Concept has a range of 81 miles, bold styling

The 2010 Paris Motor Show is in full swing and the hot topic on everyone's lips is electrified vehicles.  On Thursday the IBE battery electric vehicle (BEV) concept was unveiled to the public.

The vehicle is designed by Spanish automaker SEAT, S.A., a wholly-owned subsidiary of Germany's Volkswagen Group.  SEAT is a mid-volume automaker, producing around 400,000 vehicles a year.  Nonetheless, it is quite popular in Europe for it best-selling Ibiza sedan and its rally/sports tour vehicles.

A prototype of SEAT's IBE first popped in March at the 2010 Geneva Motor Show.  The new concept, like the prototype, is a 2+2 (two full-size front seats, two smaller seats in the back) compact sports coupe, featuring bold styling.  In the looks department, the vehicle looks somewhat like a fusion of body styles of the 2011 Ford Fiesta and recent Mazda vehicles (like the 2010 Mazda 3).

While the looks have helped the car generate a nice buzz, the performance is a mixed bag.  On the one hand the car is quite efficient, offering an 81 mile range on a 18 kWh pack, compare to a mere 100 miles on a much larger 24 kWh pack in Nissan's 2011 LEAF BEV.  And the efficiency and performance are enhanced by a low curb weight of 2,425-pounds, a bit over a metric ton.

On the other hand the car takes 10 seconds to jump from 0 to 60 mph and has a top speed of 100 mph.  And its 108 horsepower and 148 pound-feet of torque are relatively lean compared to competitive compacts like the 2011 Ford Fiesta.

SEAT has not announced any plans to produce the vehicle yet.  It's possible that Volkswagen may pick the vehicle to spearhead its fledgling electric vehicle efforts.  SEAT calls the vehicle the "super-compact sports coupe for urban mobility in the near future", so it seems clear that this won't be the last we'll see of it.

If it ever sees release, the car would join a growing stable of EVs on the international scene that includes the Chevy Volt EV (PHEV), the Nissan LEAF EV (BEV), the Ford Focus EV (BEV), Toyota Prius EV (PHEV) and the Tesla Model S (BEV)

At the auto show SEAT also unveiled a lineup of fuel-efficient petrol and diesel engines dubbed EcoMotion.  Similar to Volkswagen's BlueMotion series, these lean engines offer outstanding fuel economy and low greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.  The TDI 1.2 L Ibiza engine (diesel) gets approximately 70 mpg and offers 75 hp.  The TDI 1.6 L Leon engine gets approximately 60 mpg and bumps the horsepower up to 105 hp.

The line's fuel economy savings come largely thanks to a new Start & Stop system and a mechanical Brake Energy Regeneration System.  It is unlikely that the EcoMotion engines or the IBE will reach the U.S. anytime in the near future.

"People Don't Respect Confidentiality in This Industry" -- Sony Computer Entertainment of America President and CEO Jack Tretton

Latest Blog Posts

Copyright 2017 DailyTech LLC. - RSS Feed | Advertise | About Us | Ethics | FAQ | Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information | Kristopher Kubicki