Nissan IMx Concept – an electric SUV based on the Leaf – offers astounding 373-mile range

Article by Christian A., on October 28, 2017

Not that long ago, we talked about the Leaf-based electric SUV by Nissan. The one where we were first teased with just a dark silhouette, and was followed by another teaser where robots were molding it. And after all that, the actual car has finally been revealed as the Nissan IMx Concept. By looking at it for the very first time, you would probably agree that it has a bold appearance with many lines on its angular body, suicide doors, and the new V-motion grille. Though not everyone may be a fan of how it looks, it sure is something else.

When looking at the SUV from all angles, you would notice that both the front and the rear fenders look like they’re floating as they are designed to point upwards. That’s not only the new thing it features, the EV has got a massive panoramic glass roof that runs from the front to the rear, so it looks pretty amazing when viewed from above, and from inside too, as you get a full view of the sky. The exterior has been finished in a pearl white body predominantly, combined with a vermillion colour and contrasted with black roof and pillars.

Since the IMx is still a concept, the interior only gets a minimalist layout, with only four seats and no physical controls. There is an OLED display that acts like an instrument panel located right above a wood grain-pattered display that stretches onto the door panels. The seats feature a laser-etched katanagare diagonal pattern that is matched with kumiki (Japanese interlocking wood puzzle) motif on the headreasts that the IMx boasts, as Nissan used a 3D printer to design the seats’ frame.

The electric SUV is run by two electric motors that produce an output of 430 horsepower and 516 pound-feet (700 Newton-metres) of torque. It also rides on Nissan’s latest EV platform that has a completely flat floor. This makes the interior extra spacious, while also giving the car a low center of gravity. The electric motors work with a high-capacity battery pack with enough power to let the car reach over 373 miles (600 kilometers) between charges. Future owners of this model should not worry about losing power on long trips then.

Of course, the model features an advanced autonomous driving system that can do all the work. It features ProPILOT drive mode, in which the steering wheel hides in the dashboard when it drives on its own, while reclining the seats at the same time. On manual mode, it does the opposite so that it can be controlled by a human driver.

This may just be a concept, but we should expect to see the arrival of the Leaf-based electric SUV before the end of the decade.

Press Release

Nissan unveils IMx zero-emission concept at Tokyo Motor Show

The Nissan IMx, an all-electric crossover concept vehicle offering fully autonomous operation and a driving range of more than 600 kilometers, was unveiled today at the Tokyo Motor Show.

The innovative concept vehicle provides a glimpse into the future of Nissan Intelligent Mobility, Nissan's approach to changing how cars are powered, driven and integrated with society. It's designed to strengthen the link between car and driver as a close, reliable partner that delivers a safer, more convenient and more enjoyable drive.

By offering unprecedented enjoyment in motion and the ability to control the vehicle's drive mode, the Nissan IMx aims to transform the everyday life of drivers.

"The IMx zero-emission crossover concept vehicle embodies the future of Nissan Intelligent Mobility," said Daniele Schillaci, executive vice president for global marketing and sales, zero-emission vehicles and the battery business. "Through Nissan Intelligent Mobility, Nissan is committed to changing the way people and cars communicate, as well as how cars interact with society in the near future and beyond."

Making travel more enjoyable: Nissan Intelligent Driving

At the core of the IMx's technological features is a future version of ProPILOT that offers fully autonomous operation. When ProPILOT drive mode is selected, the system stows the steering wheel inside the dashboard and reclines all seats, giving the driver more space and allowing the vehicle's occupants to relax and enjoy their commute. When Manual drive mode is selected, the vehicle returns the steering wheel and seats to their original position, seamlessly transferring control back to the driver.

Promoting the convenience and pleasure of electric driving: Nissan Intelligent Power

The Nissan IMx zero-emission concept vehicle adopts Nissan's new EV platform, designed for maximum efficiency. It allows the floor to be completely flat, resulting in a cavernous cabin and enhanced driving dynamics. With a low center of gravity, the chassis delivers sharp handling that promises to redefine the crossover segment.

The powerful yet quiet powertrain delivers enhanced excitement. The IMx is propelled by a pair of high-output electric motors at the front and rear, giving it all-wheel-drive capability. They combine to produce 320 kW of power and an astounding 700 Nm of torque, sourced from a high-capacity battery which has been redesigned and re-engineered for increased energy density. This new battery supports a driving range of more than 600 kilometers on a single charge, so occupants can enjoy an extended adventure without worrying about recharging.

Becoming part of the social infrastructure: Nissan Intelligent Integration

The Nissan IMx can also contribute to the social infrastructure like no other vehicle before it. For example, after transporting its owner to the airport, the IMx can park itself in a spot where the vehicle can connect to the local power grid and act as a "virtual" power plant by returning electricity to the grid, an extension of its vehicle-to-home and vehicle-to-building features. Once the owner returns, the IMx can pick them up at the terminal and drive home. The whole process is carried out efficiently, thanks in part to the increased battery capacity and connected-car technologies, including Seamless Autonomous Mobility.

New EV design philosophies for the autonomous era

Until now, vehicles have been designed with a clear differentiation between exterior and interior. Exterior design provides a sense of security from the outside, while the interior design gives drivers an appropriate environment for concentrating on driving.

This purpose-based differentiation is likely to change with the arrival of fully autonomous vehicles. Nissan's designers sought to redefine the interior space of the IMx to create a sense of openness, while maintaining a feeling of privacy. To achieve this, they endeavored to design a space that links up the inside and outside of the vehicle.

They also wanted to convey the key characteristics of electric vehicles – quiet and smooth with a sense of light, yet powerful and dynamic. They took inspiration from the Japanese concepts of ma, a sense of space and time, and wa (harmony), expressing the coexistence of two seemingly contradictory concepts – "stillness" and "motion."

Exterior design: showcasing the unique characteristics of electric vehicles

The IMx's styling conveys its clean and sporty electric-vehicle attributes by incorporating Nissan's signature design features. From the familiar V-motion grille, the supple character line rises and flows to the hood and rear end. The broad surfaces of the distinctively shaped front fenders start from the grille and expand seamlessly onto the body sides, creating a sense of layers.

The vermillion accent color, contrasting vividly with the pearl white-colored body, is inspired by uramasari, which describes the beauty and extravagance found on the inside of traditional Japanese kimonos.

Interior design: spacious and relaxing, with simplicity

The IMx concept vehicle's interior adheres to the basic concept of space that can be found in a traditional Japanese house, suggesting a sense of openness.

The car's panoramic OLED instrument panel displays a view of the external environment in the background. A separate, wood grain-patterned display, positioned below the instrument panel and wrapping around the interior door trims, gives occupants a subtle sense of the outside, similar to a shoji, a traditional Japanese paper screen.

The katanagare diagonal pattern on the seats has been delicately etched with a laser cutter. The head rest – patterned like kumiki, a Japanese interlocking wood puzzle – is made from silicon-material cushioning and a frame produced by a 3D printer.

Artificial intelligence enables the driver to control the instrument panel with eye movements and hand gestures. This intuitive interface results in fewer physical controls and switches, making the cabin of the IMx simple yet highly efficient and adding to its supreme comfort.

Source: Nissan

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