– Connaught Motor Co. of the United Kingdom and its engineering arm Connaught Engineering Ltd. will no longer be limiting its products to Europe. The Llanelli, Wales-based company is forming a subsidiary, Connaught USA, with engineering division Higher Bred Technologies to market its high-performance sports cars and innovative hybrid technology in the United States. The manufacturer will be based in Milford, Mich., and hopes to join forces with suppliers or other manufacturers in offering its special HYBRID+ system, which can be retrofitted to most production vehicles.
To enhance awareness of the company’s products, Connaught promoted its Type-D GT Syracuse and Type-D h sports cars, as well as its standalone HYBRID+ system, at the Automotive Testing Expo North America in Novi, Mich., Oct. 24-26. The show marked the first time that the manufacturer appears at a trade exhibition in the U.S.
The Type-D GT Syracuse is a four-seat sports car featuring a 2.0L supercharged V-10 engine producing 300 hp, capable of propelling the aluminum-bodied car to 60 mph in under five seconds. A total of 100 cars will be built for the European market and each car will be built to the specifications of its future owner. Additional vehicles are planned for the United States, and the car and HYBRID+ system will be promoted through a combination of traditional marketing/advertising methods, Internet campaigns, and on networking Web sites such as myspace.com and facebook.com.
Available on the Type-D GT Syracuse, Higher Bred Technologies’ patented HYBRID+ technology uses compact supercapacitors rather than large batteries found in conventional hybrids. These supercapacitors are smaller, lighter, and do not pose environmental risks when disposed of, as batteries do. Additionally, the system integrates regenerative braking, which captures the energy that otherwise would be lost during conventional braking and turns it into usable energy.
The HYBRID+ system can be applied to any vehicle, either as an original equipment option, or retro-fitted to existing vehicles. In most cases, changes to the vehicle’s basic package are not required since the motor/dynamo is compact and there are no large battery packs to fit, making the system ideal for light commercial vehicles, taxis, buses, and even SUVs. The gains are substantial — up to a 25 percent reduction in carbon dioxide emissions can be observed while fuel economy improves by up to 25 percent.