University students build six-seat hybrid sportscar

A team of students at the Clemson University’s International Center for Automotive Research have developed a hybrid sportscar dubbed Deep Orange 3, which has been designed while considering the demands of Gen Y. Sponsored by Mazda, the Deep Orange 3 uses real world marketing data to develop a compact hybrid hatchback that surprisingly offers enough space to seat six passengers.

About the size of a Mazda RX-8 sportscar, the Deep Orange 3 has an aluminum chassis built at the school using a patented technology called Industrial Origami, which involves folding and riveting laser cut sheet of aluminum. The car comes with a conventional Mazda four-cylinder, front-wheel drivetrain along manual transmission. The rear wheels, on the other hand, are powered by an electric motor. The vehicle includes a control module that adjusts the power split between the two ends according to the driving conditions.

The electric motor propels the rear set of wheels when acceleration and traction are needed, while the conventional internal combustion engine takes care of the speed. While conventional hybrid cars make use of a generator that runs with the internal combustion engine to charge the batteries, the Deep Orange 3 switches its electric motor into a generator mode that draws energy produce by the resistance at the rear axle.

The mix of engine technologies, allows the Deep Orange 3 to race to 60mph in just 7.5 seconds and allow it to hit a top speed of 125mph. The creators claim that the low-emission hybrid vehicle achieves 42mpg in city driving while on the highways you can expect around 49 miles per gallon.

Via: Fox News

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