concept cars

concept cars

  A concept car is a car prototype made to showcase a new vehicle's styling, technology, and overall design before production. They are often shown at motor shows to gauge customer reaction to new and radical designs which may or may not have a chance of being produced.

Maserati is on one hell of a roll lately. First it dropped the incredibly affordable and achingly pretty Ghibli on the masses watching the Super Bowl, and now they have this new concept . Revealed today at Geneva the Maserati Alfieri Concept is a 2+2 model that is built to drive the brands design and celebrate its centenary.

One this is certain; it is utterly stunning to look at.

Alfieri is the first name of the Maserati brother who helped found the company and led many of its engineering efforts. In a more literal sense, the word Alfieri translates to standard-bearer. One name alone then, it is very obvious this car carries incredible importance for the brand.

Things get even better though. Rather than some immobile hunk of sculpture, the Alfieri Concept is a 100-percent functioning machine. It is built on a shortened version of the GranTurismo chassis and features the same 4.7-liter V8, complete with high-revving Italian howl from the exhaust pipes.

Just take one moment to imagine what this thing would look and sound like as it tore through the winding roads on the coast of Tuscany. I think “heavenly” is the word you are looking for.

Updated 03/21/2014: Maserati unveiled a new video in which it explains the design process behind the new Alfieri concept. Enjoy!

Click past the jump to read more about the 2014 Maserati Alfieri Concept.

If you thought we were a little smitten with Maserati ’s latest concept, the 2014 Alfier i, you’d be right. We’ve got every finger and toe crossed hopping the automaker pushes the Alfieri into production. But what could be better than a V-8-powered Italian supermodel with looks that kill? A roadster version, of course.

TopSpeed’s rendering genius sketched up this beautiful drop-top Alfieri concept to show what the possibilities might hold. Based on a shortened version of the GranTurismo and using its same 4.7-liter V-8 making 460 horsepower and 383 pound-feet of torque, the Alfieri Roadster makes a perfect competitor to the Jaguar F-Type Roadster .

The Alfieri’s long hood, high rear haunches, and sloping rear deck look perfectly suited for roadster duty. The rear seats of the coupe’s 2+2 design remain and an integrated third brakelight peaks out from just behind them. The rear fascia looks much the same with its huge vents, thin taillights, and dual exhaust pipes. Not much has changed up front with that distinctive Maserati grille and Trident leading the way.

Since we’re already speculating, it’s safe to guess on the top’s construction. It really depends on how Maserati decides to market the Alfieri Roadster (if ever). Will it be more luxury oriented or performance minded? Like the Jaguar F-Type , it could employ a soft top and thereby saving weight and complexity or the Alfieri may use a convertible hard top like the BMW Z4 , cutting down on road noise and adding security. Either way, we’ve got a second Maserati to be wishing for.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2015 Maserati Alfieri Roadster.

2014 Geneva Motor Show Preview

This year’s Geneva Motor Show sure provided a lot of new metal to be covered with automakers from around the world choosing to debut their latest vehicles on the world’s stage. The level of excitement about the show had been building for quite some time and to be honest, many of the vehicles were rather polarizing.

Even designs that were generally liked garnered a few nay-sayers regarding their lack of originality, while other designs only attracted drool and positive feedback. As they say, beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but in this article, the TopSpeed editorial staff cover their top five best cars of the show along with the bottom five bombs.

Don’t forget to check out more of TopSpeed’s Geneva coverage on our Podcast pilot episode . And be sure to pipe up in the comments section telling us your thoughts on our choices.

Click past the jump for our list

Every year, Italdesign Giugiaro comes to the Geneva Motor Show ; and every year it brings something completely loony (in a good way) to the party.

This time around, the Italian design house might have outdone itself completely with the unveiling of the Clipper, a peculiar-looking MPV whose eccentricity can’t be measured at least until you see what its fully capable of.

For a company that given us the Parcour and the Brivido in past auto shows, the Clipper certainly fits into that edgy design and sharpness that its two predecessors had.

But arguably the most interesting parts about the Clipper are its similarities with the Volkswagen Tex Concept it designed for VW at the 2011 Geneva Motor Show. That, or our eyes are just playing tricks on us.

In any case, this is the Clipper MPV, folks. Chances are, you won’t see another one quite like it in the near future.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2014 Italdesign Giugiaro Clipper Concept

If ever there were a vehicle to arise from left field, the Quant e-Sportlimousine would be it. Digging in the archives reveals the car’s origins starting in 2003 as the brainchild of the La Vecchia brothers. Several prototypes were built, including one that was seen at the Geneva Motor Show back in 2010, but success hadn’t been ultimately achieved. That is, perhaps, until now.

Staring a proprietary battery-powered drivetrain, the e-Sportlimousine makes its debut at the 2014 Geneva show with the intent of revolutionizing the industry. It sounds easier than it likely is, but upon inspection of its nanoFLOWCELL powerplant, it just might have a shot. It’s a 912-horsepower electric car.

The heart of the car utilizes a three-tank system that stores two types of liquid electrolytes — one positively charged, the other negatively. The liquids are circulated through the center tank; a battery-like cell with a membrane separating it into two halves. An electrical charge is generated from that membrane as the two liquids swirl on either side of it. The system generates enough power to propel the car from zero to 62 mph in a staggering 2.8 seconds and over a total range between 248 and 372 miles.

It’s obvious from the pictures the e-Sportlimousine isn’t just a boxy, test-mule science project – no, its quite the looker. The car is a substantially long, measuring 17.2 feet. It’s wide as well, measuring 7.2 feet across and its unique gull-wing doors are nearly 6 feet in length. Needless to say, this is a big car. But can its size be an indicator of how huge its technology will be to the automotive world? Click past the jump for what we know.

Click past the jump to read more about the e-Sportlimousine

With the reveal of the new Audi TT today, there was very little shock and surprise. The car was exactly what everyone expected. A gentle exterior refinement, more powerful and efficient engines, and restyled interior are all par for the course.

And then Audi goes and blows the lid off our brains with the TT Quattro Sport Concept.

The Quattro Sport Concept is basically the most hardcore TT that Audi could possibly produce. It is fitted with an aggressive body kit with requisite massive wing, Quattro AWD and 420 horsepower. Audi says the Sport Quattro Concept would hit 60 mph in 3.7 seconds. That is one-tenth quicker than the V10 Audi R8 .

The whole car is built of lightweight materials and space-age components. Much of the suspension is aluminum, carbon composites help make up some of the body work and the interior has been stripped of all but the necessities.

The hottest Audi TT from the last generation was the limited-run TT RS . This looks to even beat that machine into the ground.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2014 Audi TT Quattro Sport Concept.

The Mazda2 has been largely an afterthought in the Mazda lineup but at the Geneva Motor Show , the Japanese automaker’s resident hatchback will get its much deserved time in the spotlight.

Good for the Mazda2 because it has really earned the right to get a concept vehicle to preview what the next-generation model will look like. As far as the name of the concept goes, Mazda has christened it the "Hazumi," which apparently means "spring up" or "bound" in Japanese.

While we have no clue on the significance of its meaning to the Mazda 2, we do know that the change is long overdue, especially with that all-too-happy look of its predecessor. In its place, it appears that Mazda will adopt the new styling language seen on the Mazda 3 and Mazda 6 . What that means is that we expect to see the same angular headlights that the teaser proudly shows, as well as a more contoured grille and a sculpted signature wing. LEDs are also in play for the Mazda2.

On the more technical side, the new Mazda2 is also being prepared to use a shorter version of the CX-5 ’s platform, which means that we can reasonably expect a slightly bigger frame than what we’ve come accustomed to.

All that is good news for Mazda’s forlorn hatch. It’s forsaken no more, folks, so get excited for that!

Updated 3/4/2014: Mazda revealed the Hazumi concept today in Geneva.

Click past the jump to read more about the next Mazda 2.

Named after one of the greatest corners in modern racing, the Q50 Eau Rouge concept is a combination of Infiniti luxury and Red Bull F1 aggression. It previews what Infiniti thinks would be possible if they were given a blank check to create an outrageous sports sedan.

Based on the Q50 sports sedan , the Eau Rouge is a visual overhaul that features materials and design insight from the current F1 World Championship team of Infiniti Red Bull Racing. Much of the exterior design of the Eau Rouge features bespoke components with very few of the body panels shared with its tamer sibling.

Infiniti has stated that they would consider putting an engine with a power output of more than 500 ponies if a car like the Eau Rouge would be put in production. Ladies and Gentleman what you see here is a preview to a GT-R powered Infiniti.

Updated 03/04/2014: Geneva is here and Infiniti has finally lifted the veil from the beast beneath the hood of the Q50 Eau Rouge. Unsurprisingly, it is the same 3.8-liter V-6 found in the GT-R. See more after the jump.

Click past the jump to read more about Infiniti Q50

Concept vehicles aren’t necessarily one of Volkswagen’s strong suits but every so often, it builds one that people can’t help but appreciate.

That’s what the T-Roc Concept has done to us, at least for the most part. Built and designed as a crossover concept with the characteristics of a cabriolet — the roof is detachable, mind you — the T-Roc Concept offers us a glimpse of what a future crossover cabriolet could look like if it carried a VW badge.

The exterior design of the T-Roc Concept is definitely worth your attention, although how much of it would be found in a production model is a question only Volkswagen can answer in due time.

For now, though, we can all sit back and appreciate this concept for what it really is: a preview of a model that could arrive sooner rather than later, if Volkswagen realizes it has a real winner in the T-Roc.

Click past the jump to read more about Volkswagen T-Roc

A car that drives itself. That’s the dream, right?

For the longest time, though, it has remained as such: a dream. But a lot of automakers are beginning to tinker with the idea of an autonomous driving vehicle, and one that has been at the forefront of that is Renault .

The French automaker’s Next Two Autonomous Prototype is the culmination of years of testing and development. We probably shouldn’t even say culmination because the project is still a long ways away from being completed, but we all know where this is going.

Renault is developing a vehicle that could drive itself, similar to what we saw from the Jetsons back in the day. It still doesn’t fly — one technology at a time! — but having a car that drives itself while everyone on board gets to check their social media accounts?

That’s a pretty good start, right?

Click past the jump to read more about Renault Next Two Prototype

Source: Renault Blog

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