The Audi good, and just OK

e-Tron Spider (top) is a winner, and so is the A7 Sportback (above), but the C-pillar could use some work. Photo credit: MARK RECHTIN
Disclosure: As an Audi owner, I have a personal interest in seeing what Audi has to unveil. Fortunately, Paris 2010 showed that Audi styling is still at the top of its game.

The e-Tron Spider isn't quite as cool as the coupe from Detroit, but then I've always preferred hardtops to the open-air. But the massive expanse of hood, the sharp creases running down its flanks, and the squinting front fascia give the e-Tron an imposing appearance.

Perhaps more attuned to the market is the A7 Sportback. However, Audi is a little late, already having given Mercedes an entire generation of the CLS coupe/sedan. Also, Audi styling may have fallen a bit short in the rear-three-quarter area of the A7, with a rather dull C-pillar interpretation that should be the signature line of the vehicle. Instead, it looks stolen from the Aston Martin DB9.

There are worse vehicles to pillage, of course, but Audi should make its own imprint on the segment.