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The analogue car still has the power to seduce

It’s not only about automation: the pleasure of driving still counts in Geneva. A thrilling tour of vehicles mounting Pirelli tyres

Home road The analogue car still has the power to seduce
The analogue car still has the power to seduce

There can be no doubt that technology has reinvented the automobile in recent years. Increasingly sophisticated infotainment systems and assistance services focusing on safety are the guiding lights in the sector. And yet, in the midst of all this connectivity and automation, drivers still enjoy the simple, ancestral pleasure of driving, the sensation of dominating the road, of feeling in charge of the vehicle. We are seeing this conflict between analogue and digital in many aspects of reality, and it is obvious at the show in Geneva, where two apparently opposed worlds work together on the synthesis of thrilling hi-tech automobiles. And it’s no coincidence that these cars mount Pirelli tyres: “Long P” tyres, in the vanguard of production technology, are perfect for serving all that horsepower, sudden acceleration, and sporty, aggressive driving style.

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Visitors to Geneva 2018 on the lookout for bold design rather than interiors that look like airplane cabins will find what they are looking for in the new Compass Night Eagle. The vehicle demonstrates Jeep’s heritage, but with a darker, sportier look thanks to its stylish details and black finishes. The look is underlined by dark glass and 18” Gloss Black alloy rims with matching frames around the fog lights. And to make the best of a 2.0 MultiJet II 140 HP engine, Pirelli Scorpion tyres, guaranteeing stability and maximum braking on surfaces of all kinds, from gravel to snow. 

The “analogue” driver has an eye for exclusive details and customisation, and walks into a car dealership the way one walks into a high fashion boutique, carefully considering every little detail. This is the philosophy behind the new Mini Cabrio and Countryman models unveiled in Ginevra. A new steering wheel, rear lights recalling the Union Jack, a choice of designs and patterns to be applied to the sides, dashboard and handles. While the options also include a little light that projects the Mini logo onto the ground when the doors are opened. A style reconciling renewal with tradition, combined with a guarantee of safety, the Cinturato P7, the Grenn Performance all-season tyre created to offer the perfect combination between low resistance to rolling, comfort, mileage and braking performance.

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Apart from style, what traditional drivers want most is speed. And there is no faster car on the road than the Huracan Performante Lamborghini presented at the Palaexpo in Switzerland: a 640 HP V10 engine reaching a maximum speed of 325 km/h. Feeling the sure grip of the P Zero tyres on the pavement as you hit the gas, accelerating from 0 to 100 in only 2.9 seconds, is a sensation no kind of automation can offer! A sensation you can also get in the Ferrari 488 Pista, the showcase vehicle of this edition of the Geneva Motor Show. And while it’s true that the 488 Pista is quite different from the previous special series due to technology transfer from the world of racing, it’s even truer that this car is seductive “analogically”, for the elegance of its lines and its sporty look: aerodynamic, lighter than 90 kg, with 50 HP more than the standard model, it has a power that has never been seen before in a Ferrari, reaching 340 km/h, covering 0-100 km/h in 2.85” and 0-200 km/h in 7.6”. The sound of the engine is truly unique: a roar of greater intensity and quality, at any power and in any gear. A unique feature, like the black P Zero tyres contrasting with Maranello red, a colour combination that has been kept constant for seventy years to preserve all the sensuality of an analogue car wrapped up in high-tech sophistication.  

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