Possible Dacia model features a small rear axle electric motor for an all-wheel drive setup. The hybrid drivetrain will consist of a 1.2 liter gasoline engine with 75 hp (55 kW) and 100 Nm of torque married to an electric motor of unspecified output.

At first glance we approached this news with a little skepticism, given the name of the vehicle being Hamster.  However, according to Promotor.ro, it's a research project from The University of Pitesti in Romania as part of environmental program for alternative propulsion systems seeking to engineer a powertrain that produces CO2 of only 99 g/km.

Dubiously called the Hamster, although it's the current Dacia Sandero Stepway, it features a 1.2-liter diesel-electric plug-in hybrid engine with 75 hp (55 kW) and 100 Nm of torque powering the front wheels while a 10hp electric motor, clearly visible in the photos, runs in parallel while connected to the rear wheels. The system is called E-4WD (Electricway-4WD). Furthermore, it has photovoltaic cells placed on the roof plus a start/stop system.

Despite its experimental nature, some outlets are reporting Renault Dacia will indeed produce this vehicle which will sell for around €10,000 and come with a customer-reassuring 4 year warranty. It is expected to debut around 2012.

Again, we're skeptical but the rest of the story sounds believable enough, but that name...  Don't hamsters have short tails?

Dacia Hamster electric 4WD hybrid photos surface