2011 Geneva Motor Show in Pictures [Gallery]

Just when automakers thought it safe to roll out new models in the wake of the devastating economic crisis — 170 premieres are advertised for the 81st Geneva International Motor Show opening this week — confidence is shaken by a spike in oil prices due to civil unrest in Libya and other energy-producing nations.

The car industry, it seems, just can’t get a break. Just when automakers thought it safe to roll out new models in the wake of the devastating economic crisis — 170 premiers are advertised for the 81st Geneva International Motor Show opening this week — confidence is shaken by a spike in oil prices due to civil unrest in Libya and other energy-producing nations.

Gas pump prices, which are at a seasonal record in the U.S., will sharpen attention at the auto show on technologies that squeeze more power out of conventional engines, along with much-anticipated news in hybrid and electric vehicles. Although most carmakers are showing upbeat signs of recovery, the key theme, as during the financial crisis years, will once again be fuel efficiency.

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