Engaging strains are based mostly on 1969 504 CoupéPeugeot’s retro-inspired EV is extra fable than legend. However we have been discovering out which elements will make manufacturing
Philippe-Emmanuel Jean – Peugeot’s model plan and idea automobile technique chief – will get out the reply earlier than I’ve even requested the query. “In fact, this automobile received’t be produced,” he says. “It wasn’t developed for that.”
In order that’s the in need of it. No, they’re not going to construct the Peugeot e-Legend idea. Having been to the 2 greatest motorshows in Europe and several other elsewhere since its debut final autumn, what you’re seeing right here is the post-event tour; the closing credit. Like Ferris Bueller mentioned: “You’re nonetheless right here? It’s over. Go house.”
Pity. As a result of the e-Legend sparked curiosity like few different ideas after it was launched. Any person even arrange a petition urging Peugeot to construct it. However then it does have relatively rather a lot going for it.
Largely its appears to be like, it’s affordable to say. This does, in spite of everything, seem like a automobile a producer might construct. Impressed by the 504 coupé from 1969, it’s an especially fairly 2+2 hard-top, constructed over the course of a few months from carbonfibre, on the finish of a mission that lasted a 12 months.
It was made to focus on that two ‘coming’ issues, ‘autonomy’ and ‘connectivity’, may be wrapped in one thing “engaging and attractive”, says Jean.
It’s electrical, too. Clearly. The headline stats say there are two motors, one at every finish, totalling 456bhp and giving the e-Legend a high velocity of 137mph. In the meantime, 100kWh of batteries beneath the ground would offer a variety of 370 miles.
“For our designers and engineers it’s essential to indicate the place we’re going,” says Jean. It appears to be like prefer it could possibly be placed on the highway and, at four.6m lengthy and 1.9m extensive, it’s the proper of measurement to be, too. “It’s essential to work at a practical measurement, as a result of that is what we’re growing,” says Jean. However in fact, the e-Legend actually is a bit more sedate. This one-off idea solely has one electrical motor, a high velocity of round 6mph and is radio-controlled by considered one of its makers, who follows it round with a handset.
Just a few firms make a distinction between a present automobile and an idea automobile. “We introduced 508 Peugeot Sport Engineered Idea,” says Jean, a automobile that can go into manufacturing subsequent 12 months. “That is way more potential. The whole lot is near a manufacturing automobile exterior; the inside is way more a imaginative and prescient of the 2030s.”
He’s not unsuitable. Whenever you have a look at its exterior, you’ll be able to’t inform it’s carbonfibre; it simply appears to be like brilliantly, expensively, however realistically, completed. There are neat particulars like single piece protruding bumpers, whose floating center part flexes – one thing often hidden inside an unlimited plastic moulding made right into a characteristic. The windscreen and rear display screen are every made from three glass items, as a result of you’ll be able to’t mould glass as simple as acrylic (which is why so many use it), however glass appears to be like extra like the actual factor. There are highlights, too, such because the 3D-printed sill particulars that seem like electrical warmth sinks, which trace on the electrical gubbins beneath. Outdoors, then, this appears to be like like a automobile you would drive. And would relatively wish to.
Inside, issues are relatively extra faraway from actuality, albeit fairly beautiful. “The whole lot is made to really feel like an extension of your own home,” says Jean. And though the steering wheel retracts into the dashboard and there’s an unlimited near-50in display screen throughout the footwell so you’ll be able to watch a movie whereas it’s in autonomous mode, there’s real relevance right here too. “With every idea automobile we submit 5 to 10 patents,” says Jean, together with, right here, how the velvet upholstery – in a 504-aping blue – is joined to the technical materials round it. And what arrives on idea automobiles now, makes manufacturing automobiles later: Peugeot’s i-Cockpit and the 3D components to the 208’s newest iteration each featured in idea automobiles first. “We need to make it as sensible as potential, as a result of it has penalties for future automobiles,” says Jean. “The workforce that labored on the e-Legend’s HMI [human machine interface] are the identical workforce which can be engaged on manufacturing automobiles.”
Pity, then, that this isn’t going to be a kind of manufacturing automobiles. Jean and others communicate “with remorse”, however because the automobile continues its world tour, it’s, a minimum of, doing what it was designed for. “Persons are not near autonomous know-how and electrical energy,” says Jean. “Folks must see it may be a pleasure to have an autonomous automobile. It wants to stay attractive and actually Peugeot, and it shouldn’t stay boring, a pod with out persona.”
Peugeot’s three finest ideas
Onyx: Explored new pure supplies for the inside, additional developments of the i-Cockpit driving place, and a duo-tone exterior that’s the hallmark of Peugeot’s sport fashions. Utterly coincidentally it has a mid-mounted V8.
EX1: This all-carbonfibre EV prototype was one of many extra drivable idea automobiles – it set electrical efficiency information for each lap occasions and acceleration. Powered by two 170bhp electrical motors, the 2010 automobile taught Peugeot quite a bit about electrical efficiency.
RC Idea: From 2002, this was one other mid-engined sports activities automobile, however really paved the best way for a manufacturing automobile that adopted. The RCZ was based mostly on extra simple mechanicals, however retained a lot of the RC Idea’s daring look.
Peugeot e-Legend idea proven at Paris
508-based Peugeot idea previews electrical efficiency vary
New Peugeot 208: reservations open for petrol, diesel and EV fashions