23 February 2009

Curious Giugiaro

Legendary Italian designer readies a hybrid supercar for Geneva, but what the hell is it all about?

Giorgetto Giugiaro concept

Here at Top Gear we like Giorgetto Giugiaro, the Italian designer whose CV boasts – amongst many others – the Ferrari 250 GT, BMW M1, Alfa Brera and that lovely one-off Mustang.

So we’re very happy to hear that Signor Giugiaro is heading to the Geneva show next week with a new concept, a squat supercar billed as the world’s fastest hybrid.

Details are sketchy, as is the sketch that Giugiaro has released previewing the concept. However, we do know that – like last year’s Quaranta concept – the hybrid will be badged as a Giugiaro design, not under the umbrella of a bigger manufacturer.

The concept – the name of which remains a mystery for the moment – may share a lot more with the Quaranta. We’d expect it to be powered by the same Toyota-sourced hybrid drivetrain: a 270bhp 3.3-litre V6 petrol engine mated to a pair of electric motors. In theory, that should be good for a 0-60mph time of around four seconds and a range of some 600 miles. In theory.

It’s unclear yet whether the new concept will have the same hinging roof as the Quaranta – but judging by the lack of doors on the sketch, it’d seem a real possibility – or the McLaren F1-style seating arrangement with the driver positioned front-and-centre.

We’ll find out all in Geneva next week. Here’s hoping it looks as good in the metal as it does in the, er, pixels.

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