Holden reveal wild 1000kW 'Time Attack Concept' in time for Bathurst
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Yeah, that thing is a Holden.
Out of complete left field, the embattled, rebuilding manufacturer has revealed a new concept vehicle; the Time Attack Concept. The reveal marks the 50th anniversary of Holden's first Bathurst win in 1968, and comes on the eve of the eve of 2018's edition of The Great Race.
Looking more like one of the 'artistic explorations' that populates video games like Gran Turismo, the Time Attack Concept was designed in house at GM Holden's Melbourne Design Studio via "sophisticated simulation technology", by lead designer Ewan Kingsbury.
The 'Time Attack' element is a clear reference to the emerging motorsport genre of the same name that sees drivers engineer incredibly intricate creations, punctuated by huge wings and low-slung bodies. It's also intended to channel some of the magic of Holden's fabulous 1969 clam-shelled Hurricane.
Ironically, Australia's largest annual time attack event — the World Time Attack Challenge — takes place next weekend at Sydney Motorsport Park.
“The technology we employ today has transformed the way we design cars,” says GM Holden Design Director, Richard Ferlazzo.
"We have the ability to simulate a car’s appearance, technology and dynamics in convincing animations, which enables us to deliver better designs in a shorter time. A large part of our work is Advanced Design and we use this technology to develop concept designs for our parent company, General Motors. This concept is a digital advertisement for the advanced skills, capability and technology of the GM Holden team”.
So no, don't expect to see this Time Attack creation popping up in a showroom near you, sitting betwixt the Equinox and Commodore. This is Holden stretching its muscles, and reminding us that it's still very much part of GM's global map.
Click here to read more about Holden's $30m investment in jobs and future tech
Though it's all quite 'pie in the sky', it's still fascinating to pour over the numbers of what Holden think this vehicle could achieve it were to make it out into the real world.
A 900kg weight combined with four 250kW Axial Flux Permanent Magnet Electric Motor Drives (one for each wheel, 1000kW total and 3240Nm of torque), would be good enough for a 0–100km/h time of 1.25 seconds, a top speed of 480km/h, and a Mount Panorama simulated lap time of 1:29.30.
That weight would be scored through the use of a carbon-fibre composite chassis with a cellulose honeybomb core, which features an integrated safety cell. Carbon-fibre would also be used through the double-wishbone suspension, through the body panels (combined with kevlar and a polycarbonate-graphene coat), and on the quad-venturi underbody.
“The cessation of Motor Shows in Australia left a hole in our automotive culture in some ways and we lost a forum to showcase our passion and creativity to the Australian public with physical concept cars," adds Ferlazzo.
"However, with the realism and detail achievable through modern technology, I felt we could still deliver uniquely Holden concepts via virtual technology and digital media.
“Automotive Design and Engineering remains a core strength and competitive advantage for Holden and for Australia. The Time Attack Concept racer is an illustration of how we can utilise cutting-edge technology to develop transportation solutions for the future."
Flight of fancy, yes. But a reminder nonetheless that perhaps Holden isn't quite 'done' yet.