While Honda is unveiling an affordable sports car in the shape of the CR-Z, BMW revealed a new hybrid supercar at the recent Frankfurt motor show, based on formula one technology
With its curvaceous design, supercar performance, outstanding fuel economy and low emissions, you would be expecting the Vision EfficientDynamics to be powered by a hefty V8 engine, but it isn’t. This concept is powered by a new three-cylinder 1.5-litre turbodiesel unit, mated to a pair of electric motors. Expected to deliver an astonishing 356bhp and 590lb ft of torque when all systems are working together, the Vision EfficientDynamics is capable of achieving 75.1mpg on the combined cycle and CO2 emissions of only 99g/km. And if operated in solely hybrid mode, the emissions drop to only 51g/km, once the sources of electrical energy generation have been taken into account.
The brand new three-cylinder diesel engine is strongly tipped for production and pumps out 163bhp. It is mated to a sevenspeed dual clutch transmission and can produce a maximum torque output of 214lb ft. In this application, the engine can be used on its own, or in addition to the electric motors. It can also be utilised to charge the battery pack. When used solely in electric mode, the car has a range of 31 miles, but that can be extended to 431 miles if it’s used along with the diesel engine.
Charging of the batteries can be fully completed in 2.5 hours, if using a 220 volt supply, though that can drop to just 44 minutes if a more powerful 380 volt supply is available. The Vision EfficientDynamics features exo-skeletal bodywork, and takes its styling cues from BMW’s involvement in Formula one. The elements of the design mean that the VisionDynamics achieves a drag co-efficient of a mere 0.22 – the lowest figure of any BMW road car to date. Lightweight materials are key components for reducing excess weight and boosting performance. As a result, the concept weighs just 1,395kg.
This is thanks to the chassis and suspension are fabricated from aluminium, while the roof and outer skin of the doors are made of a lightweight polycarbonate glass. Officially there are no plans for a production model, but elements of the design will no doubt filter down to BMW’s road cars.