Hybrid Jag powered by electric motors, gas turbines

Jaguar shows off the C-X75 concept at the 2010 Paris Motor Show.

Jaguar C-X75
The C-X75 hybrid concept makes its debut at the 2010 Paris Motor Show. Wayne Cunningham/CNET

Not only does the Jaguar C-X75 look stunning, but its hybrid power train pushes into new territory.

Rather than build a typical series hybrid, with electric motors turning the wheels and a conventional gas engine recharging the batteries, Jaguar uses twin micro gas turbines as generators to either keep the C-X75's batteries topped off or supply juice directly to each wheel motor. These gas turbines spin at 80,000 rpm and get up to speed very quickly. Without them, the C-X75 can drive 68 miles on its batteries alone. But the turbines give it a total range of 560 miles from its 15.8 gallon gas tank.

Each wheel gets its own 195 horsepower electric motors, adding up to a total of 780 horsepower for the car. Torque comes in at a whopping 1,180 pound-feet, getting the C-X75 to 62 mph in 3.4 seconds. Top speed is 205 mph.

With a separate motor powering each wheel, the car has all-wheel drive. Power management across the motors enables torque vectoring to improve handling.

Sadly, the C-X75 is merely a concept, but Jaguar says it indicates the future direction of its model lineup. Given the need for all car companies to meet new emissions guidelines, Jaguar is probably not making an idle boast.

About the author

Wayne Cunningham reviews cars and writes about automotive technology for CNET. Prior to the Car Tech beat, he covered spyware, Web building technologies, and computer hardware. He began covering technology and the Web in 1994 as an editor of The Net magazine. He's also the author of "Vaporware," a novel that's available as a Nook e-book.

 

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