Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Volkswagen Concept: VolkSeven

Volkswagen Concept: VolkSeven

Based on the immensely popular Colin Chapman original, Volkswagen Concept VolkSeven is a combination volksrod and Colin’s Lotus Seven.

The Lotus Seven was designed by Chapman in 1957 as a small, simple, lightweight two-seat sports car. The Seven has been highly successful with over 2500 cars sold and is considered as the embodiment of the Lotus philosophy. It has been so successful that there have been many companies that have blatantly copied the Seven formula and have produced their own Seven replica even today.

The VolkSeven uses the same principle as Colin Chapman’s original. Use a compact powertrain in an ultralight body and chassis and attack the track. But instead of using a vintage English inline four or a modern twin-cam Japanese four-banger, We Volkswagen enthusiasts ask, Why not use a hopped-up Volkswagen engine that pumps out over 180Hp?

An immediate advantage is that Volkswagen flat four engines are air-cooled and that the lack of a radiator further reduces weight. The original Volkswagen body panels were massaged a bit. The VW hood was used as a template albeit lengthened considerably. The roof was unceremoniously cut and the doors heavily modified. While severe alterations have been done, the remaining parts still retain some VW flavor. In fact, the cockpit is a tad longer and wider than standard Seven fare. It makes the VolkSeven just that more comfortable. Bride race buckets, Simpson’s race harnesses, a rollbar and a single tachometer are all that’s needed in the interior.

VolkSeven’s got horsepower to burn! A 200HP Type 1 Volkswagen engine features full-flow oiling with a Maxi30 pump. The 2332cc four-banger has 94mm Mahle pistons with A Race Pro 84mm crankshaft with Chevy journals and forged 1.4:1 rockers. A lightened flywheel, wedge-port heads with 44×37 valves, and dual 48mm Weber IDA carbs complete the muscular powerplant. All these flow through custom-designed, all aluminum dual free-flow side exhausts.

A custom designed driveshaft connects the flywheel to the flipped VW transmission to achieve the perfect balance. A close ratio Volkswagen Type 1 Pro Street IRS transmission brings the power to the pavement. The beefed-up tranny features a Super Diff, aluminum side covers, welded 3-4 hubs, and hardened keys.

18 inch BRMs with 235/40X18 front and 265/45×18 rear Yokohama Advan AO48, single block with a race-ready compound provide incredible grip. A CB performance dropped spindle brings the front end closer to the ground and the rear torsion bar was adjusted 3 notches to match the front end.