DaimlerChrysler Concept Vehicle Introduces 'Passenger Priority Design'
7 January 2000California Dreamin'? Wake Up and Experience Java; DaimlerChrysler Concept Vehicle Introduces 'Passenger Priority Design'
LOS ANGELES, Jan. 6 -- Today, at its North American debut, the Chrysler Java introduced a fresh concept to the compact vehicle segment -- "Passenger Priority Design." Taking cues from DaimlerChrysler's signature minivan and sport-utility vehicle design, the Chrysler Java show car features "Passenger Priority Design" with tall architecture and panoramic seating for driver and passengers, allowing higher hip-points to give them more of an in-control feeling compared to other small cars. In fact, the rear passengers are sitting higher than the front passengers, creating an automotive form of theater seating. "The Java was voted 'Most Significant' by Autoweek magazine when it first debuted at the International Auto Show in Frankfurt," said Tom Gale, Executive Vice President Product Development and Design. "While we designed the vehicle with European requirements in mind, we feel that the time is right for a substantial, sophisticated small car in this market. With its creative and diverse environment, as well as its strong international representation, the Greater Los Angeles Auto Show seemed the perfect location to introduce the Java in North America." With its clean, refined and elegant "one box" profile, Java's "Passenger Priority Design" makes maximum use of its exterior dimensions. Java's interior package is actually comparable to that of the Chrysler PT Cruiser, yet Java is 20 inches shorter. Java's unique Panoramic Seating with high hip-points enhances visibility, comfort, space and ease of entry and exit for both driver and passengers. Additional interior space was achieved by moving the windshield forward and keeping the car's front and rear overhang to a minimum. Java's interior is practical and flexible, yet decidedly upscale and comfortable. The design of the Chrysler Java is almost architectural in its inspiration, rather than automotive. Its proportions are complemented by dynamic contemporary character lines. A single low egg crate grille conveys Chrysler's sophisticated lineage and performance character. Java's chiseled compact body lends substance and visual weight, suggesting a low center of gravity and stable stance with a long wheelbase (98.3 inches) and wide track (59.1 inches front, 58.7 inches rear). Tall upright tail lamps provide a unique rear signature and maximum visibility in congested traffic. Java's athletic exterior design is rounded off by prominent, detailed head lamps, taut body side surfacing and large, mechanically inspired 18-inch wheels. The Los Angeles show car features a new "Midnight Green" metallic finish. "As small as it is, Java looks substantial, grown-up and sophisticated," said Gale. Java's exterior design cues are carried on in the interior. Inspired by modern furniture showrooms, Java's spacious interior sports a lighter palette in colors and materials. Featured are brushed aluminum, chrome, cream and light green leather and curly maple wood. Enhancing Java's performance character, the gauge cluster has a unique three-dimensional execution. "In giving Java's interior a tailored look and feel with great detailing, we reinforced the upscale Chrysler lineage," said Freeman Thomas, Vice President Advanced Product Design Strategy. "The Chrysler Java shows that a compact car can have an attractive and rich interior. Added to that, the panoramic seating and light colors give the interior a bigger feel." Java has front bucket seats and a 60/40 split-fold rear bench. Kevin Verduyn, Senior Design Manager and Micheal Castiglione, Design Manager at DaimlerChrysler's Pacifica Advanced Product Design Center in Carlsbad, Calif., were responsible for the Java project under Tom Tremont, Pacifica's Design Director. Says Verduyn: "Java is the logical follow-up to previous design studies such as the Pronto and CCV. We were looking for the most efficient yet stylish way to move four people around in a sub-four-meter car." "The design was completed just before the DaimlerChrysler merger was announced. In the fabrication phase, in which we actually start the construction of the show car, we were able to include our merger partner and achieve substantial synergies by using their knowledge and resources," Verduyn added. "Since this is a design study, we had the freedom to use European- based DaimlerChrysler components such as the powertrain, transaxle and suspension on the Java." The Chrysler Java is powered by a 1.4-liter four-cylinder engine coupled to a five-speed manual transaxle allowing the vehicle to sprint to 60 mph in 12.6 seconds. Java's top speed is estimated at 105 mph while its fuel economy ranges from 24 mpg in city traffic to 40 mpg on the highway. The front suspension incorporates wishbones, MacPherson struts, double-tube shock absorbers and a torsion-bar stabilizer. Trailing links with coil springs, single-tube shock absorbers and a torsion-bar stabilizer make up the rear suspension. Java rolls on P185/50R18 tires on 18"x6" wheels. Java is a trademark or registered trademark of Sun Microsystems, Inc. in the U.S. and other countries. Sun Microsystems, Inc. did not participate in the design or development of this DaimlerChrysler vehicle, nor does the vehicle contain any software or hardware manufactured or sold by Sun Microsystems.