2017 Dubai International Motor Show preview: Living large

The 2017 Dubai motor show is shaping up to be all about SUVs as manufacturers ready their latest wares for the Middle East
By Dejan Jovanovic, Features Writer
November 09, 2017

Alfa Romeo Quadrifoglio Stelvio

Alfa Romeo is finally releasing the Stelvio Quadrifoglio in our region and we’ve waited long enough for the hype to show up - the first SUV ever from the Italian manufacturer is crucial for sales and is expected to carry the brand towards Alfa’s target of over 170,000 units per year. So far the Italians are coming up short for 2017, but when the Stelvio starts contributing to the bottom line in all markets we’ll know if the plan worked. In the flagship Quadrifoglio version, the plan is a 2.9-litre twin-turbocharged V6 making 505 horsepower and good for a top speed of 285kph. Around the Nürburgring Nordschleife, the SUV set a time of 7:51.7 making it the fastest SUV on the planet.


Brabus 900 G

From just Dh2.4 million, you can get yourself a G-Class to rule all from German madmen Brabus who took a G 65 and turned it into the Brabus 900 - with a 12-cylinder twin-turbocharged engine enlarged to 6.3-litre it’s rated at 900bhp and 1,500Nm of torque. This means the Brabus 900 can do 0-100kph in 3.9 seconds. Equipment includes eight-piston brake callipers, a mad body kit, leather everywhere, and a “starry night sky” LED roof liner.


Lincoln Navigator

We first saw the Lincoln Navigator in concept form at the New York auto show last year and it was a bit of a show star with outrageous gullwing doors and massive chrome wheels giving hope that Lincoln finally understood things. The interior was the best part, and at least some of that glitz has carried over into the production version making its debut at the Dubai motor show. Going up against the Cadillac Escalade the Navigator will cost around Dh300,000. It’s shed 100kg compared to the previous generation, and it comes powered by a 3.5-litre turbo V6 rated at 450bhp and driving all four wheels. When you’re at the show get a close look at the interior as it’s the Navigator’s big highlight.


Ford Expedition

The current full-size Ford Expedition SUV dates back to some dinosaur from 2003, and Ford will launch the all-new generation in the region at the Dubai show, with an eight-seater body-style, and a powertrain shared with that Navigator but toned down to 400bhp, which still affords the 2018 Expedition a towing capacity of over 4210kg. Top of the range models feature a panoramic roof, variable damping, limited-slip differential, 360-degree camera, and premium sound system.


Chevrolet Tahoe RST

Chevrolet is billing this special Tahoe RST as he most powerful Tahoe yet and it’s easy to see why - the SUV comes with a Corvette engine under the bonnet, with variable valve timing and displacing 6.2-litre for 420bhp. Additionally you get a 10-speed automatic transmission, big Brembo brakes, a loud Borla exhaust, and a whole bunch of blacked out accents replacing all the usual chrome. The wheels are 22in in diameter with the same black highlights, but the interior remains mostly standard.


Range Rover Sport

The Brits are bringing over the facelifted new 2018 Range Rover Sport model to the Middle East, with the biggest change on the inside and a pair of 10in display now ridding the interior of most of the physical switchgear. The capacitive touchscreen controls most everything in the car, and there’s a new gesture controlled sunblind that opens and closes to a wave of your hand as a neat trick. The exterior receives more restrained updates such as a few extra LEDs and slight revisions to the bumpers and grille, as well as new wheel designs.


Volkswagen Teramont

Called the Atlas elsewhere, Volkswagen is doing the smart thing and premiering the Teramont SUV at the Dubai show to go after volume-selling rivals such as the Ford Explorer, Nissan Pathfinder, and Chevrolet Trailblazer that sell in their droves. The Teramont should prove competitive with a base-spec 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbocharged engine and a top spec 3.6-litre six-pot driving all four wheels ad developing 276bhp. And seeing as the Teramont comes on VW’s MQB modular platform it should drive more like a car than just a lumbering seven-seater. You’ll have the full verdict in wheels soon.


Infiniti QX80

The Infiniti QX80 Monograph concept was a pleasant surprise from the New York auto show earlier this year and looked truly imposing. Mere months later Infiniti is ready to show off the production version of the next-generation QX80, and the world debut will take place at the Dubai motor show. As the Hong-Kong-based Japanese brand’s SUV flagship the QX80 will have a host of technologies on board and will completely depart form the current, ugly model’s design. It is expected the new QX80 will retain a development of the existing body-on-frame structure and an updated 5.6-litre V8 engine.


Maserati Levante

For 2018 Maserati has updated the Levante SUV with a few tiny changes to the wheels and the body trim that anoraks will find hard to spot. The changes that matter include some extra driver assistance systems and a new steering system. What was previously a traditional hydraulic set-up that we remember white enjoying, is now an electric power steering system which makes it possible to add the new-for-2018 driver assistance tech in the first place.


Porsche Cayenne

The new third-generation Cayenne is kind of a big deal for Porsche as the company’s second best-selling model after the Macan (last year they sold nearly 100,000 Macans, so yes, Porsche is an SUV maker…) and it’ll be making its regional debut in Dubai in base form as well as in Cayenne S and Cayenne Turbo trims, the latter currently topping the line-up with 550bhp before even more powerful, electrified Cayennes come along. We’ve already driven the third-gen in Greece so you can check out our verdict soon, but you can expect prices for the entry-level V6-engined model to start from Dh300K. The best bits are, as usual, optional, such as special brakes, 15-grand 21in wheels, rear-axle steering, and torque vectoring…