Citroen unveils Metropolis conceptcar
19 April 2010 | Citroën is revealing the style lines of Metropolis, a new concept car that pays homage to China's extraordinary development. Metropolis will be on show at the French pavilion at the Shanghai World's Fair from 1 May to 31 October 2010. A sleek limousine with harmonious lines, Metropolis is a reference to the grandeur, avant-gardism and vitality of the country's great megalopolises with their undeniable magnetic attraction. To better address the local needs in this full-growth market, the concept car was designed 100% by Citroën's international design team based in Shanghai since 2008.
With its three-volume body styling (essential in the Chinese market) Metropolis expresses a vision of creative and sophisticated luxury through its imposing stature (5.30 m long, 2 m wide and 1.40 m high), which also serves to reflect the ambition and scale of the country to which it pays homage.
The muscular body styling is draped in a flowing robe in a subtle 'Pearl Silk' hue, the intensity of which changes according to the light to reveal generous curves and ultra-honed detailing. Like a 'Chinese vestal' such as Xian Nu, the styling language of Metropolis blends smooth surfaces, taut lines and sensual curves, together with special touches like the beautifully shaped front wing that emphasises the powerful, tapering silhouette.
Extending far back along the body, the chromed detailing on the upper part of the side windows serves to stretch the cabin lengthwise while safeguarding the intimacy of the rear passengers. The 'origami' quarter-light appears to float in the air and, in a nod to the DS, also houses a light source.
The front end of Metropolis clearly expresses the store of power lurking behind the consummately wrought kite-shaped grille. The streamlined headlamps on either side have an imperious and steely regard, lending the whole a natural air of authority.
The interior design is inspired by fans and Chinese string instruments like the gu-zheng. In China, these are the attributes of a cultivated and refined person. The cabin is made up of superposed strata, creating a setting in which luxury is expressed in a new, 'orientalised' approach. Luxury onboard the concept car is of the expressive kind.
Metropolis balances urban responsibility and driving pleasure with its plug-in hybrid drivetrain. And to get the most out of these on-road capabilities, it is also fitted with Hydractive suspension; a Citroën hallmark that meets expectations on ride comfort worldwide, and in China in particular. This system maintains a constant vehicle attitude for better aerodynamics and, hence, fewer CO2 emissions.
With its plug-in hybrid drivetrain, Metropolis can run in several modes:
At 70 g/km, CO2 emissions are just one fifth those of a conventional drivetrain with equivalent performance (4-litre V8 engine). This was achieved through: optimisation of the petrol engine, a 7-speed, dual-clutch electronic gearbox and hybrid drivertrain operating strategies that work to continuously reduce CO2 emissions.