The Loremo: Never before has something German sipped so little

Simple, clever, fun. That's the philosophy behind the vehicle you see pictured above, the Loremo (pronounced lo-ray-mo which is short for Low Resistance Mobile). Of course, there's nothing simple about designing and building a car, but there has certainly been a large need for cleverness to meet our current standard of "fun".

Don't let the picture fool you. There's nothing really new here, aside from the impressive 50g/km CO2 figure. This car achieves its high level of fuel efficiency by taking current fuel-saving methods to a level almost beyond reason. A main part of this is weight saving. Every part of the car has been stripped down to its 'bare essentials', including the interior, chassis, wheels and tires, and engine (though oddly enough, it still possesses a navigation system). The designers have optimized its drag coefficient all the way to the width of the tires - wider tire = more friction. This is a good thing, since engine options are either a 2-cylinder 20hp turbodiesel, or a 3-cylinder 50hp turbodiesel. The former will get you to sixty miles per hour in a blistering 20 seconds, while the latter will get you there in 9. Fuel efficiency, however, is very impressive - 1.5L per 100 km (translated 188 mpg). Not too shabby.

The coupe is labeled as a 2+2 because the trunk boot is 'ergonomically shaped' so that two children can fit "comfortably" facing rearward - given, of course, that they don't get car sick. One enters the car by opening the front or rear 'gate' (see gallery). The front lifts the entire nose section from the A-pillar forward, taking the steering wheel with it. According to the website, it's as easy as getting in a bathtub. Uh-huh.

It'll be a while before we can test that out. Production versions of the Loremo won't be available until 2009. Weighing in at just over 990 lbs. to just under 1040 lbs., it might be fun to drive - but is it worth the pain to one's cornea? I mean, I like the headlights and taillights, and even the Tesla-esque nose, but really. The profile doesn't look as though it has evolved past the early sixties. Retro isn't that much back in.

Maybe if I saw one in person... nah.

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