Nissan and Infiniti to get six new EVs


New second-generation Nissan Leaf EV. Image: Newspress/Nissan via AFP Relaxnews

Nissan has revealed plans to add six new fully-electric vehicles to the portfolios of the Nissan and Infiniti brands over the next five years, according to Toshihiro Hirai, who’s Nissan’s corporate vice president for powertrain and EV engineering. Four of the new all-electric models will go under the Nissan banner, while the other two will be new Infiniti models.

These six models are Nissan’s share of the 12 EVs that have already been promised by the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi alliance between now and 2022, which was revealed in a multiyear business plan last September by Carlos Ghosn, the alliance’s CEO.

At the time of the announcement by Ghosn last year, there was no breakdown of how many models would be produced by each brand, but now Toshihiro Hirai has detailed what Nissan’s share of the plan will be.

And to be totally clear, all six of the new Nissan and Infiniti models will be pure EVs and not hybrids equipped with powertrains such as the company’s new e-Power system. E-Power still has an important role to play in the automaker’s plans as it’s a range-extender hybrid that uses a small gasoline engine to generate electricity for the electric motor to drive the wheels.

Infiniti Q50 Hybrid. Image: Newspress/Nissan via AFP Relaxnews

That makes the e-Power propulsion system the closest thing to an all-electric vehicle that also offers the kind of range we’re used to having with our vehicles. It has to be said though, that it’s not exactly a new idea as a very similar system was previously used by General Motors in America in the first-generation Chevrolet Volt.

The EV plan does only reflect the next five years of production, and Nissan CEO, Hiroto Saikawa, revealed a separate longer range plan only last month, which, starting in 2021, would see every new vehicle being produced by Infiniti offered either as an EV or an e-Power system vehicle. JB


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