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Infiniti Zero Emission Coupe Concept To Debut At NY Auto Show

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2012 Infiniti M35h Hybrid

2012 Infiniti M35h Hybrid

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Infiniti has been on something of a product blitz lately, launching its 2013 JX seven-seat crossover this month and a host of concept cars over the last year.

Now it has confirmed it will show a new concept at the 2012 New York Auto Show two weeks hence: the Infiniti Zero Emission Concept Coupe.

We don't have teaser shots yet--though if previous practice holds, they may emerge between now and then--but we know a little about the car.

For one thing, it's "close to final production form," in the words of Ben Poore, vice president of Infiniti Americas at a JX drive event earlier this week.

That means that unlike the 2009 Infiniti Essence Concept, which purely showed styling directions for the brand, the Zero Emission Coupe Concept will be a thinly disguised production car.

Leaf underneath

It will use the same lithium-ion battery pack and electric drive motor as the 2013 Nissan Leaf that will be built starting early next year at Nissan's Smyrna, Tennessee, assembly plant. And it will almost surely be assembled on the same line as the Leaf.

Infiniti officials said the Coupe Concept would be shown as a 2+2 four-seater, but that it could at least theoretically seat five people--as the Leaf does--since there is very little tunnel hump in the rear footwell.

It sounds, frankly, like Infiniti may be targeting the upcoming 2014 Cadillac ELR range-extended electric luxury coupe with this new vehicle.

For both companies, the upscale electric coupes give them better profit margins on the basic running gear they sell in more pedestrian Nissan Leafs and Chevy Volts.

2015 Infiniti electric luxury sedan teaser sketch

2015 Infiniti electric luxury sedan teaser sketch

Enlarge Photo

Not the 2015 electric sedan

It's worth noting that this will be a separate concept from the Infiniti all-electric compact sedan the company promised last fall to put on sale by 2015.

The company is said to be planning to offer inductive charging for that car, freeing owners from the need to plug and unplug their cars to recharge them each night.

Infiniti's other recent concepts included the Emerg-E range-extended electric supercar, shown earlier this month at the Geneva Motor Show, and the Infiniti Etherea Concept, a "high-performance premium compact" vehicle it will build jointly with Mercedes-Benz that was shown at last year's Geneva Show.

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  1. great to see more and more evs coming to market
     
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