Something we wrestle with here at Drive Kulture, is a Top 5 list. No one who really appreciates something can really break it down to their favorite 5. We love certain things for certain reasons, and not in absolute terms. This belief has forced us to turn what started as a normal Top 5 list of the “best concept cars that never made it to production” into a series. We tried to use sub categories that made sense, and then to keep things fun, added a few that make no sense at all. We hope you enjoy these lists, and we realize that these are just opinion. Not everyone will agree, but that’s what the comment section is for. Let us know what you think, and if you disagree, give us what you’d put on your list.
So here is the first in the series. Performance. It’s what most car guys live for. These are the concepts we wish would have been made because they promise to be fast, and they are striking. All of the cars on this particular list are not from the likes of Ferrari or Porsche, but from companies that you wouldn’t expect. That’s what makes this mental exercise a little more interesting.
Let’s start with this: The 2008 Citroen GT Concept
The Citroen GT Concept was created by an outside artist for the game Gran Turismo 5. The virtual car is said to produce 793HP and 1800 lb/ft of torque from 4 electric motors being powered by a battery/hydrogen fuel cell system. In 2009, Citroen announced they would produce 6 cars, but the next year rumors surfaced that they wouldn’t be produced. Apparently they couldn’t make money on it, but that hasn’t stopped other automakers from taking a loss on halo models.
2007 VW Golf GTI W12 650 Concept
The Golf GTI W12 was created to show at Worthersee which has been the Golf gathering since 1982. As a tribute to the Golf fanatics who helped make it a brand in itself, VW engineers took their most powerful engine (besides the engine in the Bugatti Veyron), and shoe-horned it behind the front seats. The W12 makes 640 horsepower and 550 lb/ft of torque, and sends it only to the rear wheels for a 0-60 time of 3.7 seconds. The interesting thing is that if you keep the hammer down, this little Golf will make it to 201 MPH. The ultimate sleeper.
2012 Peugeot Onyx Concept
The Peugeot Onyx was designed and built with the purpose of most concept cars: To get people excited about the brand, to preview design language for upcoming models, and to preview technology for future cars. The Onyx achieves that goal with ease. The exterior features handmade, polished sheet copper body panels. These mixed with the usual carbon fiber in a matte black finish make for a beautifully stark contrast. The interior is a show piece out of a sci-fi movie, but made with environmentally responsible materials, like ‘newspaper wood’ and felt. It features a 3.7L V8 that makes 600HP, along with a hybrid KERS system to collect energy and provide a boost of 80HP. All this from a company which doesn’t currently have a sports car in its line-up. All the more reason this car should have been built.
2012 Lexus LF-LC Concept
Lexus began its journey into performance with the LFA, and while it was fast, its focus seemed to be speed, technology, and craftsmanship. While those are all necessary attributes for a supercar, many people were left a little underwhelmed. It seems Lexus wanted to change that with the LF-LC concept. With a focus on design, the LF-LC is something completely fresh for Lexus. You almost get the feeling they intended this car to be the SC replacement. Alas, this won’t make it to production, but will only serve as a design study. Let’s hope that swoopy wooden console makes into at least one of their future models!
Jaguar C-X75 Concept
After being sold by Ford, Jaguar had to completely reinvent itself. For the longest time, a Jag was considered to be old-fashioned, especially in its design. While the cars featured excellent crafstmanship and a solid ride, it seemed like they were being confined to designs of the past in order to cater to the Jaguar faithful. With the first new concept, the C-XF, Jaguar broke out of that stigma of being stodgy and was finally looking toward the future. Enter the C-X75. This car was created to celebrate 75 years of Jaguar, and to preview technologies. The first concept featured 4 individual electric motors with a combine power output of 780HP and 1180lb/ft of torque. This electric drive system is fed by a battery which is charged by two mini-turbines which spin at an astounding 80,000RPM. The car can go 68 miles on battery power alone, and in hybrid mode, can travel 560 miles. We always get excited when a company is willing to take risks, and present new technological solutions to that battle of performance vs. efficiency. Unfortunately, the C-X75 was too far ahead of its time, so Jaguar used the platform to engineer a hypercar to compete with the best offerings of Porsche, McLaren, and Ferrari. The goal was to create a package that had the performance of Bugatti Veyron, the range of a Chevy volt, with the CO2 emissions of a Prius. With two electric motors, and a 1.6L Inline 4cyl, it produces 850HP. The 1.6L 4cyl is turbocharged AND supercharged, revs to 10,000RPM, and produces 500HP. This thing screams. Unfortunately, they couldn’t make a business case for it.
That’s our Top 5. Let us know if you agree or disagree, and if you have any we missed, please let us know in the comments!