The Venturi Volage concept is, hopefully, finally coming to fruition. Unveiled at the 2008 Paris Motor Show, the Volage is a collaborative effort between Venturi Automobiles and Michelin tires. This union of allowed Michelin to trial its truly innovative “Active Wheel” technology, which incorporates 2 electric motors per wheel, one for drive and one for suspension duties.
The Venturi Volage was slated for production in 2012. However, as we edge closer to the new year, there hasn’t been any news. The price is still uncertain, but the Volage will likely be in the hundreds of thousands of dollars due to its unique technology and finite, hand-crafted nature.
Below are some detail and interior pictures of the Venturi Volage from the 2010 North American International Auto Show Pictures. Credit to Gizmag:
* Type: 2-seater roadster, 4 wheel drive Michelin Active Wheel
o 4 wheel-motors with max power of 55 kW (220 kW total)
o Max torque: 232 Nm (4 x 58 Nm) from 0-8,500 rpm
o Liquid cooling
* Suspension: Electric shock absorber on each wheel, of the “Michelin Active Wheel” type
o Technology: Polymere Lithium
o Energy: 45kWh
o Weight of batteries: 350 kg
o Liquid cooling
o Life-span of batteries: over 1,500 cycles
o Regeneration system via deceleration
* 80% recharge
o With external recharge booster (10 kW): 4 hours (220 V-16 A T)
o With onboard charger: 8 hours (220 V-16 A mono)
o Central unit: composite materials, carbon sandwich / aluminium honeycomb, pressure-sealed
o Front and rear mesh: aeronautic steel
* Brakes: Discs and specific calipers, incorporated into the Michelin Active Wheels
o 0-100 km/h : < 5 s
o Range at 90 km/h: 320 km
o Top speed: 150 km/h
o Length: 3965 mm
o Width: 1949 mm
o Height: 1235 mm
o Front gauge: 1525 mm
o Rear gauge: 1626 mm
o Wheelbase: 2702 mm
o Front tyres: Michelin 205 40 R18
o Rear tyres : Michelin 235 45 R18
o Total weight: 1,075 kg
Many people think Tesla made the first production electric sports car in 2008, with the Tesla Roadster. However, Venturi Automobiles had been shipping the Venturi Fetish to well endowed customers since 2006. Then then there was the Venturi Volage, an awesome tetra-motored electric supercar concept that should be available soon. The French automotive company’s latest electric experiment is ironically dubbed the Venturi America. Ironic because, Venturi says is only making 100 of these door-less electric enduro cars, but despite its name, none of them are to be sold in the U.S.
Venturi calls the America a “high-riding sports car,” and on paper, we’re willing to agree on both counts based on the car’s looks and its specs. The styling of the America is what we might imagine a collaboration between Smart and Jeep, with the two-passenger car looking every bit the part of a modern street-legal dune buggy, right down to its ample ground clearance and open cockpit design. In terms of its performance, the Venturi-developed electric powertrain is said to produce 300 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque, which is pretty great for a 3,100-pound car. There are also three driver-selectable modes (Cruising, Sport and Super Sport), so the car’s dynamic settings allow the driver to choose between maximum driving range and maximum performance. Powered by a 53 kWh lithium-ion polymer battery, the America has a driving a range of around 186 miles (presumably in Cruising mode) with a top speed of 124 miles per hour. -Autoblog
Here is a video of the America in action in Venturi’s latest advertisement:
Venturi has finally revealed the successor to the Venturi Fetish and they do not disappoint. Working closely with Michelin, they designed a car that redefines the traditional concept of a vehicle. Instead of connecting wheels to a motor and chassis, Venturi and Michelin miniaturized the electric motors and suspension and put them inside every wheel:
The Volage body is basically carbon fiber wrapped around the battery for optimum aerodynamics. The driver will be sitting inside a tub that is the battery and its components, as you can see here:
The Volage will have a top speed of 93 mph and a 0-60 in under 5 seconds. It’s not quite as fast as it looks, but it will feature cutting edge technology. The driver will be able to customize the drive settings for speed, economy, or comfort. Each vehicle will be created by hand and the price will most likely be around half a million dollars. You can find out more at the Venturi Volage website.
The result of close technological collaboration between Venturi Automobiles and Michelin, the Venturi Volage, presented for the first time at the “Mondial 2008″ (Paris Motor Show), marks a major step forward in the evolution of the Automobile. This new Venturi incorporates innovations which have enabled radical changes in terms of the vehicle’s architecture, style, dynamic behaviour and, more generally, the design of a modern vehicle.
All these changes constitute several world premières which, with the presentation of the Venturi Volage, reinforce Venturi’s capability for constant innovation, as well as its position as the most advanced company in the field of electric vehicles.
POWER TRANSMISSION & ACTIVE SUSPENSION
With 4 drive wheels with active suspension, the Venturi Volage has no equivalent. “Michelin Active Wheel” technology in fact incorporates 2 electric motors per wheel (1 for suspension and 1 for drive), ie. a total of 8 electric motors piloted in real time by spearhead electronics.
Like the mechanism of a watch, all the components, motors, gear reduction units and suspensions, are miniaturized and built into the wheels.
The active electric shock absorber system allows for total adaptation to the type of road surface and driving. Combining Michelin’s experience in the area of surface liaison with that of Venturi for the chassis, the Venturi Volage represents in its road holding, drivability and silent functioning, the summum of today’s automotive technology.
THE CAR OF THE DIGITAL ERA
Playing down the mechanical aspect in favor of electronics, close to the concept of a robot, this car belongs to a new era, the digital era. Thanks to a dashboard touch screen, the driver can configure the vehicle entirely as he wishes. This total control marks significant progress in terms of management, particularly of the energy stored in the car’s batteries: the driver can, for example, decide to give preference in certain cases to range rather than power, comfort rather than speed, an important factor for an electric car.
A CHASSIS UNIQUE WORLDWIDE
The only part that the Venturi Volage shares with the Venturi Fétish is its carbon fiber bodywork. Developed by the Venturi Design Office, this body is still a unique concept worldwide, as it is the only one to have been specifically designed to be that of an electric car and thus carry batteries within its very structure.
Thanks to this innovative design, both the Fétish and the Volage benefit from an unequalled level of safety, for both the cars’ passengers and also the batteries they carry.
The ideal distribution of the Venturi Volage’s masses – 45% at the front, 55% at the rear – and its perfectly mastered weight of 1,075 kilos enable it to attain 100 km/hr (62 mph) in less than 5 seconds.
A real demonstration of spearhead technology, the car presented in its world première is entirely operational and prefigures the production of a limited series of this model, scheduled as from 2012.
Like the Venturi Fétish assembled in our workshops in Monaco, the Venturi Volage will be assembled by hand, in the form of very limited production.
The technological repercussions of these two cars positioned at the very top end of the market are to be found on other vehicles bearing the Venturi brand, enabling as many people as possible to benefit from the firm’s advances in the field of sustainable mobility.
DESIGN OF VOLAGE, BY SACHA LAKIC
“Like a light and sensual veil, the Volage’s bodywork clings close to its exceptional technical features.
Active suspensions and motors incorporated into the wheels, a flat bottom, aerodynamic tunnels: these choices and technological advances have enabled me to “design the void” usually occupied by the engine and suspensions, and thus explore audacious new paths in terms of styling.
The void is part of the Volage style; it has been designed by subtraction.
Volage has been fashioned by the wind.
The science of aerodynamics is the main tool that has been used to elaborate its shape.
It is easy and enjoyable to imagine the movement of flows of air, on and across its bodywork.
Volage finds itself in a totally original and decidedly contemporary formal category. The relationship with Venturi’s other models is obvious, though it is also possible to see, in a few details, a subtle tribute to certain icons among French cars of the pre-war era, the most elegant, the ones that were way before their time. Volage inspires passion: its powers of seduction are immense.”
Marianne HOLLANDE / Clément DORANCE
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Fax : +377 99 99 52 01
THE WORLD OF VENTURI
The Venturi stand is certified « BILAN CARBONE »:
Venturi presents its new range at the “Mondial de L’Automobile 2008″ on its stand of 500 m2 in Hall 5/1. The creation of the stand, just like our participation in this event, is certified “Bilan Carbone” which means that all emissions of CO2 connected with our activity have been compensated for.
Our industrial partners :
- MICHELIN Group for the Venturi Volage
- PSA Group for the Berlingo “Powered by Venturi”
- ZEBRA batteries for the Berlingo “Powered by Venturi”
Our partners for the Mondial are:
- The company VESTAS, N°1 in modern energy
- AUTODESK, world leader in 2D and 3D application software
- Our models wear STELLA MC CARTNEY’s dresses
With the arrival of its new vehicles Volage and Eclectic, Venturi is launching its new dedicated sites www.venturivolage.fr and www.venturieclectic.fr
Venturi spin-off products (including the “Black Feather” longboard www.venturiboards.com) are available from the on-line boutique on the website.
The Venturi Fetish became the world’s first production electric sports car when it was unveiled at the 2002 Geneva Motor Show. To this day, it remains the worlds most expensive and rare electric sports car, as only 25 were delivered worldwide. The price range has been around $400,000 to $500,000 over the years. Performance is relatively pedestrian when compared to the electric supercars in development and on the streets now. The Fetish accelerates from 0-60 in just under 5 seconds, with a top speed of only 100 mph and a 150 mile electric range. More information can be found at the Venturi Fetish website.
This is a cool video of the car in action:
The Monoco based Venturi company has since teamed up with French tire maker Michelin, and is going to introduce its next generation electric supercar extremely soon at this year’s Paris Auto show on October 2, 2008. Venturi has two other project cars that heavily utilize solar power, the Venturi Eclectic and the Venturi Astrolab. More can be read about them at the Venturi website here. More info on those vehicles will come soon.