EVLN: $1.7M Suiza’s Art Deco Carmen hyperEV

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EVLN: $1.7M Suiza’s Art Deco Carmen hyperEV

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Hispano Suiza’s New Electric Carmen Pays Homage to the Marque’s Art Deco
May 8, 2019  Robert Ross

[images  / Hispano Suiza
 hyperlux grand tourer

Hispano Suiza’s Carmen

Nothing like a $1.7 million dose of nostalgia.

The Spanish automaker Hispano-Suiza (Spanish-Swiss), founded in 1904 by
financier Damia?n Mateu and engineer Marc Birkigt, once rivaled Rolls-Royce
as manufacturer of the world’s most advanced and opulent automobiles, but,
by the end of the 1930s, it was out of the running. Fast-forward more than
80 years to the 2019 Geneva International Motor Show—the venue for the debut
of the Carmen, a 1,005 hp electric coupe from the now hyphenless Hispano
Suiza, designed in the tradition of Hispanos from the past. Like its
forebears, the Carmen is not just remarkably powerful, impeccably crafted
and exceedingly rare, it is also beautiful and stylistically daring.
Noteworthy are the tapering backlight, fulsome rear fenders and dramatically
scalloped tail recalling one Art Deco-era Hispano-Suiza that inspired its

More than merely appropriating the once-famous name, reborn Hispano Suiza is
headed by Miguel Suque? Mateu, the great-grandson of the original company’s
cofounder. “Launching the Carmen realizes a lifetime’s ambition for me and
my family,” says Mateu. “From the early 1900s to the 1940s, Hispano-Suiza
cars were famed for their exquisite luxury and meticulous attention to
technical and engineering details. We created the Carmen ‘hyperlux grand
tourer’ using this same DNA.”

Designed and built in Barcelona, the two-seat hypercar combines a fully
electric power train using two 375 kW motors, one at each rear wheel and was
developed with QEV Technologies, a company with extensive experience in FIA
Formula E series competition. The Carmen’s carbon-fiber monocoque is wrapped
in the same material as the body, which features scissor doors and a drag
coefficient lower than the benchmark Porsche 918 Spyder. And while carbon
fiber underlies the architecture of the interior, the surface employs plush
leather, turned aluminum and rich wood, as did all the past Hispanos.

“The Carmen’s highly emotive and striking design is strongly influenced by
the distinctive styling of the 1938 Hispano-Suiza Dubonnet Xenia,” says the
brand’s design director Francesc Arenas, referencing one of the original
marque’s most famous examples. The Xenia was constructed by French
coachbuilder Jacques Saoutchik and penned by Jean Andreau, who designed
aircraft as well as automobiles. Accordingly, the car resembles an aircraft
fuselage and features the first-ever curved-glass windshield, which combines
with the curved side windows to evoke a cockpit canopy. The sleek,
torpedo-shaped body has sliding doors and a removable metal roof.

The car was commissioned by Andre? Dubonnet (son of the founder of the
eponymous aperitif company), who named it in honor of his deceased wife. In
that same tradition, the new Hispano Suiza is named for—and inspired by—the
unique style and elegance of Suque? Mateu’s mother, Carmen. The company
plans to produce 19 examples between late 2019 and 2021, each with a
projected price of approximately $1.7 million.
[© robbreport.com]

EVLN: Suiza's Carmen hyperEV> 1938 Dubonnet Xenia inspiration, a hyperlux
grand tourer
 ... Hispano Suiza’s new electric hypercar might* look like this ...
Feb 08 2019

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