For two years now Nissan has been offering the Altima sedan for sale but the essential technology of the car, a gasoline-electric hybrid drivetrain, is derived from Toyota. The carmaker has always said that it will come up with a vehicle with its own hybrid drive system, and last year, in August, Nissan provided us with an initial preview of some of the technologies it was currently developing. Nissan did not provide any confirmation when they will come up with their own production hybrid system but there are reports coming out that the first models will be available in the US and Japan in 2010.
The reports are pointing to the next-generation Infiniti M sedan which is set to come out in 2010, will be the first to use the new hybrid drivetrain that will ultimately reach more luxury models and sport cars. In contrast to its competitors, the hybrid system of Nissan will be dependent on lithium-ion batteries which they claim comes with quicker recharging characteristics and are more powerful.
Nissan's hybrid drivetrain comes with dual-clutch with the electric motor connected straight to the powerplant and transmission through these clutches. Traditional torque converters are not needed in this parallel-powertrain hybrid setup, thus offering higher responsiveness and linear acceleration for enhanced driving pleasure. It comes with varying driving modes which includes electric only for low speed driving, combined electric and gasoline for high load driving and gasoline only power for cruising.
Nissan showcased its new hybrid system at the Geneva Motor Show through the Infiniti Essence Concept car where it also brought in a couple of turbochargers and direct injection technology for a total power yield of 592hp (442kW). Nissan will introduce direct-injection technology across its range to improve performance and lower fuel consumption. This technology will be introduced in 2010 using the Nissan M sedan. [source autoblog]