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Saturday, October 04, 2008
Paris Auto Show - 2008
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2008 Paris Auto Show - 2008 - Mondial De L'Automobile

The 2008 Paris Auto Show (2008 Mondial De L'Automobile) opens today to the public following two days of viewing by the world's automotive journalists. The Show runs from October 4-19, 2008, and is held at the Porte De Versailles in Paris. Its an enormous exposition with 8 immense buildings housing 362 automobile types from 25 countries. The show organizers have done an excellent job with the quality of the vehicle displays, the information kiosks, and the feeling you get that you have seen the best in motoring and new automotive technology from around the world. The show is not to be missed if you are in Paris in October.

This year, the clear theme of the Paris Auto Show is environmental sustainability in motoring and the application of new technology towards this goal. The majority of automobile manufacturers had both concept and new upcoming production models that display the latest in fuel efficiency, hybrid, and electric car technology. France's Citroen displayed their latest electric concept car called the Citroen Cactus Electrique (see photo). Toyota introduced their new Toyota iQ, which is an ultra compact car for urban motoring which will be available for purchase in January 2009 within greater France and other parts of Europe. There are two available engines in the new iQ, a 68 hp VVT-i gas engine at a base price of 12,980 euros, and a diesel 90 hp D-4D version at a base price of 15,180 euros.

Another star of the show was the smart ed (electric drive). Daimler, the parent company of smart, will perform a full infrastructure test of 100 smart ed's, called "e-mobility Berlin", starting in September 2008. Electricity company RWE of Germany will be a partner in the smart ed project and provide the charging infrastructure. Daimler's President and CEO, Dieter Zetsche, was at the Paris Auto Show yesterday receiving a number of vehicle awards on behalf of Daimler. Zetsche says "Zero emissions electric cars could shape the image of environmentally aware cities because zero local emission motoring is no longer science fiction." The new smart ed (electric drive) will be equipped with Daimler's high technology lithium ion batteries, with very compact dimensions.

The diesel powered 33 kW/45 bhp smart fortwo cdi has the lowest CO2 emissions of any production car worldwide with an output of just 88g/km of CO2 and a fuel efficiency of 3.3 litres of fuel per 100 kms. It can travel almost 1000 km on a tank of fuel. The diesel smart cdi also has a newly introduced diesel particulate filter that reduces the emissions significantly.

The Paris Auto Show was also the place to see fashion as there were some very beautiful women presenting the new car models from each manufacturer. Some of the automobiles are benefiting from an integrated approach to design, fashion and high technology low emissions engineering.

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