10 of the coolest concept cars revealed this year
Car makers are getting more tech savvy lately. Or at least their concept cars are making them appear that way.
Just last week at the International Motor Show in Frankfurt, manufacturers from Volkswagen to Mercedes-Benz showed off their futuristic concept cars.
The selection was impressive, with a mix of electric and hybrid cars. The vehicles were equipped with state-of-the-art features, which ranged from a holographic dashboard to solar powered roofs. Some of the concept cars could even be said to rival Tesla.
In no particular order, here are ten of the most impressive concept cars (not all are from the Frankfurt show) that have been revealed so far this year.
Porsche’s Concept Mission E can drive 310 miles with a full charge. Porsche aims to begin production in the next five years.
The basics: The car is powered by an advanced lithium-ion battery technology. A charging plate that can be stored in your garage allows the battery to automatically regain power, but it can also be charged at a conventional charging station or at home via a cable. In 15 minutes, the car can charge up to 80 percent, giving it a range of 250 miles.
How fast it goes: The car can go from zero to 62 miles per hour in 3.5 seconds, with a top speed of 150 miles per hour.
What else it offers: The car has four seats and four doors that open in a new way (as pictured above). It has cameras instead of exterior mirrors that captures your surroundings and displays what they see on the lower corner of the windshield.
The car has eye-tracking technology that will detect where the driver is looking on the dashboard and open the corresponding instrument. The driver can then confirm the selection by pressing a button on the steering wheel.
The Torq is windowless but cameras provide a 360-degree view projected on screens.
The basics: The car, designed by Italian engineering and design company ED, does not require a driver, but the company’s press release does not delve into how it would drive autonomously. ED hopes to create a self-driving racing car in the next 19 months.
How fast it goes: It’s advertised as having 429 horsepower and 1328-feet torque.
What else it offers: It is a fully electric car with four engines over each wheel.
Audi’s e-tron quattro has a 95 kWh battery, allowing it to go 310 miles on a single charge. It’ll enter production in 2018.
The basics: It can be charged with a DC or AC electrical current, and can fully charge in 50 minutes when hooked up to a DC current outputting 150 kW. The car can also charge wirelessly over a charging plate.
How fast it goes: Audi claims it can go from zero to 62.1 miles per hour in just 4.6 seconds, with a top speed of 130.5 miles per hour.
What else it offers: It has five doors and can sit up to four people. Rearview mirrors are replaced by cameras — the driver can see by looking at displays built into the front section of the doors. The car has a solar roof that can help power the car on sunny days, providing up to 320 watts of additional electric power.
The BMW M4 MotoGP injects water into the engine’s intake plenum or cylinders to cool the intake charge. It’s unclear how long we’ll have to wait to see this in a production vehicle.
The basics: The water injection system reduces the consumption of combustion engines and increases performance. The water is stored in a 1.3-gallon tank in the trunk that is sent to the intake plenum via an electric pump.
How fast it goes: BMW has not released specs for the car’s powertrain, but Gizmag reports that the water cooling system frees up 10 percent more torque and power than a standard car.
The Mercedes IAA has an aerodynamic mode and a design mode. When its aero aids are deployed, it is more aerodynamic than a Tesla Model S.
The basics: The Mercedes IAA is a plug-in hybrid that puts out 279 horsepowers (205 kW engine). When the car reaches 80 kilometers per hour (50 miles per hour), it switches from design mode to aerodynamic mode by extending flaps at the front and rear, employing active rims and moving the louvre in the front bumper.
How fast it goes: It has an electronically limited top speed of 250 kilometers per hour (150 miles per hour). In aerodynamic mode it has an all-electric range of 66 kilometers (41 miles) and a range of 62 kilometers (39 miles) in design mode.
What else it offers: The steering wheel has touch-based operating functions.
The Bugatti Vision Gran Turismo hit 278 miles per hour in a simulation of Le Mans. It sure looks good, but you won’t be seeing this car on the road.
The basics: It uses the Bugatti Veyron’s 16-cylinder, 8.0-litre quad turbo engine. The engine itself was producing 1250 bhp when production ended earlier this year, GQ reports.
How fast it goes: Aside from its simulation speed, we have no way of knowing how fast the Bugatti Vision Gran Turismo goes. The car itself has a hypothetical interior with a steering wheel, some upholstery and digital displays.
What else it offers: It has a drag reduction system (DRS) rear wing to reduce drag that can be increased for some downforce when turning corners.
The EDAG has a 3D-printed structure and is about 25 percent lighter than traditional vehicles.
The basics: The leaf of a plant served as the blue print for the car’s body shell. A lightweight outer skin is stretched over the structure that is made from waterproof jersey fabric.
How fast it goes: There is no powertrain for the vehicle and it is not likely to go into production. Instead, the company wanted to showcase how 3D printing could be used to make a much lighter vehicle.
What else it offers: LED lights underneath the skin lets you see the skeletal frame.
Volkswagen’s Tiguan GTE is a plug-in hybrid with 31 miles of electric range and 215 system horsepower. It arrives on the market April 2016.
The basics: The Tiguan GTE can be plugged in to charge, but it also offers a solar roof module that generate electrical energy fed directly into the battery, which allows for up to 1,000 kilometers (621 miles) of zero emissions driving.
How fast it goes: It has a system output of 215 horsepower. The car can run for up to 31 miles on electric power alone, which is powered by a 13 kWh lithium-ion battery.
What else it offers: The new Tiguan is 60 millimeters longer and 33 millimeters lower than the outgoing model giving it extra interior and trunk space. Its weight is also reduced by more than 110 pounds.
The Nissan Gripz is meant to show sports cars can be tall. It has a gasoline engine that powers an electric motor.
The basics: Drivers can select an EV mode for day-to-day driving, four-wheel drive for snow or going off road or a drift mode that uses the electric motors for the feel of driving a sports car. The car was inspired by a racing bicycle.
How fast it goes: Nissan hasn’t provided details about the power behind the car. It is a hybrid system with a gas engine and electric motor.
What else it offers: It has four doors and swing out and up. It also has forward facing cameras to record your journey.
Hyundai N 2025 Vision Gran Turismo will debut at the 2016 FIA World Rally Championship at Rallye Monte Carlo.
The basics: The car is powered by hydrogen fuel cells for 670 horsepower.
How fast it goes: The two fuel stacks (which provide 670 horsepower) are augmented by a supercapacitor that stores electrical energy conserved during breaking for another 201 horsepower, for a total of 871 horsepower. The car has four engines over each wheel hub.
What else it offers: A carbon fiber composite structure to keep weight down. The car has a hexagonal grille that connects to a duct to direct air out the back in order to minimize air drag underneath the body.