84 MPG For The New Fiat 500 Hybrid
Fiat prepares a hybrid version of the 500 model. The driving train will be made of the TwinAir two-cylinder engine and an 8 HP electric motor. The fuel mileage could raise to 84 mpg.
Fiat plans to offer the public the most fuel-efficient model in their history. Is the hybrid version of the Fiat 500, expected do drop in 2011.
The eco driving train will be made of the new TwinAir petrol engine, of 0.9-liter, and a small electric unit. The hybrid drive train is till in the project phase, the Italians studying the possibility of installing the electric motor between the engine and the transmission, most likely assured by the double-clutch gearbox developed by Fiat.
The electric motor will work in parallel with the petrol engine, being capable of helping the car in extreme situations and at the start. The drive train will not be as generous, the electric unit offering about 8 HP and some decent torque, to complete the gaps of the conventional petrol engine.
So, the average fuel mileage would raise to the 84 mpg value, and of course the CO2 emissions will drop significantly.
Thanks to the small size of the TwinAir engine, the batteries that will keep the electric unit alive will be mounted right in the engine compartment area, of course only if their weight do not affect the weight distributions on the front axle.
The new Fiat 500 Hybrid will be available both on the European and US markets, and a success would inevitably lead to the use of the hybrid drive train on the other models of the Italian group. The most viable candidate would be the new generation of the small Lancia Ypsilon, but neither Panda is of the equation. The American platform-brother, Ford Ka, might also make some room under its hood for the hybrid propulsion system.