Motoring

The wildest concept cars

Ferrari 512S Modulo concept, 1970

The wildest concept cars
 

In the late ‘60s and early ‘70s, a few European carmakers and notable design studios started experimenting with extreme wedge-shaped car designs. The most famous of the all was the Ferrari 512S Modulo concept that made its debut at the 1970 Geneva Motor Show. Designed and built by Italian design house Pininfarina, the striking car was basically a fully-functional Ferrari 512S Le Mans race car underneath the spaceship-like body. The ultra-futuristic design of the car was a smash hit and won 22 awards that year.

Honda Fuya-Jo, 1999

The wildest concept cars
 

Japanese automakers are known for creating unusual concept cars that are absolutely wild in terms of the idea, but not always well-received. One such was the Honda Fuya-Jo, first shown at the 1999 Tokyo Motor Show. The name of the car translates to “Sleepless City” and the concept was designed keeping party animals in mind. The night-club-inspired cabin featured a dash in the shape of DJ turntables and the seats were upright like bar stools. The Fuya-Jo was one the earliest hybrid concept cars to be shown off at an automobile show.

Ford GT90, 1995

The wildest concept cars
 

One might easily mistake this particular model for an early concept version of the Bugatti Veyron, but this extremely beautiful car was a Ford created as a spiritual successor to the mighty Le Mans-winning Ford GT40. It debuted at the 1995 Detroit Motor Show to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the GT40. Touted as the world’s fastest car, Ford claimed that the 6000cc V12, producing 720 horsepower could propel the car to a top speed of 407km/h. Ford even boastfully labelled the concept “the world’s mightiest supercar”. Sadly, it never saw the light of day.

Volkswagen Aqua, 2011

The wildest concept cars
 

The Volkswagen Aqua was an all-terrain concept vehicle imagined by 21-year-old Chinese designer Yuhan Zhang. It combines the aesthetics of a futuristic-looking road car with the usability of a hovercraft. Designed to tackle China's hugely varied terrain, the car was to be propelled by a pair of electric motors – one that inflated the hovercraft’s skirt and another that powered a set of propulsion fans. Although the top speed was just 100km/h, not much compared to most modern cars, the vehicle was to be capable of reaching places next to impossible for standard four-wheeled cars.

Chery Ant, 2012

Chinese carmaker Chery unveiled this at the 2012 Beijing Motor Show. It took inspiration from ants and their unique behaviour of working together. The unusual yet interesting looking car was conceptualized around the “roadtrain” system in which each individual car can attach and detach to other Ant cars forming a long snake of vehicles. The concept’s aim was to make the whole transportation system a lot more efficient and safe. The automaker said up to 10 cars with the similar destination can come together, after sharing and processing information over the cloud.

Toyota i-unit, 2005

The wildest concept cars
 

Toyota introduced the i-unit concept vehicle at the EXPO 2005 in Aichi, Japan. Based on Japanese carmaker’s revolutionary PM-01 concept that debuted in 2003, the i-unit was a “personal mobility” pod which was inspired by a leaf and carried an environment theme. Toyota said the body of the car was made using environment-friendly plant-based materials and the car was capable of turning sunlight into energy. Enabled with auto pilot, the i-unit featured variable positioning in which the passenger pod would stand upright at slow speeds and near horizontal when going fast.

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Printable version | Feb 24, 2021 1:34:46 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/life-and-style/motoring/the-wildes-concept-cars-ever/article24088164.ece

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