Nissan Juke concept to get e-Power series hybrid system as well


2017 Nissan Juke

Nissan is a leader in electric cars, but the Japanese automaker has been slow to adopt competitive hybrid technology.

In a move that could potentially rectify that situation, Nissan unveiled its new e-Power series-hybrid system in Japan late last year.

The system was first demonstrated in a Nissan Note, the subcompact hatchback sold as the Versa Note in the U.S.

DON'T MISS: Nissan e-Power series hybrid builds on electric-car expertise (Nov 2016)

But Nissan may soon add an e-Power hybrid powertrain to another model.

It will unveil a Juke e-Power concept at the 2017 Tokyo Motor Show this fall, previewing a possible production version, according to Car and Driver.

The concept may also preview updated styling that could be used in an anticipated redesign of the funky-looking but aging small crossover, likely based on the Gripz concept shown two years ago.

Nissan Note e-Power hybrid

Nissan Note e-Power hybrid

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The Juke is now seven years old, making it dated by industry standards and due for such a redesign.

A new-generation Juke could also accommodate the addition of the e-Power hybrid system to the lineup.

The e-Power system is a series-hybrid system, rather than the parallel-hybrid arrangements used by most other automakers.

ALSO SEE: 2017 Nissan Rogue Hybrid: gas mileage review

That means that rather than using both power sources combined for propulsion, the wheels are propelled solely by the electric motor, with the gasoline engine acting only as a generator to recharge the battery.

The benefit is a fully-electric driving experience, with instantaneous torque delivery.

The e-Power system builds on Nissan's experience with electric cars, even making use of components from the Leaf, including the traction motor.

Nissan Note e-Power hybrid

Nissan Note e-Power hybrid

Enlarge Photo

The battery pack in the Note e-Power, however, is about one-twentieth the size of the Leaf's current 30-kilowatt-hour capacity.

Importantly, it cannot be recharged by plugging in because the Note e-Power has no external charging capability.

If the Juke e-Power were to reach the market, it would be priced at $20,000 or more, Car and Driver suggests.

CHECK OUT: Why aren't there more hybrid crossover utilities and SUVs?

For perspective, in November Nissan said the Note e-Power would start at a price below 2,000,000 yen ($29,600) in the automaker's home market of Japan.

Thus far, the e-Power system has been sold only in Nissan's home market, where its sales have exceeded initial expectations, according to Nissan officials interviewed early this year.

It's unclear whether the Juke e-Power will be sold in the U.S., although its chances may be greater than those of the Note e-Power, a more expensive derivative of an economy model that has never been popular here.

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