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Lynch-assisted hybrid coupe will hit 225 km/h
Published:  01 September, 2004

Lynch-assisted hybrid coupé will hit 225 km/h

Two former Jaguar car engineers are leading a team which is designing a hybrid petrol-electric coupé which, they say, will reach 60 mph (96.5km/h) in 6.2s, hit a top speed of 140 mph (225 km/h) and deliver a fuel consumption of 42 mpg (8 litres/100km).

Tim Bishop and Tony Martindale have set up the Connaught Motor company to develop the four-seater vehicle called the Type-D (depicted in an artist`s impression above), which will marry a V10 petrol engine to a Lynch pancake motor. The project has already attracted £461,000 of funding from the UK-government-backed Energy Saving Trust, but around £5m will be needed to put the car into production by the target date of May 2006. Prices are expected to start at about £35,000.

By itself, the 2.1-litre aluminium engine will reach a peak torque at 4,000 rpm, but with the added power from the electrical motor, the drive system will produce a flat torque of 144 lb-ft (195 Nm) from 1,000-6,000 rpm.

The Lynch motor will be attached to the crankshaft nose via a variable gearing system designed to exploit the fact that an electric motor delivers its highest torque at low speeds.

The motor, driven by the Type-D`s 48V supply, will operate in three modes. For short bursts of added torque, a sports mode will use the motor`s full capacity. A normal mode will introduce regenerative braking and limit the motor`s output, while an economy mode will allow the vehicle to pull away under electric power only and will maximise the regenerative effect.

To minimise start-up costs, Connaught has been set up as a "virtual" company. It will design the car and manage the project but will outsource the manufacturing to Derby-based EPM Technology.

"Our aim has been to build a car for the future, while keeping the design and technology relatively simple," says Bishop, who is Connuaght`s MD-designate and vehicle engineering director. "We have met all of our own development targets and are confident to gain five-star EuroNCAP crash test results and a maximum score for pedestrian safety.

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