AutoGuide News Blog
The AutoGuide News Blog is your source for breaking stories from the auto industry. Delivering news immediately, the AutoGuide Blog is constantly updated with the latest information, photos and video from manufacturers, auto shows, the aftermarket and professional racing.
What seemed like a pipe dream is about to become reality with Jaguar today announcing plans to put the C-X75 hybrid supercar concept into production. First unveiled at the Paris Auto Show, the stunning machine will be brought to reality thanks to a partnership between Jaguar and the Williams F1 team. Using a carbon fiber chassis, Jaguar said it plans to further explore the use of jet engines in its models through a partnership with Bladon Jets, but in order to bring the C-X75 to reality within a reasonable timeframe it will instead opt to use a “highly boosted” internal combustion engine with an electric motor at each axle.
With this drivetrain configuration Jaguar is promising a 0-60 mph time of less than 3 seconds and a 0-100 mph time of less than 6 seconds. The top speed will be above 200-mph, and Jag is also targeting an all-electric (emissions free) range of 30 miles).
“People expect Jaguar to be innovators – that is when Jaguar is at its best,” said Adrian Hallmark, Jaguar Brand Director. “The C-X75 received an incredible reception as a concept car. We’ve been building on that momentum and there is a clear business case for this exclusive halo model. No other vehicle will better signify Jaguar’s renewed confidence and excellence in technological innovation than this.”
In addition, Jaguar designer Ian Callum is promising the production model will stay true to the design of the concept. “This will be the finest looking and most innovative Jaguar ever produced,” he said. “Even in the world of supercars, we can still produce the most beautiful.”
Just 250 C-X75 models will be built, priced from £700,000 (roughly $1.2 million).
GALLERY: Jaguar C-X75
GALLERY: Jaguar C-X75 Debut in Paris
Easily the star of the Geneva Auto Show, Porsche‘s 918 Spider concept has since been confirmed for production as a hybrid supercar with true Porsche style and performance. Since Geneva it has been so widely acclaimed and consumer interest so significant that Porsche has given the green light to send the 918 Spider into production.
Located out back, in true Porsche style, is a hybrid drivetrain that works somewhat like a traditional two-mode hybrid, using a gasoline engine, electric motors (two of them) and a lithium-ion battery pack. What makes it so special, however, is that the gasoline engine is a 3.4-liter 500-hp V8 derived from the Porsche RS Spyder race cars and the electric motors (one of each rear wheel) make a combined 218-hp. The gasoline engine powers the rear wheels, while the electric motors work on the front two wheels. Porsche claims a 0-62 mph time of just 3.2 seconds with a top speed of 198-mph. Possibly more amazing, however, is this concept’s capability to achieve 78 mpg.
With all those electronics weighing quite a bit, the 918 Spyder uses extreme measures to keep weight to a minimum. As a result, the car gets a carbon fiber monocoque (much like the McLaren MP4-12C and Lexus LFA) and extensive use of aluminum and titanium, for a total weight of 3,285 lbs.
Porsche has equipped the car with four driving modes, ranging from the most efficient at saving fuel, to the most efficient at saving gas. A pure electric E-Drive mode delivers 16 miles of emissions free driving, while a Hybrid model operates like a traditional Prius-type two-mode hybrid. Next up is a Sport Hybrid setting, where the electric power is used more as a boost to assist the gasoline engine. Finally, a Race Hybrid mode delivers maximum gasoline and electric power, along with an added boost of electric power after hard braking (much like a Formula One KERS-equipped car). It is in this final mode that Porsche claims the 918 Spyder Concept can out-pace the famed Carrera GT on the Nürburgring.
That number is a bit misleading however, as you can be certain the production model won’t use a racing prototype engine. Still, we have no doubt the 918 Spider will top the Carrera GT in all performance arenas.
GALLERY: Porsche 918 Spider
Before it launched, rumors suggested the Lexus LFA supercar might be a hybrid. That of course turned out not to be the case, the high-powered and high-priced exotic instead opting for a naturally aspirated 4.8-liter V10 engine. But now several spy photos have emerged showing something that just may prove the original green supercar theories true.
Spy photog Brenda Priddy recently snapped a few shots of an LFA out testing – with camo on. This of course is odd, because the LFA has already been revealed.
So what’s with the camo then you might ask? Well, we can’t really comment about most of it, but there is one important piece that sparks our interest. On the left front fender a squarish piece of extra camo could be covering up an electric port to plug the supercar in. That’s right, an LFA Plug-In Hybrid. It’s not really all that much of a stretch as Toyota is already preparing to launch a Prius plug-in hybrid and could potentially use this high-priced exotic to cover some of the development costs of future hybrid cars. Besides, we already know Nissan is thinking about delivering the next-generation GT-R in hybrid form, based on the 600-hp powertrain found in the Essence Concept.
Is an LFA PHEV in the works, delivering amazing amounts of power while at the same time the ability to get amazing fuel economy around town? Quit possibly. After all, Porsche seems ready to deliver the 918 Spyder, while Audi has its e-Tron, Mercedes is working on the electric SLS and BMW is planning its EfficientDynamics supercar.
Then again, maybe that little square of camo is just a decoy.
Hit the link below to see the spy photos.