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GM to show Diesel E-Flex hybrid at Frankfurt

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GM to show new E-Flex hybrid concept car at Frankfurt
30th August 2007 | Link to Original Article @ AutoIndustry.uk
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A concept model which GM will unveil in two weeks at the Frankfurt Motor Show will start two years of durability and quality testing at the beginning of next year, according to GM chief engineer Frank Weber, who says GM has some 600 engineers worldwide dedicated to developing the E-Flex system which will power the Chevrolet Volt plug-in hybrid and this new vehicle.

The car on show at Frankfurt will be Astra-size and powered directly only by an electric motor, using its 1.3 litre diesel as a generator to recharge the car’s lithium-ion battery when it runs low, and extending the battery’s normal 40 mile range to nearly 500 miles without a fuel fill-up or a battery recharge. Full charge time is three hours.

“This has extremely high torque characteristics,” said Mr. Weber of the vehicle, “similar to what you would get from a V6 engine, and it is available from zero revs.”

In terms of running costs he said that the E-Flex would work out at €1.50 (£1.07) per 100 km (62 miles) against €6.84 (£4.90) with a conventional diesel-engined car.

This is work in progress, however. According to Weber the system works in computer simulations, but the real test will come when the trial vehicles take to the road next year.

“We have to see how the battery performs in very hot and very cold conditions and what sort of drain is put on it by other systems such as heating and air conditioning, audio systems, lights and windscreen wipers.

“But we are not looking at this essentially as a long distance vehicle. This is for people with daily and relatively short commutes although there is the ability to go longer distances when necessary.”

Benoit Schlumberger, GM product planning director for global compact vehicles, said: “Obviously there is a lot of development cost and there will be a price premium on these vehicles, but we are expecting to sell a large number in China, for example. The environmental challenge there is greater than most other areas of the world but it is where interest in the E-Flex system is developing fastest.”

GM says its E-Flex powertrain should save some 4.4 tonnes of carbon dioxide p.a. per vehicle.
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I just hope GM is ready to handle the demand and they are smart enough to offer it throughout their product line once it proves itself.

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I agree...can you imagine an Outlook or Acadia with this kind of drivetrain? Something that will be usable as a family car will take the market by storm if it is this successful.

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GM really needs to hit the market BIG with the E-Flex technology.

Not just one or two vehicles; but MANY around the world and in the US. maybe even one for each division in the US.

Chevrolet: Volt

GMC: Acadia

Pontiac: Sporty car of some sort (Solstice coupe option)

Buick: A large sedan

Cadillac: BLS maybe?

Saturn: Vue

Saab: 9-2?

Hummer: H2

Edited by FUTURE_OF_GM
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When they get this system developed to the point of powering larger mid size and full size cars, I'd like to see the Buick variants sub branded Electra. But I do think they should focus the technology on smaller cars where it will no doubt work better than hauling behemoths around. And I don't think there is any need for a Hummer variant of this drive train. What would be the point - save the environment by smashing delicate ecological niches while off roading in your electric Hummer? An eco friendly Hummer makes about as much sence as a Cadillac for the tight budget.

Edited by wjfox
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by the way, perhaps a Saturn or Opel hybrid could be named......

ION?

ummm... no. I almost kinda liked the Ion, but I'm still well aware that the name has a stigma with people now that didn't like various things about it.

saturn spark anyone?

not bad :)

When they get this system developed to the point of powering larger mid size and full size cars, I'd like to see the Buick variants sub branded Electra. But I do think they should focus the technology on smaller cars where it will no doubt work better than hauling behemoths around. And I don't think there is any need for a Hummer variant of this drive train. What would be the point - save the environment by smashing delicate ecological niches while off roading in your electric Hummer? An eco friendly Hummer makes about as much sence as a Cadillac for the tight budget.

Actually, as long as the Hummer version is still off-road worthy, I think it could be ok. Hummer could use a sprinkle of green to quell the protesters & haters, and as long as it's still off-road capable, I don't see how it bastardizes the brand any. Sure, some wouldn't go for it, but it's not like the whole Hummer lineup would be based on it.

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by the way, perhaps a Saturn or Opel hybrid could be named......

ION?

That name shouldn't even be considered as an option.

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