Bentley Continental GT Cabriolet V8
Jaguar XK SE
Mini London 2012 Edition
Rear Paring Zone
BMW 640i SE
Range Rover Evoque
Ferrari F40 s/n 80706
Ferrari FF s/n 188603
Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG
London, 11 – 17 June 2012
The predominantly glass skyscrapers of the Canary Wharf complex, in the east part of London, once again hosted the Motorexpo car show between 11 – 17 June. The show also runs in Toronto, Canada, and New York, USA, and is billed as the world’s largest free motoring event, with an estimated 425,000 visitors to the 2011 London show. The 2012 gathering featured the participation of many major manufacturers or their sales organisations, including Bentley, BMW, Chrysler, Jaguar, Jeep, Kia, Land Rover, Lexus, McLaren, Mercedes-Benz, Mini and Volvo. The prestige dealer H.R. Owen represented Aston Martin, Ferrari, Lamborghini, Maserati and Rolls Royce, whilst Richter Sport showed the ABT Sportsline Audis.
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The classic element was represented by H&H, for whom it was their inaugural visit, and there was a separate “Eco Zone” located in Cabot Square, where alternative energy cars were on display from the likes of Nissan, Tesla and Vauxhall. Land Rover had an expansive display in Jubilee Park, and nearby was their Driving Experience rough terrain course.
From the list of manufacturers represented, it can be seen that there was a very broad spectrum of vehicles on display, ranging from the eco friendly electric cars like the Tesla Roadster, Nissan Leaf and Vauxhall Ampera, to desirable exotica like the Ferrari California and FF, the Lamborghini Aventador, the McLaren MP4-12C and the wild ABT Audi R8 GTS, together with the Epitome of luxury in the form of the Rolls Royce Phantom Coupe. The show also featured the UK debut of the new Mercedes-Benz A-Class, the Jaguar XF Sportbrake and the Bentley Continental V8 GT and GTC, the latter being in bright yellow, which brightened a dull and wet day. There was also the opportunity for attendees to drive examples of many of the cars on display, not only “humble” offerings like the Nissan Leaf, but others up to and including Lamborghini and Maserati.
If classic cars were more to your liking then there were the H&H displays in the East and West Wintergardens, that in the East section being an Italian Zone, which featured a range of cars around the Obika Mozzerella Bar, which had a special Motorexpo menu. As with the modern section of the show, the range of models on display was very broad, ranging from a 1966 Mini Cooper S rally car to a 2009 Lamborghini Reventon in a menacing battleship grey. Along the way there was a Jaguar E-Type lightweight, body number 14, built to correct specification from one of the spare period aluminium monocoques, further Jaguars in the forms of an XK 120 Roadster, a 1964 E-Type Roadster and a XK 220, plus a Ferrari F40 and Dino 246 GT, a Ford GT and a Lotus Elan, to name but a few.