E-Flex Opel May Preview Upcoming Saturn Concept

Automotive News reports that General Motors' European Opel brand will unveil a new diesel-powered electric concept vehicle at the Frankfurt Auto Show next week. The magazine also says the futuristic Opel Vectra will also provide a preview of a similar diesel-powered Saturn Aura that's expected to be showcased at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit this winter.

Using the revolutionary GM "E-Flex" propulsion system that made its debut in the Chevrolet Volt this past January, both the Opel and Saturn concepts will run primarily on electric power. A gasoline powerplant – in this case sources say a bio-diesel engine – will charge the vehicle's on-board lithium-ion batteries that supply electricity to an electric motor.

The diesel-powered system is expected to be available on the next-generation, front-wheel-drive versions of both cars "in [the] 2009 or 2010 calendar year," a source told the trade publication.

Source: Automotive News

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New Saturn Kappa Roadster Concept to Debut in January

Canada's GlobeandMail.com reports that Saturn will unveil an updated version of its Kappa-based Saturn Curve concept at the Detroit International Auto Show this coming January. The new concept car will lose its top, a la the Pontiac Solstice, but will sport Saturn's new signature European look that GM executives have been hinting at for the past few months.