Toyota - X-Runner
TOYOTA AUSTRALIA DESIGN AND ENGINEERING CAPACITY CREATES X-RUNNER LSV FOR MELBOURNE MOTOR SHOW
Toyota Australias design development and engineering team has served notice that it can create passionate and exciting motor vehicles with the debut of the X-Runner lifestyle sports vehicle (LSV) at the Melbourne Motor Show.
The breakthrough Avalon-based all-wheel-drive X-Runner was developed and built by a team from Toyota Australias Technical Centre in Melbourne as a project designed to showcase the expertise of Toyotas local engineering capability.
Furthermore, it is an expression of Toyotas innovation that is bred from its dominance of the dynamic and increasingly competitive SUV market.
Associate Director and Divisional General Manager Product Engineering Max Gillard said that the X-Runner demonstrated what could be done with the vision and commitment of a group of young, highly skilled, motivated designers and engineers who are given a clean sheet of paper and asked to create an exciting vehicle meeting the aspirations of Australian customers.
"This project was a first for Toyota Australia. Our primary goal was to generate enthusiasm and show that by harnessing the dreams and initiative of our people and by tapping into the best of Toyotas global technology and resources, we could design and build a unique vehicle that reflects the Australian lifestyle.
The Toyota Modular Platform used on Avalon was accepted as the starting point for X-Runner. From there, the team reviewed the market, established a theoretical target customer and developed a vehicle concept and specification to suit. We avoided a me too approach by deciding to create a new path with this concept car and the X-Runner is the result."
The original idea for the development of the X-Runner came from Toyota Australia President Ken Asano early in 2002. Following from the successful development of the new Camry, Mr Asano wanted to present a unique challenge to the local design and engineering team.
The Camry and Avalon vehicles that we produce in Australia are global models that we expertly modify for market conditions in Australia and our export destinations, Mr Gillard said.
Of course, this is our core responsibility, but it is important for our future that we undertake projects to enhance our capabilities and our ability to be innovative.
The X-Runner project was conceived as a project that would do just that, and allow the team to become completely immersed in new ideas, challenges and innovations which would come to life in the form of a concept vehicle.
Team members used the project as an opportunity to gain exposure and experience in areas that were not normally part of their day-to-day activities.
This approach ensured the project remained fresh and allowed ideas to be considered that might not normally be part of a development brief. So many new frontiers were crossed that it has proved to be an invaluable learning and growth experience for everyone involved.
It was the sense of pioneering spirit that resulted in the team developing the concept for X-Runner.of this Lifestyle Sports Vehicle (LSV). They took the idea even further by integrating the vehicle into a lifestyle theme. We decided on the concept of adventure partnerships and selected a mountain bike theme, Mr Gillard said.
The support of other Toyota Australia operations was critical to the success of the project, in particular, the Altona manufacturing plant and Toyota Conversions and Accessories team known as T-CAM.
A further objective was to involve our suppliers so they and their employees could share in these breakthrough opportunities. As a result, 11 of our suppliers joined this project as technical partners, which provided the benefit of strengthening already strong relationships. Overall, it was a great example of cooperation.
These suppliers included: Australian Arrow (GPS); Autofab (fabrics) Bosch (parking sensors); Dunlop (tyres); Du Pont and PPG (paint); Fujitsu (audio system); Hella (lights); LNA (badges); PBR (brakes); and Schefenaker (interior and exterior mirrors).
It has also shown many people inside Toyota that the company possesses and encourages outstanding people who relish the opportunity to extend themselves and create something special from their own vision.
X-Runner has been designed as a sophisticated, environmentally sensitive lifestyle all-wheel drive vehicle. The vehicle on display at the Melbourne Motor Show carries two mountain bikes and a GPS tracking system with a 17-inch plasma screen to monitor the position of the cyclists.
The Toyota Modular Platform used for the X-Runner project is currently used at Toyotas Altona manufacturing plant to produce Avalon and Camry and many off the shelf Avalon components were incorporated into the vehicle. The wheelbase has been extended by 150mm and the vehicle converted to all-wheel drive.
X-Runner uses the proven Toyota 3.0 litre all-alloy VVT-i engine equipped with Toyotas own supercharger which is coupled to an existing 4x4 drivetrain.
Disclaimer: The X-Runner vehicle was designed and produced by expert Toyota engineers and suppliers as a concept vehicle only. Toyota does not recommend any modification to its vehicles which results in them departing from manufacturer's specifications.
A supercharged three-litre VVT-i equipped all-alloy Quad Cam V6 engine powers Toyota Australias first in-house concept vehicle the most powerful engine ever fitted to an Australian built Toyota.
Its supercharger, sourced from Toyota performance equipment specialist TRD USA, is belt driven by the V6 engines crankshaft.
The breakthrough all-wheel-drive X-Runner Llifestyle Ssports Vvehicle(LSV) was conceived and developed at Toyota Australias Technical Centre in Melbourne.
Toyota maintained the X-Runners Avalon character by using the Avalon front cabin, bonnet and headlamps. The projects scope was extended through the opportunity to access Toyotas global technology and resources.
Toyota Australia also locally re-engineered X-Runners platform to extend the wheelbase by 150mm and accept all-wheel-drive underpinnings.
The X-Runner maintains the underbody of the Avalon TMP (Toyota Modular Platform) to the rear wheel arch.
The extra 150mm wheelbase added to the modular platform at the front of the rear wheel arch maximises X-Runners rear deck length and improves vehicle weight distribution.
The vehicles potent V6 engine is matched to a four-speed electronically controlled automatic transmission which delivers power to all four wheels through a viscous coupled centre differential.
The front suspension is independent strut type.
The torsion beam rear suspension is based on a 4WD Toyota Tarago - with specially wound coil springs and new damper units. It completes the modified rear of the platform.
The rear bodywork was specially fabricated for the project.
It is fixed to a space frame structure fabricated by engineers at the Toyota Technical Centre.
A high-performance PBR brake package including four channel, four sensor ABS takes advantage of X-Runners specially designed six-spoke 19-inch alloy wheels.
Laser-cut 245/45 R19 Dunlop tyres feature a tread pattern which reproduces the three ellipse Toyota logo.
Specially commissioned components and finishes include the alloy wheels, brake package, tyres, exterior mirrors, GPS, interior fabrics and paint treatment.
Engine: Quad Cam 3.0-litre all-alloy V6, with VVT-i and supercharger
Transmission: Four-speed electronically controlled automatic
Driveline: Four-wheel drive with viscous-coupled centre differential
Steering: Power-assisted rack and pinion with variable gear ratio system
Front brakes: 355mm diameter ventilated discs with twin-piston calipers
Rear brakes: 343mm diameter ventilated discs with single-piston calipers
ABS: Four-channel, four-sensor
Front suspension: Independent struts with coil springs, hydraulic dampers and ball-joint linked stabiliser bar
Rear suspension: Torsion beam axle with coil springs, hydraulic dampers and internal stabiliser bar
Wheels: 19 x 8 aluminium alloy
Tyres: Dunlop 245/45 R 19
Overall Length: 4905mm
Overall Width: 1910mm
Overall Height: 1520mm
Front track: 1610mm
Rear track: 1660mm
Kerb weight: 1710Kg
Seating capacity: 2