SEAT el-Born 2019 GENEVA MOTORSHOW Premiere
The new SEAT el-Born will make its first ever appearance at the Volkswagen Group night, before its public debut at the 2019 Geneva International Motor Show. SEAT el-Born is a concept car that will be a game changer in the industry, as it answers the varied questions posed by the electric revolution.
The concept car is another step in the direction of electrification moving the world towards the next-generation of automotive development. As a brand, SEAT is following industry trends and assuming greater responsibility toward these changes in working toward a lower carbon future. Despite the ever-increasing population in cities, consumers are still looking for personal mobility. The concept car fuses the core aspects which are driving change in the automotive industry: electrification, autonomous driving, shared-mobility and connectivity. The new SEAT el-Born concept will be the first 100% electric vehicle based on the Volkswagen Group MEB platform. The concept is named after one of the most iconic neighbourhood of Barcelona since it is being designed and developed in Barcelona and will be manufactured at the Zwickau plant in Germany; the el-Born is expected to hit markets by 2020.
“Mobility is evolving and with it, the cars we drive. SEAT is at the forefront of this change, and the el-Born concept embodies the technologies and design philosophy that will help us meet the challenges we face in the future”
Luca de Meo, President of SEAT.
The SEAT el-Born features a range of up to 420km according to the WLTP official test cycle, this is due to a power and energy dense battery pack at its very centre. It also has the ability to reach 100km/h in only 7.5 seconds. Typical of SEAT, the vehicle is dynamic and practical. With these features in mind, in addition to the fact the concept vehicle has the ability to recharge in as little as 47 minutes, the new el-Born will start to change the perceptions of electrification. The concept vehicle is based on the idea of integrating a range of technologies, whilst incorporating autonomous functionality to support the driver as well as a host of assistance systems.
Designed to drive
The SEAT el-Born has been designed to drive. The concept's dynamic proportions which are enabled by its electric powertrain, push the wheels to all four corners of the vehicle, whilst allowing a more vibrant and energetic stance in comparison to traditionally powered cars. The el-Born embodies the future of vehicle design in a modern and integrated way. This design style is emphasised most acutely at the front of the vehicle. Aerodynamics are key to maximising the vehicle’s range: the SEAT logo on the front is flush to the body, as there is no need to take in air to cool the engine, thus no demand for a grille. Cooling vents are positioned lower down the vehicle’s front, which provide air to the battery pack and streamlines air flow over the front of the vehicle. In addition, the electric powertrain requires less room, which in turn creates a sleeker look and internally, more room in the cabin, due to allowing the position of the A-pillar to move further forward.
“el-Born is the ultimate translation of our emotional SEAT design language into the new world of electrical vehicles. Our Design Team has taken very seriously the challenge of making our first full electric vehicle attractive. I believe that driving electric cars has to be thrilling, has to be fun. We have to make customers fall in love with the idea of the electric car”
Alejandro Mesonero-Romanos, Director of Design at SEAT.
The SEAT el-Born concept features improved aerodynamics which play an enormous role along the side of the vehicle, with an air curtain incorporated into the design, the vehicle is an elegant yet practical answer to the conundrum of balancing performance with aesthetic appeal. With 20” wheels, the need to maximise performance was crucial. The turbine design creates a positive flow of air that not only improves aerodynamics but also ventilates the brakes to maintain dynamism. The wheels provide the perfect balance between aerodynamics, heat evacuation and lightness. At the rear of the vehicle a double layer spoiler, further contributes to the aerodynamic performance of the SEAT el-Born, making sure that air flow remains smooth and turbulence is minimised, whilst still providing an awareness of the vehicle’s dynamic and performance virtues.
The sculpted cabin gives a feeling of lightness and floatability, but also technological advancement, with the integration of the digital cockpit, a 10” infotainment and connectivity screen perched in the centre of the dashboard. The concept also features increased internal proportions. The space is also used to maximise practicality and functionality, some of which includes greater storage space; the ability to stow a bag between the two front seats is a simple and effective example of this maximised capacity.
Powered to perform with technology that delivers
In addition to the performance elements mentioned above, the concept vehicle also integrates an advanced thermal management system to maximise vehicle range in the most extreme of environmental conditions. The vehicle’s heat pump can reduce the electrical heating consumption, saving up to 60km in autonomy – useful in countries where temperatures can drop and occupants need to use climate control systems.
As our roads become increasingly congested, new vehicles need to take some of the strain from the occupants. The SEAT el-Born does just this, integrating the latest developments in autonomous functionality and connectivity to relieve some of the pressure of modern life. The SEAT el-Born benefits from autonomous level two systems, giving partial automation to the vehicle so it can control steering, acceleration and deceleration events. Add to this amongst other Intelligent Park Assist and the SEAT el-Born is a concept car that encapsulates the future of driving.