Cover Porsche showcase at the Singapore Motorshow 2020

From high-performance sports coupes to technologically advanced electric cars, this year's Singapore Motorshow saw the launch of more than 20 vehicles. Here's a round-up of the ones that caught our attention


What M8 Competition Coupe

The appeal The new model is a 2+2-seater grand tourer that really packs a punch—equipped with a 4.4L V8 twin-turbocharged engine, it only takes 3.2sec to do the century sprint. With 625hp, it is the most powerful M car made yet.

Other details Its top speed is an electronically limited 250km/h, but with the optional M Driver’s package, it can go up to 305km/h. The model is also available in a convertible version.    

The perfect road trip with the M8 Competition Coupe would be… “taking it out on the Nürburgring in Germany, specifically the Nordschleife route which goes through the Eifel forests. It is well known as one of the most demanding tracks in the world, with tricky corners, crests, steep inclines and gradients. Highly skilled drivers, and their vehicles, are put to the test on this track!” says Christopher Wehner, managing director of BMW Group Asia.

Next for BMW Production of the marque's fully electric BMW iNext will begin in 2021. The car will be the first in the world to be equipped with 5G technology from Samsung and its subsidiary, Harman. It will also feature a fifth-generation electric drive unit with a range of over 600km, and is designed for Level 3 automated driving. 

(Related: The New BMW 8 Series Lives Up To Its Iconic Name As The Marque's Top Grand Tourer)


What Porsche Cayenne Coupe

The appeal The new variant features an adaptive rear spoiler—an industry-first for SUVs—which increases the downforce on the rear axle and the car’s driving stability.

Other details The model boasts a more sculpted exterior, which is complemented by a sloping roofline that resembles that of the 911. It will be available with three engine variants: the 340hp base model, the 2.9L V6-powered Cayenne S Coupe with 440hp, and the 550hp Cayenne Turbo Coupe with a 4.0L twin-turbocharged V8 engine.    

The perfect road trip with the Cayenne Coupe would be… “taking it on the annual Porsche Club Singapore ‘Drive of the Year’. This drive takes about 10 days—from Singapore, we’d drive north through Malaysia and, most of the time, continue on to Thailand," says Henrik Dreier, general manager, Singapore, Porsche Asia Pacific. “To me, SUVs are perfect for long road trips because they have abundant storage space. The Cayenne Coupe combines this spacious design with the characteristics of a sports car, which provides great driving pleasure especially on winding country roads.”

Next for Porsche The German marque has extended its production facility in Zuffenhausen to accommodate its new fully electric model, Taycan. But in an effort to reduce its carbon footprint, it is working to ensure that the factory has no negative environmental impact—to do this, it will ensure the production of the Taycan is carbon neutral. “In addition to using electricity from renewable sources and biogas to generate heat, the new production buildings are designed to be extremely energy efficient,” shares Dreier. “The assembly line will take place in a ‘factory of the future’—flexible, networked and using 4.0 production technology.”

(Related: 5 Reasons Why You Should Drive The New Porsche Macan)

Above The Land Rover Defender tackles difficult road conditions with ease. Video: Land Rover

Land Rover

What Land Rover Defender

The appeal The new Defender pays tribute to more than seven decades of adventures and innovation, while showcasing itself as a car for today’s drivers. So while it can easily navigate the most remote and unforgiving terrains around the world, it’s fully equipped to keep you connected and safe whereever you may be. The Configurable Terrain Response function, for instance, which is seen in a Land Rover for the first time, enables drivers to more precisely adjust a range of ride settings according to the road conditions.

Other details The new off-roader also features a useful function called ClearSight Ground View, which gives the driver a 180-degree view of what's under the front of the car by projecting camera imagery onto the touchscreen inside the cabin.

The Defender will be available in two versions—the long-wheelbase Defender 110 and the Defender 90. It features the marque’s new all-aluminium D7x architecture an all-aluminium monocoque construction, which results in a stiffer body structure. Certain iconic design features of its predecessor, such as its squarish head and rear lights, have also been updated. On the inside, the model also features a new Pivi Pro infotainment system, which has a dual eSIM setup (a world’s first) that allows for owners to connect two smartphones at the same time.  

The perfect road trip with the Defender would be... “to anywhere I could really put it to use,” says Paul Varley, general manager of Jaguar Land Rover at Wearnes Automotive. “A few years ago, I was living in Oman and although I was working for a different brand, I owned a Land Rover Discovery 4. I once took that to the Wahiba Sands desert and it was sensational. It was a beautiful setting, extremely peaceful and I had so much fun driving the car up and down the dunes. So [with the new Defender], I would probably go there and explore more of the desert. Then, I’ll maybe take a few more days to explore the various off-road treks through the wadis. Alternatively, if I had plenty of time, I’d love to try the Singapore to London Overland trek. It will be amazing to see so many countries and cultures, and drive across many difficult terrains.”

Next for Land Rover The petrol version of the Defender will launch in Singapore in the second half of this year, while its plug-in hybrid variant is also in the pipeline for 2020.

(Related: Mercedes-Benz's Newest GLB SUV Has Been Designed For Families)


What Audi e-tron 

The appeal This full-size SUV is the German marque’s first fully electric model, and it is 11 years in the making—the e-tron concept was first unveiled at the 2009 International Motor Show Germany. 

Other details The car is equipped with two electric motors—one at the front and another at the rear—which jointly produce 300kW of power, allowing the car to go from 0 to 100km/h in 5.7sec and reach an electronically-limited top speed of 200km/h. It can travel a range of over 400km on a single charge, with its battery rechargeable to 80 per cent in about 30min. Customer deliveries have already started in December 2019.

The perfect road trip with the Audi e-tron would be… “to three places. One is right here in Singapore, which is my new home. The e-tron is very well-suited for this city. Number two is to Hokkaido during winter. This would be the perfect combination of having fun skiing in the powder and testing the e-tron’s electric quattro all-wheel drive system on snow and ice. Lastly, it’d be to Tuscany in spring. I’ve lived in Italy, and I love this region. The winding roads and hills of Chianti are a true driver’s dream. With its exceptionally low centre of gravity, the e-tron would be the perfect companion for a truly memorable tour of the vineyards," says Markus Schuster, managing director of Audi Singapore.

Next for Audi The Sportback variant of the e-tron is slated to launch in the second half of this year, further demonstrating Audi’s commitment to introducing more than 30 electric models globally by 2025. Other notable launches from the marque taking place later this year include the Q7, which will feature a mild-hybrid technology for the first time, the RS 6 Avant and RS 7 Sportback.

On a company level, Schuster highlights that the Audi e-tron factory located in Brussels, Belgium, is certified carbon neutral, which aligns with Audi’s goal to ensure this is the case for all of its production facilities by the year 2050. “We are evaluating every part of the value chain to really shape not just our own future, but that of the entire industry.”

(Related: 8 Car Brands That Launched Their Very First Road-Ready Electric Cars In 2019)


What Lexus LC Special Edition

The appeal The sports coupe features a sophisticated new paintwork called Nori Green Pearl, which accentuates its sculpted curves. There is also just one unit in this specially developed colour available in Singapore.

Other details The car is powered by a 5.0L, V8 engine, which is capable of producing 470bhp and a max torque of 540Nm at 4,800rpm. Paired with a 10-speed automatic transmission, and the car can accelerate from 0 to 100km/h in 4.7sec.

The perfect road trip with the LC Special Edition would be… “along the west coast of the US, and in-land to Napa Valley. It’s not just crafted for performance, it also prides itself on true functionality and extraordinary levels of comfort. For example, it comes with a Power Front Headrest with memory function that optimises the positioning of the headrest, as well as a glass roof which can allow natural light into the car and me to have magnificent view of the beautiful vineyards,” says Samuel Yong, Borneo Motors Singapore’s director of marketing and business strategy.

Next for Lexus Later this year, the Japanese marque will be launching the convertible version of the sports coupe. It will also continue to push ahead with its global electrification strategy, “Lexus Electrified”—most recently, the marque unveiled the UX 300e, its first-ever battery electric vehicle, at the Guangzhou International Automobile Exhibition. This model is currently only available in China and Europe.

(Related: The Fully Electric Pininfarina Battista Accelerates Faster Than A Modern-Day Formula One Car)


What Maserati Levante GTS 

The appeal The model’s 3.8L twin-turbocharged V8 engine, which produces 550hp and 730Nm of torque, is one of the marque’s most powerful yet. It was previously only used for the flagship Quattroporte GTS.  

Other details Top speed of the car is 292km/h, while its century sprint timing is an impressive 4.3sec. Design-wise, notable features include an exclusive full-grain Natural Leather interior, a V8-specific front grille with a chromed frame, a redesigned gear lever with improved functionality, and carbon fibre touches throughout the cabin.

The perfect road trip with the Maserati Levante GTS would be… “to the Stelvio Pass in South Tyrol, Italy, which is supposed to be one of the most amazing stretches of road in the world, with scenery to match,” says Nick Syn, director of Tridente Automobili, the distributor for Maserati in Singapore.

Next for Maserati The launch of the Ghibli mild hybrid this year. (A mild hybrid sits between a traditional gasoline car and a full hybrid vehicle, with its electric motor acting as a power booster to improve the gas engine’s output and thus, improve the car’s performance. It also helps to save fuel in situations such as when the car is cruising or stopping at a traffic light, as the gas engine can be turned off.)

(Related: The New Bentley Flying Spur Is Surprisingly Nimble On The Narrow Roads Of Monaco)