Jet aircraft-inspired Chevrolet Mi-ray roadster concept


April 4, 2011

Chevrolet's Mi-ray roadster concept vehicle

Chevrolet's Mi-ray roadster concept vehicle

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With General Motors last year announcing its intention to roll out Chevrolet across Korea, this year's Seoul Motor Show has seen the unveiling of a slick hybrid roadster concept developed by the GM Advanced Design Studio in Seoul to celebrate Chevrolet's 100-year heritage and showcase future design possibilities for the brand. The Mi-ray, which is apparently Korean for 'future', is a small open top vehicle that boasts an aerodynamic body that GM says is reminiscent of modern jet fighters.


The Mi-ray's body is made of carbon fiber and carbon fiber-reinforced plastic (CFRP), with scissor doors and a dual port grille flanked by LED headlights with daytime running lamps. The vehicle's front and rear fenders are designed to evoke the look of Chevrolet Corvettes of the past, while carbon-fiber spoilers at the rear corners are designed to help control downforce and airflow.

Additional airflow control is also provided by retractable flaps that also provide access to the vehicle's charge port on one side and the fuel filler on the other. In a nice touch, the charge port also features an external battery charge indicator. There's also cargo space for storing small items in the rear fenders, while the aluminum-carbon fiber composite 20-inch wheels in the front and 21-inch wheels in the rear are designed to evoke a sense of movement even when the car is stationary.


Inside the designers have also turned to jet fighters for inspiration with a combination of brushed aluminum, leather, white fabric and liquid metal surfaces. The interior compartment is surrounded by a carbon fiber twin cockpit shell that tightly wraps around the driver and passenger and connects to the seat cushions and headrests, which are mounted on a single aluminum rail.

The information panel uses back projection and prioritizes information for the driver into three zones. Front and center is vehicle performance, with navigation and mileage figures flanked on either side. The jet aircraft-inspired touches continue with a centrally located start button that triggers the column-mounted retractable meter cluster to rise "like a fighter jet canopy" when pressed.

Replacing the traditional rearview mirrors are retractable cameras that electrically extend from the side glass, while the forward-facing camera works with the GPS to overlay navigation information on real-time video.

Under the hood

Fittingly for a concept vehicle, the Mi-ray features a concept "mid-electric" propulsion system that is located primarily behind and beneath the driver. For city driving there are two front-mounted 15 kW electric motors powered by a 1.6 kWh lithium-ion battery, which can combine with the Mi-ray's 1.5-liter four-cylinder turbocharged engine mounted behind the cockpit when a little extra grunt is required. With the electric motor driving the front wheels and the engine driving the rear wheels, the Mi-ray can switch between front- and rear-wheel drive, while when working together, torque control is provided to both left and right wheels as needed.

To achieve a reduction in the size of the vehicle's powertrain by eliminating the torque converter the Mi-ray sports a dual-clutch transmission (DCT) that has been tuned for improved top speed in performance mode and works in conjunction with a start-stop system. GM says the Mi-ray gets 60 mpg (unadjusted) for city driving and 63 mpg (unadjusted) on the highway.

GM unveiled Mi-ray last week at the 2011 Seoul Motor Show, which runs until April 10, at the Korea International Exhibition Center (KINTEX).

About the Author
Darren Quick Darren's love of technology started in primary school with a Nintendo Game & Watch Donkey Kong (still functioning) and a Commodore VIC 20 computer (not still functioning). In high school he upgraded to a 286 PC, and he's been following Moore's law ever since. This love of technology continued through a number of university courses and crappy jobs until 2008, when his interests found a home at Gizmag. All articles by Darren Quick

now that\'s one kool car

adam smolkowicz

Jet fighter? Without guns or missiles? Hardly.


concept cars are a waste of time and money...they will never get built and the majority of the items that make a concept car a concept car will never see the light of day...What a waste these things are!


Building concept cars is a luxury ego trip for executives. Now that GM is a \"bailout\" company the American taxpayer foots the bill. And people keep paying taxes. Why? Will they ever get off their knees and stand up for themselves like the colonists did when they declared: \"No Taxation without Representation\"?


Since we have so sophisticated 3D / CAD / modeling / wind tunneling etc soft wares, I am also thinking that the really building these love-it-or-hate-it style concepts completely unnecessary. If you crazy to see it in 1:1 scale, just build it with Styrofoam or clay or something.

Plus, I\'m finding stupid that spending any intelligent energy to fancy smancy sport cars instead of concentrating fuel economy, alternative energies, public transportation, shrinking of our carbon foot print, fighting air pollution etc. You guys got to leave your teenage dreams behind, -jet fighter inspiration sport car-Jeez- wake up and come back to our real world.

Resat Arbas

Here\'s a better idea... why not try and make a minivan that\'s safe, not ugly as sin and gets better than 19mpg city? That\'d really shake up the market.

Brian Walczak

thats a dam awsome car

Waiel Jibrail

oh boy! used to be a sport concept would inspire the entire line with styling clues.this \"thing\" has all the styling clues of a fifties pickup.what was chevy thinking.shouldn\'t be called mi-ray.should be called me tarzan.

Cowfy Kaufman
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