The Paris Auto show is on in full swing and has already registered hundreds of thousands of footfalls in just a week. Among the various automanufacturers and their feature launches and displays, we decided to make a list of the top ten concept cars that have been put up for display and are hogging most of the limelight through the sheer brilliance of their design and the thoughts behind their conceptualisation.
Exciting concept cars in view
The Citroen Cactus has been in and around Europe for some time as a small hatchback. The one put up on display goes several steps beyond the regular hatch and employs a compressed air unit to provide for a boost to the car while climbing hills and at traffic lights. This allows for a drop in its fuel consumption levels down to 2 litres per 100 km. The compressed air gets refilled during regular driving and is ready to be deployed in low power output situations. The company calls this the Cactus “Airflow” Concept. The engine idea comes from the combined thought processes of the brains in Citroen and Peugeot, who have promised a production version very soon.
The Audi TT Roadster has been around for years, a flagship model being upgraded every now and then according to the design and performance needs that have changed over time. Audi have come up with a four-door version of the TT roadster that seats four passengers and yet retains the overall shape along with the sloped roof of the smaller sports car. The sportback is about 29 cms longer than the roadster and has a 12 cm longer wheelbase. It is also lower by 3 cms. Powered by a 2.0 litre engine that produces 400 bhp, if launched, it is bound to compliment the A5 and the A7 sportbacks.
From Infiniti, comes a contender against the Mercedes Benz S Class, BMW 7 Series and Audi A8. Called the Q80, the car is run by an all aluminum 3.0 turbocharged V6 engine paired with an electric motor to produce a total output of 550 horsepower. The production version is expected in the next couple of years and will be along the same lines as the concept except for the difference of the wing mirrors – which in the concept are actually just rear view cameras.
Designed by Italian coachmaker Touring Superleggera, comes a super hot Mini that is as beautiful as concept hatches get. The Mini “Superleggera” comes complete with a tail fin and Union Jack styled tail lamps. The company states a waiting period of atleast six months before they decide to put it in production. The car had been spotted at the Villa d’Este concours in Italy, but the official debut takes place at the Paris Auto show.
Mitsubishi displayed their PHEV plug in hybrid which is actually the popular Outlander with a nicely restyled front and back portion which has added considerably to the old looks of a vehicle that has been – despite its capabilities and features – somewhat looked down upon. The PHEV has been in production for a little while now and battery supply problems have somewhat delayed its availability at the retail outlets.
Designer Looks for the new makes
The Renault EOLAB is only a concept vehicle and the company has no plans for putting it into production atleast for a long time ahead. The Eolab is a research vehicle for Renault’s ultimate fuel efficient car that employs a hundred different technologies to be eventually introduced among the French automaker’s production line up. The materials used for its construction make it incredibly light. The roof of the car weighs only 4 kg and the car itself is very aerodynamic and even has sideflaps at the rear that open and allow for air to flow through. The hybrid engine produces an unbelievable 100 kms per litre of fuel.
From Peugeot, comes a car that actually looks like it is designed to resemble a chiseled stone. The performance hybrid called “Quartz” comes with huge 23 inch wheels and the front fascia reminds one of a rather grimaced expression complete with a snarl. Powered by a 1.6 litre turbo engine that makes 270 hp, the Quartz is also equipped with an electric motor which helps boost the engine power output to a whopping 500 hp.
Last but not the least, comes possibly the most important concept car at the show, the Toyota C-HR. Built on an all-new platform with a brand new full hybrid powertrain, it resembles what one could call a scaled down version of the BMW X6. Toyota claims the C-HR to be the new direction for their C-segment crossover with small and to the point ergonomic packaging and maneuverability with agility. It is quite obvious that this car would be competing against the likes of the Nissan Juke and Honda’s HR-V.