While we’re preparing for our New York Auto Show, the other side of the world is hosting numerous automakers at the 2011 Seoul Motor Show in Korea. One of the automakers dazzling the show floor is Chevrolet with their new Miray concept car - a mid-electric hybrid-powered sports car whose name means "Future" in Korean. The concept was built to celebrate the brand’s 100th anniversary and previews the company’s future design language evolution.
The new Miray concept combines design elements from the 1963 ’Monza (Monza) SS’ and 1962 Corvair Super Spyder and molds them into a futuristic design language. It features an aerodynamic body shape with Le Mans (Le Mans) racer-style vertical doors, a dual-port grille, LED headlamps, a carbon fiber spoiler, and a new set of wheels, 20" at the front and 21" at the rear.
According to GM Korea President and CEO Mike Arcamone, "’Mi-ray’ is Korean for ‘future.’ As GM rolls out Chevrolet across Korea, the Mi-ray concept offers an exploration of future possibilities for the brand. It strengthens the bond between car and driver, creating a fresh look at what sports cars of the future might be."
UPDATE 08/16/11: The Chevrolet Mi-Ray Concept left such an impression at the Seoul Motor Show earlier this year that the Bowtie has decided to bring the Asia-penned concept car to one of the biggest auto shows of the year in Frankfurt. That’s great news because when we saw in Seoul, we couldn’t get enough of it, so to see it in Frankfurt is a pretty good treat for us.
Hit the jump to read more about the Chevrolet Mi-ray concept.
The Mi-Ray concept is made from carbon fiber and CFRP (carbon fiber-reinforced plastic) and is distinguished by an angled character line with ambient lighting underneath. Up front, the concept gets a new dual port grille flanked by LED headlamps with new signature daytime running lamps, while the front and rear fenders evoke Chevrolet Corvettes of the past.
Chevrolet has also opted for carbon-fiber spoilers that help control down force, retractable flaps that provide additional airflow control, and new taillamps at the rear just because. The concept sits on aluminum-carbon fiber composite 20-inch wheels in front and 21-inch wheels in the rear and entry is attained through the Le Mans racer-style scissor doors.
The jet-inspired interior combines brushed aluminum, natural leather, white fabric, and liquid metal surfaces, all surrounded by a carbon fiber shell, which gives it a lightweight yet rigid structure. The driver-focused cockpit is inspired by the legendary Corvette, while asymmetric seats form a symmetric interior that gives the driver a feeling of being fully connected with the car.
A very unique feature in the new Mi-Ray concept is the back projection on the instrument panel. Information in front of the driver has been prioritized into three zones. Immediately in front is vehicle performance. It is flanked on the left by range and on the right by navigation and mileage figures. This eliminates unnecessary visual clutter, allowing the driver to focus on the thrill of driving. The center touch screen flows down to an aluminum support, which evokes a fighter jet’s nose with the landing gear down.
The Mi-Ray’s hybrid system combines a 1.5-liter four-cylinder turbocharged engine mounted behind the cockpit that drives the rear wheels with two front-mounted 15-kW electric motors for quick acceleration and zero emissions in urban driving. The electric motors will take their energy from a 1.6-kWh lithium-ion battery that is charged through regenerative braking energy. The Mi-ray has the capability of being switched from front-wheel drive to rear-wheel drive.
The hybrid system is combined with dual-clutch transmission (DCT) and start-stop system.
"The propulsion concept fits perfectly with the rest of the vehicle, delivering big performance in a small footprint, on the road and in the environment," said Arcamone. "By combining GM propulsion technology and visionary design, the Mi-ray points to the future of Chevrolets around the globe – expressive, youthful and entertaining."
When can I buy one?
Well, unfortunately never. The Mi-Ray concept is just a design exercise. However, its design language previews the company’s future evolution, so expect to see some of its aesthetic lines in the future production models.
Impressive exterior design
Both FWD and RWD in the same vehicle