This is Volkswagen’s new Nils concept car – a radical single-seater electric car designed purposefully for the solo urban commuter. The Nils is all about lightweight and minimalism. It uses an aluminium spaceframe to trim kerbweight to just 460kg – and those compact dimensions help, too. It’s just 3040mm long – half a metre shorter than an Up – while it’s just 1390mm wide. It’s lower than a Porsche 911. VW says the blueprint for this single-seater followed an F1 car: the driver’s in the middle, lightweight 25kW electric motor slung out back driving the rear wheels and free-standing 17in wheels.
Powered by a lithium-ion battery pack residing under the passenger seat, the RAKe has a top speed of 75mph, a range of 60 miles and a target price of under €12,000. Opel’s designers were keen to keep the running costs down to about €1 per 60 miles and the whole vehicle weighs 380kg including batteries. The four-wheeled configuration is to improve the stability. It would be taxed as a quadricycle so avoiding expensive safety crash tests, but Nick Reilly, General Motors Europe boss is adamant that his company would not dive under the regs by safety testing the vehicle without its batteries, which they are currently allowed to do.
AUDI URBAN CONCEPT
In this Audi, two passengers sit in a fighter-jet-looking cockpit, complete with a rollback canopy in place of doors. The chassis is made of carbon fiber, into which the seat buckets are molded; the steering wheel and pedals adjust to the driver. The seats are staggered, as in the XL1, to afford a little more shoulder room in the narrow vehicle. Twenty-one inch wheels stick out from the body and are covered by cycle fenders with built-in LEDs. Size-wise, the little Audi—said to weigh less than 1100 pounds—is just over ten feet long and 67 inches wide; that’s more than 20 inches shorter than a three-door Mini but about an inch wider.
The quirky Yo-Concept, unveiled in Frankfurt, is one of four hybrid vehicles the Russian automaker is reportedly working on. And even though the Yo-Concept is not destined for production, execs say this unique concept previews the company’s stylings and that it will function as a design model for all of Yo-Auto’s future vehicles. The Yo-Concept reportedly features some sort of extended-range setup similar to the gas-electric plug-in system that powers the Chevrolet Volt. Of course, the Yo-Concept’s trickest feature has to be its novel curved doors that slide up and to the rear of the vehicle.