Seat Cupra R on on display at Frankfurt Motor Show 2017
Our reporters empty their notebooks to round up this week’s gossip from across the automotive industry
Respect your elders, they say, and so it was that Autocar (founded 1895) was forced to defer to Mercedes-Benz (founded 1883, depending on how you read history) boss Dieter Zetsche (substantially younger than both) when he visited the BMW stand at the end of the Frankfurt motor show press day.
Alas, our interview with BMW R&D boss Klaus Fröhlich was cut short so Zetsche could have a tour of the BMW i Vision Dynamics concept, his thoughts on which remain unrecorded.
How do you make a splash at the Frankfurt motor show when your company doesn’t have a stand? McLaren tried parking a 570S Spider outside the BMW hall, but Aston Martin CEO Andy Palmer and his team took unsubtle to new levels when they decided, quite literally, to fly the flag for the UK manufacturer.
“I do not listen to rap music,” Bentley boss Wolfgang Dürheimer proclaimed to a bunch of amused journalists at the show. His son does, though, he explained, and his son recently told him rappers own Bentleys. Dürheimer’s point was that its customer base varies around the world and Bentley cars are aspirational to rappers as much as older clientele.
Seat still hasn’t confirmed Cupra as a sub-brand but boss Luca de Meo dropped the biggest hint yet: “We will be more precise [at the] Geneva [motor show]. Talk to us then.” He said Cupra gives another dimension to the Seat brand and it wanted to develop a whole range of Cupra models.