Haven’t really seen a lot of Opal lately, but their latest automobile, known as the Flextreme Mini MiniVan Concept is turning heads for it’s out of the box thinking. First, there’s the hybrid powerplant, which by itself isn’t very groundbreaking, in fact, it’s all the rage. It’s similar to the Chevy Volt, and at least the European model charges the batteries with a small diesel motor rather than gasoline. It’s round trip range on one charge of the lithium-ion batteries is about 62 miles, with the diesel motor engaging to recharge them.
However, when used together with the diesel motor, the mileage skyrockets to just short of 500 and makes for about 53kW of power. That at least makes for less frequent charges. It would be a drag if you had to go the gas station 3 or 4 times a day, which has always been the drawback with a purely electrical concept.
The fossil-fuel motor is a 1.3L turbodiesel with intercooler and runs between 1,500rpm and 1,800rpm. The diesel motor can kick in and override that with a blistering 3,200rpm if it has the need. The hybrid marries the two together quite nicely. But that isn’t the cutting edge feature that warrants this post.
The Flextreme also includes storage space for not one, but two Segways on constant charge. So once you get where you’re going, you can … well, get where your going.
Pure concept for now, but I like the thinking behind it.
Source – Moral Authority