A FEW manufacturers certainly kept some surprises under wraps for the 2014 Paris Motor Show. Lamborghini was one.

The luxury car manufacturer revealed its Asterion four-seater supercar that has rather unique styling. Personally, I see a bit of the old De Tomaso Pantera up front but mainly it is all Lambo. It boasts seating for four in the same way as the Ferrari FF and has a petrol/electric hybrid powertrain. Not surprisingly, it is going to be no slouch, with 669kW and a claimed 0-100km/h time of just three seconds.

Sticking within the VW group, Porsche also remained on the hybrid road with the launch of a number of plug-in hybrids.

Predictably, the French marques tried to make the most of their home event. Peugeot had its dramatic Quartz crossover concept on display, but it was the 308 R that had many hacks shouting: "build it!".

One the lion is building is the new 108 with a wide range of personalisation options but unfortunately the model is not coming to SA. Citroen marked its decision to split the DS models into a standalone brand with the reveal of its Divine concept.

Predictably, the French marques tried to make the most of their home event. Peugeot had its dramatic Quartz crossover concept on display, but it was the 308 R that had many hacks shouting: "build it!".

Perhaps more Audi than Audi, especially at the rear, it could give hints at a rather nice production model for the future. The company also had a number of versions of its unique Cactus crossover on display. This model will arrive in SA in 2015. Renault pulled out the big gun in the form of Renault-Nissan Alliance boss, Carlos Ghosn, to reveal the latest generation of the Espace. It is unlikely to come to SA but it created a great deal of attention.

The Nissan IDX concept has been shown before but we had to mention it again after seeing it in the metal for the first time. It really is the definition of true retro cool and the Motor News team is hoping that Nissan will build it. If not, then you might have to settle for a slightly more subdued vehicle in the form of the Pulsar. Aiming to take on the VW Golf, the model adopts the new face of the brand but it is not yet confirmed for SA.

There was a huge crowd on the Jaguar Land Rover stand as it unveiled two new models that could redefine the company’s future. Jaguar had little success with its Ford Mondeo based X-Type, but now it has the XE which will be in SA towards the end of next year to take on the BMW 3 Series and other German rivals. Defined as a sports sedan it will have its work cut out for it and after we attended a number of workshops on the new vehicle, you can read more about it next week.

The other big deal for the company is the Land Rover Discovery Sport. If you are thinking of buying a seven-seater compact SUV, then you might want to wait until March next year when the Sport arrives. It will feature many of the innovations in the Jaguar along with seven seat space and, we are assured, proper Land Rover off-road ability. Pricing is going to be in the same ballpark as many five-seater SUVs such as the BMW X3 and Audi Q5.

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Wed Dec 07 14:16:11 SAST 2016

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