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2005 Volkswagen EcoRacer Concept

2005 Volkswagen EcoRacer Concept
2005 Volkswagen EcoRacer Concept Specifications
Brakes F/R:ABS, vented disc/disc
Tires F-R:R17
Type:Turbocharged Deisel Inline-4
Displacement cu in (cc):91 (1484)
Power bhp (kW) at RPM:134(100) / 4000
Torque lb-ft (Nm) at RPM:185(250) / 1900-3750
Redline at RPM:n.a.
Length Width Height in:147 67.9 47.2
Weight lb (kg):1873 (850)
Acceleration 0-60 mph s:6.1
Top Speed mph (km/h):142 (230)
Fuel Economy EPA city/highway mpg (l/100 km):n.a. (3.4)
Base Price: 2005 Volkswagen EcoRacer Concept - n.a. (last update: 5/12/2007)

The Economic Sports Car: EcoRacer

At the 2005 Tokyo Motor Show, Volkswagen presented a prototype that could well make history as the most economical the sports car of its time. Its basic data: average fuel consumption of 3.4 liters for 100 km, a top speed of 142 mph. Its name: EcoRacer. Thanks to its carbon-fiber (CFP) bodywork, this sports car with its centrally located engine weighs in at only 1873 lbs, and accelerates from 0 to 60 mph in just 6.1 seconds. Powered by a newly developed 134-bhp turbo-charged diesel of the next generation, it offers a forward-looking synthesis of austere economy and impressive performance. 142 mph, 6.1 seconds, 3.4 liters - these vital statistics are as unusual as they are fascinating. But the objective of development was not to break records. With the EcoRacer, the intention was rather to create a research vehicle that united the elements of economy and performance under a very emotionally styled "roof".

Tight Proportions

The styling of the bodywork, with its new sports-car front end, LED headlamp and rear-light systems, tight proportions and powerful lines, demonstrates that even very economical cars can rivet attention wherever they appear.

Fully Functional

The prototype is anything but a show-room mock-up. It can be driven without restrictions, and is intended to serve as a technology test-bed. And the EcoRacer is also a versatile all-rounder: As soon as a door is opened, the roof wing above it swings up, giving optimal access. The entire T-bar roof is removable. Even the rear hatch can be removed. And, last but not least, the frame of the windscreen can be exchanged for a module with a short, racing windshield. This makes the EcoRacer, firstly, a coupe, secondly, a roadster and, thirdly, a speedster.

Futuristic Styling Elements

As to the front styling, the shape of the radiator grille and the double headlamps above it is particularly conspicuous. They demonstrate a front end that would be conceivable in a similar form tomorrow on future models of sports car. In the area of the B columns, the typical air intakes of a central-engined sports car are dominant. A sense of power emanates from the muscular contours of the wings and the 17" aluminum-alloy wheels that fill the wheel-boxes.

Running Gear, Light and Athletic

Dynamics and innovative concepts characterize the prototype's running gear, too. On the one hand, it is very light, but on the other hand it offers quite obvious potential for extreme agility. The front double-wishbone axle is a completely new design. The wishbones are made of aluminum, as are the pivot bearings. The four-control-shaft rear axle is based on the derivate that was used in the Golf. Its use in a central-engined sports car emphasizes the potential of an axle that harmonizes perfectly with front-wheel, rear-wheel and all-wheel drive. In the EcoRacer (weight distribution front / rear: 40 to 60) it was tuned specifically to the central-engine concept, and robbed of a few kilograms.

New-Generation TDI Engines

Just as unique from the point of view of design as the entire body is the EcoRacer's TDI engine. It reflects the future of the diesel engine. Clean, powerful and very versatile. The 1.5 TDI is still under trial. Like the new twin charger (TSI) among the direct-injection petrol engines, the turbo-diesel direct injection engine is characterized by greatest agility at lowest consumption. The Volkswagen developers refer to it as a highly charged downsizing concept.

The four-cylinder engine develops 134 bhp at 4000 rpm. Between 1900 and 3750 rpm, the 1484 cc four-valve unit develops a torque of more than 185 lb-ft. The compression ratio is 17.2:1. The unit is both light and compact, and - not only in the EcoRacer - it conforms to the EU-5 exhaust standard, and future further-reaching EU threshold values. The gearbox of the turbo-diesel is the DSG double-clutch transmission. The 1.5 TDI, presented in the EcoRacer for the first time, has the potential to implement the CCS process. CCS (Combined Combustion System) is a combustion process that combines the advantages of diesel and petrol engines, using synthetic fuels.

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