RAC Cars News


2016 London Motor Show

By raccars Published

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Britain hasn't had an annual motor show of international importance since 2008, so the debut of the new London Motor Show last weekend was a much-welcomed event among automotive fans in the UK. All the major international brands attended the event with their latest new metal, including the first UK new model introductions from Infiniti, McLaren and MG.

The event took place at London's Battersea Evolution Centre from 6-8 May after the show's organisers secured the support of 35 manufacturers, including Aston Martin, BMW, Ford, Jaguar, Land Rover, Nissan and Rolls-Royce. The show featured 130 cars on display, among which was the rather amazing Kahn Vengeance, a bespoke British supercar based upon the Aston Martin DB9.

Prices for the limited edition vehicle, which was debuted at the Geneva Motor Show in March, start at £300,000. At the other end of the scale, Kahn also brought a one off special edition Land Rover Defender 90 to the show, featuring the firm's usual modifications and upgrades and a £65,000 price tag.

UK new product debuts at the London Motor Show

MG chose the London Motor Show to reveal its first attempt at an SUV, called the GS. It's a great value alternative to the Renault Kadjar and Nissan Qashqai, with prices starting at about £16,000, and will reach the UK market in June. Under the bonnet there's a new turbocharged 1.5 litre petrol engine, available with a new DCT automatic gearbox for higher spec models. Diesel versions will be released later on. This is the first time that the car has been seen in the UK.

Infiniti's new Q60 coupe has also been seen before, at the Geneva and Detroit motor shows, and will reach the market later this year. It's designed to take on the smart four seater coupes which usually wear premium German badges, replacing the previous Q60 which was discontinued last year.

McLaren's new Grand Tourer also attracted a great deal of interest at the show; the £154,000 570GT model. The car belongs to the Sports Series by McLaren and is designed to be a little more practical than the firm's usual output. It's got a large boot but is still luxurious, but less sports focused than the other Sports Series models, the 540C and 570S Coupe.

The new TVR

Probably the most exciting display of all was a piece of cloth... under which was the first model from the team which has taken over TVR. Unfortunately the company left the cloth in place but the firm's chief exec Les Edgar did expand upon his plans for the car, which include a Cosworth V8 and the possibility of the return of the Griffith nameplate. Such is the excitement of the revival of TVR that nearly 400 buyers have already laid down deposits for the car.

Other events

There was plenty of other visitor entertainment apart from new model reveals, including a display focusing on vehicles of the future which included the innovative Riversimple RASA, a two seater hydrogen car from a Welsh company. The firm also announced plans to release a larger, four seater version of the same car; an environmentally friendly van; plus a Bloodhound SSC replica - the 1,000mph car preparing to set a new land speed record.

The event's lecture theatre featured a programme of talks from the likes of Nigel Mansell, Tiff Needell and Sir Stirling Moss, plus the opportunity to take a test drive with these high profile figures from motorsport. There was also an autonomous emergency braking showcase featuring live demos, so that visitors could experience the technology in a controlled environment and discover how important tyre tread depth is to braking performance.

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