Concepts, green designs to wow at Vancouver auto show

Concept cars and green innovations are bringing the wow factor to this year's Vancouver International Auto Show March 29 to April 6. Take a peek at what will be shown off.

Comments Off on Concepts, green designs to wow at Vancouver auto show March 27, 2009
by Design Engineering staff

Ford Motor Company leads the concept car creative charge at the weeklong Vancouver International Auto Show with the futuristic-looking Ford Airstream crossover concept, influenced by the future Stanley Kubrick captured in his 1960s film 2001: A Space Odyssey.

The concept is powered by a plug-in hydrogen hybrid fuel cell drivetrain that operates under electric power at all times delivering a combined city/highway equivalent fuel economy of 5.7 L/100km. This advanced fuel cell system is half the weight and cost of today’s fuel cells and can operate in the dead of winter. That’s a major step forward because today’s fuel cells don’t do well when the mercury dips below freezing.

As well, Ford will debut its retro Interceptor muscle-car concept and a luxurious Lincoln MKR full-size sedan.

S300 Bluetec Hybrid

But it wouldn’t be a Vancouver show without a bunch of tree-friendly designs hitting the showroom floor. Some of the standouts will include the Mercedes-Benz S300 Bluetec Hybrid and the Toyota A-BAT hybrid.

The S300 Bluetec Hybrid has a combination of Bluetec and hybrid technology. As a four-cylinder with hybrid module, it develops a combined system output of 165 kW/224 HP and a maximum torque of 560 Nm, a figure more reminiscent of a large-displacement V8 petrol unit. It consumes just 5.4 litres of diesel per 100 km – equivalent to just 142 grams of CO2 per kilometre.

Toyota A-BAT

With Toyota, they are going to show off their new A-BAT concept pickup, 27 inches shorter than an extended cab Tacoma and nine inches shorter than the regular cab model. The door trim, shoulder, armrest and instrument panel pads and seat cushions are made of a “tough, lightweight and comfortable material” that can be selected for personalization. Power for the A-BAT comes from Toyota’s Hybrid Synergy Drive mated to a four-cylinder engine.