Battersea Park was once again the host of the London Motor Show. Over 130 brand new cars (and a couple of classics) were on display from affordable family cars like the Skoda Kodiaq to exotic supercars like the Lamborghini Aventador S.
MG chose this as the venue to unveil its all new XS. The compact crossover SUV is a rebranded version of the Chinese ZS and will rival the Ssangyong Tivoli and Dacia Duster. It is a sign that the old British brand is very much back in action.
Speaking of legendary British cars, this show also marked an end of an era for the London Taxi. This time next year, London will require all cabs in the capital to be hybrid or electric. The upcoming TX5 will be a range extended electric-vehicle, marking an end to diesel powered black cabs. At the entrance was the last of the breed and a book which fans could sign to say goodbye to the old or good luck to the new green black cab.
Stop the Crash held a demonstration on autonomous emergency braking (AEB) with a new Mazda3. If the driver fails to stop in time, the car will automatically stop before hitting an obstacle. What makes the Mazda particularly special is that it also works going backwards! The same cannot be said for a lot of more expensive luxury cars including Infiniti.
If you’ve ever seen an American muscle car or pickup truck on the streets here, chances are it was imported by Clive Sutton. Once an official Chrysler/Jeep dealer, it now helps bring over anything from a Ford SVT Raptor to a 707bhp, Dodge Challenger Hellcat.
David Brown Automotive showed off two of its products. The Speedback, inspired by the Aston Martin DB5/6 and the Mini Remastered, a restored and modified classic Mini.
The show also played host to a number of UK debuts. These include the Aston Martin Valkyrie, a £1 million track car and the new Alpine which drew one of the largest crowds of any car there.
With the classic car shows at Excel and Alexandra Palace, daily events at the Ace Café, and Formula E in Battersea Park, London truly is a city for car enthusiast. The cynic would want to talk about the congestion charge and bus lanes. But scratch just beneath the surface and you will find a heart that beats with a love of cars.