The weird styling has alternately been dubbed "Eco Motion," "Under Priority" and "Keen Look." Whatever it's called, the pointed nose, underbody tray and tapered roof aerodynamic drag of just 0.235 Cd. Despite its hybrid drivetrain, the FT-Bh weighs just 1,730 lbs, 25% less than the current Yaris. Much of that come from redesigned interior pieces that weigh half as much as current production parts. Under the hood, the car gets a typical Toyota hybrid system, combining the electric motor with an Atkinson cycle engine. In this case, a 1.0l two cylinder provides high speed motivation, while weighing just 132 lbs, 80 lbs. less than the current Prius motor. A lithium-ion battery also keeps weight in check.
There are a lot of little touches that go into getting the most out of a tank of fuel. Like Tesla's Model X concept, the side mirrors have been replaced by rear view cameras, requiring only an inch-wide bump at the edge of each door. Matte paint may be all the rage for custom cars, but here it's used for better thermal performance, as is the specially-engineered glass. This decreases the need to use the heater and air conditioner. Electrical load from the accessories has been cut in half through use of items like LED lighting.
How Does The FT-Bh Compare To Current Cars?
This car is is aimed at Europe's b-segment market, the equivalent of the American subcompact category. Over there, Toyota's main offering in the class is the Yaris. Over there, the car is equipped with a 1.0l or 1.3l gas engine, or a similarly-sized diesel. 0-60 times for the segment are around 12 seconds, a far cry from the 8.8 second time of North America's 1.5l-equipped model.
The FT-Bh strives to double the fuel economy of the European model while offering the same performance. Using the New European Driving Cycle (NEDC,) the FT-Bh consumes fuel at a rate of 2.1 liters per 100 km, or 112 mpg. Under the EPA's more strenuous test cycle, economy should be closer to 100 mpg.
Will It Reach Production?
The FT-Bh concept isn't a planned production vehicle, but most of the technology displayed in this prototype to make it to Toyota's hybrid cars. Currently, the rear view cameras won't legally meet Department of Transportation requirements, but several automakers are pushing to have this rule changed for better aerodynamics.
A car with the FT-Bh nameplate is said to be in the works to hit the market sometime between 2015 and 2020. Like the concept, this car will concentrate on fuel economy, although it may or may not adhere to the show car's design.