Diesel-electric hybrids aren't cost-effective for mainstream cars. The price of either hybrid or diesel powertrains makes it hard to justify on a cost-recovery basis for fuel savers, though the environmental payback is obvious. But for the supercar set, money is no object, and so cars like the Morgan LIFEcar 2 are possible.
Powered by a diesel-electric hybrid powertrain--Morgan hasn't revealed the details yet--the LIFEcar 2 promises 1,000 miles on a single tank. With a typical large fuel tank size of 20 gallons, that would equate to roughly 50 mpg average at least. Its predecessor, the first LIFEcar (pictured), featured far less practical hydrogen fuel cell propulsion and a 250-mile range.
The LIFEcar 2's 50-plus mpg is not too shabby for any vehicle, let alone a car that packs quirky retro style and entertaining driving dynamics into the bargain. And for those thinking, "Yeah, nice concept. We'll see if it ever reaches production," remember that Morgan is known for building its prototypes into limited-run models in near-unchanged form for actual real-world buyers, few as they may be. Until the Eva GT, most of Morgan's cars were still wood-framed, after all.
There's no official time-frame on the car's release yet, and no word on where or when the concept will be unveiled, though we'd expect the 2011 Geneva Motor Show to be a likely candidate.