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Otnas Automotive - 2nd Generation Otnas Kucing


#1

Hello everyone! Welcome to the Otnas Automotive forum page. Here, I will explain and tell the stories about whats behind Otnas Automotive company and its cars.

History

Otnas Automotive was established in 1935 in Dutch East Indies (Indonesia as per 1945) as Nederlands-Indische Auto-Carrosserie (NAIC). NAIC is known for building busses and custom automobiles for customers around the world and is reputable for their splendid and precise work. 35 years after its establishment, NAIC changed their name into Otnas and announced that they will stop making bus bodies and custom coach-built bodies for other companies.

Models

70s

1st Generation Kucing Hatchback

1st Generation Kucing Normandy

2nd Generation Kucing

Innovations

70s

1974 - Anti Lock Brakes


Car Company Directory
#2

Wait a minute, how do you even make bus bodies?


#3

workshop mods, somehow


#5

Otnas Kucing - The First Generation

Background

It was 1971, a small hatchback from the Indonesian company was finally revealed to the public. It was called the 'Kucing' - a word for cat in Indonesian language which describes its small physical dimension yet zippy driving characteristics. It was made as an all-in-one car — a car that is dependable enough for daily use, sporty enough for spirited driving, capable to do light off-roading, and as comfortable as premium limousines.

Although some people tend to have two kind of cars; the fancy smanchy one for the weekends and special occasions, and a dependable daily car. What if we can deliver the best of both worlds in just one? Especially in the metro… You can’t drive a Lamborghini Miura everyday but you can’t also drive an S-Class easily in the tight packed traffic! It’s a hyperbole to say that our little car is as sporty as a Miura and as posh as an S-Class but what we’re talking about here is the goal of making the car is to deliver sportiness and comfort. Oh there’s a clue of its feature! A rigid monocoque chassis and a four wheel independent suspension setup!

Chassis & Suspension

The monocoque chassis is made out of corrosion resistant steel to make sure it lasts long. The rigid construction also ensures that there will be less chassis flex which improves the suspension performance. At the front, the Kucing has double wishbone suspension — used by F1 cars of that day. At the back it has semi trailing arm suspension — utilized to maximize cabin and cargo volume whilst having independent suspension. In skidpads, the Kucing can pull 0.88 g’s !

It also has four wheel disc brakes — 2 pistons at the front on each sides and 1 piston at the back on each sides which shortens its braking distance from 100km/h to 0 in just 40 metres in around 3 seconds!

Bodywork

The Otnas Kucing is available in five door and three door configuration (coming soon!). The Kucing has plastic clads that cover its wheel wells and underside of its front end to protect and enhance aerodynamics. The front end is rather rounded than boxier in order to improve aerodynamics. The Kucing achieves 0.343Cd — a good figure for its era — which allows the Kucing to move swiftly from the air resistance. Its styling although is inspired by sports cars such as the DeTomaso Mangusta, Ferrari 365 GTB/4. The upper part of the sides are also fitted with a plastic trim that stretches from the rear end to the front end — mimics the trimming found on luxury cars. The side indicators are also fitted at the fender and rear end that also functions as a parking light that tells where the car is parked in the dark.

Powertrain

The Kucing is powered by a 1.5 litre SOHC 12V Inline 4 motor that is codenamed ‘A’ since its Otnas’ first motor. Although it is also known to have another name; ‘Purring Cat’. Unlike many cars of its day, the Kucing had a mechanical fuel injection that is the Bosch D-Jetronic The D-Jetronic is considered as a fancy system that they are used in Jaguar V12s until 1989 and Mercedes V8s. Although later in 1974, the fuel system is changed into K-Jetronic - a newer system used by Mercedes cars and Porsches.

The ‘Purring Cat’ motor achieves 84hp and 120Nm of torque with its power channeled by a 5-speed manual transmission — allowing the small Kucing 1.5-Classic to accelerate from 0-100km/h in 10 seconds and reach a staggering 186km/h top speed as claimed. Although test drives have revealed that the Kucing’s 0-100km/h time is actually 9.5 seconds and has a 200km/h top speed. To make it more impressive, the fuel consumption of it is rated at 9.5l/100km — translates to 29.7 MPG.

Safety

7 years of research before NAIC changed its name as Otnas has resulted to Otnas Kucing’s refinements. Many of cars in the 70s are much larger than it — and how will the 980kg hatchback would survive in a head on crash against a 1.7 tonne car?

The Kucing has collapsible steering column, a dash that remained intact in crashes, safety glass, safety cage, crumple zones, pre-tensioning three point seatbelts at four points, headrests, and a fuel pump switch that turns it off in an event of a crash.


65km/h crash

65km/h vs 65km/h against a 1.7 tonne car

70km/h rollover

70km/h T-Bone

(Prototype pics. Might differ from the final product!)

The Kucing also has reinforced pillars to keep passengers safe in an event of a rollover crash.

Interior

Inside, the Otnas Kucing has a three spoke sporty steering wheel that is tilted to the left. Why? Because some people are born with their left hand longer than their right hand — which makes them experience fatigue in their right hand since they need to stretch it a bit further. The interior is upholstered in smooth Indigo colored fabric.

Otnas also researched on how the seats are supposed to be built. They had a research in human anatomy, worked with a team of doctors, to build orthopedic seats that are super friendly in long trips — because it’s not rare to meet people who do long trips! These seats are also known to hold the bodies of the passengers in an event of high speed cornering.

Last but not least, the Otnas Kucing has a Blaupunkt FM Radio with two high quality speakers. Although Otnas is known to have audiophiles working for them thus resulting the Kucing offered with with a Becker Europa AM/FM Radio and also Becker Mexico AM/FM Radio with a cassette player! They even offered four speaker option — in a 70s hatch!

Last but not least...

The Otnas Kucing possess impressive features which makes it such a car back then. Although it is known that the Kucing was offered in quite low price; $16900 in todays money for the base model. Its fuel consumption and performance is also astonishing, often compared with premium sport sedans. Although the world’s favourite Otnas Kucing story doesn’t end here for this generation — there’s a lot more to come!

Sport model coverage coming soon!

BeamNG.drive export:
https://www.beamng.com/resources/1971-otnas-kucing-the-little-car-that-could.15911/


#6

Safer Braking

In the early 50s, Dunlop’s anti-brake lock system called Maxaret was the first system to be widely used in the aviation industry. It is able to shorten brake distances by 30% and eliminate flat spots and tire bursts due to skids whilst braking and later widely used in 70s in automotive when the electronics matured. In 1971, the Chrysler Imperial had four wheel anti-lock brakes that was supplied by Bendix and not much later Toyota and Nissan followed with their Toyota Crown and Nissan President.

At that time, Otnas only had one car; the Kucing. Although so, they wanted to introduce the system to the public to improve safety thus in 1974, Otnas introduced anti-lock brakes in the Otnas Kucing. It is proven that the brake distance of the ABS-equipped car is shorter; from 40.4 metres to 37.3 metres with ABS.


#7

This first model from Otnas shows plenty of potential - as evidenced by the sporty version that’s coming soon. Why not make a 3-door version as well?


#8

Good question, @abg7 !

It exists.

The following 3-door Otnas Kucing is called 'Kucing Normandy'. It was suggested to exist by a Japanese car culture page in Instagram that is called Garage Style Normandy.

Differences?


The clear difference between the previously posted Otnas Kucing is the Kucing Normandy is this one has 3 doors instead of 5 doors. Thanks to at least two less panel gaps, the drag coefficient has been decreased to 0.341 Cd, making it able to reach higher speeds faster.

Its weighs at 946kg - 3.37% lighter than the 5-door model making its suspension act firmer for the 3-door model thus allowing it to pull 0.90 g’s at the skidpad with the same suspension settings, wheels, and tires.


BeamNG.drive port?

Of course it exists! It’s in the works now although it’ll come much sooner since there’s a lot that is shared with the 5-door BeamNG port! Coming soon!


#9

The 2nd Generation Kucing - A Step Further Taken


Background

In 1985, there are 4 million units of first-generation Otnas Kucing have been produced making Otnas expand their market into the worldwide market. The 2nd generation Otnas Kucing development started in 1977 and the Citroën CX largely inspires the smooth-edged body work of this generation to reduce its drag coefficient. to 0.28 Cd Otnas also started developing test mules for the four-link multi link suspension system since 1973 - inspired by the Mercedes C111 and the second generation Kucing is originally finished in 1982. Although before the product was frozen, the Mercedes 190 Series was launched with the similar multi-link axle suspension and the board of directors decided to improve the suspension even further thus delaying its launch until mid 1985.

Chassis & Suspension

The chassis of the second generation Otnas Kucing is 15% more rigid than the one found on the previous model. As explained before, the second generation Otnas Kucing has four-link multi-link suspension (read: glorified double-wishbone suspension) and the reason why this generation of Kucing has that kind of suspension is to enhance its handling and comfort at the same time. The second generation Kucing could pull 0.91 g’s in the 20m skidpad and 0.90 g’s in the 200m skidpad.

Like the previous model, this one also has four wheel disc brakes which shortens its braking distance to 38 metres.

The second generation Kucing is clearly larger than its predecessor but thanks to aluminium panels at some parts of it, the weight is toned down to 1075kg that is nearly as light as the first generation Esprit-I model.

Powertrain

It’s powered by the new ‘Purring Cat - II’ engine. It has dual overhead cams (DOHC) with 4 valves per cylinder - totalling 16 valves which makes the new engine breathes better. The shown model is the 1.8-Classic that has the 1.8 litre version which produces 129hp - 180Nm of torque. The power is channeled to the front wheels either through a 5-speed manual gearbox or a four-speed automatic gearbox and either with open differential or viscous limited-slip differential (optional) to the front wheels, allowing to propel from 0 to 100km/h in just 8.7 seconds - very quick for its time. Its top speed is also staggeringly high for an economy hatch 242km/h.

Although despite the sportiness it has, the Kucing is still an economy car. Thanks to its electronically controlled multi-port fuel injection that allows the car to be so efficient that its fuel consumption is rated at 7.7l/100km (36.7 MPG) for the 5-speed manual model.

Interior

The second generation Kucing has a modernized version dashboard. It has a four-spoke airbag steering wheel that is made out of polyurethane that could be wrapped in either leather or the newly founded material; Alcantara. Passenger side airbag was optional in the early models of this generation.

The seats are orthopedic that are basically an updated version of the previous ones making it deliver better comfort to the passengers. Otnas also started naming the seat; Otnas Ortho-II and selling the seats to the public with ‘Otnas’ branding. It was also available with speakers on the headrests just like Recaros!

Although the seats that are available in the Otnas Kucing were already orthopedic, the market for Recaro-equipped Otnas Kucing exists and it’s not so small so Otnas started offering the second generation Kucing with either Recaro LX and the Recaro Type-C seats too.

As standard the second-generation Otnas Kucing had Alpine cassette player with high quality four-speaker audio system but they also offer a 6-speaker system with Nakamichi cassette player if you want to enjoy listening to Chet Baker even better and if you still think that’s not enough, you can opt for the speaker-headrest seats.

Last but not least

This generation of Otnas Kucing ended was praised to deliver the utmost comfort and sportiness. It also proves that Otnas is not a discount brand that some people thought when the first generation came to the market not because it came cheap but because it came from a third world country; Indonesia. This generation also has the most sport models, from Esprit Junior, Esprit Turbo, Esprit W4 that has two versions, Esprit Sphinx, Esprit Sphinx-RS, and the Esprit Sphinx-RA450 that was produced to homologate for racing in the Group A.

BeamNG Ports!

Kucing 1.8-Classic: Coming Soon!

Kucing Esprit Turbo: Coming Soon!

Kucing Esprit W4, Sphinx, Sphinx-RS: CLICK HERE!


#10

Since not all people likes to read and prefer listening. I have made a video explaining the first gen Otnas Kucing! Have a watch!