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Geneva 2012: Ten great concept cars

Here are ten concepts that show just why Geneva is so special a venue.

Every year, the design houses wheel out a selection of exciting and interesting concepts. 2012 is especially vintage, though, because it's the Centenary of Bertone, and ItalDesign seems to be back on form. But these two weren't the only players in town as our gallery proves.

Enjoy the concepts, and let us know what you think. Are these the supercars of tomorrow?

Infiniti Emerg-e   ItalDesign Giugiaro Brivido   Suzuki G70 Concept   Rinspeed 'Dock+Go'
1. Infiniti Emerg-e

Infiniti Emerg-e

It might look like a motor show teaser, but the mid-engined Emerg-e is an electric sports car is based on a ‘viable’ mechanical package, with much of it developed with Lotus. infiniti is pushing hard on its future model plans, and expect this to be central to its plans to become part of the automotive elite in coming years.

2. ItalDesign Giugiaro Brivido

ItalDesign Giugiaro Brivido

Now that VW owns ItalDesign, there seems to be some serious budget. And it showed with the four-seater Brivido Concept – a GT hybrid with VW underpinnings. For a start, two were shown, one in Martini racing livery - or something very close to it.

More iconic paint schemes are needed, we say. JPS Bertone, anyone? Alitalia Pinifarina? We hope so.

3. Suzuki G70 Concept

Suzuki G70 Concept

The G70 weighs just 730kg and has a drag coefficient at least 10 per cent lower than that of a current Suzuki 'A' segment model. But of course, it's also cute and retro. And green!

4. Rinspeed 'Dock+Go'

Rinspeed "Dock+Go"

These plug 'n' play set-ups have been tried before, and have never got off the grounf - but there's something quite appealing about Rinspeed's Innovative modular mobility system from Swiss automotive visionary Frank M. Rinderknecht.

Pininfarina Cambiano concept   Morgan +E   IED Cisitalia 202 E   Honda NSX Concept
5. Pininfarina Cambiano concept

Pininfarina Cambiano concept

Slightly anonymous compared with some of the wilder concepts at the show, but the unusual 2+1 door arrangement looks smart on this low environmental impact concept. Innovative, too with its electric motor in each wheel and a front-mounted diesel turbine.

6. Morgan +E

Morgan +E

Seems odd that we're called Octane, and yet secretly like certain electric cars. We suspect the Morgan +E will be another of those guilty - and yet wholesome - pleasures. It's based on the aluminium chassis from the Aero Supersports but is powered by a 94hp electric motor developed by Zytek. A lithium-ion battery is built into the vehicle's aluminium structure, and the electric motor is mounted within the transmission tunnel.

7. IED Cisitalia 202 E

IED Cisitalia 202 E

The Istituto Europeo di Design of Turin exhumes a great name, Cisitalia, to adorn its 202 E design study. Apparently, this is based on the study of the Cisitalia 202, but it's far from being the elegant racer that was. The E stands for evolution, but could equally mean 'evacuate'.

8. Honda NSX Concept

Honda NSX Concept

Honda's next generation supercar features a V6 mid-mounted engine with Sport Hybrid SH-AWD. Dull acronyms, we agree, but it's exciting us that this car is expected to go on sale within the next three years.

Bertone Nuccio   MINI Clubvan concept        
9. Bertone Nuccio

Bertone Nuccio concept

A mid-engined sports car is the latest concept from the famed Italian styling house celebrating its 100th anniversary. Main influence would appear to be the Bertone Stratos Zero concept - but who cares, it looks great!

10. MINI Clubvan concept

MINI Clubvan concept

Considering there's a new MINI due for launch next year, it's fascinating to see that the company is still creating new versions, and experimenting with new concepts. Okay, so the Clubvan is basically a panelled-in Clubman, but it looks surprisingly usable - and desirable. Florists and disigner patisserie owners, queue here for the production version.

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