Brussels Salon 2013

Sandwiched between two giants of the international car scene, the Detroit and Geneva motor shows, the Brussels Salon always seems a little obscure by comparison. It receives far less media attention, but is arguably commercially more important. Not only because of the numbers in which the public attend – over 600,000 turned up last year – but also because they come with the intention to buy, rather than fawn over spellbinding concept cars. Brussels may not have the big reveals, but it's a steady indicator of which cars the major manufacturers think are viable products to sell to the public.

That said, the Belgium new car market suffered last year with 86,000 fewer registrations than the 572,000 in 2011. More worryingly, the average carbon dioxide emissions of the privately-bought contingent of those new cars was higher than in 2011, at 130g/km, although for company-bought cars it was lower. 

Environmentally friendly cars are less and less a curiosity, however, and more real-world electric and hybrid vehicles are making it onto the main floors of the major motor shows. This year the show is running until the 20th January, so there's still time to drop in.

Here are the pick of the bunch from Brussels 2013.

Mitsubishi Space Star 1 litre petrol - 92g/km CO2 - €13,495

Hyundai ix35 Fuel Cell hydrogen fuel cell - 360 mile range - 134bhp

Nissan TeRRA Concept hydrogen fuel cell - 400 mile range 

Nissan e-NV200 electric - 100 mile range - 108bhp - due 2014

Mitsubishi Fugo Canter Eco Hybrid diesel-electric hybrid 

Toyota Touring Sports Hybrid 87g/km CO2 

Volkswagen eT! Concept electric

Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid 


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