Nissan has unveiled its e-Power series hybrid powertrain drive system to customers.
E-Power borrows from the EV technology in the Nissan Leaf and adds a small gasoline engine to charge the high-output battery when necessary, eliminating the need for an external charger while offering the same high-output.
The e-Power system features full electric-motor drive, meaning that the wheels are completely driven by the electric motor.
The power from a high-output battery is delivered to the e-Power’s compact powertrain comprised of a gasoline engine, power generator, inverter, and a motor.
In conventional hybrid systems, a low-output electric motor is mated to a gasoline engine to drive the wheels when the battery is low (or when travelling at high speeds).
However, in the e-Power system, the gasoline engine is not connected to the wheels; it simply charges the battery. Unlike a full EV, the power source originates from the engine and not just the battery.
This system structure generally requires a bigger motor and battery because the motor is the only direct source to drive wheels, but Nissan has developed a system which uses a smaller battery than the Leaf, but delivers the same driving experience as a full EV.
The manufacturer said e-Power's fuel efficiency is comparable to that of leading conventional hybrids, especially during around-the-town commutes.