There are people in Europe who would like to see them banned in urban centres; in America their users claim the right to drive around in them with no concern for fuel consumption; in Japan they keep producing more and more sophisticated models. Sport Utility Vehicles are indeed a controversial topic, and now Italdesign Giugiaro proposes a new approach with Nessie, a hydrogen-powered SUV concept created for the Mitsubishi brand.
An idea from Fabrizio Giugiaro, a well-known fan of this type of vehicle and frequent visitor to Japan and the USA in his role as Director of the Italdesign Style Centre.
An SUV-coupé, the Nessie breaks new ground in research into this type of vehicle. While by no means large – a mere 4.60 m in length and 1.95 m wide – the visual impact is extremely powerful, thanks to its modulated surfaces and 23″ wheels. And in fact it was this concept car’s two pronounced side-bulges that suggested the name Nessie, the legendary Loch Ness monster usually depicted with two humps emerging from the water. Robust wheelarches are also a distinctive feature on the Mitsubishi Pajero, both the standard and Evolution rally version. In fact, the latter is what inspired Nessie’s radiator grille design and sharply angled front wheelarch profile.
The interior remains only a virtual reality as Nessie made its debut in Geneva as a pure styling exercise. But the Italdesign Style Centre has already designed every last detail, including a monocoque chassis that would be equipped with 4×4 mechanicals and a Mitsubishi V8 hydrogen-powered engine, a conversion made in partnership with the Linde Group.
The article continues in Auto & Design no. 151