Volkswagen GX3

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Volkswagen GX3
VW GX3.jpeg
Overview
Manufacturer Volkswagen/Lotus
Body and chassis
Class technically a Motorcycle
Body style 3-wheel 2-seat roadster
Powertrain
Engine 1.6 L I4

The Volkswagen GX3 was a concept car created by project Moonraker, which was initiated by Stefan Liske, former director of group product strategy at Volkswagen. The GX3 was first shown at the 2006 Greater Los Angeles Auto Show. It was considered a very unusual concept since it was three-wheeled and sometimes considered more of a motorcycle concept than a concept car; but it did feature great performance for a projected cost of only about US$17,000.

The GX3 used a transverse-mounted 1.6 L I4 engine from the VW Lupo GTI. This engine gave the GX3 an output of 125 PS (92 kW) and 152 N·m (112 ft·lbf) of torque. The GX3 could go from 0–100 km/h in 5.7 seconds and had a top speed of 200 km/h (125 mph). It used a six-speed manual transmission.

The design of the GX3 was atypical, with a front double wishbone suspension, tubular steel spaceframe and laminated body panels. The exterior design was one of a kind, with it being a two-seat, three-wheeled vehicle. It lacked a roof or windshield, and was intended mainly for fair-weather environments, as a "weekend car". The design of the interior was very minimalist and entirely functional.

There was considerable speculation as to possible production of the GX3; Volkswagen fueled this with the announcement that production would depend on the public reaction to the concept. However, in spite of the energetic and overwhelmingly positive public response to the concept, and intensive chassis development by Lotus Cars for production, Volkswagen later concluded that it would not be able to sell the GX3 without costly and complex redesigns that would alienate VW's target market and increase price above the proposed US$17,000 base price. The company cited possible safety issues that could lead to product-liability lawsuits and decided that the legal concerns made production as-is impossible.

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