Magna Steyr is an Austrian company that specializes in designing cars and platforms. The company was involved in the development of many popular models including the BMW X3, Jeep Grand Cherokee, and even the Chrysler 300C.
At the 2008 Geneva Motor Show, the company revealed a pretty innovative concept named the Mila Alpin. Built as a compact SUV, the Mila Alpin concept features a modular platform that can be used to house a hybrid system or even an electric powertrain. Thanks to its modular design, the concept’s platform can be used as a base by more than one automaker.
The Magna Steyr Mila Alpin concept has a 3+1 seats configuration and is capable of climbing 45 degree inclines. After it was revealed to the public, the Magna Steyr Mila Alpin managed to attract BMW and Mercedes ’ attention which expressed their interest in the modular platform developed by the company. Both companies plan to launch new models and also want to reduce their costs of development, so the solutions offered by the Mila Alpin concept seem to perfectly fit their needs.
Hit the jump for more information on the Magna Steyr Mila Alpin.
Exterior and Interior
The Magna Steyr Mila Alpin concept looks like it’s ready to travel on the surface of the moon. The concept looks like no other SUV seen before, mostly due to its short nose and the elongated greenhouse. The massive wheels give it a relatively high ground clearance which helps it climb without problems 45 degrees inclines, so it will be able to go head to head with harsh terrains without breaking a sweat.
The front is dominated by a pair of oval headlights which give the vehicle a pretty studious face. Under the headlights, you’ll find a pretty rugged bumper which betrays the vehicle’s all terrain abilities.
The straight waistline is underlined by a pretty thick beltline which runs along the sides until it meets the rear pillars.
To avoid a brick looking profile, the car rails slightly slope toward the back, making the profile sleeker and also enhancing the vehicle’s aerodynamics. What’s more, the roof is entirely made of glass, forming a transparent bridge that unites the front and rear glass areas, further enhancing the futuristic look of the concept.
Out back, the taillight assemblies match the headlights and are mounted high on the rear pillars.
Despite the compact exterior dimensions, the Magna Steyr Mila Alpin’s cabin is pretty spacious with its 3+1 seats configuration. The driving position is higher than usual and the driver seat is pushed far forward, being close to the front axle. Thanks to the forward position of the driver’s seat and the large panoramic windscreen, we can expect excellent front road visibility.
Engine and Technology
The Magna Steyr Mila Alpin is fitted with a clean CNG (compressed natural gas) Hybrid 3 cylinder engine though its modular platform can host various types of power-plants including supercharged gasoline engines or electric motors.
The Mila Alpin is equipped with independent suspension and ESP, two features that guarantee on-road safety. The concept also features a mid engine layout which ensures good traction and perfect body balance.
In the official press release, Magna Steyr stated that the considerable ground clearance, large overhang angles, option of locks in the transfer case and axle drives, and the low crawling speed work together “to make driving safe and relaxed off the road,“ and we have all the necessary reasons to believe them.
The company added that the concept was designed to keep the costs of manufacturing to minimum: “Given the modular design, automation can be kept at a low level and, at the same time, flexibility in assembly at a high level. The MILA Alpin concept can therefore be used for volume production without any problems.”
The Magna Steyr Mila Alpin’s frame consists of straight sections, which are made of different materials to guarantee low weight and enable a flexible body. The company says that thanks to the modular design, other manufacturers can introduce their own components and systems and also add various optional extras without any problems.
The modular platform of the Mila Alpin Magna Steyr was clearly designed to be used by others. What makes the concept so interesting, is the fact that its modular platform has the potential to give birth to a new segment of vehicle – an ultra compact SUV which has capable off road abilities and it’s also fuel efficient. Moreover, given the fact that both BMW and Mercedes were interested in the concept, proves us that the concept is indeed as practical and innovative as the company said.
Magna Steyr Mila Alpin Key Features
- CO2 reduction as optional extra
- Wide-ranging uses
- Optimized product development chain
- Four Wheel Drive
- Mid Engine Configuration
- Modular Platform
- Low Manufacturing Costs