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Citroen’s High Peformance Diesel-hybrid Concept Car

The Citroën C-Métisse concept car

Citroën C-Métisse concept car

The Citroën C-Métisse concept car is the latest vehicle to prove that manufacturers are taking hybrids increasingly seriously. Following the trend set by the Lexus GS450h for a high performance hybrid, the Citroën uses a V6 diesel engine and two separate electric motors on the rear wheels, capable of developing 400Nm of additional torque. This combination gives a top speed of 155mph, a claimed 45mpg on the combined cycle and CO2 emissions of 174g/km. Around town the car can run in Zero Emission Vehicle (ZEV) mode.

Powering the front wheels is a 208bhp V6 HDi diesel engine mated to a six-speed automatic gearbox, whilst a further two electric motors can drive the rear wheels. This provides 4-wheel drive capability as per the Lexus RX400h, with each of these motors able to deliver up to 400Nm of torque and 20bhp.

A ‘boost’ function, activated under heavy acceleration, provides immediate torque. This combines the torque of the diesel engine with that of the electric motors that drive the rear wheels to enhance performance without increased fuel consumption. This results in a 0-62mph acceleration time of 6.2 seconds and a 50-75mph time of 4.2 seconds.

With the boost function and electric motors activated, the vehicle engages 4-wheel drive mode. ESP sensors are also capable of reporting low grip conditions to operate the electric motors.

The diesel hybrid drivetrain consists of a pack of high voltage batteries to supply the electric motors. Placed in the centre of the vehicle, the pack is automatically recharged during deceleration phases. The drivetrain and braking control unit automatically manage the energy configuration – transition from 2 to 4-wheel drive, energy recovery and the recharging of batteries.

Around town the C-Métisse can be driven in ZEV mode, a completely silent all-electric mode that helps limit fuel consumption and pollutant emissions. With the diesel powerplant running, the Diesel Particulate Filter System ensures that virtually no particles are emitted into the atmosphere.

In addition to the diesel hybrid power unit, the C-Métisse also points at future car design with its optimised aerodynamics and reduced weight. Enlarged front air intakes, a flat underside, two retractable rear airfoils together with a rear fixed-fin spoiler contribute towards a drag coefficient of 0.30. The carbon fibre body helps reduce the entire weight of the C-Métisse to just 1,400kg, including batteries.

The C-Métisse will be unveiled at the Paris Motor Show later this month.