After building more than 5,500 electric vehicles, Citroen is calling on its experience in the field to deliver a “triple zero” car - zero fuel consumption, zero CO2 emission at the tailpipe and zero engine noise. The C-ZERO (what else could they call it) is a full electric city car powered by a permanent magnet synchronous motor delivering 47kW or 64bhp EEC from 3,000 to 6,000rpm. Citroen says the automatic vehicle will have a top speed of 130kph (80mph), acceleration from 0-100kph (0-62mph) in 15 seconds and 60-90kph (37-56mph) in six seconds. Between charges, the vehicles is expected to achieve a range of around 130km (80 miles).
Designed with urban mobility in mind, the four-seater compact car is powered by a 330V lithium-ion battery system comprising 88 50Ah cells (for onboard energy of 16kWh), mounted in the center of the vehicle. Lithium-ion batteries keep the weight down compared with conventional technology, while offering equivalent performance.
Citroen says part re-charges won’t have a negative impact on battery longevity which is great for drivers who need a few more miles out of their battery but don’t want to wait at least 30 minutes to get going.
To re-charge the C-ZERO's batteries, drivers plug the supply cord into a 220V socket. A complete charge takes six hours, while an 80 percent charge is possible in just 30 minutes using an external station with a single-phase current of 125A at 400V, for power of up to 50kW.
Citroen says the car is so quiet, when the driver turns the ignition key, a beep is used to confirm that the car is running. The traditional fuel gauge is replaced by a battery charge indicator.
The manufacturers believe the C-ZERO will appeal to public sector operators, local authorities, smaller businesses and company fleets - and also to private customers looking for a car with exceptionally low running costs. Easy to park and navigate with its 2.55m wheelbase, the C-ZERO has a number of comfort and safety features including power steering, ABS, traction control, ESP, electric windows, six airbags and air conditioning. It also has a 166-liter boot.
The C-ZERO has zips around with a maximum torque of 180Nm which is available from 0-2,000rpm. Power is transmitted to the rear axle via a single-speed reduction gear.
Due for launch in the last quarter of 2010, the C-ZERO is developed in collaboration with Mitsubishi Motors Corporation. Citroen is also launching new models shortly, including the new C3 and DS3 models (emitting 99g/km of CO2) that will be available next year and the full hybrid DS5 vehicle which launches in 2011.
Currently, more than 30 percent of Citroens sold emit less than 120g/km of CO2.
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