2012 Geneva Motor Show: Pininfarina unveils the Cambiano plug-in hybrid coupe concept

Article by Christian Andrei, on March 8, 2012

Italian firm Pininfarina unveiled the Cambiano plug-in hybrid coupe concept at the 2012 Geneva Auto Show. The inspiration for this diesel plug-in hybrid is the 1957 Lancia Florida II, which is the first concept car ever built by Pininfarina. It’s also the first public work of Pininfarina's new chief creative officer Fabio Filippini, who moved to the company from Renault in April 2011.

Filippini said that they aimed to “create a pure form with a strong impact, which is Pininfarina's DNA.” He said that he hoped to give the Cambiano a “strong visual impact,” using the least number of lines while eliminating decoration. A single long door can be found on the driver's side of this sleek four-seat sports car concept. It has two doors on the passenger side, which includes a rear-hinged rear door.

It doesn’t have a B-pillar. To make the design of the Cambiano even simpler, Filippini made headlights that are tiny LED blades incorporated into the grille shape. Its rear lamps are hidden behind a gray bar and these reflect light on the vehicle’s body. Carbon fiber is used for the passenger compartment while aluminum sub-frames are used in the front and rear to carry powertrain, suspension systems and batteries.

Some aspects of the interior are covered with recycled Venetian oak. These include the floor, fascia and lower part of the door panels. A small diesel-fueled turbine is used by Pininfarina as a range extender for the Cambiano concept.

Andrea Maria Benedetto, Pininfarina's head of product and process development, said that the turbine weighs half as much as an internal combustion engine, which delivers an equivalent 50kW/68hp power, which drive the wheels or recharge the battery. Benedetto said that diesel is used on the turbine since it has very clean emissions that it may be considered as “a future Euro 7 compliant powertrain.”

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