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Geneva Auto Show Opens With a Bang

This week officially kicks off press days at the Geneva International Motor Show, which will open to the public on Thursday. Geneva is one of the largest auto shows in the world, and plenty of manufacturers send new concept and pre-production vehicles to Switzerland to gauge public interest. The big stories making headlines this week come from two of the world’s largest supercar authorities, the Lamborghini Veneno and Ferrari LaFerrari, but many more will bow by the time the first civilian feet step on the floor. Here is a guide to the most significant and interesting models:

Alfa Romeo 4C

We first wrote about the Alfa Romeo 4C just a few weeks ago, but we have more pictures, and power and weight specs have finally been released. The car will feature an all-aluminum turbocharged 1.8L 4-cylinder turning out 240hp. No word on what the tub and body panels are made of, but the dry weight of the car will be about 1,975lbs. At €60,000 ($78,000), the car sure isn’t cheap, but a 0-60mph time of 4.5 seconds is certainly impressive for something that could probably kick the crap out of a Lotus. Here’s a little bit of car porn to get you through the day:

Alpina B3

For years, Alpina has been BMW’s lunatic uncle that everybody feels really uncomfortable around when he’s not taking his pills but somehow still gets invited to Thanksgiving dinner. Alpina cars are sold through BMW dealerships when BMW decides it doesn’t want to make an M version of a car, like the 7-Series based 540hp B7. With the B3, Alpina stuffs a 410hp twin-turbo 6-clyinder under the hood of a 3-Series to placate those screaming for the new M3 to finally arrive.

Jaguar XF Sportbrake

Add this wagon version of Jaguar’s entry-level car to the list of automobiles that won’t make it to America unless hell freezes over, especially since this one is fitted with a diesel.

Jeep Grand Cherokee

While its baby brother, the standard Cherokee, has been put through the wringer throughout the last week because of a controversial redesign, the big bad Grand Cherokee will likely walk away unscathed. The new front end is much cleaner and more rounded than the squared mug of the outgoing model, and will, along with a completely refreshed Compass, allow Jeep fans to simmer just a little bit.

Spyker B6 Concept

Amazingly, Donkervoort is not the only supercar manufacturer to hail from the Netherlands. The two companies share similarities in that production of their respective cars is extremely limited, but where Donkervoort shoves drivers into a seat surrounded by little more than a frame and engine, Spyker creates real sports cars and GTs. They also produce the most beautiful shifters in the entire world, hands down.

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About Cameron Rogers

Cameron Rogers is the founder and lead writer at Downshift Autos, the only automotive blog on the Internet*. Born in the back of an AMC Gremlin, Cameron vowed to never let this extraordinarily embarrassing detail define him, so help him God. He drives a GTI but absolutely will not shut up about it if somebody asks. He will not hesitate to let people know that no, they shouldn't get a Porsche 911 when a Morgan 3 Wheeler is so obviously the superior choice. He is obsessed with the seats of a Carrera GT and the steering wheel of a Fisker Karma. He once sat in the driver's seat of a Tesla Model S, his greatest accomplishment to date. He is just now realizing that writing an autobiography, however miniscule, in the third person is odd and unnerving. *As of this writing, Cameron has been informed that there are, in fact, many websites and blogs centered around cars and car culture. He regrets his grievous error.

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