To date the only Fiat we’ve seen hosting green car technologies is the all-electric 500e, being released in California with an EPA rated miles per gallon equivalent (MPGe) of 108 MPGe. Could the popular Italian automaker perhaps make use of its iconic look as a way to lure in more buyers for green cars? While noting is confirmed from them on possible future offerings, industrial designer Joseph Martinez recently unveiled his own concept idea with a plug-in hybrid drivetrain under the hood.

The Fiat 900 Lussino, with what’s described as a modern approach to style and function by Martinez, could potentially challenge an electric car by surpassing 100 MPG with its hybrid technology. It is looked at as being a small luxury car which would price around $26,000 were it actually a production model and not just design sketches.

The compact design of the Lussino conceptually is well laid out for such a vehicle. It has front cargo access, with a spare tire underneath that overlaid on the car’s electric drive. The Lussino would have more headroom than your typical Fiat, allowing folks like myself to not feel like our head is wedged against the ceiling. The Lithium-ion battery would be stored under the rear seats, sitting right in front of the electric controller, electric motor, gas engine and radiators.

Fiat Lussino (image via Joseph Martinez/Coroflot)
Fiat Lussino (image via Joseph Martinez/Coroflot)

Other design touches seen by Martinez include unique trim material, rear hinged doors and a cabrillo soft top.

The hybrid powertrain consists of a combination of the electric motor and a Fiat 900cc T 1.4 liter, 130 hp 2 cylinder engine. The engine would include a special electro-hydraulic management “MultiAir” system and would be combined with “special fluid dynamics” that is optimized for the best fuel consumption.

Working with the Italian design philosophy in mind, it is envisioned this Fiat vehicle would be able to recharge at special Fiat sponsored “Cafe Charging Stations” that exist around town. The idea here would be you could sit at a cafe, sipping your cappuccino and talking with friends while the Lussino is plugged into a nearby charging station that likely has quick charging capability.

As this is a concept idea from an independent designer, we can’t expect this is something Fiat might actually make. The touches though by which Martinez approaches this through the Fiat way of viewing things suggests a more refined and polished approach to a green car lifestyle that sees EVs as stunning to look at  and also more enjoyable to charge versus plugging in at a random charging point in some underground garage.

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