By the time you read this, the 2015 Singapore Motorshow should be in full swing from 15-18 January after a 7-year hiatus...
Singapore - It doesn't seem like all that long ago, but the last time we enjoyed a local motorshow was in 2008, incidentally the first year of the Singapore Grand Prix, the inaugural night race in the F1 calendar and the first street circuit in Asia. Folks who travel widely for work and pleasure may have had the opportunity to sample the major motorshows across the world, where world-firsts and premieres are standard fare, especially at the bigger shows, but based on past experience, the Singapore version tends to involve intense car-selling as well. However, that's not to say visitors won't see their fair share of new models too –driven by the Motor Traders Association of Singapore (or MTA for short), the 2015 Singapore Motorshow will showcase 26 brands and see the unveiling of over 20 new cars.
Tickets to the event are available on-site and priced at $6 each, with free entry to anyone shorter than 1.2m. A limited number of special preview tickets are available at $10, which allow visitors to enter the show at 12 noon on 15 January (instead of 5pm for the regular tickets).
The 4C marks a return to compact, lightweight coupes for the brand and is certainly a long time coming to Singapore. A 1750cc turbocharged 4pot is mounted in the midship and is mated to the 'Alfa TCT' dual-clutch transmission. The sexy 4C is capable of generating 1.1g of lateral acceleration and more than 1.2g of deceleration force.
This is a model that tends to polarise opinions, but the fact that Audi keeps rolling them out must mean it's a good niche for the brand, since it's a crossover-coupe-sedan-liftback alternative for executive types who want to avoid the sedan cliche. Of course, there's nothing like seeing it in person to appreciate the suprisingly balanced proportions.
The third generation TT showcases innovative technologies in its engine and in its control and display concept, including the Audi virtual cockpit.
The latest X6's aesthetics create a well-blended subtly hulking silhouette that no longer looks as brutish as before. Of course, the earlier model had its fans, but there's a grace to the new car and its cabin accoutrements that should see its appeal transcend this limited niche following.
Experience a healthy dose of French flair with the Cactus, which provides thrills of a more avantgarde, yet honest variety so one never feels that the car is 'trying too hard'.
Finally available in right-hand drive (well, not this display car, but in general), this automotive icon of Americana is expected to hit our shores before the first half of 2016 at latest in both big V8 and 2.3-litre Ecoboost guises. The earliest we could expect it? Q4 2015.
This seven-seater compact MPV should tick all the right boxes as far as Singapore is concerned, as it includes thoughtful features, such as tumbling seats and a hard-wearing cabin.
Q50 Sports Sedan (DAS)
Infiniti showcases its award-winning DAS (Direct Adaptive Steering) system on its Q50 compact sports sedan, the first ever steer-by-wire system in a production car.
Lexus takes the fight to the Germans with its F models, which now includes the recently unveiled GS F. Unlike its M and AMG rivals, the RC F coupe is still animated by a naturally-aspirated V8.
Nissan's crossover concept gets a small punchy engine that should provide just the right amount of grunt without making you visit the pumps too often (even if gas prices are pretty low now).
VW's 'coupe' is the third generation in the Scirocco line-up and features a distinctive design that draws inspiration from the Iroc Concept. Visually, the Scirocco's shape has been refined and modernised, while new engines underscore its commitment to deliver more power with better efficiency.