Nissan is showing off a new series-hybrid version of the Serena minivan at this year’s Tokyo Motor Show, according to a new press release. The new Nissan Serena e-POWER minivan, as it’s been dubbed, will represent the second series-hybrid offering released by Nissan.
For those unfamiliar with the terminology being used here — a series hybrid is essentially a vehicle without an internal combustion engine (ICE) that utilizes an electric powertrain and a small high-output battery that’s typically charged by a small gas/petrol generator.
Such vehicles can be considerably less complicated mechanically than ICE vehicles generally are, and can deliver many of the “benefits” of electric vehicles (instant torque, quiet operation, good energy efficiency, one-pedal driving, etc.) without the need to forgo the use of gas/petrol and to rely upon high-capacity batteries and charging.
According to Nissan, the e-POWER tech allows for fuel efficiency similar to that of the world’s top conventional hybrids — despite a generally lower selling price.
Green Car Congress provides more: “e-POWER was first introduced in November 2016, when the Nissan Note e-POWER was launched in Japan. The Note e-POWER couples a 1.2-liter, three-cylinder HR12DE engine with a 1.5 kWh battery pack and the EM57 traction motor from the LEAF.
“…The Serena is already known for its spacious interior and smooth ride. With e-POWER, it will also offer the powerful, responsive acceleration of an electric-drive vehicle, along with above-its-class quietness and excellent fuel efficiency.
Very notably, Nissan’s new ProPILOT semi-autonomous driving features will be available as an option with the Serena e-POWER — allowing users to experience fully autonomous single-lane travel on divided highways.
As it stands, Nissan is reportedly expecting to release the Serena e-POWER in Japan sometime next spring.
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