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Infiniti reveals an electric vehicle largely based on the Nissan LEAF, and is set to be the first mass-market luxury EV when it goes on sale in 2014.
Infiniti finally revealed the long-promised electric vehicle at the New York Motor Show. Largely based on the Nissan Leaf, the LE aims to become the first mass-market luxury EV when it goes on sale in 2014. While the Leaf is a five-door hatchback, the LE is a four-door sedan with wave-like flowing lines that have become synonymous with Infiniti’s styling the past few years.
The LE Concept comes in at 4,734mm in overall length which is about the same size as the G37 sedan. A 100kW electric motor with an output of 134hp and 325Nm of torque provides the power, a significant increase over the Leaf’s 110 hp and 284Nm of torque. A 24 kWh lithium-ion battery pack mounted on the floor is mated to a single-speed transmission, for an estimated 160km range. The Leaf sacrifices performance, with a leisure 11 seconds to hit 100km, hopefully the Infiniti will perform better.
Sources at Infiniti claim the LE’s design is nearly 80 percent production ready and were primarily designed to be a luxury vehicle followed by an electric vehicle second. Infiniti’s Vice President of the Americas Ben Poore takes it even further:
“Most of what you see in the LE Concept will become a reality, including its zero emission powertrain, advanced telematics, cutting-edge design, advanced connected services and premium appointments.”
The super slick 0.25 drag coefficient body should make it to production together with a wireless charging system that incorporates an inductive coil system that can be installed in the owner’s garage. The LE also uses Nissan's Around View Monitor, electric power steering and self-parking technology to automatically align the car with the charging pad. The GPS system will even bookmark the location after parking so that the LE can find the pad when it gets close.
The LE’s interior is filled with tech, starting with LED lighting, a mixture of digital and analogue gauges, a new infotainment system with dual displays powered by an Intel Atom processor.
With some Leaf-based mules caught testing, the Infiniti’s LE’s production should not be far off. Expect an appearance in 2014 as a 2015 model with prices no less than $40K (S$50,400, excluding taxes)
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