I’ve always been of the mindset that fuel efficiency and performance do not have to be mutually exclusive. A new concept car from BMW pursues that ideology, blending almost 600 ft-lbs of torque with a 62.6 mile-per-gallon fuel efficiency.
Called (take a deep breath) the Vision EfficiencyDynamics turbodiesel plug-in hybrid concept, it combines a lot of future technology into a polarizing design that is sure force people to draw lines in the sand.
First, the goods. An estimated 0-60 time of about 4.8 seconds, with a total net-output of 356 horsepower and 590 ft-lbs of torque. The heart of the drivetrain is a 1.5 liter three-cylinder engine that is essentially half of the 3.0 liter 6-cylinder engine found in many popular performance BMWs. By itself, this engine is rated at 163 horsepower and 214 ft-lbs of torque. A six-speed dual clutch transmission delivers power to the all-wheel drive system.
Between the engine and dual clutch transmission is an electric motor that delivers 51 horsepower and another 214 ft-lbs of torque. At the front wheels is a second electric motor, with 80 horsepower and a 162 ft-lbs of torque, capable of bursts of up-to 139 horsepower. All that horsepower delivers (according to BMW) the 356 ponies and 590 ft-lbs of torque. With the 2+2 (meaning two people up front, two in back) car weighing in at just over 3,000 pounds, this car will be a real mover and shaker if it ever makes it to the street.
Under that sleek, futuristicly flowing skin is a lot of technology and design. With a drag coefficient of just .22, it slips through the air thanks to its low front profile. This is due in part to the mid-mounted motor, which allows the front to stay lower to the ground. Active louvers and air vents fold into the body when not in use and push air around the car when it isn’t needed for cooling.
Besides all this sleek technology is a 3D Heads-Up Display and night vision, as well as LED lights that doublt as air foils. The lithium-ploymer battery provides up-to 30 miles of electric-only power, and can be recharged in just 2.5 hours on a 220 volt outlet.
If this concept ever actually becomes a car, it will no doubt be expensive; but it also might be a game changer too. Turn the page for video and BMW’s official press release.