Toyota FT-Bh Concept to be introduced at the 2012 Geneva Motor Show

Article by Christian Andrei, on February 13, 2012

We now have our first look at Toyota’s new concept car with innovations that offer a “total vehicle” approach to cutting the overall CO2 emissions of a city car. Toyota released the first sketch of this concept named FT-Bh before its official unveiling at the Geneva motor show next month. Toyota hasn’t provided the complete details of the new concept yet.

It’s believed that the concept is “an ultra-lightweight, full hybrid city car study,” meant to attain low emissions but within a production framework that’s “economically viable.”

For this project, Toyota avoided the complex manufacturing processes and expensive raw materials. Instead, it utilized those that are commonplace within the industry.

This approach would make sure that the FT-Bh would be a viable car for the future even as it appears like a typical concept car. Toyota will also debut the new Toyota Yaris Hybrid to the world at the Geneva Motor Show.

This extremely frugal supermini makes use of a new 1.5-litre Atkinson cycle petrol engine coupled to an electric motor and nickel-metal hydride battery pack. It comes with a combined power output of 99bhp.

Toyota GT 86’s appearance in Geneva would be its European debut. It will be displayed beside the NS4 and FCV-R concepts, which were first seen at the Detroit and Tokyo motor shows respectively. Toyota’s new lineup will also include the diji concept, which was introduced last year in Tokyo.

The Toyota FT-Bh concept is styled according to the theme “Ecomotion,” featuring an exterior design that combines emotive shapes and an exceptional level of aerodynamic performance in order to achieve super low fuel consumption.

With a form that took inspiration from natural air flow over exterior surfaces, the FT-Bh concept represents a fresh approach to bodywork design. It features key panels that are formed to remind you of fabric stretched taut between the fastening points and therefore reflect the fabric’s ultra-lightweight composition.

The front of the concept inherited elements of the Japanese carmaker’s “Under Priority” design language as well as its “Keen Look” style and is dominated by a huge undergrille, vertical headlamps that are integrated with the front wings, and a powerfully sculpted bonnet.

What’s more, the roof panels’ stretched fabric styling adds a sense of lightness to the FT-Bh. This is emphasized all the more by ultra-slim A-pillars and C-pillars that maximize the cockpit’s glazed area for better visibility and perceived cabin spaciousness.

Additionally, the FT-Bh's rear is arch-shaped, creating a stable stance with a low center of gravity. It has a cabin that seamlessly merges into its rear, as well as an uplifted rear bumper and chevron-shaped corner elements. These contribute to the car’s aerodynamic styling and performance, and help deliver a drag coefficient of only 0.235 Cd.

This stretched-fabric panel design is also apparent throughout the car's interior and in the form of its center console, seats, dashboard, and steering wheel. The center console’s concave form also creates a cockpit that is driver-focused while also maintaining a sense lightness and spaciousness.

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