Geneva round-up (3)
March 4, 2015 § Leave a comment
Have to say that I really liked the textile-skinned EDAG Light Cocoon (body construction 3D-printed): one of the more truly innovative concepts of the show, and it was a pretty little thing, too. A welcome distraction from all the super-coupes, massive crossovers/SUVs and suchlike. The Magna Mila Plus (yellow one, below) was less eye-catching and less obviously impressive at first glance, but is interesting in that it effectively offers OEMs a turnkey solution: its platform can accommodate several PHEV powertrain configurations of varying power/output/range (in combination with a three-cylinder engine) as well as bodystyles.
And Quant – last year, arousing a certain level of scepticism and accusations of vapourware, though I gave ’em the benefit of the doubt – have brought their nanoflowcell tech a stage closer to production-readiness. Quant F (the big red one, gullwing doors) promises a 30% increase in range (to 800km) over last year’s prototype, as well as an all-new two-speed auto transmission, a 1075hp peak output and 186mph top speed, and is close to final Euro-homologation; and the more affordable Quantino (compact, blue) has been developed with larger-volume sales in mind. Quant has been talking with a series of different infrastructure-providers, businesses and relevant bodies about setting up a supply-chain for the charged ionic fluid its batteries need (top-ups every 1000km); this is the difficult bit, but given that Tesla has managed to set up its Supercharger network, by no means impossible with the right partnerships in place.
Hyundai showed a version of its new Tucson SUV with PHEV powertrain: 50km all-electric range, 114bhp 1.7 diesel engine plus 68bhp e-motor driving the rear axle. And the Mitsubishi XR-PHEV II (red, bottom) looked good, too…
Non-pictorially, Koenigsegg’s Regera‘megacar’ is a PHEV, albeit one with electric motive force to add even more power rather than for any great environmental impact, I suspect; twin-turbo 5.0 V8 plus three motors (2x rear wheels, third on the crankshaft) to give a frankly ridiculous 1782bhp/1549lb ft and the title of most powerful car in production, which is probably the entire point of the thing. Similarly baffling (to me, anyway) was the high-riding Aston Martin DBX Concept (in-wheel electric motors, lithium-sulphur battery cells). However, on a far more practical everyday note – and therefore of far more use to the world – Mercedes-Benz showed a PHEV concept version of its latest V-Class MPV/executive taxi-shuttle; petrol-electric powertrain from the C350e, delivering 210hp plus 90kW from the motor (total 333hp output), 94.2mpg and an all-electric range of 50km (more details here). Oh, and the Volvo XC90 T8 PHEV (a total 400hp; 0-62mph in 5.9 seconds; 59g/m and an all-electric range of 25 miles; described more in this earlier post) looked impressive, too (below).