First shown in February of last year, the new Nissan Qashqai crossover was launched as an internal combustion affair, with “a new type of hybrid powertrain” only briefly mentioned – as if in passing. Needless to say, we weren’t holding out much hope for something really great … and we were wrong. Meet the new Nissan Qashqai E-Power, a true EREV that takes Nissan’s hybrid program to the next level.
The Qashqai E-Power will be the first Nissan model to get this new powertrain in Europe, and it will live there for a while before it comes stateside. It’s a unique offering, now that the BMW i3 has been discontinued, but this will be the third or fourth such EREV that makes it to the US, following the i3, original Fisker Karma, and Chevy Volt, so it should be familiar enough if it comes as the new Nissan Kicks or Rogue Sport.
The electrically-driven crossover features a 1.5-liter engine packing 156 hp that acts as a high-powered generator, producing energy that’s then stored in a high-output battery pack. Nissan says the engine “never” drives the wheels, allowing the ICE part of e-POWER system to run consistently in its most efficient rpm range, leading to superior thermal efficiency and lower CO2 emissions compared with a traditional internal combustion driven car (even a hybrid).
Good From Many Angles
Nissan is understandably excited about their new offering. “The introduction of the innovative e-POWER system to the new Qashqai brings more of Nissan’s pioneering spirit to the crossover segment,” said Guillaume Cartier, Chairperson for Nissan’s AMIEO region. “Customers will love the feeling of driving an EV but without consideration for charging. And e-POWER represents a significant milestone in Nissan’s electrification strategy.”
The system isn’t perfect, however. For one thing, there’s no plug, so there’s no way to “eliminate” the ICE component, making the Nissan much more like a conventional hybrid than a PHEV. Nissan doesn’t see that as a problem, though, calling e-POWER, “an ideal technology for those who cannot or do not want to take time to recharge with a cable but face a daily urban or suburban drive, and who are ready to make the first move in their transition to a full EV in the future.”
You can watch this great video explaining the new Nissan e-POWER EREV system, below, then let us know what you think of this plugless electric SUV in the comments section at the bottom of the page.
Nissan Qashqai e POWER New Hybrid Powertrain Tech Explained
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