October 9, 2008 Teaser pics of the Citroën Hypnos first surfaced last month and more details have now been revealed to coincide with the unveiling of the outlandish crossover concept at the 2008 Paris Motor Show. Pitched as a hybrid in terms of both technology and styling, the dynamically proportioned Hypnos attempts to marry the elegance of an executive saloon with the volumes of a cross-over while at the same time showcasing the company's HYmotion4 technology - a diesel hybrid drivetrain featuring a rear axle-mounted electric motor which optimizes dynamic performance and traction while keeping fuel consumption down to 4.5 l/100 km (60+mpg) and emissions at 120 g/km of CO2).
The 4.90 m long, 2.17 m wide and 1.58 m high Hypnos is distinguished by 22-inch wheels and pronounced arches that provide a high-stance emphasized by the raised waistline, heavily sculpted flanks and a pillarless floating roof. The body is finished in deep radiant grey that varies in intensity according to the light and a concave rear window highlights its design ties to Citroën executive saloons of the past.
Entry to the uniquely styled interior is made easier via rear-hinged doors and a cargo tailgate at the back gives unrestricted access to the boot.
All the colors of the rainbow
Inside, occupants are treated to "color therapy" with the use of bright hues combined with premium brushed aluminum materials such providing a sharp contrast to the exterior finish. The four body-hugging seats are positioned on either side of a central helix in a staggered seat layout that enhances the space available to each passenger. Occupants can also customize elements of their own space such as air conditioning settings using the pivoting blades of the central helix and (we like this bit) the seats consist of prism-shaped components that can be inflated and deflated for upper and lower back massages.
The prism theme continues through the instrument cluster which shows driver information via with diamond-like facets and incorporates a touch screen in the middle of the console. Air vents on either side of the dashboard add to the color therapy experience by using micro-diodes located inside the air-conditioning duct which diffuse halos of soft light in a color that varies with the chosen temperature. This therapy is also tailored to the individual - a ceiling-mounted camera films the driver’s face and regularly measures anthropometric data which is compared with pre-recorded data to gauge the driver’s state of mind and cabin lighting, along with a scented air-freshener fragrance is adjusted accordingly.
Another notable feature is the original onboard clock designed by the artist Michel Serviteur which changes color depending on the light at different times of day rather than using with needles and digital read-outs.
The HYmotion4 hybrid drivetrain architecture also features an "extended" completely silent all-electric mode. and when conditions of low grip are encountered or strong acceleration is required, the car goes into four-wheel drive mode, with the electric motor powering the back wheels and the combustion engine the front wheels.
Citroën says the new HYmotion 4 technology will be used on future vehicles. We're not sure about the clock.