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Toyota's radical Compact Sports & Specialty Concept

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March 2, 2005

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March 3, 2005 A radical Toyota sports car featuring a hybrid petrol-electric drive-train and a host of innovative interior features was one of the stars of the media day at the 2005 Melbourne International Motor Show. The CS&S; (Compact Sports & Specialty) concept was designed to demonstrate the sporting potential of Toyota's Hybrid Synergy Drive technology, as featured in the second-generation Prius production car. With its midship-mounted next-generation Toyota Hybrid System THS II based on the Hybrid Synergy Drive concept and an E-Four (electric 4-wheel drive) system, the CS&S; is designed to provide outstanding environmental performance and driving exhilaration.

In the CS&S; a mid-mounted 1.5 litre petrol engine drives the rear wheels while the 50kW high-output motor electric motor drives the front wheels. The arrangement gives the CS&S; the extra traction of four wheel drive combined with vigorous acceleration thanks to the high torque characteristics of the electric motor. Four-wheel control provided by the E-Four system and the midship positioning of the hybrid power plant further enhance handling and road-holding performance.

Toyota says the CS&S; will accelerate to 100 km/h in 8.6 seconds. Despite the quick performance, the concept car's Hybrid Synergy Drive uses less fuel and has lower exhaust emissions than an equivalent conventionally-engined sports car.

The CS&S;'s innovations extend to the interior which features a revolutionary human-machine interface called Toyota Space Touch (TST).

The TST system uses a series of holographic projections which the driver "touches" to control functions such as air conditioning, audio, satellite navigation and email.

The car's seating system is flexible, allowing the CS&S; to be converted from a two-seater to a 2+2 by the removal of canopies behind the two front seats.

In addition, the front passenger seat has been designed in such a way that it can be rotated to cover the entire cockpit area like a hard tonneau cover, thereby boosting anti-theft security.

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About the Author
Mike Hanlon Mike grew up thinking he would become a mathematician, accidentally started motorcycle racing, got a job writing road tests for a motorcycle magazine while at university, and became a writer. As a travelling photojournalist during his early career, his work was published in a dozen languages across 20+ countries. He went on to edit or manage over 50 print publications, with target audiences ranging from pensioners to plumbers, many different sports, many car and motorcycle magazines, with many more in the fields of communication - narrow subject magazines on topics such as advertising, marketing, visual communications, design, presentation and direct marketing. Then came the internet and Mike managed internet projects for Australia's largest multimedia company, Telstra.com.au (Australia's largest Telco), Seek.com.au (Australia's largest employment site), top100.com.au, hitwise.com, and a dozen other internet start-ups before founding Gizmag in 2002. Now he writes and thinks. All articles by Mike Hanlon
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