One of my favourite things is concept cars. They’re ridiculous with their futuristic design and crazy features (which sound undoable) but it’s because of concept cars pushing boundaries that we move forward in the auto industry and redefine what cars are and what they can be capable of.
One concept car that I still find myself thinking about often, is the Lamborghini Terzo Millennio.
Lamborghini first presented the concept in November of 2017 as a result of collaboration between Automobili Lamborghini and two laboratories of the Massachusetts Institution of Technology (MIT).
With the Terzo Millennio, Lamborghini isn’t doing the conventional approach to make this electric supercar. They’re moving away from batteries and instead they’re exploring the feasibility of supercapacitors to equip the Terzo with.
Quick Science Compare: If I remember my high school science right and understood wikipedia correctly, batteries have a higher energy density (they store more energy per unit mass) but supercapacitors have a higher power density (they can release energy more quickly). What this means is that supercapacitors are suitable for storing and releasing large chunks of power quickly but individually, supercapacitors have low voltages (which means you need more of them to be able to store the energy, I think).
To accommodate this new way of energy storage, materials used in the Terzo Millennio would have to change, too. The carbon fibre used in the body of the car will have to be used as a storage system.
But, the coolest thing about this concept car is its “self-healing” powers. It continuously conducts health monitoring on its carbon fibre structure to detect cracks. If it does detect anything, it’ll start a self-repairing process via micro-channels filled with healing chemistries (don’t know what it is. Even they don’t what it is yet).
The Terzo will be four-wheel drive and each wheel will get its own integrated electric motors (it’s the orange glowing electric motors). The cool thing about this is that by moving the motors into the wheels, designers and aerodynamicists can get a lot more creative. Also, it looks fantastic!
Inside the car there will be a virtual cockpit. Its Piloted Driving simulation will let you to be taken around a track by a virtual expert before you take over to experience the car and track while following the virtual ghost car.
Lamborghini’s chief technical officer, Maurizio Reggiani, thinks of the Terzon Millennio more of a “thinking box” than an actual production car (too bad). And it’s this sort of thinking that pushes boundaries and revolutionises the auto industry.
And I love this car so much that still, after four years, I catch myself thinking about the Terzo Millennio from time to time.