Plug-In Infiniti Sports Car Within 3 Years – Like A Tesla, But With More Range
Using knowledge gained from the Emerg-e and Essence concept electric vehicles, Infiniti will launch an electric sports car within the next three years (by 2016) in a report put out by AutoCar.
And this time, the Nissan-Renault alliance is mostly like going to be producing their first extended range plug-in vehicle, with the thinking that it will be taking on the likes of the Tesla Model S.
Infiniti brand boss Andy Palmer, said of final product being “like the Tesla sports car option, but with more flexibility in terms of range.”
So, unless Infiniti is really upping the ante on battery technology to pass the 85 kWh lithium ion pack found in the Model S or the 56 kWh found in the Roadster, a range extender of some kind must be in play.
Previously, the Emerge-e concept had a 1.2L engine coupled to two electric motors giving it 402 hp that propelled the car to 60 mph in 4 seconds, while hitting 130 mph from a standstill in 13 seconds. Range on just electric power is 30 miles.
And it is not just a showroom concept, it actually raced (and subsequently broke down) at the Goodwood Festival of Speed last year, showing that Infiniti is serious about building a performance electric car.
The second vehicle giving us some clues as to what Infiniti’s new “halo” sports car will bring, is the Essence concept that the company built for its 20th anniversary party back in 2009.
The Essence concept had a 3.7L V6 twin turbo engine rated at 320 kW/430 hp alongside an electric motor rated at 120 kW/160 hp with 500 N·m/370 lb·ft of torque. A combined 590 hp would certainly make an attractive super-car package.
When the Essence debuted at the Geneva show in 2009, Infiniti was quick to say that this particular car would not be going into production, but elements from the car were planned to be incorporated into a later Infiniti model.
Separately, Infiniti will launch a premium all-electric car, the LE, to be built alongside the Nissan LEAF in Smyrna, TN in 2014.