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Paris Motor Show All About Sexy Cars, Less About Sexy Gals

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On: Wed, Oct 6, 2010 at 9:05AM | By: Chris Weiss

Paris Motor Show All About Sexy Cars, Less About Sexy Gals

The Paris Motor Show has been one of the hottest shows of the year in terms of sexy car and concept debuts. Just look at what we've seen so far: the lightest Lamborghini we've ever had the pleasure to meet, an all-new Jaguar plug-in supercar, six Lotus concepts, a funky Peugeot electric racer and a new BMW 6-Series, just to name a few that immediately come to mind. While all attention has been on these sexy vehicles, there's been an interesting side story going on in the background: less sexy ladies—or more accurately, less sexily dressed ladies.

Sexy women and cars have been a peanut-butter-and-jelly combination for as long as we can remember. In fact, I'd like to think that when Karl Benz finished up with his automobile back in the 1880s, he immediately called the sexiest girl in town over to lie across the hood in her best girdle to spice the design up for onlookers.

Never is the connection between eye candy of aluminum/carbon fiber and that of flesh more acute than in the auto-show circuit. Companies always employ models and hot PR folks to prance around their cars, pose for the cameras, and make the entire scene look a little more attractive. And these women aren't typically wearing long dresses and loose sweaters: skin and curves are the names of the game. In fact, take a look at any auto blog around show time and you'll usually find a post or two in some derivative of "Babes of show."

According to a Reuters report, this year's Paris Motor Show showcases a change in direction, possibly a new era in auto shows. As the report goes, automakers are looking to make their displays a little more inclusive to female consumers and the overwhelming trend is: cover up. Sure, there are still sexy models, but they're reportedly more modestly dressed than ever before. In simpler terms—less leg, less cleavage.

Interestingly, the Reuters report draws a correlation between the growth of the green car segment and the transition of spokesmodels. Now that horsepower and sheer-testosterone-fueled design have acquiesced part of the spotlight, related aspects of the show have toned down as well.

I don't know that I'd agree with that correlation, but hard numbers are always telling. The report indicates increasing numbers of female attendees at auto shows, citing specifically that a quarter of the attendees at the 2008 British Motor Show were female. Likewise, this year's Paris Show is expected to attract more female visitors than past shows. Given the shaky economic times over the past few years, automakers are playing it conservative in an attempt to reach out to all potential buyers.

One aspect that Reuters doesn't touch upon that I find interesting is the fact that this is happening in Paris. While it may be indicative of a greater trend overall (though I remember a few posts on Geneva models), it's interesting that it's gaining some notoriety in a city that's basically analogous with sex and romance. If the change can happen in the birthplace of cabaret (and the backdrop for this Honda CR-Z commercial), it's likely to happen at auto shows around the world.

Of course, this news doesn't mean that scantily-clad beauties have disappeared entirely; you just may need to look a little harder. The article mentions Lamborghini as one particular manufacturer that hasn't followed the trend toward modesty, and it's likely that other supercar manufacturers are still angling at their bread and butter. Good news for the guys—those are the type of places that they're likely to be spending at least a little time anyway.


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