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PSA Peugeot Citroen unveiled Tuesday two prototype cars featuring its new diesel-electric hybrid powertrain, the Peugeot 307 and the Citroen C4 Hybride HDi. (That's the Citroen C4 above.)

The cars achieve 25 percent better fuel economy than a comparable gasoline-eletric hybrid -  3.4 liters of diesel fuel per 100 km (roughly 69 mpg combined city/highway).

Details and pictures after the jump... The Hybride HDi system includes a 1.6-liter HDi diesel engine, a diesel particulate filter system, a "Stop & Start" system, electric motor, inverter, high-voltage battery pack and motor control electronics. The Stop & Start system allows the vehicles to start and drive if the batteries are flat, using only the diesel engine.

The prototypes also feature regenerative braking, an all-electric mode (good for 50 kph), and an Extended ZEV (zero-emissions vehicle) mode in which electric power is used by default when battery levels permit.

On the highway, the electric motor is available for a 35 percent power boost for extra acceleration.

The company says its Hybride HDi vehicles could hit dealers as soon as 2010, if the price gap between the hybrid and standard diesel models can be brought down to an acceptable level. Major cost drivers are the high-voltage batteries, the electric motor/generator, the inverter and the regenerative braking system.

[Source: PSA Peugeot Citroen]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 8 Years Ago
      A few clarifications that i think should be made, mostly based on personal opinion, but most of those presented here are:
      According to the UK top gear survey for customer satisfaction, french cars are consistently the lowest ranked, 5 years in a row the last six vehicles are french. Maybe it has something to do with the hatred the british have for the french, maybe they are simply unreliable.
      Second point: On the highway, at high speeds, a prius redirects all of its power to the wheels, and not to the batteries, so it should function as a normal gas engine for the most part. A disesl engine is inherently more efficient than a gas engine, has a higher thermal efficiency quotient, and toyota cannot change that whatever they do. What is meant by highway speeds? 80 mph? In germany on most highways its as fast as you can go. A 2.0L diesel engine can be driven around 1200 rpm in sixth gear, at 80 mpg, but when needed can cruise at a maximum speed of around 125 mph. Its up to the driver to decide how to drive.
      Third point: for some years now diesels have higher hp per liter ratio than gas engines. Examples: BMW 118d vs 118i, 120d vs 120i, same engines go in the 3 series, VW has a 170 hp 2.0 TDI engine, i am at a loss where do you get your figures that a diesel engine only has low end torque and no power... It is just designed differently and has its peak power in a different band. On a highway, you dont need to shift down to overtake, as you would normally do in a gas engine, you just have to step on the gas (assuming you are not already flooring it).
      And finally, i live in europe, and hope that the french never again try to sell their vehicles in the crazy market that is the us. It would only do them damage, judging from the comments of the Prius afficionados posting here. They have the french market, good sells in germany and the UK, and while logic probably dictates that they should try to expand, i think they will only get their hand dirty and damage their european sales and brand perceprion, which is quite bad in the US already.
      • 9 Years Ago
      (#10) Re: Lupo

      I think you're forgetting that the Lupo (Fox) is about as small as a car you can get (apart from a Smart) The Lupo is VW's smallest offering. That would compare to the C1 from Citroen.

      The C4 looks like the average size 3d Euro car. So, comparable to a Golf?

      By all means I think this is a good study & effort. Mileage is good imo.
      I hope to see a lot more hybrid diesels.

      And yes, the car looks good.
      The dash? Yikes! :(
      • 9 Years Ago
      To me it looks like a Prius Coupe.

      And ONLY 69 MPG hwy? Pathetic. Seeing as the Lupo 3L TDI was able to get 75...
        • 8 Years Ago
        Only difference with the Lupo is that the Citroen C4 or Peugeot 307 can comfortably ans easily fit four 6'2" adults in it...
      • 9 Years Ago
      Ok, well 10.6sec 0-60 isn't as bad as I would have expected, and it's about the same as a Prius (motor trend says 9.8sec, car and driver says 11.3). Either way they're both damn slow.

      My point was that you'll have a ton of torque but no power, which sucks for trying to merge on the freeway, or trying not to get rear ended in LA's 75mph bumper-bumper traffic.

      Adding an electric engine to a gas drivetrain gets you some much needed torque; adding it to a diesel drivetrain will get you, well, even more torque. Obviously it's going to be faster than the diesel alone, but you don't end up with a very balanced car.

      And to the other comment about CA needing to relax it's emission laws to allow diesels, that's only part of the problem, the real issue is the diesel fuel we get in the states is of a much lower, dirtier grade than is mandated in Europe. Regulations are in place for us to get cleaner diesel soon (is it next year? anyone know the exact date) at which point it will be much easier for diesels to meet CA emissions regs.
      • 9 Years Ago
      This diesel trend is just going the wrong way. It makes the thermal
      engine part of an hybrid vehicle larger, heavier and more costly;
      while exactly the opposite is sought. A small, light and cheap
      engine. Something that leaves spare mass, volume and money for more
      powerfull motors and batteries.
      • 9 Years Ago
      nice blog
      • 9 Years Ago
      I was serious. Take the decals and crap off of it and I see a nice looking car there.
      • 8 Years Ago
      Andyduncan - you say it's stink on Freeways?? What is that based on? As a diesel, it'd EXCEL on freeways, and the PSA 1.6Hdi is a particularly good engine. I've done 25k this year on diesels, and the US doesn't know what it's missing.

      Actually, the biggest problem in the US is the poor quality of the diesels - I think you'd find the modern high-speed diesel would work very well in the US if something was done about the poor fuel quality....
      • 9 Years Ago
      I am a Science teacher in the local public school system and would be honored to receive any information which would be useful in explaining the newer hybrid technology to my high school students. I was raised with both Citroen D-series cars (mostly D-Supers and DS-21 Mechanical shifts besides Saab 9000 CSE automobiles). Currently I also own a Honda Hybrid. Would love to obtain a Citroen hybrid. I am a life-time John Muir Sierra Club member. Thank you, Citroen, for being avante guarde. Merci.
      • 8 Years Ago
      Yep those french know about green. A friend haves the same C4 coupe (here in Costa Rica) from above but it's just diesel (1.6 hdi), a full tank of diesel lasts for one and a half months. They are just as clean as a prius/civic hybrid but they are faster (and better looking :).
      These french brands deliver more quality than toyota, and you don't have to worry about gas prices going up the sky :).
      • 9 Years Ago
      So, we're taking two high-torque, low power engine types and combining them. This thing should make a Prius look like a Z06. Sure, it'll pull stumps out, but it will stink on freeways. I've got to think that's at least part of the reason why American car companies aren't looking at this.

      And flame on, but I actually think it looks cool.
      • 9 Years Ago
      But is it air conditioned and have electric windows?
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