The saviour of driving in the city?
SHELL unveiled a concept city car on Friday which, if it were ever to go into production, could deliver material reductions in energy use in the road transport sector.
The three-seater car is tangible proof of energy efficiency improvements that can be achieved by using cutting edge technology available today through a process of ‘co-engineering’ whereby vehicle body, engine design and lubricants are all created together.
Independent testing and a rigorous life-cycle study shows that Shell’s Concept Car would deliver a 34% reduction in primary energy use over its entire lifecycle when compared to a typical city car available in the UK. The Shell Concept Car would use around half the energy required to build and run than a typical small family car available in the UK and 69% less than that of a typical sports utility vehicle available in the UK
The Shell Concept Car is a total rethink of the Gordon Murray Design T.25 city car produced in 2010 for which Shell produced a prototype oil to improve the vehicle’s energy efficiency. The new car is the result of a co- engineering collaboration between world leading vehicle, engine and lubricant designers, with each of the three elements of the vehicle tailored to work optimally with each other. It takes a holistic view on energy reduction focusing on design material selection; reduced energy demand via aggressive downsizing, and streamlining while enhancing the efficiency of energy delivery through innovative engine design and lubricant formulation to minimise the impact in terms of overall energy lifecycle use.
Tests on fuel use show the equivalent to a 5% improvement in fuel efficiency compared to standard lubricants available in the UK.
Mark Gainsborough, Executive Vice-President of Shell’s global lubricants businesses which backed the project said, “This is a significant automobile engineering milestone. I’m very proud of what Shell’s scientists and their partners at Geo Technology and Gordon Murray Design have achieved. Insights gained from this project could be transformational in terms of how we address energy use in the road transport sector. E
“This project shows that if we use the best of today’s technology, including cutting edge lubricants science, we could potentially have a major impact on energy use and reduce CO2 emissions. It also shows the powerful role that lubricants can potentially play in helping achieve CO2 reduction targets.”