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Saturday, January 02, 2010
BMW Vision Hybrid Car
Image: © 2010 theirEarth.com

BMW's Vision Hybrid Concept Car - Pure Power

FRANKFURT, GERMANY - theirEarth photographed BMW's 2009 Vision plug-in Hybrid sports GT at the Frankfurt Motor Show in Germany in late 2009. The BMW Vision is branded with BMW's EfficienctDynamics trademark logo and represents BMW's future design strategy for high performance hybrid powertrains. The BMW Vision is a sports touring car with vertically raising doors and is driven by an all-wheel drive hybrid M-Power system.

The BMW Vision's powertrain comprises an advanced highly efficient 1.5L three-cylinder turbo-diesel engine integrated with a front drive 60 kW electic motor and a 25 kW rear axle mounted electric motor. For maximum acceleration, BMW says the front-drive electric motor can also provide 84 kW of surge power over a 30 second interval or as much as 104 kW over a 10 second burst. The rear axle electric motor is also capable of a surge power output of 38 kW.

During the Motor Show at Frankfurt, BMW had on display the entire powertrain system of the Vision Hybrid in a separate full-scale model that outlined some of the engineering concepts built into the design of the car. The BMW Vision has a chassis made up of extruded aluminium beams and aluminium cast components that are welded together to provide an overall light weight vehicle construction.

Performance characteristics are excellent on the BMW Vision and it can accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h (62.5 mph) in 4.8 seconds, with the maximum combined hybrid power output delivered equal to 262 kW / 356 Hp. With all of this performance, BMW engineers have still been able to deliver high fuel efficiency equivalent to a sub-compact car where the Vision achieves 3.76 L/100 km (U.S. MPG / Imp MPG) and has a low CO2 output of just 99 g/km.

The BMW Vision also has energy storage capability through its battery pack made up of 98 lithium polymer cells mounted below the driver console. The location of the battery pack helps to balance the vehicles weight distribution and deliver performance handling. BMW has reduced the charging time off of a home outlet to just 2.5 hours and says that when a high voltage charger is used, charging times are reduced to just 44 minutes. The BMW Vision also has regenerative braking, which captures a majority of deceleration energy during braking manoeuvres and transfers the kinetic energy into the lithium-ion battery pack.

The compact BMW 1.5 L three-cylinder diesel engine used on the Vision hybrid has a common-rail direct fuel injection system that is coupled with a turbocharger to increase the air density in the combustion process. The engine delivers a maximum power output of 120 kW/163 hp. BMW says the cruising range of the Vision off of its 25-litre fuel tank is 650 km (406.3 miles), with an additional all-electric battery powered range of 50 km (31.3 miles). The BMW Vision can therefore go 700 km (437.5 miles) before needing refueling or charging.

The Vision wouldn't be a BMW without a sports pedigree transmission, and BMW engineers have installed a sports DCT (double-clutch) type that uses the same advanced direct power application gear-changing technology as found on the current 2010 BMW M3 sports sedan. BMW also uses a thermoelectric regeneration process on the exhaust to convert the heat generated into electricity, producing as much as 200 watts of recovered energy.

For efficient dynamics on the road, BMW has installed large 21 inch aero profile narrow wheels that reduce frontal drag while still maintaining a contact patch equivalent to a larger width tire. Some of the engineering features found on the BMW Vision are really encouraging as it shows what is capable for efficiency and performance when engineers put their minds to the task. BMW needs to be congratulated for the effort they put into establishing benchmarks in the conservation arena.

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