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1994 Suzuki GSX-R Design Inspired This 9T4 Electric Convertible Roadster Concept
Some people write for a living, while others save lives. Some people, on the other hand, design cars. And not just any car, but this time around, one inspired by nothing other than a motorcycle, the 1994 Suzuki GSX-R.

1994 Suzuki GSX-R Design Inspired This 9T4 Electric Convertible Roadster Concept

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Folks, it’s called the Suzuki 9T4. That “9T4” is short for 94, coming from 1994, the Suzuki GSX-R motorcycle model year that inspired the design you see. Sure, this is a car, and the GSX-R is a motorcycle, but the entire design language for this car is full of cues from the cycle. Before I get into this design and what’s so neat about it, I should tell you a bit about the mind behind the design.

George Schelfaut is an electromechanical engineer and transportation designer from Torio, Italy. His resume shows extensive backgrounds in all sorts of software, but most importantly, three master's degrees, one in mechanical engineering, one in mechatronics, and a current master’s degree in transportation design. So be sure to see several ideas expressed in the 9T4.

Now, the hardest thing that you can possibly undertake when trying to express the same design cues of a motorcycle within is car, is just that; the two have seemingly different structures. So, to undertake such a project could be considered madness.

The main discerning feature of the GSX-R that is seen in the car, is the top line of the bike, minus the seat. Another may be the front tire and its ultra-thin wheel well, almost resembling the front wheel of the bike. But another clear trait is the cars fender-like tail at the rear. This feature follows a similar curve to the passenger seat of the motorcycle.

One thing I enjoy about the exterior design is the low and dropped hood, made possible by an electric RWD, and a battery pack hidden in the floor of the car, much like a skateboard chassis. Oh, and the windshield; you’ll find out why shortly.

I mentioned that the 9T4 is an EV, and even though its power and capacity levels are not revealed, what is revealed is the RWD construction. It would seem that Mr. Schelfaut really gave this area some thought, as he does mention that the car is designed in such a way as to be able to be manufactured if it catches anyone’s eye.

As for the battery, the fact that it’s hidden in the floor of the car offers more room for passengers and other mechanical systems. The golden or blue wings that extends from behind the front wheel all the way to the rear are meant to route and hide wiring.

Now, my favorite part. The windshield of the 9T4 is one that grants the car a convertible feature. Let's say this design made it to production. In order to get inside, the roof breaks in two from that roll bar above the passenger and driver, retracts to the front and rear of the car, and entry is made possible. However, one step further into the dynamics of the concept, and the glass itself then becomes a major factor in the aerodynamics of the car; can be left retracted and driven around town.

As small as the car may be, because the designer chose to minimize components to a few motors and a battery pack, the rest of the space is suitable for two guests. Has got to be one hell of a feeling to be riding in something like this.

Sure, it’s a conceptual render and this gentleman’s thesis project, but at this point, I just want to take a ride in it, even if just in my imagination. However, the spirit of a vehicle draws you to touch and feel it, just like the GSX-R does; the 9T4 may have captured more than just the feel of a motorcycle.

Editor's note: This article was not sponsored or supported by a third-party.


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