WHAT IS OICA? OICA, the International Organization of Motor Vehicle Manufacturers, was originally founded in 1919, with headquarters in Paris. OICA has as its members 37 national professional associations on all five continents and consequently represents practically the entire world automobile industry. The main tasks of OICA are to defend and promote the interests of vehicle manufacturers and importers, through their national federation.
OICA was granted consultative status at the United Nations in 1956. OICA activities are conducted mainly through its four specialized committees, all under the leadership of the General Assembly and the Council These committees are the Technical Committee, the Communication Committee, the Statistics Committee and the Exhibition Committee.
OICAâ€™S MISSION The general objectives of OICA are toÂ : Defend the interests of vehicle manufacturers, assemblers and importers. - Ensure a permanent link between the national Associations of the automobile industry. - Undertake studies on any question of mutual interest relating to the development and future of the automobile and its industry. Establish, whenever possible and where appropriate, convergent standpoints of the automobile industry on the same questions.
- Collect and circulate, for the benefit of these Associations and their respective members, any useful information available in these areas. - Represent - whenever this is felt advisable - the automobile industry at the international level, in particular with the competent intergovernmental and international bodies, as well as other international organizations concerned with these questions. - Disseminate and promote automobile industry common viewpoints amongst these bodies and the general public.
reen Car Design has evolved from just a modest idea back in 2008 to a well and truly established entity of its own today. I had never imagined that we could come this far, and being present inside the Paris Motor Show 2012, the most visited car show in the world, is a dream realised. In automotive terms we are a crossover magazine; not only do we love cars but we also recognise design as being pivotal in making them greener. This is our focal point and what sets us apart from other car magazines. What has also made us unique has been our exclusively digital platform, and whilst we have mastered our virtual presence it is with palpable excitement that we delve into the 'real world' with our first-ever printed magazine! Inside you'll find stories on two of the most exciting eco-car projects in the world – the all-electric Lightning GT superEV and the hydrogen-powered Riversimple, which takes our first front cover. Each sits at either end of the green spectrum and offer a different philosophy on zero-emissions motoring. We've also included a guide to this year's show and a map of the Porte de Versailles Expo (you'll need it!), as well as a taste of what you can expect on our website. We hope you enjoy this year's Paris Motor Show as much as we will, and don't forget to check out all of this year's developments on www.greencardesign.com. Welcome to Green Car Design!
Editor and Founder Hannah Macmurray
P.43 08 PERFORMANCE HYBRIDS Same price, same performance, but very different: BMW ActiveHybrid 3 v Infiniti M35h
10 TOYOTA YARIS HYBRID Toyota deliver a knock-out blow to the competition with a sharp and extremely efficient new Yaris
12 KIA CEE’D ECODYNAMICS After arriving late for the original Cee’d, Peter Schreyer delivers a real head turner
14 TWINAIR INVASION Fiat Group inject more fun into the small-car market with four new TwinAir models
16 ELECTRIC: LIGHTNING GT Looks like an E-Type, goes like a 911, clean as a Nissan Leaf
20 HYDROGEN: RIVERSIMPLE Surely it’s only a matter of time now?
24 MIA ELECTRIC France’s latest micro.bus goes on the charm-offensive in London
26 MURAT GÜNAK Interiew: Quick-fire questions with the former VW design boss and mia electric design director
27 GALLERIES Some of our favorite photographs this year, straight from our own lenses
38 PARIS MOTORSHOW GREEN MAP Paris is the largest motor show in the world. Don’t get lost.
43 PARIS PREVIEW What to see, where to see it, and why. A Green Car Design guide to Paris 2012
52 ELECTRIC DREAMS Are cars like the BMW i8 actually slowing down the rate of EV development?
56 ET VOILA! Peugeot’s new supermini has put them back on the map, but just how good is the new 208?
59 ANNA COSTAMAGNA Interview: Interior Design Manager for Peugeot’s 208 gives GCD an insight
62 PARIS DESIGN TRENDS Horizontal graphics and in-car apps: An exclusive trend report preview from the pros at the Car Design Research consultancy
64 BACK TO THE FUTURE Volkswagen's uber-efficient car of the future is on its way to production: here's a reminder of the next big thing
66 GOLF ELECTRIC VW enter the fray with their electric Blue-e-motion. Life just got harder for everyone else...
GREEN CAR DESIGN Founder/Editor-in-chief Hannah Macmurray Assistant Editor Richard Lane Photography Olgun Kordal Mark Raybone Graphic Designer Helen Stella Communications Fatima Bettache Printing TRMG Ltd www.trmg.co.uk The paper used for printing this magazine has been sourced from sustainably managed forests â€“ trees harvested for pulp production are replenished under a supervised replanting programme, and with minimal effects to the environment.
Green Car Design Ltd 5 Kendrick Mews London SW7 3HG United Kingdom +44 (0) 207 581 9993 www.greencardesign.com
Steve is an angel investor, technology advisor and venture financier who founded the digital publishing venture, Drivers Republic, in 2008. He currently publishes the automotive marketing blog, SkiddMark, and is a life-long car enthusiast with a passion for anything with a steering wheel, no matter how itâ€™s propelled.
Eric has always had a passion for automobiles. An avid journalist and photographer, Eric rose to become Editor of Car Design News following his MA studies at Coventry University. At the start of 2012 he began a freelance career covering the automotive design sector for a range of worldwide titles.
Sam Burnett is an A-list motoring writer, wit and conversationalist. Before journalism he worked briefly in politics and the third sector. He is currently Editor of Driving Instructor magazine.
“Inside, the M35h is luxuriously appointed with a dynamism that sets it apart from its illustrious German rivals”
Price: £42,020 Engine: 3498 V6 petrol, 50kW electric motor Power: 359bhp combined 0-60mph: 5.5 seconds Top speed: 155mph CO2 emissions: 169g/km Economy: 40.9mpg
apacious, imposing, and a bit different, Infiniti’s first production hybrid is also the most powerful car the company has ever assembled. But can Nissan’s luxury division reposition themselves at the forefront of environmental performance? It’s not particularly easy for Infiniti to infiltrate the Western saloon market, especially when aesthetic weighs heavily on the conscience of potential buyers. Potential buyers, that is, who have grown up knowing BMW, Audi and Mercedes – manufacturers who more-or-less formulated the concept of the modern executive saloon. Infiniti, therefore, need something different, and in between breathtaking design concepts evidenced in the Essence and Emerg-e, they have created the M35h. Infiniti’s illustrious VP of Design, Shiro Nakamura, has said that the design for all Infiniti cars comes from a single brush stroke - something that is patent in the M35 from the car’s incredibly smooth silhouette. It’s the Essence-inspired beltline, however, that is indicative of Infiniti’s design language. Arching over the front wheels before leveling out underneath the wing mirrors, it then rises again over the rear haunches, much in the style of a coupe. This shoulder then falls away at the rear, although the boot lip features a faint ducktail that aids stability. The supporting role to this unusual contour is played by a softer, but no less important, crease line that runs below it. Originating
from the foremost corner of the headlights, it runs the entire length of the car, all five metres of it, and into the rear light. It’s an ambitious feature that, when viewed from certain angles, changes the entire personality of the M35h. The front graphic is an exercise in controlled aggression, leering down the road in a way that entirely suits the car’s imperious driving style. The rear graphic, however, is as pinched and awkward as the front is purposeful. Inside, the M35h is luxuriously appointed with a dynamism that sets it apart from its prestigious German rivals. With Bose speakers
Nakamura has said that the design for all Infiniti cars comes from a single brush stroke set into the shoulders of wingback-esque leather seats, an armrest wider than most city-cars, and swathes of varnished wood, the wraparound interior feels every inch the M35h’s £42,000 asking price. Many will prefer a more austere interior, but for those who enjoy a little variety features such as the cascading centre-stack that plateaus under a 7” LCD screen and purple-rimmed instrument binnacles are likely to hit the spot. Naturally, the M35h comes equipped with adaptive cruise-control and a lane departure warning system as well as plenty of readouts (both analogue and digital) pertaining to the hybrid
aspect of its drivetrain. The M35h won’t be to everybody’s artistic tastes, particularly in regard to the unresolved rear three-quarter and slightly cumbersome dimensions. It’s certainly a resolute looking machine, however, with a wonderfully atypical interior that cossets and unwinds its occupants. The M35h marks the debut for Infiniti’s Direct Response Hybrid Technology, which consists of a powerful 3.5-litre V6 mated to a 50kW electric motor. Total combined power is 359bhp. It’s an efficient drivetrain, partly due to its use of two clutches; one each side of the single electric motor/7-speed gearbox unit in the middle. The electric motor alone can sustain speeds of up to 60mph. The driver can also select ‘Eco’ mode, which blunts the throttle response and uses the gearbox to keep revs relatively low. It’s easy to see the Infiniti M35h as a contradiction, but surprisingly low emissions and an innovative drivetrain mean its crushing performance is tempered with commendable eco-technology. And whilst it’s difficult to recommend the non-hybrid M variants Infiniti make against German rivals, the hybrid option makes a strong case for itself. RL
GCD: A rare and capable hybrid cruiser Robust design unresolved in parts
hilst some makers offer hydrogen powered models and others fuelefficient diesels, many are opting to fit their vehicles with hybrid powertrains, mating a small displacement petrol engine with an electric motor. Even BMW, who pride themselves on creating driver’s cars are not immune to this syndrome. BMW’s Efficient Dynamics mantra has seen fuel saving technologies applied to every model in its range. And now, with the ActiveHybrid 3, the German automaker is showcasing the fourth addition to its hybrid range. Born from the concept of creating a more efficiency-oriented model based on the popular 3 saloon, the ActiveHybrid 3 is slightly larger than the previous generation, yet it retains BMW’s characteristic aesthetic: with short overhangs, a good bodyside to glass ratio, long bonnet and set back cabin –courtesy of its rear-wheeldrive layout. The most noticeable difference over the outgoing model is in the new front face, which appears lower and wider thanks
to designers cleverly disguising the visual weight with new treatment that blends the grille and headlamp units into one. The more sinister headlamp units seemingly grow out of the forward canted twin kidney grille, a visual identifier that has become progressively larger with each generation. In profile, the ActiveHybrid is well proportioned, retaining the previous 3 Series’ wheels-at-each-corner stance and DLO shape – the only elements to tell it apart from its conventionally powered siblings are its specially designed, aerodynamically optimized wheels shod with low rolling resistance tyres and its dual exhaust outlets finished in black chrome. Available in Sport, Modern, Luxury and M Sport character lines – each with specific elements to individualise the exterior and interior – the ActiveHybrid is demarcated only by subtle emblems and largely flies under the radar. Inside, the layered theme of the IP and high-grade material use exudes an aura of
elegance and refinement, with high levels of perceived quality. The ActiveHybrid 3 can run on pure electric power up to 37mph for up to 2.4 miles, but when necessary the petrol engine fires up seamlessly, providing the main source of power and recharging the 135kg battery pack. Whilst that may sound like a traditional set-up for a parallel hybrid, where the BMW differs is in its tuning characteristics: it will always err on the side of power over economy. When requested, the petrol engine and electric motor will work in unison to provide peak power and torque, which is available very low in the rev range. It’s not a car that will win any eco-challenges, but one that will put a smile on your face. It’s a wolf in sheep’s clothing. EG
GCD: Engaging; a genuine driver’s car Not a lot, poor economy vs 330d
BMW ACTIVEHYBRID 3 Engine: 2797cc turbocharged flat-6, 40kW electric motor Power: 340bhp combined 0-60mph: 5.3 seconds Top speed: 155mph CO2 emissions: 169g/km Economy: 47.9mpg Price: £40,225
SHARP NEW YARIS
TOYOTA YARIS HYBRID
Toyota blazes the green trail again with the world’s first full hybrid small car.
esigned to offer ‘agility and sophistication’, the third generation Yaris has traded its eco-box identity for a more modern, angular character. Its faster, steeply raked windscreen, set back A-pillars, sharply rising beltline and pronounced boneline create a dynamic presence, whilst the aggressive DRG with a trapezoidal lower grille are symbols of Toyota’s new design language. These signature elements are joined by contoured wheelarches, which give the car its strong stance, while a lightcatcher visually reduces its overall height. A more distinct offering than its conventionally powered counterpart, the Yaris Hybrid’s unique design features include blue hybrid-specific badging, revised front bumpers with teardrop-like foglamp housings, intricate projector-style headlamps with LED daytime running lamps and clear lenses covering the LED-equipped taillamps. The Hybrid model also has a 20mm longer front overhang to accommodate the electric motor and a series of aerodynamic improvements that optimize airflow above and beneath the car to return a class leading 0.28Cd figure. The Yaris’ Hybrid Synergy Drive system mates a 1.5-litre petrol engine to a compact electric motor, transaxle inverter and nickel metal hydride battery pack. Toyota’s engineers have brought total weight of the hybrid system down to 201kg – an impressive 42kg saving over that of the Auris system. The battery pack – 20% smaller than the Auris’ and with a 67% shorter stateof-charge recovery time - has been fitted below the rear seat to optimize weight distribution and prevent intrusion into the cabin and boot. Operating in fully electric mode below 30mph, the drive to decrease NVH levels is evident in the transition to petrol power. But even through the Netherlands’ low speed limits, smooth road surfaces and largely flat terrain, the engine note proved coarse when pushed – an unfortunate drawback of the efficiency-optimised CVT transmission pairing. Our Yaris Hybrid returned an impressive 3.9 litre/100km fuel efficiency figure (roughly 72mpg).
The Yaris’ interior – as spacious as the conventionally powered model thanks to its battery placement – belies its compact exterior dimensions. A traditional binnacle set up in front of the driver serves to enhance the cabin’s width while the tiered IP and contrasting colourways contribute to a more spacious feel. Detailing also helps to elevate perceived quality: the IP upper, for example, is made of recyclable plastic and is brushed and textured rather than plain, whilst the door panels and dash board feature soft-touch, subtly textured inserts. As with the exterior, the Yaris’s individual identity is accentuated through instruments that are set within silver rings and backlit in blue and white, and blue stitching on the handbrake and seats. A centrally mounted screen displays the vehicle’s infotainment functions and is intuitive and easy to use. Designers have done well to give the B-segment car more dynamic presence and disguise the interior materials, heightening the levels of perceived quality in the cabin. But they’ve also worked well with engineers to optimise the hybrid model’s packaging to ensure it will resonate with consumers unwilling to sacrifice practicality for economy. Overall, the Yaris Hybrid is a well-conceived product from the Japanese automaker hell-bent on offering a hybrid vehicle in every model range. EG
GCD: Class leading real-world economy Design is too fussy for some, gearbox Engine: 1497cc 4-cyl petrol/electric motor Power: 98bhp combined 0-62mph: 11.8 seconds Top speed: 103mph CO2 emissions: 79g/km Economy: 80.7mpg (claimed) Price: £14,995
KIA CEE’D ECODYNAMICS Engine: 1582cc 4-cyl diesel Power: 126bhp @ 4000rpm Torque: 192ft lb @ 1900 0-60mph: 11.5s Top speed: 122mph CO2 emissions: 100g/km Fuel economy: 74.3mpg combined Price: £18,295
GCD: A colossal step up in desirability Not as good to drive as it looks
ressed in a sharp new suit, Kia’s second generation Cee’d certainly looks the part, but there’s also substance to match the style. Currently undergoing a brand transformation the magnitude of which is rarely seen in the automotive world, Kia believe that the second generation Cee’d showcases everything the company knows about automotive design. It’s not hard to tell, either. The 2012 Cee’d marks an aesthetic improvement over the original car that could have easily taken sixteen years instead of six, and even that wasn’t exactly a bad looking car. Chief Design Officer Peter Schreyer’s arrival from Volkswagen came a little late to influence the first generation car, but now, along with Kia’s European design chief Gregory Guillaume, the pair have injected a marked and decisive design language into Kia’s popular hatchback. Narrower and lower than its predecessor, the new Cee’d also sits closer to the ground. Its sporty intentions are emphasized further by steeply raked A-pillars and cab-forward stance that immediately sets it apart from its C-segment rivals. The Cee’d’s sportier stance can also be attributed to the significant widening of both the front (17mm) and rear (32mm) tracks. Something that Schreyer is particularly proud of is that this production car so closely resembles the original clay model. This is because the design team originally spent “more time working on the proportions than the details”, as Guilliaume admitted before this year’s Geneva Motor Show. “We believe in getting the proportions, volumes and surfacing right. If you achieve that, it speaks for itself in the manner of a simple black cocktail dress”. Kia have also spent over 100 hours with the Cee’d in the wind tunnel – something that has helped contribute to it’s impressively low dragcoefficient of 0.30 (for reference, Porsche’s slippery new 911 has a Cd of 0.29). The front and rear lights bear the fruit of these hours in the wind tunnel, both featuring sculpted plastic lenses designed to guide air around and off the car. The crease in the rear light even flows into the metal rear three-quarter panel, such is Kia’s uncompromising approach to designing this car. Attracting the most attention, and winning the plaudits, is the Cee’d’s heavily revised front graphic. Featuring Kia’s latest interpretation of the ‘tiger-nose’ grille, the front graphic also
features wrap-around headlights which house daytime running LED strips. The bonnet sports two character lines that flow into the A-pillar from the grille – one following the curvature of the headlights and the other mirroring it further out into the bonnet panel. Details like these make the Cee’d worthy of praise, and combined they add up to make the car fluent and very well resolved. In comparison to the front, the rear graphic is strangely uninspiring. A raked rear-windscreen continues the sporty trend and, thankfully, there’s no black plastic bumper either. But the Cee’d’s ovoid derrière is cumbersome in regard to the car’s chiseled snout, and that’s a shame, because the Cee’d is so nearly comprehensively brilliant to look at. A wedge-like silhouette, combined with a low belt-line and aggressive stance lend the Cee’d an unexpected vibe of authority and competence, and it should be regarded as a major coup that Kia have aesthetically upstaged many of their more prestigious rivals with a bold and individual design. Kia’s Ecodynamics technology makes this 1.6-litre CRDi the most environmentally friendly Cee’d currently at market. Fitted with Kia’s stop/start system, CO2 emissions are just 100g/km and fuel economy of 65mpg can be reached on a day-to-day basis. And whilst 100g/km CO2 emissions are no longer exceptional, the 1.6-litre engine still manages to produce 126bhp, which compares favorably with rivals. Although a little gruff, the 4-cylinder diesel engine is a strong powerplant with plenty of torque. The overall driving experience, however, is unreservedly inert. Kia’s environmental efforts extend further than the machinery, however, and the company’s policy of building cars in the markets where they will be sold reduces the distance that finished cars have to be transported. Furthermore, 75% of the parts used in the plant that makes the Cee’d in Žilina, Slovakia, are sourced from within Western Europe. At just £18,295, the combination of striking good looks, an honest and well-built interior, and competitive economy make the Cee’d a compelling package as a spacious 5-door hatchback. Kia still have a little way to go, mainly in terms of driver involvement, before they can genuinely be mentioned in the same sentence as Volkswagen and Ford’s engaging Focus, but if the established brands haven’t yet felt Korean breath on their necks, they certainly do now. RL
ECO-mode cuts power to 70bhp to save fuel; high torque figure due to small fast-spooling turbo.
380,000,000. Or €190,000,000 per cylinder. Fiat may have yet to see a financial return on the colossal investment made in developing the two-cylinder TwinAir engine, but from the driver’s seat the rewards are tangible enough.
Whilst the vast majority of small cars derive their power from four-cylinder engines, we’ve recently seen a ‘downsizing’ trend, with three-cylinder engines from Ford (1.0 Ecoboost) and Peugeot (1.2 VTi) and the minimalist TwinAir from Fiat. It’s the latter that has been something
of a runaway success; chiefly because it unites impressive urban fuel economy with reliability, low emissions and, a relative rarity in this arena, fun. Weighing just 85kg and set up to achieve minimal levels of engine friction, the turbocharged TwinAir’s party piece is
or us, the Panda is the pick of the bunch. Practical and charismatic, the TwinAir engine seems to suit Fiat’s best-selling model perfectly. We were pleasantly surprised by the Panda’s refinement at motorway speeds and the overall build quality of the ‘squircle’ interior. Like all TwinAir cars, however, getting near the claimed economy figures is nigh on impossible, but 40mpg in the city is easily achievable. The Panda has always been a charming little car, but a well-resolved new design language lends it a maturity that’s complemented by the excitable TwinAir engine.
ancia is back in the UK market - in the form of a Chrysler. The Ypsilon is certainly the most unusual model to house a TwinAir engine and will be the rarest sight on the road. Don’t be fooled by the overbearing, and slight ungainly, front graphic either, because the Ypilson is just as small as it’s stablemates. Inside it’s the same story. The instruments are mounted atop a space-ship-esque central stack and not in a good way either. The Ypsilon benefits from a two-cylinder engine just as the other cars here do, but it’s not enough to redeem the car as a whole.
INVASION the wholesome torque it develops from a lowly 1900rpm. This torque not only helps reduce consumption by allowing the driver to short-shift gears and keep the revs low, but also results in an entertaining, easygoing driving experience. Fiat Powertrain Technologies’
revolutionary 875cc powerplant originally found a home in the engine bay of Fiat’s successfully reincarnated 500. That was 2010, however, and two years later a total of five Fiat Group cars boast a TwinAirengined model in their range. This expansion was, of course, always part of
he Mito is the greatest exponent of Italian style and verve in the TwinAir stable, and the latest car to be endowed with the two-cylinder engine. Like the larger Punto, it also benefits from a dual mass flywheel, which makes it an altogether more sophisticated proposition than the similarly sized Panda. Where the Panda is amusing, the Mito is more of a cool customer. Not only has the Mito aged well since its launch in 2008, but there’s also a good chance that it will receive the 105bhp TwinAir engine. Now that’s an attractive suggestion.
Full-circle: original 500 used 479cc 2-cyclinder 13bhp engine
lthough in the twilight years of its model cycle, the popular Punto has recently been rejuvenated with the addition of the TwinAir. Unlike the Panda and Ypsilon, the Punto is fitted with dual mass flywheel that makes the power delivery noticeably smoother. It also comes with a 6-speed gearbox, and these changes help the heaviest car on this page float along in a manner fitting of the Punto’s higher segment. The TwinAir may be better suited to smaller cars, but its inclusion in the Punto range is justified. This colour, ‘Unplugged Green’, is exclusive to the Punto TwinAir.
the plan and the engine itself even has the potential for more power – a 104bhp version will debut in the Fiat 500L early in 2013 and a 120bhp variant is possible. Until then, Fiat 500 aside, your TwinAir options are limited to these four, each with their own character.
THUNDERSTRUCK Words: Richard Lane Photography: Mark Raybone
t’s hard not be quite taken by the Lightning GT. Handsomely endowed with a cab rearward stance, when confronted with not one, but two, GT’s on the ground floor of Lightning Car Company’s offices on the bank of the River Thames, my immediate thought was, ‘Jaguar E-type meets Jensen Interceptor’. Rather a neat trick, that. Five years in the making and, whilst it’s not been easy for chairman Iain Sanderson and co-founder Arthur Wolstenholme, they’re confident that the next twelve
months will see cars finally roll off the production line. The fact that they’re still here at all, when so many British startups are long gone, is as much a testament to their passion as it is to the underlying imagination and individuality of their product. The ‘product’ is a 402bhp, all-electric grand tourer with a range in excess of 150 miles and a body crafted entirely from carbon fibre. Perhaps most impressive, however, are the lithium titanate batteries that allow the Lightning to reach full charge
in just ten minutes. About the same amount of time it takes to fill up your Ferrari 599’s 105-litre tank and then queue at a service station, for those so inclined, and that’s very much the crux of this endeavor. “I lived in London where I saw Aston Martins going into Mayfair in the morning doing nine miles per hour and nine miles per gallon” recalls Sanderson, “and I felt that was wrong because of pollution in built up areas. I can see how money should buy you rights and privileges, but I don’t see why it should buy you the right to pollute four
or five time more than the car next to you, when you don’t need the performance”. You may be surprised to learn, then, that the development prototype Lightning you see here is loosely based on an original V8 version, penned by now-Lotus designer Daniel Durrant, although the only original part left over from 2002 is the windscreen. Supported by a small team, Durrent was later aided by the digital modeling team at Chris Longmore’s Drive Design consultancy to bring the car off the page to fully running prototype stage.
There’s not much choice for those in the market for an electric supercar, but the Lightning Car Company are here to remedy that problem with the muderously fast and neoclassically styled Lightning GT PARIS SPECIAL
The car’s 2008 showcase at the London Excel represented a time frame of six years from sketch to metal, and in the design world a lot can, and often does, change. One thing Sanderson was adamant on keeping, however, were the somewhat magnificent dual buttresses flowing off the GT’s roofline. Inspired by the Vanwall Formula One cars of the 1950’s (the 1958 VW 5 taking the inaugural constructor’s championship from Ferrari, with Moss and Brooks taking three wins apiece), they offer bystanders the same visual drama as the GT tears silently away as it does on approach. The design brief was, simply: keep the car looking good at all angles. Sanderson, however, admits that there’s still more work to be done before the first of an anticipated 20 cars are completed in Coventry early next year. ‘More work’ may mean raising the roofline by an inch to accommodate taller drivers but by and large, what you see here is what the finished article’s exterior will look like. As well as a roadster version of the GT, Sanderson believes the car’s platform also
The design brief was simply: keep the car looking good at all angles offers a fantastic base for a large saloon or SUV. Coasting around the streets of west London in the matt black development car was an experience different to that of any other electric car I’ve been in. Firstly, the GT encapsulates that old-school grand tourer feel, with a high bonnet-line and low-slung seats, the Lightning felt akin to a Mercedes SLS. Whilst the powertrain consisted of just a single motor putting out around 150bhp, the GT possessed a pointand-shoot nature that will be familiar to EV owners, and it’s not hard to imagine how formidable the production car will be equipped twin 150kW motors generating over 400bhp. “Top speed will probably be limited to around 150mph but we can limit it to whatever we want” states Sanderson, and the Lightning will crack 60mph from rest in less than 4.5 seconds “easily”. Overtaking should be something of a
doddle for the Lightning, too, as a glut of instantaneous torque bodes well for brisk 30-70mph dash. Of comparable width to an Aston Martin Vanquish, the Lightning disguises its considerable size well from behind the wheel. Yes, it’s large, but it’s also manageable, and watching Sanderson, a former offshore powerboat racer, thread the GT through some precariously narrow traffic calming measures with relative ease bodes well for the car as an urban mode of transport. That same width pays dividends in the cockpit. Though modestly appointed in this prototype, it’s clear that the production model will have ample space inside, partly due to the chassis integrated battery packs that run down the core of the car and, as a result, pave the way for a centre console (over a foot wide) that duly dominates the cabin. The GT also feels surprisingly agile, due, again, to the batteries. “Handling will be exemplary” anticipates Sanderson, “because the weight’s where you want it: central and low”. From the passenger seat at least, direction changes feel light and crisp. The lithium titanate batteries, although very expensive (around £50,000’s worth per car) and a little heavier than lithiumion batteries, have been totally reliable – to the extent that the Lightning team hasn’t seen them for the last fourteen months and over 10,000 miles. Encouragingly, theste batteries are also immune to ‘bricking’, happily running from 100% to 0% charge. Again, highspeed off board charging makes long range, zero emissions motoring a realistic proposition. Costing well over £100,000 to build, Lightning Car Company will look to sell the 20 cars due next year for between £185,000 and £200,000, and are now looking to convert the 2,000-or-so enquires they’ve received into deposits for build slots. Entrepreneur-minded individuals have been earmarked. The overall impression of the GT is the juxtaposition of classic proportions and aesthetic onto ultra-hi-tech hardware, like a bridge between analogue and digital spheres. There’s a distinctly British charm the car and for those who find a Tesla too small and a Fisker to brash, look no further.
Words: Richard Lane Photography: Olgun Kordal
Carbon fibre hydrogen car for ÂŁ250 a month? 20
nyone familiar with The Marches, those counties that have historically straddled the Anglo-Welsh border, will vouch for the fact that there are few, if any, greener landscapes in the UK; something that is particularly true in light of this year’s waterlogged summer. It’s also a quiet, rural place where people just get on with whatever they’re up to, chiefly agriculture. Away from congested urban sprawl and polluted cities, it also seems an appropriate locale in which to base a small company aiming to entirely eliminate the environmental impact of personal transport evenutally, at least. And that, in the shadow of a large granary that backs onto Shobdon Aerodrome, is exactly what Hugo Spowers and his company Riversimple are steadily accomplishing. Spowers, an Oxford Engineering Science graduate, has a history in the manufacture of single-seater racing cars and more recently with the hydrogen-powered LIFECar, a collaboration between Riversimple and Morgan. Currently his efforts are focused on securing the next level of investment for a production successor to Riversimple’s prototype fuel-cell car, the peculiar looking but strangely lovable car you see here. The prototype itself uses four in-wheel electric motors served by a 6kW hydrogen fuel cell in the front and ultracapacitors situated behind the driver (144 to be precise, which were being replaced at the time of these photos hence the raised rear). The electric motors also work in a regenerative capacity whereby electricity used for acceleration can be partially recovered and sent back to the ultracapacitors under braking, although they can also be charged from the fuel cell. Riversimple call this arrangement a Network Electric platform, and it’s an integral part of Spowers’ philosophy as it allows the car the same acceleration with a fuel cell 80% less powerful as the ultracapacitors bear that particular burden. “The industry has built numerous fuel cell prototypes, and they are brilliant bits of engineering, but to put fuel cells into cars designed for combustion engines, you have to persuade them to behave like combustion engines,” he argues, “and they don’t do it very well!” There’s no doubt this is true, Mercedes’ F-Cell, to name but one, is a real feat of engineering. But it’s not enough - cars like the Honda FCX Clarity are expensive to run and hampered by production costs. By designing
a fuel cell car from the ground up it allows engineers to work with the characteristics of fuel cells, including their key weaknesses, by eliminating the need for great power density (needed for high speed motorway driving, for example). This will most likely occur, at least Riversimple certainly believe, in smaller unconstrained start-ups rather than the established automotive giants, but that’s another story altogether. Aside from a resourceful powertrain, the production vehicle will bear little aesthetic resemblance to this prototype. A carbon fibre body will remain, although the weight of 370kg will increase marginally, principally because of safety regulations concerning the thickness of panels. Riversimple really are leaving no stone unturned, and the car will also featue optimised rubber to reduce friction. Spowers himself averages over 85mpg in his own imported three-litre Audi A2, and it’s the same cocktail of lightweight aluminium, a low drag coefficient and worryingly narrow tyres. When people buy cars performance is something that weighs heavily on their minds. Not ‘performance’ as it has colloquially come to be known – as something only sports cars possess – but as a set of parameters that a car has to surpass as not to have a detrimental effect on one’s lifestyle. The prototype, or technology demonstrator as Riversimple refer to it, has a top speed of 50mph on paper, quite enough for short journeys (although the latest version of the powertrain is not quite there yet), and a range of 240 miles. The production car will have a similar range that can be replenished in less than five minutes from a hydrogen filling station; so the ‘performance’ is there. One of Spowers’ arguments concerns the critical mass of infrastructure required for hydrogen to ‘take-off’, and it’s a convincing one. The UK’s hydrogen infrastructure is currently in its infancy - the first public hydrogen filling station, subsidized by Honda, opened barely a year ago and since then progress has been slow to say the least. So who’s going to buy an expensive fuel cell car with an ICE-rivaling range of 350 miles but access to precious few refueling facilities? It’s a good question, and Riversimple’s answer is to target society on a local level rather than a national one. Simply put, for local use the critical mass to create a commecial market is only one filling station, whereas if the car were aimed at motorway speeds the critical mass
would have to be nationwide coverage before anyone would buy the car. So, with a range of over 200 miles (more than a week’s fuel for a local car) Riversimple believe that they can create a commercial market from a solitary filling station, as they will target customers for a local means of transport from the off, and not as a longer ranged (but severely hindered) rival to conventional cars. The ball is now well and truly rolling, too, with an urban trial in Leicester and a rural one in the picturesque countryside surrounding the company’s headquarters. The benefits of starting in a localized setup are apparent – not only is the car faster to refuel as it has a smaller tank, but Riversimple can also offer excellent customer support and the investment case for gas suppliers is stronger, as all the cars are concentrated around one filling station. The counterargument is that by reducing range you negate hydrogen’s greatest advantage over electric cars, range itself, but the fuel cell cars are still lighter, more fun, quicker to fill up and, importantly, cheaper. If successful at first, more fuel stations could then be built further afield, each time unlocking another increment of commercial market until the network is quite large and Riversimple, amongst other companies (the technology is open sourced), could build cars with a greater range. The important thing is that the network growth would be selfsustaining as its existence would be a result of consumer uptake rather than speculative investment. Riversimple will look after the
car’s servicing and upkeep, even paying for fuel, until the contract ends and the car can be refurbished or updated if necessary for subsequent customers. The company has high aspirations, too, with a planned output of 2,000 units per annum at first. Production will come from a number of smaller plants as the optimal scale of production with carbon fibre (as opposed to steel) is around 5,000 units per annum. Riversimple’s business plan is the opposite of conventional car companies, who would have you replace your car every three or four years. Some would even argue that it is in
“The segment we are targeting is one that the industry doesn’t yet recognise” their interest to manufacture cars that don’t stand the test of time as their business model relies on selling newer cars. The idea is to sell the service to customer, rather than the cars themselves, and Riversimple estimate that on a two-year contract the total cost of ownership would be similar to that of a Smart Car. As someone mentioned, where else can you pay a monthly fee of £250-300 to drive something with similar levels of technological innovation to a McLaren F1? This leasing strategy is also essential to Riversimple’s ‘cradle to cradle’ mission to make their cars 100% ecologically sound – no car should ever end up on the scrapheap. So fervent is Spowers’ belief in
total ecological responsibility that it’s unlikely that the cars will even be painted. “Technically you can recover 85% of paint by weight a the moment, but you can’t close the loops,” he says, explaining that they may have to resort to optically impregnated carbon fibre. Naked carbon fibre isn’t for everyone, it seems. Riversimple’s assertion is that new technologies need a chance to develop. Expect too much of them and you’ll never be satisfied – complex science needs time to mature. Spowers’ poignantly analogizes the case of hydraulic diggers – post-WWII they couldn’t compete with draglines and few were willing to invest in them. Then the council house market boomed and provided a basis for the technology to develop and improve rapidly. Now draglines, in commercial use since 1904, are all but redundant. Technology has to move on. Spowers believes it’s time for change. “Modern motor cars, I think, are utterly, brilliant,” he concedes, “but they are the most refined and mature technology we’ve ever had on the planet, and incremental improvements to be gained are tiny. We’re squabbling over the last 1%”, and this is very much the crux of it. Look closely and you’ll see that fuel economy hasn’t changed much in the last fifty years – it’s again time for a radical change. “We’ve been optimizing for 80 years now and this is not an optimization, it’s a step change. I think we’ll look back in 10 years and see how extraordinary the rate of change has been”. Horse, meet motorcar. Motorcar, meet fuel cell.
“I think we’ll look back in 10 years and see how extraordinary the rate of change has been” Hugo Spowers
WHAT WILL IT LOOK LIKE?
ate in 2010 Riversimple pulled off something of a coup when Alfa Romeo Design Director Chris Reitz joined the team. Reitz’s portfolio includes the Alfa Romeo Giulietta as well as the Audi A2 (interior) and Fiat’s reincarnated 500. His first job is to design Riversimple’s production car.
Reitz is a classicist, and likely to try and instill a ‘timeless’ quality into the production car’s aesthetic. “We’re keen on simplicity beyond complexity,” says Spowers, “so a sophisticated elegant simplicity rather than a crude and basic simplicity” – an outlook that Reitz is sympathetic to. The finished article will probably use two different materials, one of which will be carbon fibre, and will abstain from superfluous surface details evident on many mainstream small cars. Expect a clean, tasteful and minimalist design.
Reitz himself says, “It has to look good as well as be functional. We don’t want to shock because if you shock you are very quickly old and out of fashion. We need to be robust, innovative and safe.” He has also voiced his concerns over heavy, resource-consuming modern cars. Riversimple can take encouragement from the prototype in that it has a very low drag coefficient of 0.31, which is comparable to the latest Porsche 911 and remarkable for such a short car.
Is the Mia Electric a hit or a miss? We found out in London Words: Sam Burnett Photography: Olgun Kordal
t’s been a tough few years for Mia Electric. The effort that goes into any manufacturer launching a new product is mind-boggling, but to launch an all-new vehicle with an all-new brand requires superhuman levels of determination and financial backing. Risen out of the remains of esteemed French coachbuilder Heuliez, the company has come about through an EV project which resulted in the Friendly Concept, shown at the Paris motor show in 2008. Ex-Volkswagen design chief Murat Günak had found his way to the company with his friend David Wilkie, a former Bertone man, and such was their passion for the Friendly’s environmental rethink of urban transportation that when Heuliez went bankrupt in 2009 they salvaged their pet EV project, and the factory, with the backing of German pharmaceutical entrepreneur Edwin Kohl. The Friendly became the Mia with minimal changes, save for the usual concept flourishes that are removed to make way for cheaper production parts. It’s been a rocky start since Mia’s formation in 2010, but the presence
It’s a genuinely refreshing take on getting around town of Günak and Wilkie alone gives credibility to the quest. The Mia bravely shrugs off mainstream styling flourishes for a pared-back style that suggests a resolute emphasis on function over form, until you notice the little touches dotted around the car. The front graphic is cute, and certainly looks friendly, justifying the Heuliez concept’s moniker. Touches like the firm’s petal logo, which you press to open the doors, lift the functional design and add character. It’s the interior that really impresses, however. Cutting through the marketing-speak is not as arduous as it might be with another manufacturer, largely because the Mia holds true to its ambition. It’s a genuinely refreshing take on getting around town. Ease of use is excellent and Mia have created an almost scooter-like vehicle in the sense that you can just jump in and go. In a footprint barely 20cm longer than the Smart Fortwo’s, the Mia fits in the driver and two passengers in V formation and a boot that would be respectable in a supermini. Legroom and general passenger space would be class-leading, if you could work out what class to slot the Mia into. Mia calls its car a microbus, but given that’s what Volkswagen termed its Bulli mini-MPV concept car in 2011, you’d have to imagine the Mia as more of a nanobus.
The car was nominated earlier this year for the transport category in the Design Museum’s design of the year awards, along with Gordon Murray’s T27. Both lost out to the Helen Hamlyn Centre’s redesigned ambulance interior, but it is telling that it was the T27 that the Mia was up against. Both projects are attempting to challenge prevailing assumptions about personal transportation, but in very different ways. Murray’s white label design beats the Mia on eye-catching theatre (the clamshell front end hinges out to access the interior) and offers a better range at a lower price, but remains a theoretical challenge because it isn’t on sale yet. Gordon Murray’s car will steal the headlines, but meanwhile there are Mias pounding the streets. The Mia is not an easy car to pigeonhole, though. Is the car competing against mainstream IC-engined cars, oyster cards, bicycles or other small EVs? A mix of them all, certainly: competition for the Mia will come as much from Toyota’s Yaris hybrid as the Nissan Leaf and Renault Twizy. Mia is ambitious to take on allcomers, though. The price will hold sales back in the UK – even with the government’s £5,000 plug-in EV grant, it will still set a prospective owner back more than £20,000. Anyone prepared to spend that much will really have to buy into the car’s character and ethos. Buy a Leaf and you’ve got a fairly standard car that just happens to run on electricity. The Mia is much more of a lifestyle statement: it turns heads and attracts attention. The external charm will have to be enough to mask some of the car’s shortcomings. Fit and finish isn’t acceptable for a £20,000 car, even if you do make certain allowances for the low volume production and an expensive powertrain. Patchy interior plastics and complicated ventilation controls offset any extra perceived value that is contributed by the excellent seats and novel dashboard, which extends out either side of the
instrument panel. On the move, the Mia is entertaining to drive once you’ve got past the body roll. The unassisted steering lends a refreshing connection to the road which mates up nicely with the eerie quiet of an electric powertrain that allows you to hear more of the outside world than you might in a petrol engine car. The Mia lacks the finesse you get in vehicles produced by Murat
Günak’s illustrious former employers, and spend some time scrutinising the Mia and you certainly wonder what might have been had an outfit like Smart had been more ambitious. Mia’s achievement is admirable and extrovert early adopters will certainly be rewarded, but mainstream manufacturers won’t be worried just yet.
MEET MURAT GÜNAK
INTERVIEW WITH MURAT GÜNAK
MURAT GÜNAK Design Director
How did you get to mia electric? It’s a long story, I knew Heuliez since I was working at Peugeot. We have always worked together - Heuliez did the Mindset prototype and during this time the mia project started. We had been working on the mia cars since summer 2009, then Professor Kohl founded mia in the summer of 2010. The story of Mr. Kohl is very interesting because I know Mr. Kohl as a friend and he wanted actually just to buy mias for his company, for his interns. He wanted to give them free mobility when they came to work for him. Then he was impatient waiting for the car and when he read in the newspaper that there were all the financial problems he decided to take over! From the beginning he was very convinced about the mia project.
When did you change your mind about cars and the environment?
Can simple designs happen by chance?
No, the Mia did not happen by chance. The 2007. The only thing which I believed is that Mia started by the concept not the design. Three seats, sliding doors, and lightweight if you look carefully at the environment and you start thinking about it, any normal person - the secret is the lightness, 750 kilos! A comes to the conclusion, probably, that the car Turkish friend told me this, ‘your car is good’, I asked why? ‘Because it is different - when I is not the most efficient in this context. But we live all in a world where we try to deny it, look at a small car I think ‘Ha Ha!’, but when because I love cars, we love cars, lots of people I look at your car I think ‘Ahah!’ love cars. So, there is no other solution. Even to get the petrol from Arabia to Germany to refine - when it gets into my car half of it is burnt already! It’s an inefficient mobility Born in Istanbul system, but there is no alternative. And the Royal College of Art traffic, the noise, the city - if you take all this Mercedes C-Class/SLK away and you look at it on a purely efficient Peugeot 206CC/307/607 way it is so inefficient to get petrol from the other side of the world to feed your car. Volkswagen Passat CC
hotographing cars. There’s more to it than staring down a fancy lens and pushing a button, even more so when a car’s fundamental design is the aspect under most scrutiny. The light, the exposure, filters, character, circumstance, what is and what is not appropriate - they all need to be considered. It’s the subtleties that differentiate between an objective photograph and a beguiling portrait of a car’s personality. Braving meteoric hailstorms in the Scottish highlands for sake of the latest SUV or dangling inches off the tarmac for that perfect tracking shot are different matters entirely. This gallery exhibits some of Green Car Design’s most memorable photographs, each of which aims to summarize the car’s unique character and design philosophy.
Peugeot RCZ by Olgun Kordal Canon EOS 5D MkII, 24-105mm F5.6, 1/125
Hyundai i40 Tourer by Mark Raybone Canon EOS 5D Mark II F5.6, 1/6
PARIS MOTOR SHOW GREEN MAP The Paris Motor Show was founded in 1898, outdoors, with only a small selection of pioneering vehicles.
Paris is the worldâ€™s largest motor show, with over 1,263,000 visitors in 2010 and 1,500,000 expected this year. There were nearly 50 production car introductions and 27 new concept cars in 2010.
NISSAN MERCEDES BENZ
MERCEDES BENZ AMG SMART
Pavillons 2.1, 2.2 & 3
MINI MICHELIN 611
LA BOUTIQUE DU SALON
PAVILION 2.1 Pavillons 2.2 & 1 LES 3 POLES DE COMPETITIVITE AUTOMOBILE
CLUB DES VOITURES 220 SOBEMECOLOGIQUES SCAME STATIONNEMENT DES VÉHICULES
EON BOOX CORP. MOTORS
AVERE FRANCE DBT 200B IES GREENOVIA
AVERE SITL BRAND MOTORS
ELECTRIC CAR TEST TRACK
PAYS DE MONTBELIARD
AMBASSADE DU DANEMARK
EUROPEAN HYDROGEN ROADTOUR 2012 H2MOVES SCANDINAVIA
ELECTRIC MOBILE CARS STATIONNEMENT DES VÉHICULES
ECOLE NATIONALE DES INGENIEURS ESCRA-ISCAM DE METZ 144 140
SAINTRONIC SAFT SPIE
ASSOCIATION EV PLUG ALLIANCE
ECOLE DES MINES D'ALES 158
BMW, COURB, EDF, EON, H2MOVES, MITSUBISHI, NISSAN, SMART, TOYOTA
MARKETING & SALES SYMBIOFCELL
GENERATION SANS PERMIS TRAVEN TECHNOLOGY
DELTA CAR TRADE
RoadEyes EXA CORPORATION COMPANY OLIVER WYMAN
CARFILM DESIGN AKRAPOVIC
CROWN 448 444 RIMA PERSYN PAVILIONS POLAIRE LANXESS MECACYL
DE TOMASO CLUB DE FRANCE
ISUZU MIDI FRANCE
MAM GLADIATOR VICTORIA
Pavillons 2.2 & 1
107 AISIN AW ADVICS
ENTRANCE Pavillon 4
PAVILION 4 ORANGE AUDI
BRM CHRONOGRAPHESONROAK AUTOMOTIVE
EXAGON MOTORS AIRE DE REPOS
PAVILION 5.2 520
LA BOUTIQUE DU SALON
Alfa Romeo - Pavillon 1 Stand 140 BMW - P.1 S.621 Exagon Motors - P.5.1 S.112 FIAT - P.1 S. 230 Fisker - P.3 S.214 Infiniti - P.1 S.224 Jaguar - P.5.1 S.101 KIA - P.5.2 S.520 Lancia - P.1 S.130 Mia - P.1 S.361 Mitsubishi - P.3 S.416 Nissan - P.1 S.331 Opel - P.5.2 S.501 Peugeot - P.1 S.421 Renault - P.1 S.431 Smart - P.1 S.551/631 Toyota - P.4 S.114 Volkswagen - P.4 S.211
BY PAVILION PAVILION 1 Alfa Romeo - P. 1 S.140 BMW - P.1 S.621 FIAT - P.1 S.230 Infiniti - P.1 S.224 Lancia - P.1 S.130 Mia - P.1 S.361 Nissa - P.1 S.331 Peugeot - P.1 S.421 Renault - P.1 S.431 Smart - P.1 S.551/631
PAVILION 4 Toyota - P. 4 S.114
PAVILION 5.1 Exagon Motors - P.5.1 S.112 Jaguar - P.5.1 S.101
PAVILION 5.2 KIA - P.5.2 S.520 Opel - P.5.2 S.501
PAVILION 3 Fisker - P.3 S.214 Mitsubishi - P.3 S.416
idely regarded as the first of its kind, the Paris Motor Show is also the largest, attracting over 1.2 million visitors last time around in 2010. As you might expect, the French makers will be out in force with a special emphasis on the small car segments. We’ll see at least one new Renault (excluding the electric Zoe), in form of the Clio 4, as well as a trio of Citroens and a further exhibition from Peugeot, who are already enjoying the 208’s success. Along with Opel’s Adam, the supermini segment will be more competitive than ever in 2013. Alternative, greener drivetrains will also feature in almost every arena, from Mitsubishi’s Plug-In Hybrid Outlander 4x4, to the production debut of the Fisker’s shooting brake, the Karma Surf, right up to Ferrari’s eagerly awaited Enzo successor, which will feature a hybridized setup. The environmental statement of intent made by manufacturers at the last Paris Motor Show has been made good on, too. In the interim we’ve seen cars such as the Nissan Leaf and Renault Twizy go on sale, dazzling concept cars such as the BMW Vision Efficient Dynamic Concept make huge strides towards production (the i8), whilst not forgetting Audi’s R8 e-tron and the Porsche 918 Spyder. Manufacturers are also embracing one of the most effective green design trends of all - weight saving. Range Rover’s new flagship is 420kg lighter than the outgoing model, due to an allaluminium monocoque, and the latest Volkswagen MkVII Golf will save an equally impressive 100kg over the MkVI car. After ballooning in weight over the last three decades, cars are now getting smaller again, but without compromising space.
PAVILLON 1 - STAND 421
esigned for young-minded people who value practicality, the 2008 Concept will go into production in 2013 and is based on the successful 208 (reviewed on p54). Reflecting the concept's global appeal, the 2008 has been created by Peugeotâ€™s design teams in Paris, Shanghai and Sao Paulo and will go into production in China, France and Brazil. The 2008 will be powered by a new, 1.2-litre turbocharged petrol engine and combines 110bhp with low CO2 emissions and comparable economy to the 208.
PEUGEOT ONYX 44
PAVILLON 1 - STAND 421
NISSAN TeRRA SUV CONCEPT
PAVILLON 1 - STAND 331
issan believe that this concept combines two of their strengths – electric vehicles and SUVs. Unlike their current electric vehicles, however, the TeRRA is powered by a hydrogen fuel cell with three electric motors. It also has 4-wheel drive – with
eugeot like supercars, and with an illustrious history in building them it’s no surprise that this, the Onyx Concept, is arguably the best yet. Powered by a 3.7-litre diesel-hybrid V8, the Onyx’s central structure consists of only 12 parts and uses a carbon fibre shell. Total output
in-wheel motors at the rear. Head of design Shiro Nakamura has taken inspiration from the lifestyles of young customers in Northern Europe, particularly in regard to their desire for sustainable mobility that can also go anywhere. The striking exterior features a
high beltline and slim waist, and Nissan have incorporated short overhangs to give the TeRRA a confident stance. Nissan don’t have any plans for production, but believe this concept demonstrates that they are ready for hydrogen.
is 600bhp in a car that weighs just 1100kg – the same as a Fiat Panda. Peugeot have also endeavored to use a few processed materials as possible. Pure copper panels adorn the exterior, and Peugeot intend these to age over time and form a patina – suggesting that the
car is alive. The Onyx also pays tribute to the RCZ, a facelifted version of which is at the show, with a double-bubble roof. Interior stylist, Julien Cueff, has admitted that he took inspiration from an egg box for the interior.
PAVILLON 5.2 - STAND 501 Due
hat an important car for Opel/Vauxhall the Adam is. Starting at £11,000 (€14,000), the Adam will rival the likes of Citroen’s DS3, Fiat’s 500 and will aim to undercut premium rivals such as the Audi A1. Designer Mark Adams has introduced a new design language with the Adam and features like the two-tone colour scheme that creates a ‘floating roof ’ illusion make it exciting car to look at. Vauxhall have aimed for a retro-based design with a fresh and bold look, and there are over 1 million personalisation combinations (you can even specify an LED-lit starlight interior roof trim). The Adam will be available with three ecoFLEX four-cylinder engines, including a 70bhp 1.2-litre and 100bhp 1.4-litre. All models can be specified with stop-start technology.
Interview with designer Mark Adams
RENAULT CLIO 4
PAVILLON 1 - STAND 431
rguably the star of the 2012 Paris Motor Show, the latest Clio is the first Renault to be designed entirely by Laurens van den Acker and follows on from the facelifted Twingo released earlier this year. Wheel arches inspired by the DeZir concept and rear door handles hidden in the C-pillars make it easily the most svelte small car Renault have ever made, and should stand it in good stead as it aim to take sales from Peugeot’s excellent 208. Like the Auris and the new VW Golf, the Clio 4 is lower and wider that the outgoing Clio, which makes for a sportier stance without compromising interior space. The interior itself is a vast improvement, with all models sharing the same dashboard. Renault will offer a 0.9-litre turbocharged petrol engine that will offer excellent economy and low emissions as well as producing 90bhp.
SMART FORSTARS CONCEPT PAVILLON 1 - STAND 551/631
aking it's name from the glass roof that gives its passengers a clear view of the sky, the smart forstars is an electric coupé powered by a 60kW electric motor from the new BRABUS electric smart. Painted in “alubeam rouge”, the forstars uses another
example of smart's tridion safety cell as is described by its maker as “Europe's most inexpensive series-produced electric car.” The forstars' silhouette gives us an idea of the design direction that smart will be taking in the future, and is characterised by
extremely short overhangs and a rhombic design of the front and rear lights. The forstars shares the same body as the for-us – the pick-up concept that debuted at this year's Detroit Motor Show.
PAVILLON 5.1 - STAND 112
rench company Exagon Motors’ FurtiveeGT surfaced at the last Paris Motor Show as a concept. Now it’s back – as a production version. The pure-electric eGT has been designed to combine the “behaviour and performance of a leading sports car with the comfort of an executive car”, hence the 2+2 layout. It has also been developed with the help of Siemens
Corporate Technology, who have supplied twin-electric motors that generate 148kW (403bhp). Exagon tout these motors as the lightest and most compact engine on the market, and they should be, as the FurtiveeGT will cost around 350,000 euros. Range from the lithium-ion batteries is around 310km, with an optional range-extender that sees autonomy increase to over 800km.
Traditionally a racing brand, Exagon Motors’ first venture into road-going electric cars is an extremely striking product that indulges in the “French spirit” of shunning casual trends and fashion. Graceful but hard lines give the eGT a unique character and it’s interesting to look at, but most of all, it’s fast.
VW GOLF MKVII PAVILLON 4 - STAND 211 A
new VW Golf is always big news, and nothing’s changed this time around. VW also know that the expectation placed on a Golf is higher than any of its rivals, and as such the depth of engineering found in their flagship vehicle is hard to match. The headline figures are that the car is 100kg lighter than the MkVI, which will make it 23% more efficient that before. At the same time, the Golf is also longer and wider, but lower, too. The result is a sportier stance but improved interior space. Inside, a 5.8-inch touchscreen system will be standard in all Golfs, and the centre console is now angled more towards the driver. Outside, the Golf has changed relatively little, but what did you expect? A strong crease now characterizes the flanks and the agressive front graphic is clearly an evolution of the Golf ’s immediate predecessor. Active Cyclinder Technology will also deactivate two of the car’s four cylinders when they are not required.
JAGUAR F-TYPE PAVILLON 5.1 - STAND 101 Due
piritual successor to the legendary E-Type, Jaguar’s latest sports coupé will sit just beneath the flagship XK in the company’s lineup and three engines - two 3.0-litre V6 and 5.0-litre V8 - will be available. Unfortunately the hybrid powertrain evidenced in the C-X16 concept is unlikely to make it to production. The finished car will, however, make use of stop-start technology.
So far all we’ve seen is a heavily camouflaged development car that has featured in several photos, videos and at the Goodwood Festival of Speed, but it’s clear that the F-Type will evidence Jaguar’s feline genetics with high rear haunches and a swooping bonnet line that tapers into an aggressive nose. The F-Type’s body will also be constructed entirely from lightweight aluminium.
INFINITI LE PAVILLON 1 - STAND 224 Due
aris marks the European debut for Infiniti’s first all-electric concept saloon. Encouragingly, Infiniti has also revealed that the LE is a ‘production intent’ concept, meaning that what you see here will be closely reflected in the production model. Infiniti have yet to set a date for sale, but are encouraged by the French government’s decision to raise the electric car grant from €5000 to €7000 and a development period of
around two years is anticipated. The LE Concept’s flowing lines bear the hallmarks of Chief Creative Officer Shiro Nakamura’s ‘brush stroke’ design philosophy that has applied to the company’s recent production cars and concepts alike, and performance should be respectable too. Powered by a 100kW electric motor, the range is expected to be 160km, which puts it on par with most pure-EVs on sale today.
modes: Pure – where it is powered only by its electric motor; Series – where the electric motor is supported by a petrol engine generator; and Parallel – where the combustion engine is supplemented by Twin Motor 4WD. Overall range is just shy of 500 miles (800km) and average
CO2 emissions will be less than 50g/km, which on the face of it is fairly incredible, but the Outlander certainly won’t achieve that when driving off-road – or the 151mpg figure Mitsubishi is quoting. Even so, the Outlander is a first-of-its-kind car and deserves some recognition.
PAVILLON 3 - STAND 416 Due
he plug-in hybrid Outlander will be the world’s first production electric car with permanent four-wheel drive, and although it’s not the prettiest car at the show it’s significance shouldn’t be underestimated. The Outlander will have three drive
FISKER KARMA SURF
PAVILLON 3 - STAND 214 Due
ou would be forgiven for letting Fisker Automotive's existence slip your mind recently. Fierce rivals Tesla have dominated the headlines this year with the success of the Model S and cars like the Twizy have also taken a share of the limelight. Fisker have, however, sold over 1000
Karmas worldwide and are opening showrooms across Europe, including two in the UK (London and Manchester). Paris sees a further installment of the Fisker story, where a production version of the Karmabased surf will be revealed. The Surf is aimed
T TOYOTA AURIS PAVILLON 4 - STAND 114 Due
he new Auris features much sharper styling than the car it replaces and clearly follows the lead of the latest Yaris (reviewed on p22). Longer but lower than the outgoing model, it will also feature ‘Skyview’ – one of the largest panoramic roofs in its class. The Auris will be available with Toyota’s Hybrid Synergy Drive and will use a similar drivetrain to
at increasing the brand's practical appeal and stays true to the design language of the Karma. It is also another example of the resurgence of the fabled 'shooting brake'. The Surf should start at over $100,000 in the USA. the extremely economical Yaris Hybrid. Extensive use of high-tensile steel will also bring overall weight down considerably. Whilst adopting Toyota’s new ‘face’ at the front, the wedge-shaped side profile and angular rear graphic give the Auris a contemporary aesthetic that, although a little fussy, marks a quantum leap over the old model.
ELECTRIC DREAMS Words: Steve Davies
With electric ‘halo’ models entering the fray, environmentally friendly cars are about to become a lot more desirable
he competitive landscape for electric vehicles will change in 2013, and not because of a deluge of sensible, affordable city cars from China, but because the biggest most aspirational car brands will begin a land grab of our hearts and minds with a mindboggling array of super sports cars. Jaguar, Porsche, Ferrari, Audi and BMW will all release the most jaw-dropping beauties that will give the most ardent of petrol heads a bad case of ‘electric dreams’ – destroying the illusion for ever that EVs are little more than a ‘sensible’ form of sustainable transport. This move is reinforced by the continued success of electric powered cars in motorsports, most famously at the Le Mans 24 Hours - a race which was won for the first time in 2012 by the hybrid Audi R18 e-tron Quattro (challenged closely by the TS030 Hybrids from Toyota). Not forgetting last month’s Pikes Peak Hill Climb, which saw the entry of no less than seven electric powered race cars, notably that of six-time winner and former record holder
Monster Tajima, whose Team APEV car was unfortunately knocked out by an electrical fire. Nevertheless, he’ll be back next year and no doubt the course record of the most famous hill climb in the world will finally be claimed by an electric powered car. In the high-altitude ‘Race to the Clouds’ of a Pikes Peak hill climb, electric power claims an obvious advantage over combustion, since it’s unaffected by the drop in oxygen levels. For endurance racers the significantly fewer moving parts of an electric car make for greater reliability and instant overtaking torque out of tight corners. Honorary President of the Motorsport Industry Association (MIA), Lord Drayson, recently revealed his 850 bhp Lola-Drayson B12/69EV. It will most likely join Audi and Toyota at Le Mans next year, together with the hydrogen-electric GreenGT H2 prototype, which has been granted a “Garage 56” spot by the Automobile Club de l’Ouest race organisers.
But while the future looks increasingly green, there is a potential fly in the ointment. Does the progress of hybrid powered cars accelerate or delay the development of fully electric vehicles? Jaguar’s £900,000 Project C-X75 will be one of the fastest, low-emission vehicles in the world when it is released in 2013, with a 200mph top speed, 0-60mph in less than 3 seconds and 0-100mph in less than 6 seconds. The road car will use a 4-cylinder 500bhp internal combustion engine, boosted by both a turbocharger and supercharger and supported by a Kinetic Energy Regeneration System (KERS) from the people who develop Williams F1 powerplants. The headlines quite rightly praise its sub-99g/km CO2 capability, but with an all-electric range of 60km, electric propulsion seems more of an hors d’oeuvre than a main meal.
As distinctive as these design sketches are, the interior of the production i8 coupé is unlikely to look this flamboyant, and i8 test cars have been seen using an array of 3-Series components
will be used yet again as a way of reducing CO2 emissions, rather than providing a genuinely The Porsche 918 Spyder, a master-class in feasible means of efficient propulsion, harnesses a 500bhp V8 propulsion. engine together with two permanent electric Audi’s R8 e-tron motors to produce nearly 750bhp. Porsche’s quattro has already goal is to deliver 200mph performance, 0-60mph acceleration in 3.1 seconds and a lap established a performance time around the Nurburgring Nordschleife of 7 minutes 30 seconds. It will go on sale in benchmark at the Nurburgring, September 2013 around £690,000, boasting CO2 performance of 70g/km but with an all- claiming the fastest ever lap of 8 minutes 9 seconds in June. It’s also the first of these electric range of just 16 miles. electric powered sports cars which runs We know far less about Ferrari’s ‘purely’ on electricity. Propulsion comes forthcoming Enzo replacement. It is from four electric motors driving each wheel, due in 2013, priced somewhere between delivering a total power output of 313bhp Porsche’s 918 Spyder and Jaguar’s C-X75 and 3,319lb-ft of torque (equivalent to and according to Ferrari’s chairman, Luca di Montezemolo, “.. will be our first-ever hybrid around 502lb ft in real world terms). The R8 car.” It will be the carmaker’s most powerful e-tron’s all-electric range from its lithium-ion model, combining two electric motors with a batteries is a far more respectable 154 miles 12-cylinder petrol engine, which will achieve and it will be priced at a little over £100,000 when it goes on sale in early 2013. a 40% reduction in fuel use. Electric power
Last but not least in our short list of established sports car makers is BMW. The i8 Concept is a 2+2 seat sports car with a 1.5-litre threecylinder petrol engine working in tandem with a frontmounted electric motor. The combustion engine produces 220bhp and 221lb-ft of torque which combined with the second electric powerplant delivers around 354bhp. Acceleration from 0-60mph will be achieved in under 5 seconds combined with a maximum fuel consumption of 104mpg. The i8’s price should be around the same as the R8 e-tron (£100,000+) but unlike the Audi, BMW’s electric powered sports car has an all-electric range of just 20 miles.
Audi are already anticipating that their near-silent electric cars will need to be heard by pedestrians who are used to the sound of oil-burning engines. Seen here on a rolling road surrounded by microphones, this is the R8 e-tron undergoing acoustic engineering to develop a synthetic solution: Audi e-sound. So what’s the problem?
because the future of sustainable transport depends on the rapid innovation in battery Compared to just a few years ago we will technology. All of the above cars use soon be facing the production reality of lithium-ion batteries which are far slower five sports cars from the most prestigious to charge than lithium–titanate batteries, as performance car makers in the world, well as having a shorter life span (lower cycle all waving the flag of environmental life). sustainability through their use of electric This reliance on older technology is one power. downside of innovation being led by large Such a ‘halo’ presence in the market will manufacturers, whose interests lie more significantly raise the appeal of both battery in protecting their own investments than powered electric vehicles and their hybrid accelerating the technological progress for all. counterparts. But will customers appreciate In economic terms we call it rentthe difference between Audi’s R8 e-tron seeking, manipulating the social or political and BMW’s i8? Or in fact show preference environment of a sector to maximise their towards the BMW due to its superior own economic gains. There is of course a (perceived) range when using both petrol and social cost to monopoly, but there may also electric drive? be an environmental one when it comes to The question is an important one the development of electric vehicles.
Apart from Audi, the other car makers mentioned above are merely dipping their toes in the electric vehicle ecosystem, although BMW deserve credit with their i3 hatchback which uses the same electric motor as the i8 but lives up to the pure-play all-electric format of the R8 e-tron. So let’s celebrate the onset of an electric vehicle revolution in 2013, where for the first time in the history of the car, our automotive pin-ups will major on sustainability rather than self-indulgence. But beware of complacency, for electric powered vehicles to reach the majority of road users the cycle time for innovation needs to become shorter and the distinction needs to be maintained between rangeextended hybrids, performance-boosted hybrids and all-electric cars.
PEUGEOT 208 ‘R
egeneration’ is very much the buzzword with the Peugeot 208. Significantly lighter, greener and cleaner than the outgoing 207, Peugeot’s new supermini now looks the part too. Goodbye ugly duckling, hello swan. On first impression, the 208 is remarkably elegant for such a small car, and this stems as much from the details as it does from the car’s overall silhouette. What makes this elegance all the more impressive, however, is that the 208 is actually 70mm shorter than the 207. Featuring a floating grill, ‘boomerang’ rear lights and a spine that runs along the roof and down onto the bonnet, the 208 is Peugeot’s most distinctive car since the RCZ, although the project’s Head of Design, Pierre Authier, is most proud of the LED ‘luminous signatures’ at each end of the car. These signatures are patterns depicted by the 208’s lights – a mixture of LED and halogen – and are designed to portray a feline element to onlookers, particularly on the front graphic. Another interesting flourish is the brushed aluminium blade that protrudes into the C-pillar from
the rear window (only on the 3-door, though). This is intended as a nod to the much-loved 205 GTI of the 1980’s, and its blade-like shape is a recurring theme on the exterior – notably recreated inside the boomerang rear lights and the folded character line on each side of the car. Interestingly, the 208 also sports an aggressive kink in the window line immediately before the wing-mirror, which is reminiscent of a similar feature underneath the RCZ’s rear window. Details aside, the upshot is that Peugeot have managed to condense, even distill, the hefty proportions of the 207 (208 is smaller on the outside but bigger on the inside) into a coherent, svelte design that exudes quality in a way Peugeots of recent times could only dream of. By class standards the 208’s interior is rather spectacular, too, and
“The strength of the 208 lies in its style: it is a real ball of energy” Gilles Vidal focuses on providing an intuitive and insouciant environment. The first, and most radical, step Peugeot have taken to ensure this is by considerably reducing the size of the steering wheel – it’s very small by conventional standards and the idea is that the driver reads the high-mounted instrument cluster over it rather than through it. This is intended to aid visibility and awareness in urban environments and, although I’m not a fan of the petite wheel (unlike the unprecedented 3,000 people who have already ordered the 208), the view from the driver’s seat is excellent. The alternate argument is that holding a smaller steering wheel
lends the driver a sense of increased control, much like inside a racecar. The instrument binnacle itself is wonderfully smart and easy to interpret. With an elegant central digital readout and white backlit dials, the already linear casing dissolves into an expansive dashboard that
is tastefully adorned with both piano-black plastic and brushed aluminium. Despite all these delightful little touches, however, it’s hard to not home in on the enormous freestanding 7-inch LCD touch-screen that sits front and centre of the dashboard. Although flanked by metal inserts, surely it wasn’t beyond the realms of possibility for Interior Design Manager, Anna Costamagna, and her team to create something a little subtler? And for the system to work as intuitively as the rest of the car, for that matter. Buyers can choose from a range of ten engines, but two are particularly noteworthy.
All five diesel engines emit less than 100 g/ km CO2 and the most impressive is the 68bhp 1.4-litre e-HDI, which puts out just 87g/km CO2. With the help of a competent stop/start system, the diesel is touted to achieve 83.1 mpg. On a short but busy route out of Manchester through
Engine: 1.4-litre 4-cyl diesel Power: 68bhp Torque: 160Nm 0-62mph: 15.5 seconds Top speed: 101mph CO2 emissions: 87g/km Economy: 83.1mpg (claimed) Price: £9,995
DRIVEN the suburbs, however, we managed a reasonable 43.4 mpg, and although on acquaintance the diesel can seem a little gruff, it soon revealed itself to be a smooth, albeit modesty powered, little engine. The other significant engine is the petrol powered three-cylinder 1.0-litre VTi, which emits 99g/km CO2. It’s an impressive achievement, but with just over half the torque, needs to be worked harder than the diesel and this becomes a little tiresome. Both engines are attached to a 5-speed gearbox that, whilst slightly lethargic, is entirely suited to a car like the 208. Both these low-powered engines work
because of the impressive weight saving program Peugeot have embarked on with the 208, which is on average 110kg lighter than the car it replaces. Furthermore, 25% of the car’s synthetic materials are either recycled or naturally occurring (up from 7% for the 207). The rear bumper, in fact, is entirely recycled. Reduced weight also endows the 208 with a responsive nature from behind the wheel and direction changes are relatively crisp in comparison to other cars in the B-segment. The importance of the 208 to the Peugeot brand is enormous. Times have been lean of late and hopefully what is now the best looking car in its class can help
remedy that. It’s also encouraging to a see a mass-market car reaping the benefits of serious weight saving and, also, that Peugeot have been diligent in sourcing and using environmentally conscientious materials. The question is: can it take sales from the Corsa, Fiesta and Polo? I, for one, can’t see why not. RL
GCD: A lighter, greener, sexier package 3-cylinder petrol engine is hard work
ANNA COSTAMAGNA Design Manager Anna Costamagna is the kind of designer that all young designers should aspire to be.
f Italian descent but now based at Peugeot’s Design Centre in Paris, Design Manager Anna Costamagna is the kind of designer that all young designers should aspire to be. Successful in a male-dominated profession and unusual in that she originally studied engineering in Turin, Anna’s individuality is placated by an ardor for classic, understated Italian design qualities - something that is apparent in her latest project, the all-new 208. Green Car Design: Tell us a little about how and why you decided to work in car design? Anna Costamagna: When I was a little girl, I used to draw my paper dolls and their clothes. As I grew up, I really wanted to be in fashion design, but my left-brain prevailed so I studied hard to become an engineer. An Industrial and Management Engineering Graduate from Politecnico of Turin, I started my career at Bertone Design Center in Turin. From the very first project, I realised that I had found in-car design the perfect ground to express my quest for beauty and elegance and my obsession for details, quality and precision! In the end, cars are complex industrial products with a high creative and emotional potential, which have nowadays become fashion items that you can wear. For me, being a woman in a man’s world helped a lot, as I might have a different approach to the car world in general, and design as well. My technical and mechanical skills have helped a lot, too, as if you want to get closer to the product I think you need to have some technical insight.
GCD: Your background includes a lot of experiences living in many countries, how do you think that affects your design process? AC: I’ve always been a wanderer! My first long-term experience abroad was when I was only 16 and, as a college student, I enrolled in a one year exchange program in the U.S.A. My family has always encouraged me to witness and experience “bio-diversity”; I need to see different people, different places, to speak their language and to live their way of life. Being creative and working in a team require an open mind, to listen to each other, to experience the multiple facets of life and, most of all, to be curious. In my day-today job, I believe that my Italian openness and my foreign accent have been very important as I play a transversal role and deal with many stakeholders, striving to find solutions to give design its best chance and convince by results. story continues...
INTERVIEW WITH ANNA COSTAMAGNA
GCD: Having worked at Bertone and now in Peugeot, what do you think are the distinct differences and advantages that each company has to offer? AC: I have a special affection for both companies and I am proud of my professional experience. Bertone is a small family company based in Turin, my hometown, and despite the typical “Turinese understatement”, has managed to become one of the world references for car design. Its legendary Stratos Zero, Miura, Countach, Carabo, Testudo and Giulietta Sprint are milestones in car design, their fascinating power is as strong as when they were created. Peugeot is a big worldwide selling company, a reference brand especially in the supermini segment, but it started out as a family company 200 years ago fabricating utensils like peppermills and sewing machines! I think I love this “understatement” feeling that gives the best results through work, passion and endurance, which I finally found in both. I believe having gathered the best from each as I had the chance to manage quite a few concept car projects in Bertone (GM Hywire, Opel Insignia and Hummer H3T) and mostly production vehicles in Peugeot (3008 and 5008, 208 interior). Working on the 208 GTi
and XY concept cars unveiled at the Geneva Motorshow last March reminded me the good old sweet thrill of concept cars. GCD: How do you start thinking about designing a car? What is your first point of departure?
of design details and is has a lovely interior space. Can you explain the process, the voyage, and what is meant to you and the project?
AC: A small group since the Pre-Project Phase, very closely knit, we had the same vision of the direction we should take. That is what inspired us, gave us the strength and energy to AC: The design process usually starts succeed in realising all our ideas. spontaneously, designers being quite free to From the beginning of the project (2007) we propose and to challenge fellow designers. wanted the 208 to “re-generate” the B segment Other times projects are based on a simple supermini. In the early advanced phases, silhouette idea or a very concise brief. Key our teams developed a totally new interior products are mostly based on complex architecture: an ergonomic innovation to product briefs integrating societal parameters, provide the driver with a much more pleasant, market and trend evaluation as well as brand simplified and intuitive driving experience in objectives. today’s ever changing world. In general, designers are able to express In order to achieve this challenge we have themselves freely within our brand design based this new architecture on the following identity, which we create and nurture project elements: by project. - A small and agile steering wheel which The point of departure for each project could gives a more direct and precise drives providing be the anticipation of customers’ needs and complete control. new lifestyles (3008 crossover), the definition - A clean, precise cluster positioned just of a trend (208 downsizing) , the will to reabove the small steering wheel in order to generate an iconic model (208 GTi), every-day give a more instant reading of relevant driving life technology (208 touch screen) or just a information without taking eyes off the route. beautifully intelligent idea (RCZ)...concept This gave birth to the innovation that we call cars are a good way to start! HUC (Head Up Cluster) a natural evolution of Peugeot 3008 HUD (Head Up Display). GCD: Let’s talk about the Peugeot 208, full In the central axe of the dashboard we have
placed a touch screen in the optimal reachvision zone. This permitted us to reduce and simplify the usual collection of buttons and commands into something more intuitive and direct, allowing more freedom and space to design. We managed to design a car which is both sensual and clean in its form language, yet sophisticated in the treatment of each detail. The design theme is athletic and sculpted, embodying a feminine/masculine alchemy which is unique and powerful. To give it complete consistency, exterior and interior elements are fully coherent. This is the case of graphical, fragmented motifs (e.g. front grilles and door panel loud speakers) as well as other details (the small chrome on the rear quarter panel and on the dashboard) or lighting. In the interior two blue LED ‘comets’ discretely integrated under the glass roof recall the LED eyebrows in headlamps. I’m very passionate about my work, as it combines astonishing design and engineering aspects as well as a great deal of passion, psychology, endurance and teamwork to make things happen: being Interior Design Manager for 208 has been a wonderful project and human experience that well synthesise these feelings! GCD: Would you change anything if you had time? AC: This is a tricky questions…I would change nothing and everything at the same time! It would be fun to re-do it over again as I would capitalise on my experience, but I find the overall result best in class, both because of its innovative design theme and ergonomics but also because of its good perceived quality, so I’d rather go on to the next project!
GCD: What are your design obsessions? AC: Being Italian I have a certain taste for understated timeless elegance: my design obsessions are therefore design pureness, coherence and result quality. I have learned from experience that the most difficult project goal is to reach beauty by balance and simplicity. I always stimulate people in the team to simplify and to think about production manifold details, as the result’s feasibility and quality are highly dependent on the industrial process complexity. GCD: Can you describe a typical work day for you? AC: I have no typical workday: I can be in a design presentation with top management in the morning presenting scale models and in the production plant in the afternoon talking with the quality manager. I love working in this transversal role, but it sure requires lots of different skills and focus. GCD: What advice would you give young designers aspiring to become car designers? AC: Never give up! Rely on your passion, be open and curious and don´t be afraid to say you don´t know – find the experienced people who can give you the answers. Watch out for stereotypes – value ideas first – and always encourage diversity in a team to boost creativity. Finding your own peculiar style is a sufficiently hard task to accomplish, nevertheless try to challenge yourself continuosly, especially for ideas, not only for rendering! HM
Check out other interviews on our website!
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Senior Vice President and Chief Creative Officer of Design and Brand Management of Nissan and Infiniti
PARIS DESIGN TRENDS
A sneak preview of the Paris Motor Show trend report from leading automotive consultancy, Car Design Research Credits: Car Design Research
INTEGRATED HORIZONTAL FRONT GRAPHICS
s facial identity becomes increasingly important to the brand, and as grille sizes slim down and lamp cans get smaller, we’re seeing increased integration of elements in the upper DRG. Lamps and grilles are becoming one… Paris debutant, the Clio 4 introduces Renault’s new face, with an emboldenned centre diamond - while the Golf VII keeps the integrated grille and lamp graphic of Mk VI, but visually reinforces it with a chrome bar that runs through into the bumper part line.
The new Range Rover features a face that evolves the theme of the last car - but the grille and lamps now truly touch and the extended lamp helps wrap the face around the car, giving it less boxy corners. The Mazda 6 runs a chrome element out of the lamp and around the grille, while Toyota’s Auris features a treatment not disimilar to the Clio.
THERE’S AN APP FOR THAT: CHANGING THE AUTOMOTIVE EXPERIENCE
fter years of struggling with the fast pace of change in consumer electronics, the App may be the answer to car makers’ prayers. Introducing new players to the sector, they also allow brand extension opportunities and are changing the user experience...
Apps allow consumers to bring their technology with them to the car and update it from the cloud.
Avego debuts its 3rd Generation rideAudi’s Business Mileage Tracker can be used in any car - not just Audis. Its Audi graphics sharing app in Paris - represenative of nonand fonts allow the four ringed brand a precious piece of real estate in the interior of other car car brands who saw the value of apps in the transport space first . GM’s On-Star MyLink brands.. allows customers to get remote diagnostics on the car and control charging and heating on E-REVs like the Chevrolet Volt.
The next step is illustrated by Renault’s R-Link, seen on the Clio 4 that debuts in Paris. It’s one of the first systems to allow users to choose and add different apps to the car’s on board interface. Most automakers are working on similar systems. We understand Audi and BMW will ‘skin’ 3rd party suppliers’ apps into a house graphical style, to ensure branding and appearance consistency.
Car Design Research is a unique consultancy providing strategic support, trend analysis and consumer insight in the automotive sector. E-mail us: firstname.lastname@example.org See more at www.cardesignresearch.com
BACK TO THE FUTURE Words: Hannah Macmurray
In 2013, Volkswagen are going to get serious about economy...
midst the electric revolution, there is also a hard push by car companies to make 'what we have' more efficient. The anxiety associated with range and recharging points is alleviated if you have the best of both worlds, diesel and electric for example, yet in the automotive world car companies are obsessed with performance. It’s all about the numbers. Volkswagen knows this, and tried to prove a point in the most extravagant way imaginable when they went through the painstaking task of producing the Bugatti Veyron, which tops out at nearly 270mph; point made. But at what cost? And why? Estimates suggest that VW lost around £2,000,000 on each Veyron and they seem to have learned a valuable lesson. They are now redefining the meaning of the word ‘performance’ - as 'efficiency'. It’s a clean, modern, and very contemporary interpretation of the word, neatly encapsulated by the new XL1 SEV (Super Efficient Vehicle) unveiled in Qatar last year. First seen as the 1-Litre in 2002, and then the L1 in 2009 at the Frankfurt Motor Show, the XL1 is now bigger and heavier but closer to a real world solution. It was announced that the plug-in hybrid drivetrain and innovative packaging returns 313mpg on a combined cycle emitting a mere 24g/km of CO2. The combination of a compact 800cc TDI two-cylinder diesel engine and an electric motor allows drivers to take longer trips, up to 340 miles, without refilling or recharging. The context in which it was unveiled emphasised its efficiency dense cities can be navigated on E-Drive alone within the 20mile range while the combined hybrid system can be used when the driver sets out into the dunes, as one does in Qatar.
Much of this ultra-efficient performance is achieved by cutting down on weight. In total the XL1 SEV weighs 795 kg, around the same an as a modern F1 car, which has been achieved by using lightweight materials and reducing the amount of steel used. Its footprint is similar to Volkswagen Polo, yet its height is closer to a Lamborghini Gallardo Spyder. These comparisons were made by Volkswagen themselves, and highlights their intention to place this vehicle in a market segment of its own, a new crossover, so to speak. They call it SEV but we think it should be Super Efficient Performance Vehicle, SEPV. You read it here first! Aesthetically the XL1 also marks a new direction in styling for green cars. Using hints of futuristic designs, such as Syd Mead's conceptual creations, in the wheel cover and single formed taillight, and mixing it with taught sinewy Bauhaus lines, the concept looks the part. Unlike the tandem arrangement of the L1, the XL1 features a staggered seating layout that makes access and using it more comfortable and practical. The viewer instinctively knows that something ‘eco’ is going on and one can easily understand that the construction and performance of such a car will be 'different'. This is key to the development, even progress, of car design, by taking a footnote from the Bauhaus movement, 'form follows function', we can release ourselves from what cars look like today, many of them monotonous, confused and complicated, and move on to tomorrow. Fingers crossed...
Volkswagen confirmed this year that the XL1 will go into limited production in 2013, and are clearly sincere on this promise – an XL1 with obvious production intent has been spied hot weather testing in Europe this summer. The performance figure given by VW last year were a respectable 0-60mph time of 11.9 seconds and a limited top speed of 99mph.
e know that the Golf Blue-e-motion is not due on sale until 2014, which is possibly a little late, but Volkswagen’s electric flagship was, nevertheless, recently introduced to the press. Visually the same as the regular on-the-road Golf, the Bluee-motion is part of a German government subsidised trial and has been kitted out with VW's electric drivetrain in the best way possible without manufacturing a whole new body. The BMW i3, for example, expresses a whole new way of driving electric instead of force feeding EV tech into a century old mould. So, although the design innovation really lies under the hood (I have to say the Golf ’s ‘engine’ bay is one of the coolest as it mimics old school computer tower innards), there is not much to critique other than remind you that VW does have a non-fossil fueled vehicle design vision...it’s just reserved at the moment to the futuristic XL-1. There are arguments that back up both approaches - regular looking or new looking
EV design - mainly by the companies themselves. There is however one golden rule - if you are going to make an EV feel like a regular car (which, by the way, you can’t) then you have to at least make some tweaks to make it drive like your brand. There is something we happily discovered about the electric Golf the test-drive day out in Farnham - that aside from very controlled weight distribution (despite 205kg of batteries), responsive handling and accurate if muted torque, the Golf reserved a cheeky trick up its sleeve. How, the engineers might have asked themselves, can we make the car behave in a VW way that respects and ticks all the tech boxes yet shows that we, too, love to drive? Enter interactive regenerative braking.
In setting 'B' the driver can actually use them to simulate sporty gear shifting by releasing or increasing the amount of regen braking. Whilst technically purposeful it is also a unique idea. What if we could engineer electric vehicles to behave and do things that we would not expect of them? Would that make them more appealing? Certainly. But do we have to conform with conformity? I don't think so. A last word on the interior. Unlike most nouvelle EVs that have sparse interiors with minimal comforts, the Golf interior is thankfully much like the 'regular' version. Solar panels on the roof assist minor functions such as keeping the batteries cool and regulating the cabin temperature, and the trim and design are top stitch.
The Golf Blue-e-motion is still two years Just behind the steering wheel are discrete away, but if you can’t wait that long there’s paddle shifts that would normally be used an electric up! will be coming our way in to change gears in a car, but in this EV they 2013! are there to assist with regenerative braking.
Model tested: Volkswagen Golf Blue-e-Motion Power: 114 bhp permanent magnet synchronous electric motor Torque: 199 lb/ft 0-62mph: 11.8s Top speed: 82 mph Weight: 1500kg CO2 emissions: 0 g/km Price: NA
VW GOLF BLUE-E-MOTION 66
Words: Hannah Macmurray Photography: Olgun Kordal
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No-one can work in a vacuum, and there is no time like the present to pool resources and create partnerships. Our Resources is a one-stop place you can go to link to companies and schools that offer services we recommend and respect.
Give our readers and followers an opportunity to get involved in creating the future, in thinking about eco mobility, and green design. We host our own events annually but are equally available to design and run one for your company.
As eco-design becomes more mainstream so will the need for employees with this specific green know-how. Get ahead of the game by listing your green design Jobs with us!
There is no point in talking the talk if you are not ready to walk the walk, so Green Car Design actively supports and promotes â€˜good causesâ€™. We commit to at least 5 Charities a year and help in many ways.
BECOME A MEDIA PARTNER There are many advantages in becoming a media partner with Green Car Design Ltd. As a company we decided from the outset to fully understand and embrace our chosen platform for distribution, the internet. Not only does it provide us with an ‘eco’ environment from which to work from, it also potentially allows for viral distribution. Whereby most online magazines and blogs simply ‘copy and paste’ contents, thus retaining viewer interest for a short time, we aim for the highest quality of reporting and photography. This has allowed us to set ourselves apart and create a niche product followed by dedicated and interested readers. We in turn thank their loyalty and provide them, when we can, with added benefits through our media partners. It’s a benefits-all sustainable cycle.
HERE ARE A FEW REASONS WHY YOU SHOULD BECOME OUE MEDIA PARTNER.. • Advertising on www.greencardesign.com prior to event* • Mentions in our monthly Newsletter to our exclusive database* • Featured listing on www.greencardesign.com Events section • Tickets sale promotion*
• Event preview design review (when available) • Editorial coverage • Social Media promotion via Twitter (live coverage, whern possible) and Facebook (other media available)* • Advertising in GCD Digital Review (full page or double page - quarter magazine) • Design your advert
*All terms and conditions are negotiated and confirmed with a contract tailored to each event provided by Green Car Design Ltd or the media partner when preferred.
EVENTS COVERED AUTOMOBILE EVENTS
• North American International Auto Show • Brussels Motor Show • Geneva International Motor Show with International Advanced Mobility Forum • CleanWeek 2020 Belgium • Eco Rally Oxford-London • Paris International Motor Show • Los Angeles International Auto Show (TBC)
• Mia Green Expo Miami • SMi Electric Vehicles London • Electric Vehicles Land-Sea-Air USA • Economist Conferences: The UK Energy Summit • EV Infrastructure World Germany • World EV Summit Denmark • Plug-In Event San Antonio - USA • World Future Energy Summit Abu Dhabi (2013)
DESIGN EVENTS • Auto(r) Croatia • Automotive Interiors Expo Germany • Interiors UK • Economist Conferences: The Innovation 2012 • The Big Rethink 2012
Each client is unique in our eyes, so please feel free to get in touch. firstname.lastname@example.org or call at +442075819993. Green Car Design Ltd 5 Kendrick Mews London SW7 3HG, UK
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