We are back! The Real Madness starts now!! www.highthrottle.com will be launching very soon. The Chase Begins Again... High Throttle: January 2011


Monday, January 31, 2011

All-New Nissan Quest - Errands Commercial

Source: Youtube

2011 Volvo C70 : A elegant coupe as a sporty convertible.

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The new Volvo C70 has a smart three-piece steel roof, practical seating for four adults and world-leading convertible safety. With an updated design and elevated premium feel, the C70 also delivers an "I want" aura of absolute world class.
The C70 is two cars in one. It is as much an elegant coupe as a sporty convertible. With the same gentle, clean lines in both versions.


Modernised, self-assured front

The Volvo C70 reveals traces of the S60 that was unveiled in early 2010. Thereby the C70 is upgraded to relate more closely to the design language of the larger cars in the Volvo model range.
The nose is more wedge-shaped and has been given added three-dimensional depth by moving some elements of the front both longitudinally and vertically. The headlamps and the décor around the fog lamps, for instance, have been angled offset up and to the rear, at the same time as the detailing of the lower grille has been enhanced.

From head-on, the front forms an open, inviting "V". The enlarged iron mark and the enlarged air intake reinforce the self-assured stance.

The shoulder line swings up towards the rear to give an impression of dynamism and reinforces the feeling of a protective collar around those travelling in the back.

Elegant three-piece steel roof
The Volvo C70 transforms smoothly from a cosy coupe into an open convertible. Just press a button and the three-piece steel roof folds away quickly (about 30 sec.) and silently, disappearing neatly into the boot.

Exterior colours
The following exterior colours are available for the Volvo C70:

* Flamenco Red metallic (new) 702
* Silver metallic 426
* Black Sapphire metallic 452
* Barents Blue metallic 466
* Magic Blue metallic 467
* Celestial Blue metallic 474
* Electric Silver metallic 477 (Inscription)
* Ember Black metallic 487 (Inscription)
* Vanilla Pearl 491 (Inscription)
* Black Stone solid 019
* Passion Red solid 612
* Ice White solid 614.


Rewarding the driver
The interior creates a unique ambience in the Volvo C70. The instrument panel has been redesigned, giving it a wider, sleeker look, and the surface of the panel has a new texture that enhances the feeling of quality.
The exclusive instruments, with gauges and graphics specific to the C70, are yet another example of how the car's premium feeling has been emphasised still further.
The interior features around the driver are designed to give the owner a stronger perception of being rewarded behind the wheel. The seats are upholstered in soft hide and general attention to the finish of the various details makes driving a more pleasurable experience.

Iconic centre stack
The centre stack's floating theme flows smoothly with similar elegant soft curves all the way to the rear seat. The storage space between the seats has also been designed with the help of Scandinavian design tradition's most renowned hallmark - smart functionality.
The sliding cover over the larger storage compartments, in which there are also two holders that provide secure support for large and small cups, is complemented by a flexible armrest for the driver.

Audio and information
The Volvo C70 can be equipped with Bluetooth® technology that enables wireless communication. By connecting Volvo's Bluetooth device to the car's audio system and a Bluetooth-compatible cellular telephone, easy and practical hands-free phoning is made possible.

Cars with Volvo On Call now have the option of activating the cabin heater remotely via SMS text messaging.
The High Performance and Premium Sound systems have a USB port, making it easy to attach an iPod® or other MP3 player or even a digital camera to the audio system.
C70 buyers can now specify optional parking sensors front and rear.


Well-balanced and controlled driving
The C70 is built according to the same principles as the rest of the cars in the Volvo range. A very torsionally rigid body, a wide track and a relatively long wheelbase all help give it responsive and stable driving characteristics.
The chassis, with spring struts at the front and Multilink axle at the rear, is set up for controlled, reassuring driving manners and alert steering response. The Multilink rear axle is an independent rear suspension system featuring a number of links and it is designed to offer a good combination of controlled wheel movements and a high level of ride comfort.

DSTC standard
Volvo's advanced DSTC (Dynamic Stability and Traction Control) stability-enhancing system is fitted as standard. DSTC intervenes and helps stabilise the car if it registers any tendency to skid.


Transverse engines
The engines in the Volvo C70 are transversely installed in-line units. Together with large displacement, the five-cylinder configuration provides high torque across a broad rev band and thus also swift acceleration and excellent driveability within a wide speed range.
T5 with 230 hp
The Volvo C70 T5 petrol engine features a turbocharger and five-speed automatic transmission. It produces 230 hp and 320 Nm of torque.

New 2-litre diesel D3
The new five-cylinder 2-litre turbodiesel introduced in the all-new Volvo S60 is now available throughout Volvo Cars' model range. The new five-cylinder D3 is in principle the same engine as the well-established 2.4-litre diesel, but its displacement has been reduced with a shorter stroke to optimise fuel consumption.
The engine has been optimised for low fuel consumption and the injection system has a different type of piezoelectric fuel injector compared with the D5 engine. These injectors minimise consumption with exceptionally rapid and precise injection pulses under high pressure. This promotes extremely efficient combustion.
In the Volvo C70 the new 2-litre turbodiesel is available in two variants:

* D4 with 177 hp and 400 Nm of torque and a fuel consumption of 6.4 litre/100 km
* D3 with 150 hp and 350 Nm of torque and a fuel consumption of 6.4 litre/100 km

Both the new D3 and D4 meet the Euro 5 emission standards.
All the variants of the new two-litre turbodiesel can be specified with a six-speed automatic transmission or six-speed manual gearbox.


IDIS promotes safer driving
Volvo Cars has developed various support features designed to help the driver while on the move. One such system is IDIS (Intelligent Driver Information System), which for instance delays incoming phone calls in complex traffic situations that require the driver's undivided attention.

Active Bending Lights (ABL)- swivelling headlamp beams
In order to contribute to the best possible visibility during night-time driving on curving and twisting roads, the car can be equipped with Active Bending Lights - swivelling headlamps that follow the sweeps and bends of the road.

World-leading safety among convertibles
The new Volvo C70 has been engineered as one of the safest convertibles on the market as regards both preventive and protective safety. The car has an advanced body structure and several solutions that are unique in the world of open cars. The lack of a fixed roof has been compensated by structural reinforcements and sophisticated technology.
Protection in roll-over accidents
The Volvo C70 has sturdy metal hoops that shoot up behind the rear seat passengers to create added protective survival space should the car roll over. These hoops, which are part of Volvo's Rollover Protection System (ROPS) are activated by a gyro-sensor. Since the Volvo C70 has a proper glass rear window, the hoops shoot up through the glass if the roof is up. They have therefore been fitted with small metal spikes that break the glass to guarantee proper protective function.
Unique door-mounted inflatable curtain
One important part of the side-impact and rollover protection is the inflatable curtain (IC), which is installed in the door since there is no roof rail in which to fit it. The curtain has an extra-stiff design featuring twin rows of panels that are offset somewhat in relation to one another. As a result, the curtain can remain upright and help protect the head in an effective way even if the window is open. What is more, the curtain deflates slowly, helping to provide added protection should the car roll over.
Side-impact airbags and safety belt pre-tensioners for all seats
In addition to the inflatable curtains on either side, the front seat occupants also have side-impact airbags. The size of these bags is dimensioned to shield both the chest and hips. What is more, the inflatable curtain interacts with the belt pre-tensioners to contribute to the best possible protection for front seat occupants in a side impact or rollover situation. All four seats come with safety belt pre-tensioners.

Source: Volvo Press Release.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

2011 Porsche Cayenne Turbo

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It’s been more than seven years since Porsche launched the original Cayenne to the United States. Since then Porsche’s first-generation SUV has enjoyed remarkable success, selling more than 280,000 Cayennes worldwide, including more than 88,000 in the United States.

On the heels of this success comes the next-generation 2011 Cayenne, truly an all-new model that is even more sporting and dynamic, more fuel efficient, and more spacious and lighter than its predecessor.

For example, the next generation Cayenne improves on it predecessor models with:
• An entirely new exterior design that appears sleeker and smaller when in fact it is larger than the previous model, but is still instantly recognizable as a Porsche Cayenne;
• An all-new, spacious interior that raises the luxury bar and puts this SUV’s passenger compartment on par with the award-winning interior found in the Panamera Gran Turismo;
• More rear cargo room and interior space for the rear passengers thanks to a longer wheelbase and rear seats that adjust fore and aft with seat-back incline adjustability;
• Significant weight savings as Porsche engineers shaved roughly 400 lbs overall (145 lbs alone with a lighter yet still robust body structure) when compared with the previous Cayenne models;
• A new active all-wheel drive system that can be paired with Porsche’s new Porsche Torque Vectoring (PTV) Plus option to provide agile on-road driving dynamics, yet it’s still extremely capable when the pavement ends;

Other unique features to the 2011 lineup include a new high-end audio systems from Bose® and Burmester® and new safety systems like the Porsche Dynamic Light System (PDLS), Lane Change Assistant (LCA), and Adaptive Cruise Control.

The North American Cayenne model range includes four models: the 2011 Cayenne, Cayenne S, Cayenne Turbo and the Cayenne S Hybrid. The Cayenne model lineup base MSRPs (excluding $975 for destination) are as follows: Cayenne, $46,700; Cayenne S, $63,700; Cayenne S Hybrid, $67,700; and Cayenne Turbo, $104,800.

Three Cayenne flavors have two main ingredients: performance and efficiency
While the new entry level Cayenne has a 300-horspower 3.6-liter V6 engine, thanks in part to the new eight-speed Tiptronic S automatic transmission it is approximately 20 percent more fuel efficient than the model it replaces.

The high-torque Cayenne S with its 4.8-liter V8 likewise shows a significant decrease in fuel consumption, down by 23 percent. At the same time engine output is now 400 horsepower compared to 385 horsepower in the former Cayenne S. And similarly the range-topping Cayenne Turbo with its 500-horsepower, twin-turbocharged, 4.8-liter V8 is 23 percent more fuel efficient than its predecessor. The Cayenne S and Cayenne Turbo have U.S. fuel economy ratings of 16 city/22 highway and 15 city/22 highway, respectively. The Cayenne with the standard six-speed manual gets 15 city/22 highway and 16 city/23 highway when fitted with the optional eight-speed Tiptronic S automatic transmission. The Cayenne S Hybrid gets an estimated 20city/24 highway under current EPA regulations.

In addition to Porsche’s new eight-speed Tiptronic S transmission with a wide range of gear ratios, other factors also contribute to this reduction in fuel consumption. Specifically this includes the Automatic Start Stop function (first introduced on the Panamera), efficient thermal management of the engine and transmission cooling circuits, on-board electrical network recuperation, variable deceleration fuel cut-off and the Cayenne’s intelligent lightweight construction.

Thanks to the combination of material weight minimization and overall changes in the vehicle concept such as the new, active and extra-light all-wheel drive system, overall weight for the Cayenne S is down by a substantial 396 lbs. The benefits are not only better fuel consumption and lower CO2 emissions, but also improved performance, agility and handling.

High-Tech Advancements Permeate the Entire 2011 Cayenne Lineup Superior power with better efficiency: the V8s in the Cayenne S and Turbo
The fully upgraded family of V8 power units is made up of the even more powerful 4.8 liter naturally aspirated engine now delivering 400 hp and 369 lb-ft maximum torque in the new Cayenne S and a twin turbocharged 500 hp together with 516 lb-ft in the new Cayenne Turbo.

With the two power units designed and upgraded together, the natural-aspiration and the turbocharged engine share a particularly large number of common parts. And once again it almost goes without saying that the new V8 engines featured in the Cayenne S and the Cayenne Turbo come with all the new technologies to reduce fuel consumption, such as thermal management, on-board network recuperation, variable overrun control, and the Auto Start Stop function.

The proven light-alloy block of the V8 power units is further enhanced by the even more comprehensive use of aluminum and magnesium, saving approximately 15 lbs in weight on the valve timing cover, the cover itself, the camshaft adjuster, various bolts, and the crank. As an example, the new generation of the V8 power units comes with a new lightweight camshaft adjuster for adjusting valve timing through VarioCam Plus made completely of aluminum, This alone reduces engine weight by approximately 3.8 lbs, minimizing the rotating masses in the process, improving the speed of adjustment, and giving the engine an even more agile response.

Both power units now feature pressure-controlled measurement of air mass instead of a hot-film air mass meter, with the advantage of lower intake air resistance and an even better air flow.

On the naturally aspirated power unit in the Cayenne S a newly developed, lighter crankshaft and lighter connecting rods reduce the movement of masses and weight within the engine. In all, the crank on the V8 is 5.1 lbs lighter than before.

A further feature on the V8 is the oil flow housing made of magnesium, again reducing engine weight by approximately 4.4 lbs. The intake camshafts, to mention yet another example, have been optimized for a very smooth flow of power and torque. Together with the new intake system boasting a larger throttle butterfly and optimized electronic engine management, the 4.8 liter naturally aspirated V8 now delivers maximum output of 400 hp at 6,500 rpm.

An Improved V6
The new 2011 Cayenne, based on the same all-new underpinnings used for the Cayenne S and Cayenne Turbo, offers a powerful 300-hp V6 engine, fulfilling the needs of consumers who desire the agility, comfort and safety of the this new model in an even more economical package.

Like its predecessor, the new Cayenne features a 3.6-liter naturally aspirated V6 engine, but it has been upgraded to deliver more performance and better efficiency. Again, this is in line with Porsche’s Intelligent Performance philosophy.

In addition to refining the engine, Porsche also equipped the Cayenne with a new eightspeed Tiptronic S automatic transmission that helps the car accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in just 7.4 second. The same car fitted with a six-speed manual gearbox can reach 60 in 7.1 seconds, and both versions have a top test track speed of 142 mph. The Cayenne with the optional Tiptronic S gets 16 city/23 highway. The same car with the standard six-speed manual gearbox gets 15 city/22 highway.

A sophisticated start stop system
All 2011 Cayenne models equipped with the eight-speed Tiptronic S transmission come with an Auto Start Stop function. Auto Start Stop switches off the combustion engine under defined conditions as long as the vehicle is at a standstill, reducing fuel consumption and emissions in the process and thus preventing the engine from idling unnecessarily, for example when stopping at traffic lights.

As soon as the vehicle comes to a stop with the driver pressing the brake pedal, the Auto Start Stop function will switch off the engine, informing the driver accordingly through the green Auto Start Stop symbol in the instrument cluster.

In the process the driver may leave the selector lever in position D or M, and the engine will remain inactive also when shifting to P and N. Once the driver lets go of the brake pedal, the engine will start again and the driver can set off without a delay. For reasons of safety, however, this is not possible if the driver’s door or the engine compartment lid are open or if the driver is not wearing his seat belt. Under certain conditions the engine is intentionally not switched off when coming to a halt, for example when the driver has activated the Sports Mode, when towing a trailer, when on an incline, or when the vehicle is in a parking or maneuvering process. In such cases the driver is informed by a yellow Auto Start Stop symbol in the instrument cluster that the system has not switched off the engine.

New active all-wheel drive with electronically controlled multiple-plate clutch Porsche has developed an active all-wheel-drive system for the new Cayenne driving the rear wheels and transmitting power to the front wheels as needed through an electronically controlled, map-based multiple-plate clutch.

Porsche selected this technology to reduce weight and make the new Cayenne even more agile on the road. But at the same time the Cayenne offers all the off-road or foulweather capabilities a driver needs under normal conditions, and its reduced weight actually enhances its off-road dynamics. For the first time this active all-wheel drive system can be paired with Porsche’s new Porsche Torque Vectoring (PTV) Plus option. PTV Plus uses variable torque distribution on the rear wheels as well as an electronically controlled rear axle differential lock, thus helping to increase both driving dynamics and stability in curves.

A new Porsche Traction Management (PTM) system together with the new eight-speed Tiptronic S transmission eliminates the need for a reduction gearbox, which saves 73 lbs. When developing PTM, Porsche engineers wanted to optimize the driving dynamics while retaining the Cayenne’s outstanding off-road qualities. The result is two different PTM systems designed for specific new-model characteristics. In the Cayenne S Hybrid, PTM comes with permanent all-wheel drive complete with a self-locking center differential. In the Cayenne, Cayenne S and Cayenne Turbo, PTM features active all-wheel drive with an electronically controlled, map-guided multiple-plate clutch.

Superior suspension with various options for enhanced driving characteristics Porsche’s engineers have succeeded in making the Cayenne’s outstanding driving abilities significantly better. The name of the game again is lightweight engineering. For instance, the Cayenne chassis is now 145 lbs lighter thanks in part to the use of aluminum.

All Cayenne models except the Cayenne Turbo come with steel suspension as standard equipment, but for the first time it can be combined with Porsche Active Suspension Management (PASM) as an option. PASM is a highly sophisticated system providing active, infinite damper control on the front and rear axle. It offers the choice of the three settings: Comfort, Normal and Sport.

The Cayenne Turbo comes with a new air suspension system with PASM as standard equipment (available as an option on the other models). A Cayenne, Cayenne S and Cayenne Turbo with air suspension and PASM may be further enhanced with Porsche Dynamic Chassis Control (PDCC), an optional system that actively stabilizes the vehicle through dynamic distribution of roll forces.

Again, PTV Plus is a new option on the Cayenne, Cayenne S, and Cayenne Turbo. PTV Plus varies distribution of drive power on the rear wheels via an electronically controlled rear differential to help enhance both driving dynamics and stability. Depending on the steering angle and steering speed, the position of the gas pedal, the yaw rate and road speed, PTV Plus helps improve the vehicle’s steering behavior and precision by activating the brakes as required on one of the rear wheels. In a curve the inner rear wheel is slowed slightly when the driver turns the steering wheel. This in turn directs more power to the outer rear wheel to help enhance the handling and stability. The system interacts with PTM and PSM to help provide enhanced driving stability on various road surfaces, in wet weather and on snow. And in offroad driving it helps prevent rear wheel spin.

Exterior and interior design: elegance in a new dimension The completely new Cayenne design leaves no doubt that it is part of the Porsche family. Its sporting character is evident from all angles, and its Porsche shape and design highlights are more distinct than ever before. It is 1.9 inches longer than its predecessor, and an added 1.6 inches in wheelbase ensures extra space and greater versatility. But despite larger exterior dimensions, the new Cayenne looks far more compact and dynamic.

The new headlights resemble those on other Porsches, with the high-beam lamps positioned closer to the centerline of the car and the low-beams toward the outer edge. The Porsche family resemblance continues at the rear with quarter panels flowing to the back and accentuating the Cayenne’s broad shoulders. Inside, the luxurious interior features a high center console that like the original Carrera GT and now the Panamera rises up at an incline to meet the dashboard center stack with highquality fittings and a touch-screen infotainment interface to provide a cockpit-like environment up front. The center console grab handles that were present in the original Cayenne are still there, yet with a new design that is carried over to all four doors.

Rear-seat comfort is much improved, as well, thanks to the extended wheelbase. The bench seat now slides fore-and-aft by 6.3 inches, and the backrest can be adjusted to three different angles, or up to 6 degrees.

Porsche’s traditional set of five round instruments in the drivers gauge cluster includes a high-resolution circular 4.8-inch TFT screen to the right of the tachometer. It can be used to change radio stations, vehicle settings, or access the navigation system or view the map.

The Cayenne S Hybrid instrument cluster differs as the instruments provide the driver with all information he or she needs to monitor car’s innovative hybrid system and maximize its efficiencies.

The new Cayenne comes with the latest generation of audio and communication systems found in the new Panamera, with Bose® Surround Sound System and the Burmester® High-End Surround Sound System.

New comfort and safety systems, some even featured as standard For the U.S. market, all Cayenne models include Bluetooth telephone connectivity and the universal audio interface to connect an external audio source such as an iPod or a USB stick with the Porsche Communication Management (PCM) system as standard equipment. Servotronic speed-sensitive power steering and a moonroof are standard on the Cayenne S, Cayenne S Hybrid and Cayenne Turbo.

Porsche also offers a range of systems for the new Cayenne to help the driver, including Porsche Dynamic Light System (PDLS). PDLS is a further development of the existing Bi- Xenon® light system and offers not only dynamic and static cornering lights, but also for the first time in the Cayenne speed-sensitive headlight control with separate modes for roads and interstates. The system is standard on the Cayenne Turbo and an option on the other models.

Another new option is the Lane Change Assistant (LCA). This driver aid monitors the adjacent lanes up to a distance of 230 feet behind the vehicle, including the driver’s blind spots. As soon as another vehicle enters the blind spots or approaches rapidly from behind within a range of 180 feet, an LED warning light illuminates on the inside of the corresponding exterior mirror. If the driver uses the turn signal, the flashing light appears to alert the driver of the approaching vehicle.

Cruise control is standard equipment on all Cayenne models. Customers can also opt for the optional Adaptive Cruise Control system. This driver aid uses a radar sensor to monitor the space between the Cayenne and the vehicle ahead and maintains your preset distance. It does this by restricting the throttle or gently applying the brakes to maintain the preset distance. If the vehicle in front continues to decelerate, Adaptive Cruise Control will reduce cruising speed – even down to a stop. To set off again after coming to a halt, all the driver has to do is briefly press the control lever or the gas pedal.

Adaptive Cruise Control operates at speeds from 20 to 100 mph, and the required braking power, as calculated by the system, is provided by Porsche Stability Management (PSM) actively building up brake pressure. This provides active safety benefits to the driver. If the distance between the Cayenne and the vehicle ahead becomes too small, the system alerts the brake standby function to shorten the stopping distance required. It also pre-fills the brake system for quicker response and gives the driver both a visual and an acoustic warning and an additional brake pulse as an added driver warning in risky or possibly dangerous situations.

Source: Porsche Press Release.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Would you buy a road version of the MINI Countryman WRC?

The car above is the MINI Countryman WRC. It looks awesome, don’t you think. Wouldn’t it be cool if MINI made a road-going version of that car, complete with modified body panels. And, it would be even more complete with a high power engine; something like 300hp (220kW). Would that be enough to convince you to hand over your cash?

A few months ago we heard a rumour that suggests a road version of the WRC weapon could be in the works. The info that came our way mentioned a 300hp widebody Countryman, we’ve joined the dots for the rest. We understand a concept version of this car could be on show later this year, at Frankfurt in September, we hope.

As to the validity of this rumour, well it might end up being pie in the sky, but our source has come up trumps for us before, so let’s wait and see.

Source: Via AUSmotive

Design Unfiltered: Bold Sketch Gives Life to 2011 CTS Coupe

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DETROIT – Bob Munson, design manager for the Cadillac CTS, admits even he was taken aback when he first saw the production version of 2011 CTS Coupe.

“I thought it looked like something from another planet,” Munson said. “It looked like a concept car driving down the road. The Coupe definitely has a shock value…but in a good way.”

The CTS Coupe quickly has become one of the most-heralded new cars for the 2011 model year. It’s the most dramatic form yet in a Cadillac line that follows a theme described in design language as an archer’s bow pulled taut.

Road & Track described Cadillac’s new luxury sports coupe as “a head-turner on the scale of the Exorcist.” A New York Times review said the CTS Coupe “looks as if a stealth bomber just touched down in the neighborhood.” Popular Mechanics named the CTS Coupe one of the Top 10 Cars of 2011, and AutoWeek recently selected the high-performance version, CTS-V Coupe, as its Best of the Best Car for 2011.

The development of the CTS Coupe was a special project, said Munson, who began his career in GM design in the 1970s while attending what’s now Kettering University in Flint, Mich. For Munson and the Cadillac design team, the Coupe was as close to an unfiltered creative process as it gets. While early design sketches usually serve as inspiration for the final automobile, the original drawing of the CTS Coupe was followed almost as closely as a blueprint.

Munson first drew the lines that would become the CTS Coupe in 2004 as part of an exercise by Cadillac designers to describe the showroom of 2015. One evening at home, he sketched a two-door coupe that featured sharp angles, bulging wheels pushed to the corners and a fast, almost horizontal line from the roof to rear.

The coupe shape provided him the ability to focus on form, Munson said. Sedans and SUVs, by their nature, have more design constraints than coupes.

“Coupes are emotional,” Munson said. “They still have to function. You have to be able to drive down the road and carry groceries. You still need a back seat. But the emotional side weighs more heavily in a coupe than it does in a sedan.”

Mike Simcoe, then executive director of North America exterior design, saw the sketch hanging on the Cadillac studio wall and asked for a scale model of it as a side project. Paul Scicluna, a talented sculptor at GM, brought the sketch to life. Bob Lutz, then vice chairman of global development, and Ed Welburn, vice president of global design, saw the full-size clay model and insisted it be turned into a full-fledged automobile.

As the car moved from concept to production, Cadillac designers and engineers worked closely to preserve even the most minute details. The Coupe was not meant to be simply a two-door version of a sedan. The track was widened, roof lowered and length shortened to give the Coupe a more aggressive stance.

Engineers worked to ensure the dual-exhaust remained in the center, allowing the back fascia to be wrapped tightly at the corners. Special metal stamping techniques were developed to preserve the dramatic lines and angles of the original design. A group was created to figure out how to make the pointed tail-lights, putting a futuristic twist on the classic Cadillac tailfins.

Munson said he’s pleased with the results. The Coupe’s design has helped it stand out in the crowd. A Wall Street Journal review described the Coupe as “wicked, cool, extralegal…the car Frank Gehry and ‘Batman’ animator Bruce Timm would design if their lives depended on it.”

“We always knew it would be a polarizing design,” Munson said. “Some people are going to love it. Some people are going to hate it. To me, you’re not doing your job unless you get that kind of reaction. There’s a lot of coupe and sedan designs that are understated. They’re not trying to be a ‘look at me’ kind of car. The Cadillac CTS Coupe is very much an in-your-face, you-can’t-help-but-notice car.”

The development of the CTS Coupe was driven by a group of people with a passion for automotive design, Munson said. At its core, the CTS Coupe is a designer’s dream car brought to life.

“As a designer, you try to get better with each design,” Munson said. “I’m definitely still pushing myself to do that, but I’ll be honest. After doing the CTS Coupe, it will be hard to top that design. If this is what I’m remembered for, that will be okay.”

Source: Cadillac Media

Luxemburg only: Abarth 500 GULF Special Edition

The Gulf oil petrolium company celebrates its tenth SA activity in Luxembourg. For this birthday in the spotlight they worked with an exclusive package Autopolis on the Abarth 500 Esses, they think the perfect car for the history of racing in the Gulf to stress. This Limited Edition Abarth 500 GULF makes the difference with his GULF-color, official document, record, Monza muffler, Esses kit (160 hp), Corse-Sabelt seats, the backs of the seats was completed in GULF-blue and Of course you get a picture with numbered.

Initially the intention was only to make a copy and give away during a match. But both sides were so enthusiastic that they immediately made a limited edition of ten copies made. Price per piece is 25,000 euros EXL. VAT. For that money you do have a still more exclusive Abarth 500 Abarth 695 Tributo than Ferrari.

Update: The picture is a photoshop image.

Source: Autofans (Translation)

Rumor: BMW M3 Wagon Being Considered.

We have seen BMW build limited edition runs of the ///M3 in many markets. From the ///M3 “Edition”, to the “Tiger Edition” in China and even the matte grey version for the US, so why not build a “Sportwagon” ///M3? Rumors are floating around that ///M may be toying with this idea and that they had built a tester early on in the E9X development so it is a distinct possibility.

For all of you getting ready to say that there would be too much work required- not really, it would just be the rear quarters of the sheet metal and the rest would be bolt ons (sound familiar?). The real question is if the car would sell. If this limited run of less than a hundred for worldwide sales is even to be formally considered BMW would need to at least break even on the car. This means it would have a fairly significant price premium over other models (our best guess would be around $65k with a full carbon fiber roof). If you factor in the limited numbers, the practicality and performance that is actually significantly less than say even an X5 ///M so while expensive it is not astronomical.

As wagon lovers we are all for an M3 wagon, it would be a way for wagons (at least in the US) to go out with a BANG! and be the answer to the CTS-V, Mercedes and Audi performance wagons that are currently running around with no competition from BMW. Will the market support such a car is an entirely different question and more than likely the answer will be one that we rather not hear.

Source: bimmerfile

2011 Ferrari FF Testing at Balocco Proving Ground

Source: Youtube

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Pagani have finally taken the wraps off its successor. : 2011 Pagani Huayra


Inspired eternity element air. Delicate and ethereal, yet capable of eroding the most resistant materials, giving them the forms that we recognize in nature. Elegant, muscular, Huayra combines past, present and future in the timeless art automotive interpretation. The style of the car has been perfected over five years to give each line a clear beginning and an equally clear view.

Hundreds of drawings, scale models and eight two-size, that even keeping the basic design concept, we have gradually refined the shape and substance. This was achieved through meticulous attention to detail that has resulted in a continuous and exhausting search for proportion and elegance.

The bi-xenon headlights, a prestigious heritage of the Zonda R and LED daytime running lights are harmoniously integrated into the elliptical shape of the mouth front. The integrated rear bumper diffuser dominated by an elliptical frame that surrounds and enhances the four tailpipes, a symbol of continuity and a characteristic feature of the mark Pagani.


The all-new monocoque central Huayra is built in carbon-titanium, with its gull-wing doors that include a good portion of the roof. The research focused on the application of advanced composite materials and technologies first tested on the Zonda R, to achieve the highest levels of rigidity combined with maximum lightness.

The tank is positioned in the most protected of the camper behind the pilot, reinforced by a safety cell made of different composite materials and ballistics. The semi-chrome-moly frames provide a stiffness to weight ratio allowing the suspension to work exceptionally well and to incorporate an advanced absorption of energy, ready to protect occupants in case of impact.

The constant quest for weight reduction has led to an ingenious combination of aesthetic, structural and otherwise. One example comes from the pipes of the cooling and air conditioning: the ambitious choice of integrating them into the monocoque structure has rendered superfluous the inclusion of additional components. The result of the reduction program is summed up in a vehicle weight of 1350 kg which makes lighter Huayra the supercar segment.


Mercedes-AMG provides the heart of Huayra. The 12-cylinder biturbo engine with 60 ° V? with 5980 cm3 has been developed to meet not only the technical application and the strictest quality aspects, but also to give the car its dual character. The calm and harmony that are perceived to drive one of GT's finest today are interrupted when the pilot called Huayra to unleash its power over 700 hp and a torque of over 1000 Nm

The turbines are designed to offer an immediate response to the minimum stress of the butterfly, giving the driver complete control over the power at any speed and preventing unwanted delays in disbursement. The two radiators on the sides of the mouth anterior ensure the best cooling efficiency of the intercooler located above the cylinder head. This cooling system at low temperature is designed to operate in adverse conditions of Death Valley with temperatures above 50 ° C.

The dry sump lubrication also feeds the engine when the car is subject to extreme lateral accelerations. Also regulates the oil flow so that only the required quantity of lubricant is pumped into the engine from the external tank, reducing the friction caused by an excessive volume of fluid inside the base. The dry-sump oil pan makes obsolete the conventional one, allowing you to mount the engine and have a lower center of gravity away from less land.

A heat exchanger oil / water reduces engine warm during cold start and keeps the refrigerant and lubricant temperatures stable. Extensive weight reduction programs have resulted in simple yet ingenious solutions. In order to limit as much as possible to pipe connections and the expansion tank is mounted directly on the engine.

Bulkheads intercooler act as reservoirs of the expansion of low-temperature circuit and the engine coolant circuit. The M158 engine is certified to the strictest environmental regulations and EU5 LEV2 and, despite a significant increase in power compared to engine developed by Mercedes-AMG in the past for Pagani, fuel consumption and thus CO2 emissions have been killed so that Huayra holds the record among female athletes to 12 cylinders, with values close to cars on the market of displacements and lower powers.

The large 85-liter tank ensures a longer range travel. The power system in two stages with no return has two power pumps that send fuel to the engine by activating the second pump when needed. To further increase the demand for fuel efficiency is controlled by a microprocessor on each pump, releasing the required amount from the engine control at any particular time.

This reduces the energy needed to operate the fuel pump and eliminates the waste of excessive fuel transport and heating ducts of gasoline. As a tribute to the decade-old tradition of Mercedes-AMG to build engines in the world for sports cars, the M158 boasts the historic AMG emblem on the intake manifold along with the name of the technician cha has hand-assembled at the headquarters Mercedes-AMG Affalterbach to Germany.

The titanium exhaust system has been engineered by MHG-Fahrzeugtechnik and is a direct application of technologies racing on a high-performance road car. The hydroformed junctions have been developed to reduce the pressure and ensure a free flow of exhaust gases. Titanium offers a limited role in the silencer while offering reliability Iconel exhaust parts most exposed to high temperatures.

The full exhaust system weighs less than 10 kg and research undertaken to ensure maximum pleasure sound translates into a harmonious and deep roar that portends a wave of power ready to erupt with a roar, accompanied by the hiss generated by aircraft intakes' air.


The power and enormous torque is transferred to the wheels via a seven-speed sequential gearbox cross and a dual-disc clutch. The adoption of a dual-clutch in oil bath was discarded because it would lead to an increase in weight over 70 kg, negating the advantage of a changed little faster. The entire transmission weighs 96 kg.

Its small size made it possible to reduce the rear overhang, providing a more neutral behavior in extreme conditions and improving safety in the event of a rear crash. Xtrac, already supplies the changing of the Zonda R, was therefore the natural choice for the development of a road exchange high performance. For Huayra was made a change that provides a level of comfort combined with a high rate of change comparable to that of a car on the track.

The suspension geometry was designed to further enhance the behavior accurately and without hesitation he made famous the Zonda, the entire Huayra longer. The independent suspension with double arm, forged Avional were tested at length on the Zonda R. Their league, which offers a weight reduction of 30% compared to the common aluminum, has led to some of the lightest uprights.

These were connected to the cooling ducts, which prevent overheating of the bearings connected to the hubs, thus prolonging life. Öhlins adjustable shock absorbers have been linked to groups with special wheel pivot, arranged in the corners that have optimized the dynamic characteristics of the car.

"Power is nothing without control" following this famous slogan, Pirelli engineers have been faced with the demanding task of combining a perfect grip, and an exciting driving experience less rolling resistance to reduce CO2 emissions . It is in Pirelli P Zero tires, developed, built inside "MIRS" Modular Integrated Robotized System, the department dedicated to producing high-performance tires and designed to ensure complete control of the pilot.

Designed to fit Huayra, transcend the state of the art, suitable as never before at speeds above 370 km / h with lateral forces than 1.5 G.


Think Huayra as a wing, able to actively change its angle of attack by changing the height of the front from the ground and operating independently of the four flaps placed at its ends. The result is that the machine constantly change its shape, from time to time to ensure the minimum friction coefficient and the maximum downforce.

A commanding this unit is a dramatic metamorphosis, which receives and processes information about speed, yaw rate, lateral acceleration, steering angle and throttle position, and act so as to obtain a car from neutral behavior in all conditions, the correct aerodynamic roll and braking.

Thanks to a thorough search it was possible to exploit the fluid pressure gradients to generate spontaneous flow of extraction from the radiators. In particular, the central air is extracted from the radiator is on the bonnet and through the arch, an angle that does not contaminate the stream that flows around the body, while the air from the radiator side is channeled in the cooling ducts of brake discs and hubs, and breathe on the brakes at a temperature of about 50? ° C heat and thus raise the initial speed of the system during braking.

The side air intakes behind the front wheels generate a negative pressure inside the wheel, causing a draw that effectively lowers the coefficient of aerodynamic drag and downforce generating front. The shape of the two air intakes engine, behind the backs of the occupants, is a tribute to the most advanced supersonic aircraft of the '50s and '60s.

The connection for the exchange of the radiator is positioned behind the glass window above the engine, where a conveyor feeds the appropriate carbon heat exchanger without having a substantial impact on friction aerodynamics. To meet the design specifications on downforce has recreated a low turbulence flow at the top of the car to work the best two back flap, perfectly integrated into the body, thus generating a negative lift further amplified by two areas of strong negative pressure created from the bottom and rear diffuser.


As soon as the doors close Huayra transports its occupants to a new dimension, a world of meaning, to satisfy and surprise the sight, smell, touch and emotion. The driver will find all the primary functions on the steering wheel. The paddles are mounted directly on the steering gear so you can change without taking your hands off the steering wheel.

The seats provide comfort for long journeys but also the lateral support given the enormous lateral forces that the car is able to develop. Driving means driving a Pagani state of the art without forgetting the roots and history. The eye can not dwell on the leather laces and a spinner on the switches, then lost the manual transmission, shiny sculpture that embodies progress and tradition.

The aluminum panel was inspired by the most sophisticated Swiss watches and includes a central multi-function display that shows information relevant driving in sport mode and a trip computer when you select the Comfort mode. The center console aluminum is machined from a single block of anticorodal and inspired by the keys of a clarinet, with push buttons for controlling the heating and air conditioning.

The central touch screen high-definition multimedia system is the heart of the vehicle for the control of audio functions, satellite navigation, Bluetooth phone and secondary functions.


Over the past four years we have conducted our tests with prototypes for over five hundred thousand kilometers. Before entering the U.S. market we will have one million tracks. Each prototype was assigned to a specific development: Mercedes-AMG uses one for the study of driving and one for the reduction of emissions of the engines, and a third car is constantly at Bosch Engineering to implement ABS, stability advanced and systems performance improvement, while another vehicle is dedicated to the development of exchange and the dynamic behavior.


The car fully respects the most exacting standards of Europe and the United States in terms of safety and environment. In addition, specific research has been conducted to study the dynamics most often involving this type of car accident. Several cars were used to validate these tests. The survey showed that the evaluations have led us to apply concepts of construction not specifically required by law but how to improve occupant protection.

Soure: Pagani Press Release.

The New Aston Martin V8 Vantage S.

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The Aston Martin Vantage range comes of age with the new Aston Martin V8 Vantage S characterised by a host of new driver-focussed features all designed to push the honed dynamics of the standard Vantage to a new benchmark level.

Aston Martin's own 4.7 litre V8 engine has been engineered to deliver peak power of 430 bhp (436 PS / 321 kW) at 7300 rpm and torque of 490 Nm (361 lb.ft) at 5000 rpm and is coupled with a new ground-up developed Sportshift™ II transmission specifically designed for the Aston Martin V8 Vantage S with seven short ratio gears to deliver the most engaging and intense driver involvement.

"The Vantage S epitomises every attribute of the V8 Vantage and pushes the driver experience beyond what we have offered before," says Dr. Ulrich Bez, CEO of Aston Martin, "It combines dynamic exhilaration with all the charming finesse, beauty and practicality already associated with the Vantage range."

Dynamic revisions are central to the Aston Martin V8 Vantage S, with a quickened steering rack ratio of 15:1 compared to 17:1 on the standard car and a larger diameter front brake disc with new six-piston front brake calipers. New springs and dampers, and wider rear wheels also contribute to chassis revisions. A new dynamic stability control (DSC) system specifically tuned to the Vantage S along with a new brake module providing features such as Hydraulic Brake Assist (HBA) which provides assistance in emergency braking situations, and Hill Start Assist (HSA). Bespoke tyres have been developed with Bridgestone to optimise road holding enhancing dynamic feel.

At the core of the Aston Martin V8 Vantage S is the new seven speed Sportshift™ II automated manual transmission, offered as standard and delivers exceedingly rapid gear changes, twenty per cent quicker than Sportshift™. The extra gear permits shorter well-spaced ratios taking advantage of the optimum torque, which combined with a shorter final drive ratio of 4.182:1 delivers quicker acceleration and an enhanced sporting feel. The inherent benefits of a single clutch system reduces complexity and significant weight over a dual clutch solution. Sportshift™ II allows the driver to take an increased level of control, modulating the throttle pedal to achieve the desired type of gear change. In addition, the Vantage S features a 'Sport' button which quickens the gear changes and gives the driver a more aggressive throttle response while also opening the exhaust bypass valves across most of the engine speed range perfectly characterising the 'S' variant.

As with every Aston Martin, the Vantage S benefits from its own unique sound with a new exhaust muffler and bypass valve map, creating a very distinctive and highly vocal exhaust note.

The Aston Martin V8 Vantage S is instantly recognisable as a true Aston Martin, characterised by its purposeful stance conveying its agility and performance capability. From the front, a new lower front bumper finished in perfectly-aligned carbon fibre houses a larger air intake feeding the engine and front brakes. The splitter combined with the extended deck lid 'flip' work in harmony to provide increased down force at speed. New 19 inch 'V' spoke wheel styles are available as standard, while an optional 10-spoke lightweight forged wheel option, reduces unsprung mass further. A new rear bumper and side sills optically widen the car.

Bridging the gap between road car and race car, the Aston Martin V8 Vantage S is heavily influenced by the 2011 Vantage GT4 race car. The GT4 takes advantage of the Vantage's immensely rigid bonded aluminium chassis, providing the ideal platform for a race car. Minor racing safety modifications including an FIA approved roll cage and racing 'bag' petrol tank along with weight saving measures are made to the standard road car to convert it into a class winning race car. In 2010, it won its class at the Dubai 24 Hours following this up with further endurance race wins at the Nürburgring 24 Hours, Silverstone 24 Hours and Spa 24 Hours. It also won its first major international championship victory in the European GT4 Cup.

Source: Aston Martin

The most successful super sports car in Lamborghini's history : Lamborghini Gallardo LP560-4 Bicolore.

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Just a month before the world debut of its V12 replacement for the Murciélago at 2011 Geneva Motor Show, Automobili Lamborghini has presented at the 2011 Qatar Motor Show a highly exclusive and appealing vehicle making its world premiere: the Lamborghini Gallardo LP560-4 Bicolore, a Special Edition supersports car which will be produced for the European and Asian-Pacific markets, while for the American market it will be only available in the version LP550-2. As its name implies, this special series features an exclusive two-tone finish with matching interior, and offers a full range of standard equipment. A refined contrast between the black roof and the color of the rest of the body (available in a choice of five shades) further emphasizes the sharp, dynamic lines of the Gallardo LP560-4, while simultaneously enhancing its sportiness and adding a touch of elegance to an extremely prestigious model in the field of automotive design.

The most successful super sports car in Lamborghini's history captures the imagination with the brutal power of its 560 hp V10 engine, the absolute grip of its permanent all-wheel drive and the razor-sharp precision of its chassis. Every kilometer in the Lamborghini Gallardo is an intense experience of explosive dynamics and absolute control. Its breathtaking performance is indicated by the 3.7 seconds it takes to reach 100 km/h and its top speed of 325 km/h.

"With the Lamborghini Gallardo LP560-4 Bicolore, Lamborghini demonstrates once again the extreme, uncompromising and unmistakably Italian nature of our brand. The super sports cars from Lamborghini combine volcanic energy with design that is as unique as it is stylish," says Stephan Winkelmann, President and CEO of Automobili Lamborghini.

Unique design DNA

The success of Lamborghini's unequalled design DNA lies in the beauty of highly-concentrated power and precise function. The Gallardo is the sheer essence of form with a purist approach, so the body shell is crisply sculpted and completely free from decoration. A timeless piece of design and an uncompromising driving machine - the Lamborghini Gallardo is both.

Even more extreme, thanks to a personalized appearance

With its new Bicolore model, Lamborghini is now setting a further design highlight in the ten-cylinder model series. The colored exterior finish matched with the black on the upper area of the body gives the Gallardo a new, more aggressive personality that looks even wider, even more extreme and innately adhered to the road.

From the window-line upwards (including pillars, roof, engine hood and rear spoiler), the vehicle is decorated in Noctis Black - a pastel black that contrasts perfectly with the lower area of the body, available in a choice of five colors: Giallo Midas, Arancio Borealis, Grigio Telesto, Bianco Monocerus and Blu Caelum.

The exterior appearance is enhanced by Skorpius aluminum-alloy rims with 15 thin spokes that are forged to minimize unsprung weight and are finished in titanium gray enamel. And, the air intakes and front spoiler have a high-gloss black finish, as does the upper section of the rear diffuser.

Top-quality and highly individual interior

The contrast between black and color is repeated in an understated, elegant manner in the interior of the Lamborghini Gallardo LP560-4 Bicolore. The instrument panel, seats, door panels and other elements in the passenger compartment are upholstered in the finest "Nero Persus" leather, with a refined contrast provided by precise stitching that is colored to match the exterior paintwork: yellow, orange, blue and gray (also used on the Bianco Monocerus version).

The bezel of the e-gear transmission on the center console is in Nero Noctis, just like the upper area of the vehicle. Obviously, the interior is finished in the Lamborghini tradition using only the materials of the very highest quality, which are crafted with undisputed professionalism and fine Italian workmanship.

V10 like a work of art in a glass display

The complete range of standard equipment includes the fast e-gear automated transmission controlled by paddles on the steering column. A lifting system enables the front axle to be raised for safer travel onto ramps and over humps in the road, and the engine hood in tempered glass provides a stunning view of the heart of the vehicle: a 5.2 liter, 90° V-10 engine with stratified direct injection.

From a satellite navigation system to a rear-view camera, from a brake system with carbon-ceramic discs to heated power seats, a long list of optional equipment and accessories allows the vehicle to be adapted to the personal requirements of any client.

Unique success for a super sports car

Well over 10,000 Gallardos have left the production facility at company headquarters in Sant'Agata Bolognese - a unique success story in the world of super sports cars. The Bicolore Special Edition is particularly intended for the enthusiast who desires a supercar with an exclusive appearance and remarkable design. In any event, he or she will own a Lamborghini that is altogether distinguished by an extremely dynamic character, maximum driving excitement, yet an ability to be driven daily.

Individual characters in one model range

The Lamborghini Gallardo LP560-4 Bicolore completes Lamborghini's ten-cylinder model range, which is enjoying enormous resonance worldwide with its broad spectrum of individual characters. While the Gallardo LP560-4 is already a highly trained, extreme athlete, the Gallardo LP570-4 Superleggera takes the notion of thoroughbred high performance even further. Thanks to its extensive experience in carbon-fiber lightweight engineering, Lamborghini succeeded in reducing its weight by a further 70 kilograms. At 2.35 kilograms per hp, the power-to-weight ratio of the Superleggera is the best in its class, with breathtaking performance guaranteed.

The Gallardo LP560-4 Spyder, on the other hand, offers a very different kind of extreme driving pleasure - every trip with the roof down is a journey with a hurricane, yet with maximum protection. This can only be bettered - in true Lamborghini style - by the Gallardo LP570-4 Spyder Performante. Its purist carbon-fiber lightweight engineering, according to Lamborghini's tradition, adds an even sharper edge to the dynamics.

Source: Lamborghini Press Release.

2011 Volkswagen XL1 Concept

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Future mobility is one of the most stimulating topics of our time. The key question here: Just how much could the energy consumption of cars be reduced if all the stops were pulled out for efficiency? There is now an answer to this question, and Volkswagen is delivering it in the form of the new Volkswagen XL1 Concept. Combined fuel consumption: 0.9 l/100 km. No other hybrid car powered by an electric motor / internal combustion engine combination is more fuel efficient. The prototype makes its world debut at the 2011 Qatar Motor Show (26-29 January, 2011).

Conceptually, the Volkswagen XL1 represents the third evolutionary stage of Volkswagen's 1-litre car strategy. When the new millennium was ushered in, Prof. Dr. Ferdinand Piëch, who is today Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Volkswagen AG, formulated the visionary goal of bringing to the market a production car that was practical for everyday use with a fuel consumption of 1.0 litre per 100 km. In the new XL1, Volkswagen is demonstrating that this goal is now within reach.

The new Volkswagen XL1 attains a CO2 emissions value of 24 g/km, thanks to a combination of lightweight construction (monocoque and add-on parts made of carbon fibre), very low aerodynamic drag (Cd 0.186) and a plug-in hybrid system − consisting of a two cylinder TDI engine (35 kW/48 PS), E-motor (20 kW/27 PS), 7-speed dualclutch transmission (DSG) and lithium-ion battery. The results: with fuel consumption of 0.9 l/100 km, the new Volkswagen XL1 only emits 24 g/km CO2. Since it is designed as a plug-in hybrid, the XL1 prototype can also be driven for up to 35 kilometres in pure electric mode, i.e. with zero emissions at point of use. The battery can be charged from a conventional household electric outlet. Naturally, battery regeneration is also employed to recover energy while slowing down and store as much of it as possible in the battery for re-use. In this case, the electric motor acts as an electric generator.

Despite the very high levels of efficiency, developers were able to design a body layout that offers greater everyday practicality, incorporating side by side seating rather than the tandem arrangement seen in both the first 1-litre car presented in 2002 and the L1 presented in 2009. In the new Volkswagen XL1, wing doors make it easier to enter and exit the car. Further progress has been made by manufacturing body parts from carbon fibre reinforced polymer parts (CFRP), a technique used in Formula 1 car construction. Once again, Volkswagen has successfully achieved significant reductions in production costs - an important step forward to make viable a limited production run of the XL1. Background: together with suppliers, Volkswagen has developed and patented a new system for CFRP production in what is known as the aRTM process (advanced Resin Transfer Moulding).

The most efficient car in the world

The new Volkswagen XL1 Concept shows the way forward for extreme economy vehicles and clean technologies. It also demonstrates that such cars can also be fun. The feeling when driving the XL1 is truly dynamic − not based on pure power, rather on its pure efficiency. Two examples:

* To travel at a constant speed of 100 km/h, the prototype only needs 6.2 kW/8.4 PS - a fraction of the performance of today's cars (Golf 1.6 TDI with 77 kW and 7-speed DSG: 13.2 kW/17.9 PS).
* In electric mode, the Volkswagen XL1 needs less than 0.1 kWh (82 Wh/km) to complete a one kilometre driving course. These are record values.

When the full power of the hybrid system is engaged, the Volkswagen prototype accelerates from 0 to 100 km/h in just 11.9 seconds; its top speed is 160 km/h (electronically limited). Yet these numbers alone do not tell the whole story: Since the XL1 weighs just 795 kg, the drive system has an easy job of propelling the car. When full power is needed, the electric motor, which can deliver 100 Newton metres of torque from a standstill, works as a booster to support the TDI engine (120 Newton metres torque). Together, the TDI and E-motor deliver a maximum torque of 140 Newton metres in boosting mode.

Plug-in hybrid concept

With the new XL1, Volkswagen is implementing a plug-in hybrid concept, which utilises the fuel efficient technology of the common rail turbodiesel (TDI) and the dual clutch transmission (DSG). The TDI generates its stated maximum power of 35 kW/48 PS from just 0.8 litre displacement. The entire hybrid unit is housed above the vehicle's driven rear axle. The actual hybrid module with electric motor and clutch is positioned between the TDI and the 7-speed DSG; this module was integrated in the DSG transmission case in place of the usual flywheel. The integrated lithium-ion battery supplies the E-motor with energy. The high voltage energy flow from and to the battery or E-motor is managed by the power electronics, which operates at 220 Volts. The Volkswagen XL1's body electrical system is supplied with the necessary 12 Volts through a DC/DC converter.

Interplay of E-motor and TDI engine: The E-motor supports the TDI in acceleration (boosting), but as described it can also power the XL1 Concept on its own for a distance of up to 35 km. In this mode, the TDI is decoupled from the drivetrain by disengaging a clutch, and it is shut down. Meanwhile, the clutch on the gearbox side remains closed, so the DSG is fully engaged with the electric motor. Important: The driver can choose to drive the Volkswagen XL1 in pure electric mode (provided that the battery is sufficiently charged). As soon as the electric mode button on the instrument panel is pressed, the car is propelled exclusively by electrical power. Restarting of the TDI is a very smooth and comfortable process: In what is known as "pulse starting" of the TDI engine while driving, the electric motor's rotor is sped up and is very quickly coupled to the engine clutch. This accelerates the TDI to the required speed and starts it. The entire process takes place without any jolts, so the driver hardly notices the TDI engine restarting.

When the XL1 is braked, the E-motor operates as a generator that utilises the braking energy to charge the battery (battery regeneration). In certain operating conditions the load shared between the TDI engine and the electric motor can be shifted so that the turbodiesel is operating at its most favourable efficiency level. The gears of the automatically shifting 7-speed DSG are also always selected with the aim of minimising energy usage. The engine controller regulates all energy flow and drive management tasks, taking into account the power demanded at any given moment by the driver. Some of the parameters used to realise the optimum propulsion mode for the given conditions are: accelerator pedal position and engine load, as well as the energy supply and mix of kinetic and electrical energy at any given time.

Two-cylinder TDI uses mass production technology: The 0.8 litre TDI (35 kW/48 PS) was derived from the 1.6 litre TDI, which drives such cars as the Golf and Passat. The 0.8 TDI exhibits the same data as the 1.6-litre TDI common rail engine in terms of cylinder spacing (88 mm), cylinder bore (79.5 mm) and stroke (80.5 mm). In addition, the Volkswagen XL1 Concept's two-cylinder and the mass produced four cylinder share key internal engine features for reducing emissions. They include special piston recesses for multiple injection and individual orientation of the individual injection jets. The excellent, smooth running properties of the common rail engines were transferred to the two cylinder engine. within addition, a balancer shaft that is driven by the crankshaft turning at the same speed optimises smooth engine running.

Meanwhile, the TDI's aluminium crankcase was constructed to achieve high rigidity and precision, which in turn leads to very low friction losses. With the goal of reducing emissions, exhaust gas recirculation and an oxidation catalytic converter as well as a diesel particulate filter are used. Equipped in this way, the 0.8 TDI already fulfils the limits of the Euro-6 emissions standard.

Also designed for efficiency is the vehicle's cooling system. Engine management only cools the TDI by activating an externally driven electric water pump when engine operating conditions require it. This cooling system includes an automatically controlled air intake system at the front of the vehicle to reduce cooling system drag. This thermal management strategy also contributes towards reduced fuel consumption. A second electric water pump, which is also used only as needed, circulates a separate lower temperature coolant loop to cool the starter generator and power electronics.

CFRP body is a technical masterpiece

The development team made extraordinary strides in designing the CFRP body − in terms of its lightweight construction as well as its aerodynamics. A comparison to the Golf illustrates just how innovative the body concept of the new XL1 is.

The drag coefficient of the highly successful Golf is very good for the compact class: Cd (0.312) x A (frontal area 2.22 m2) equals a total drag figure of 0.693 m2 (Cd.A) providing this car with benchmark aerodynamic credentials in its class. Meanwhile, the Volkswagen XL1 exceeds this performance with a Cd value of 0.186 and a frontal area of 1.50 m2. The product of these two parameters yields a total drag, or Cd.A value of 0.277 m2 which is 2.5 times lower than that of the Golf.

Design for a new era: The VW XL1 is 3,888 mm long, 1,665 mm wide and just 1,156 mm tall. These are extreme dimensions. The Polo has a similar length (3,970 mm) and width (1,682 m), but it is significantly taller (1,462 mm). The height of the new XL1 is about the same as that of a Lamborghini Gallardo Spyder (1,184 mm). So, it is easy to visualise just how spectacular such a Volkswagen would appear on the road - as long and wide as a Polo, but with a low profile like a Lamborghini.

The wing doors of the new Volkswagen XL1 are also reminiscent of a high-end sports car. They are hinged at two points: low on the A-pillars and just above the windscreen in the roof frame, so they do not just swivel upwards, but slightly forwards as well. The doors also extend far into the roof. When they are opened, they free up an exceptionally large amount of entry and exit space.

Visually, the new XL1 also adopts the styling lines of the L1 presented in 2009; however, the new prototype has a more dynamic appearance thanks to its greater width. The design of the entire body was uncompromisingly subjected to the laws of aerodynamics. In front, the VW XL1 Concept exhibits the greatest width; the car then narrows towards the rear. Viewed from above, the form of the XL1 resembles that of a dolphin; especially at the rear, where the lines optimally conform to the air flow over the car body to reduce the Volkswagen's aerodynamic drag.

In side profile, the roofline reflects styling lines that trace an arc from the A-pillar back to the rear. The rear wheels are fully covered to prevent air turbulence; the air flows here are also optimised by small spoilers in front of and behind the wheels. Observers will look for door mirrors in vain; replacing them on the wing doors are small cameras which take on the role of digital outside mirrors that send images of the surroundings behind the car to two displays inside the vehicle.

The front end of the new Volkswagen XL1 Concept no longer exhibits the typical radiator grille; however, it still reflects the styling of the current Volkswagen "design DNA" with a predominance of horizontal lines. Specifically, there is a black cross-stripe (in the area where there is no longer a radiator grille) that combines with the energy-efficient dual LED headlights to form a continuous band. The actual air intake for cooling the TDI engine, battery and interior is located in the lower front end section and has electrically controlled louvres. The narrow turn indicators are also designed in LED technology; these form an "L" shape which vertically follows the wheel housing and horizontally a line beneath the headlights. This creates a front end, which - although it is completely redesigned and extreme in its dimensions - can immediately be recognised as a Volkswagen design by its clean lines.

* At the rear, the design takes an entirely new path, reinterpreting the brand values of precision and quality. A new dimension of Volkswagen styling was created here. Four characteristics are discernible:
* Once again, the dolphin body form that narrows towards the rear with very precise trailing edges for perfect aerodynamics.
* The coupé-shaped roofline without rear windscreen. Merging into the roofline is the large rear boot lid that covers the drive unit and 100 litre luggage space.
* A strip of red LEDs that frames the rear section at the top and on the sides. Integrated in this LED strip are the reversing lights, rear lights, rear fog lights and brake lights.
* A black diffuser, which exhibits nearly seamless transitions to the completely covered underbody.

Lightweight construction: more systematic than ever: Large sections of the new XL1's body consist of carbon fibre reinforced polymer (CFRP) − which is as lightweight as it is strong. Specifically, the monocoque with its slightly offset seats for driver and passenger and all exterior body parts are made of CFRP. The layers of carbon fibre, which are aligned with the directions of forces, are formed into parts with an epoxy resin system in the aRTM process. This material mix produces an extremely durable and lightweight composite. For a long time, it was considered impossible to manufacture a body of CFRP, like that of the new Volkswagen XL1 Concept, to industrial standards. Nonetheless, Volkswagen successfully found a cost-effective way to mass produce CFRP parts in sufficient volumes as early as 2009 - in the framework of the XL1 development project. Now this process has been further perfected.

CFRP is the ideal material for the body of the new XL1 because of its light weight. The XL1 Concept weighs only 795 kg. Of this figure, 227 kg represents the entire drive unit, 153 kg the running gear, 80 kg the equipment (including the two bucket seats) and 105 kg the electrical system. That leaves 230 kg, which is precisely the weight of the body - produced largely of CFRP − including wing doors, front windscreen in thin-glass technology as in motorsport and the highly safe monocoque. A total of 21.3 percent of the new Volkswagen XL1, or 169 kg, consists of CFRP. In addition, Volkswagen uses lightweight metals for 22.5 percent of all parts (179 kg). Only 23.2 percent (184 kg) of the new XL1 is constructed from steel and iron materials. The rest of its weight is distributed among various other polymers (e.g. polycarbonate side windows), metals, natural fibres, process materials and electronics.

Lightweight construction: safer than ever: The new XL1 is not only lightweight, but very safe as well. As mentioned, this is due in part to the use of CFRP as a material. In the style of Formula 1 race cars, the Volkswagen has a high-strength monocoque. In contrast to Formula 1, however, this safety capsule is enclosed on top - for safety. Depending on the type of collision, the load path may be directed through the A- and B-pillars, cant rails and sills, all of which absorb the impact energy. Additional side members and crossmembers in the front and rear perfect the car's passive safety.

Running gear with ESP utilises high-tech materials

The running gear is equipped with anti-roll bars at the front and rear and is characterised by lightweight construction with maximum safety. In front, a double wishbone suspension is used, while a semi-trailing link system is employed at the rear. The front and rear suspension are both very compact in construction and offer a high level of driving comfort. The running gear components mount directly to the CFRP monocoque in key areas.

Running gear weight has been reduced by the use of aluminium parts (including suspension components, brake calipers, dampers, steering gear housing), CFRP (anti-roll bars), ceramics (brake discs) magnesium (wheels) and plastics (steering wheel body). Friction-optimised wheel bearings and drive shafts, as well as an entirely new generation of optimised low rolling resistance tyres from MICHELIN (front: 115/80 R 15; rear: 145/55 R 16), contribute to the low energy consumption of the Volkswagen XL1 Concept. Safety gains are realised by an anti-lock braking system (ABS) and electronic stabilisation programme (ESP). That is because sustainability without maximum safety would not really be a step forward. The new VW XL1 shows how these two parameters can be brought into harmony.

Source: Volkswagen Press Release.