Click above for a high res gallery of the SEAT Leon Ecomotive Concept

Amid all of the fanciful green concept cars debuting in Geneva like the Rinspeed iChange and the Magna Steyr Mila EV comes something a little more standard looking: the SEAT Leon Ecomotive concept. As you can see from the large lettering all over the car, this concept seats four while emitting just 99 grams of CO2 per kilometer. The low emissions come from a 105 PS 1.6-litre TDI common rail engine with a particulate filter paired with automatic stop-start technology. But the "automatic" part of that requires a little bit of work:

Among the new features debuting on the Leon is an Auto Start/Stop function. When the car comes to a halt – for instance at a traffic light – and the driver selects neutral and takes his foot off the clutch, the Start/Stop function automatically switches off the engine. As he prepares to move off again and depresses the clutch, the engine is re-started and the car can be driven as normal.

The concept also uses "a form of brake energy recovery." SEAT says that this concept car is the next step in building range-extended electric vehicles. See more details after the jump. The SEAT Leon Ecomotive concept gets a combined fuel economy rating of 74.3 mpg (62 mpg U.S.) on the European cycle. We'll have live pics from Geneva up soon.


[Source: SEAT]

PRESS RELEASE:

SEAT'S ULTRA-GREEN LEON ECOMOTIVE CONCEPT

* CO2 emissions slashed to just 99 g/km
* Refined, efficient 105 PS 1.6-litre TDI common rail engine
* First application of Auto Start/Stop and brake energy regeneration technology

SEAT is once again grabbing the spotlight at Geneva with the unveiling, today, of an exciting new concept car.

The Swiss debut of the Leon Ecomotive Concept, a dramatic development of the existing low emissions, high economy family five-door, underlines SEAT's growing stature as a motor maker that appeals across the spectrum – from exceptional economy to outstanding performance.

Boasting a raft of new technologies, as well as an all-new 1.6-litre TDI diesel engine which features state-of-the-art common rail fuelling, the Leon Ecomotive Concept delivers class-leading CO2 emissions of just 99 g/km – the same as the outgoing and much smaller Ibiza Ecomotive – while offering combined fuel economy of 74.3 mpg.

These significant improvements in both emissions and economy over the current Leon Ecomotive (119 g/km and 62.8 mpg combined) come courtesy not just of that new 105 PS turbodiesel engine, complete with DPF particulate filter, but also an array of clever fuel-saving innovations.

Among the new features debuting on the Leon is an Auto Start/Stop function. When the car comes to a halt – for instance at a traffic light – and the driver selects neutral and takes his foot off the clutch, the Start/Stop function automatically switches off the engine. As he prepares to move off again and depresses the clutch, the engine is re-started and the car can be driven as normal.

The driver's kept up to speed on the system's operation via a special readout in the instrument binnacle, which also shows the optimum gear for maximum economy at any given moment.

This development alone can deliver fuel savings of as much as four miles per gallon around town, without the need for the Leon's driver to make any changes to their driving style.

As well as the slick Start/Stop system, the car being unveiled at Geneva also includes a form of brake energy recovery – harnessing energy generated during the braking process to save fuel by reducing the usual drain on engine power that stems from a conventional alternator.

Of course many of the existing fuel- and emissions-saving techniques employed in the existing Leon Ecomotive find their way into the new concept car: lengthened gear ratios, the use of low rolling resistance tyres and optimised aerodynamics all feature.

The new Concept naturally includes the same elegant design revisions as those seen across the revised Leon and Altea family range, also making their debut in Geneva.

Top quality interior design and trim are matched by generous equipment that includes ESP, ABS and TCS, numerous airbags, body-coloured electric door mirrors, air conditioning and a six-speaker MP3-compatible CD radio with Aux-in connection.

The Leon Ecomotive Concept follows hot on the heels of the recently-unveiled Leon Twin Drive Ecomotive prototype which made its debut at the SEAT Technical Centre in Martorell, near Barcelona, in January.

That concept showcases SEAT's work towards producing vehicles which run on electricity in urban areas, switching seamlessly to conventional petrol or diesel power for longer trips out of town.


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