The Geneva Motor Show may be the focal point for most carmakers, and less than two weeks away, but Nissan (logo, pictured) has decided to announce some significant developments to its hybrid system a little early.
At this week’s SAE 2013 Hybrid and Electric Vehicle Technology Symposium in Anaheim, California, the company provided an update on its upcoming FF (Front-Engine, Front-wheel drive) hybrid system.
Owen Thunes, who is the senior project engineer for the company’s zero emission research group, announced that the FF system will be the successor to the FR-Hybrid – which featured front engine with rear wheel drive – that was included in the Infiniti M. The FF Hybrid will make use of a one-motor, two-clutch configuration, known as Intelligent Dual Clutch Control.
The intention is that the FF Hybrid System can be used for vehicles of any size, while also supporting multiple applications: including plug-in hybrid vehicles and all-wheel drive vehicles.
According to Thunes, four elements will help encourage more motorists to turn to hybrid cars: namely, affordability, fuel economy gains, rational evolution from powertrains and the maintenance of the cabin and cargo area.
As such, Nissan chose to focus on a parallel hybrid system because it offers the ability to choose a transmission type; compatibility with conventional powertrains; and better fuel economy. In addition, with a parallel system the engine’s power and battery output are independent: it’s simply a design choice.
In the case of the FF hybrid system, a 2.5litre, four-cylinder engine will replace the 3.5litre V6 engine. Torque will also exceed the 3.5litre V6 at low to middle engine speed areas, except at very low speeds. There is also an efficiency gain due to downsizing.
Meanwhile, the Nissan CVT is another core component with wider ratio coverage helping to achieve friction reductions of 40 per cent. It also offers advantages when used with an electric motor by improving the motor/generator efficiency by three per cent.
Paul is a freelance writer with a background in everything from motoring to finance; and holidays to women's undergarments he just writes about them, honestly! He has now sadly crept into his early 30s and seems to have forgotten everything learned at school Still, he's a green car fanatic and isn't that what counts?
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