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NSU RO 80 '74

NSU RO 80 '74 (1974)

Reference ch.1699
Make NSU
Model RO 80 '74
Type berline
Construction year 1974
KM 21223
Cilinder displacement 2390
Gears manual
Steering left hand drive

The NSU Ro 80 was a technologically advanced large sedan-type automobile produced by the West German firm of NSU from 1967 until 1977. Most notable was the powertrain; a 113 bhp (84 kW; 115 PS), 995 cc twin-rotor Wankel engine driving the front wheels through a semi-automatic transmission employing an innovative vacuum system. It was voted Car of the Year for 1968 by European motoring writers. The car featured an automatic clutch which was commonly described as a three-speed semi-automatic gearbox: there was no clutch pedal, but instead, on top of the gearknob, an electric switch that operated a vacuum system which disengaged the clutch. The gear lever itself then could be moved through a standard 'H pattern' gate. The styling, by Claus Luthe who was head of design at NSU and later BMW, was considered very modern at the time and still holds up well; the Ro 80 has been part of many gallery exhibits of modern industrial design. The large glass area foreshadowed 1970s designs such as Citroën's. The shape was also slippery, with a drag coefficient of 0.355 (very good for the era). This allowed for a top speed of 112 mph (180 km/h). Indeed, comparisons have been drawn between the design of the Ro80 and the aerodynamic 1982 Audi 100 - ironically built in the same factory some 15 years later. Series production began in October 1967: the last examples came off the production line in April 1977, 37.398 were produced Specifications Bodywork Length: cm (in): 476 (188.2) Width: cm (in): 176 (69.3) Height: cm (in): 141 (55.5) Wheelbase: cm (in): 286 (112.6) Weight: kg (lb): 1210 (2671) Mechanics. Displacement: twin-rotor 2 x 497.5 cc (= 2390 cc,146 ci), front-mounted Gearbox: 3-speed automatic Driven wheels: front-wheel drive Maximum power: 115 hp at 5500 rpm Maximum torque: 162 Nm at 4500 rpm Maximum speed: 176 km/h (109 mph)

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