Teased last month, the Toyota FT-Bh Concept has been revealed at Geneva, and what a creature it is! Expressing the “Under Priority” design language and “Keen Look” styling of Toyota’s next generation vehicles, the FT-Bh is an ultra-light, sub-800 kg, full hybrid B-segment family car.

At 3,985 mm long, 1,695 mm wide and 1,400 mm high, with a long wheelbase of 2,570 mm, the FT-Bh is close to the size of today’s Prius C, although the shape is closer to the full sized Prius. It’s very aerodynamic at just 0.235 Cd.

The concept is upheld by five key pillars targeting optimum fuel efficiency and minimised emissions: Mass Reduction; Driving Resistance in the form of aerodynamics and tyre rolling resistance; Powertrain Efficiency; Thermal Energy Management and Electricity Saving. The FT-Bh is projected to deliver average fuel consumption of just 2.1 litres per 100 km and CO2 emissions of only 49 g/km – the latter is less than half of what the 1.0L Yaris emits.

The best thing is that it will be affordable. Toyota says that the techniques and thought processes demonstrated here do not involve the use of exotic, expensive materials or complex procedures, but only those already commonplace to the automotive industry.

Made from of high-tensile steel, aluminium and magnesium, the FT-Bh concept targets an overall mass reduction of 25% over the 1,030 kg 1.0L Yaris, bringing total weight down to just 786 kg. Because the hybrid powertrain is marginally heavier than a conventional 1.0 litre engine, the overall mass reduction required of the bodyshell, interior trim, chassis and electronics is actually 340 kg, or 33% of the Yaris’ weight, with no detriment to safety.

On show here is a slew of next gen aerodynamic techniques. Air curtain intakes to the frontal extremities, air-stream alloys, airflow-disrupting door mirrors replaced by cameras, handle-less electric latch doors, a pagoda roof with a dropped rear section, and a sharply cut rear end section incorporating an air outlet slit and an underfloor spoiler all contribute to the slippery shape.

Elsewhere, the full hybrid drive system is almost 90 kg lighter than the Prius’ HSD system. The petrol engine is 38 kg lighter than that of the Prius, while the lithium-ion battery pack weighs almost half that of the Prius’ Ni-Mh battery.

The lightweight, two-cylinder, 1.0 litre Atkinson cycle engine has combustion efficiency maximised via a long stroke, high 13:1 compression ratio, next gen D4 injection system with a high fuel-injection pressure, a larger Exhaust Gas Recirculation (EGR) system with cooling and a high tumble port design.

Ultra-low friction measures have been applied to the axis receivers, timing belt and electric water pump, while thermal energy management involves the use of a low heat capacity, reduced cold friction and the careful control of heat flow to regulate engine oil/water temperatures.

The detailed info and target figures hint at a serious ongoing study by Toyota, rather than a design concept with no certain future. It will be toned down, for sure, but expect many of the features here to surface in the next generation of Toyota hybrids.