EXALT ON THE SENSES: Peugeot will showcase a tweaked European version of their hybrid concept car at the Paris Motor Show next month. Image: Newspress
PARIS, France - Peugeot is showcasing the Exalt concept car in a new livery for the 2014 Paris auto show.
The bodywork will have shades of grey that emanate from the bare steel covering most of the exterior to the distinctive ‘sharkskin’ rear end. Inside, the ‘Newspaper Wood’ finish borrows (literally) from the pages of major business dailies.
Sitting on a wide track , the five-door hatchback expresses its style over a length of 4.7m. The cabin is trimmed in natural materials and is dedicated to comfort and instinctive driving. This innovative concept makes the sedan even more attractive and more versatile, in particular the tail hatch with its unique opening mechanism and large boot.
TRIMMED IN 'SHARKSKIN'
Peugeot says the Exalt is a fresh take on time-honoured traits synonymous with automobile passion: taut and dynamic lines, a high waistline, a raked windscreen, a low roof (1.31m), a very slender profile that conceals a nonetheless spacious cabin, tightly shaped side panels with basalt-fibre sills and 20" wheel rims.
The long bonnet grows out of a particularly expressive nose where the twin headlights set in the bumper integrate the brand’s recognisable signature lighting. In the middle, the powerful grille emerges from the bodywork and provides the backdrop for the lion.
At the bottom, the flow of air supplying the engine is divided by fins housing the LED indicators.
To improve the drag coefficient, the rear of the Exalt is trimmed in "sharkskin", an efficient textile that draws on biomimicry to create a technical grain structure that markedly improves the aerodynamic performance of the vehicle and reduces fuel consumption.
The hatch has an innovative pantograph mechanism to create the biggest possible opening while needing lessexternal space. It and the motorised hobby flap reveals a boot with a low load sill, providing easy access to the HYbrid-kick concept, a foldaway electric scooter stowed below the boot floor that represents an ideal addition when it comes to covering last-mile mobility.
The i-Cockpit has a small wheel trimmed in leather and chiné—a natural wool-based mixed fabric—and the digital instrument panel are intuitively arranged in front of the driver to improve operation and visibility.
On the extended centre console two folding touchscreens emerge from the facia. The upper screen gives access to the car's computer and the audio and navigation systems. The second screen is a permanently visible control bar to provide access to the automatic aircon and the "Pure Blue" system.
The facia has nine toggle switches, the design of which borrows from the world of music. They are arranged in two groups: two to the left of the small steering wheel; seven to the right. This layout was adopted because of the human brain’s ability to easily remember up to seven items, with regard to position and function.
The driver is also free to assign functions to the switches, as desired: access to navigation with one switch, vehicle settings with another.
Peugeot has fitted the Exalt's features with raw and natural elements paired with innovative and efficient materials. The idea was to finish the car with useful touches and to do so intelligently, with a view to constantly optimising processes to economise on the use of materials and reduce waste.
This responsible approach is also applied in the local sourcing of materials, such as replacing the Asian ebony used in China with 'newspaper wood' in Europe.
Steel remains bare in all areas where it does not come into contact with the bodies of the four occupants. At the elbows and arm contact points, the Exalt is trimmed in warm toned wood. From the bottom of the windows it gives way to a natural wool-based chiné fabric used to trim the door panels, the facia and the interior roof.
Between these two materials, a 3D-printed strip conceals the speakers of the audio system. The bucket seats made of composite material feature seat squabs and backrest in chiné fabric with side areas in aged leather.
Fabric and leather are worked together in a process that optimises the use of resources.
250KW OF MAXIMUM POWER
Weighing just 700kg, the Exalt is powered by a plug-in hybrid drive train with a total maximum power of 250kW shared by all four wheels. The turbocharged 1.6 198kW engine was developed by Peugeot Sport. Coupled with a six-speed auto gearbox, this four-cylinder petrol engine develops a specific power output of nearly 125kW per litre.
The multi-link rear axle contains a 50kW electric motor for electric or hybrid phases of operation. This motor is also used to recharge the battery through energy-recovery braking.
The car will automatically adapt to the driver’s wishes by selecting the most suitable mode: all-electric, petrol-only or petrol-electric hybrid.