The future is full of technology for General Motors subsidiaries Opel and Vauxhall.
Images and technical details surrounding a concept car slated for the Frankfurt Motor Show were released today, previewing what the brand’s designers and engineers are developing for future products.
Opel seems to be putting a strong emphasis on connected car technology in the future. Current iterations of that system that several automakers are developing would allow cars to share information both with other vehicles and information waypoints. Traffic data, upcoming hazards and other relevant safety information will be relayed in split seconds, assuming manufacturers can agree on which system to use. Contention between charging heads for electric cars probably offers accurate foreshadowing.
If the auto industry avoids its usual Mexican standoff, the Monza’s information sharing system could offer interesting capability. It uses three modes: “me,” “us” and “all.”
In “me” mode, the infotainment system mostly disconnects from smartphones and focuses on relevant driving information. Switch to “us,” and preselected people will be able to communicate with the car to play music, share pictures and information. “All” mode opens the car to share information with anyone. Drivers will be able to share their planned route with people who have a smartphone or tablet so they can “catch a ride.”
The infotainment system, itself, is also something of a tech wonder. Rather than a conventional touch screen, it uses 18 LED projectors to cast a display onto the dashboard. The display will be customizable according to driver preference as well.
The sculpted-looking sheet metal is an evolution of the current Insignia design, which is the basis for the North American Buick Regal. Buick relies heavily on Opel for its product line, and if that remains the case for future products, this could have tie-ins to coming Buicks too. From an aesthetic standpoint, this design isn’t terribly different from the Buick Riviera concept shown in Shanghai earlier this year.
The style cues and wheels all bear similarities, but it’s the cabin and powertrain that really offer an important peek into what might be coming.
The Monza suggests that range extenders won’t be exiting the General Motors portfolio any time soon. It uses an electric powertrain supplemented by a range extending engine similar to the Chevrolet Volt, which uses gasoline. This doesn’t. Instead, it burns compressed natural gas (CNG) with the company’s new 1.0-liter turbocharged three-cylinder engine, which will debut simultaneously in Frankfurt.
GALLERY: Opel Monza Concept
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