The new Qashqai brings the first deployment of Nissan’s innovative e POWER drive system to Europe. Exclusive to Nissan and a key component in the company’s Intelligent Mobility strategy, the e-POWER system is a unique approach to electrification by making every day driving exciting.
The new Qashqai’s e-POWER system is comprised of a high-output battery and powertrain integrated with a category-leading variable compression ratio 157PS petrol engine, power generator, inverter and 140kW electric motor of similar size and power output as found in Nissan’s electric vehicles. It’s a unique solution that combines the enjoyable, seamless linear acceleration which is characteristic of an EV, but without the need for charging.
To meet the typical demands of European consumers and their daily drive, the e-POWER installation has been significantly upgraded for the new Qashqai. Where the application in the Note - Japan’s best-selling car in recent years – is a 1.2 petrol engine charging the battery unit, and a final power output of 108PS. For Europe it has been upgraded to a 1.5-litre petrol engine, with a final power output of 140kW (190PS).
The unique element of the e-Power is that the petrol engine is used solely to generate electricity, whilst the wheels are completely driven by the electric motor. This means the engine can always run within its optimal range, leading to superior fuel efficiency and lower CO2 emissions compared with a traditional internal combustion engine.
“The e-POWER system offers the best transition technology between ICE and EV, allowing users to enjoy exhilarating EV driving sensations and impressive efficiency at an affordable price point. We’re really looking forward to customers experiencing the thrill of new Qashqai’s superior electrified driving performance – it’s a perfect expression of Nissan Intelligent Mobility,” said David Moss, Region Senior Vice President Research and Development, Africa, Middle East, India, Europe and Oceania (AMIEO).
Thanks to the pure electric motor drive, there’s no delay as with an internal combustion engine or traditional hybrid. The instant ‘EV like’ response delivers exhilarating high torque feel and best level acceleration at different speeds to make overtaking or merging onto a motorway easier and more confidence-inspiring.
There are three driving modes on e-POWER versions: Standard, Sport and Eco. In Standard, the car produces excellent acceleration and lift-off regeneration is tuned to simulate the engine-braking of a conventional petrol vehicle. In Sport mode, the car further improves acceleration response with reduced engine off time, especially in sporty driving scenarios. In Eco, the car goes into fuel-saving mode by optimising battery management and allowing the driver to select a coasting model for economical highway driving. In all modes an additional B mode can be selected which increases the energy recuperation at lift-off, slowing the car more efficiently without the use of the brake pedal.
The new Qashqai with e-POWER not only accelerates quicker than hybrid rivals, but does so with a lower engine RPM. The system operates very quietly, much like a full EV, and is tuned for the best level of quietness and connected feeling when accelerating, thanks to a focus on keeping relationship between engine RPM and road speed connected.
Similar to the LEAF, the new Qashqai e-POWER benefits from an entirely new ‘one pedal’ driving experience called e-Pedal mode. Drivers can start, accelerate and decelerate using only the accelerator pedal, supporting up to 90% of driving scenarios.
In stop-and-go urban driving conditions, e-Pedal mode significantly reduces the need to move your foot from one pedal to the other by providing up to 0.2G of deceleration when lifting off the accelerator. This makes driving simpler and more relaxing. In order to optimise e-Pedal for parking manoeuvres, creep has been added and the brake pedal must be used to stop the vehicle. On open, winding roads, e-Pedal provides a more engaging drive whilst reducing the need to depress the brake during cornering.
Drivers can monitor the energy flow of e-POWER on the 12” TFT meter to check the system state.
Nissan’s e-POWER system was introduced to the Note and Serena models in Japan. An immediate success in terms of customer popularity, more than 70% of Note sales and almost half of Serena sales in the country are e-POWER versions. Indeed, the recently launched Nissan Kicks compact SUV equipped with e-POWER has just been awarded the 2021 Technology of the Year award by the Automotive Researchers’ and Journalists’ Conference of Japan.
“Since 2007, when it invented the segment, the new Qashqai has always set the standard in the crossover segment. With the third generation Qashqai, new and existing customers are going to love the innovative powertrain options available to them. Our offer is simple and innovative, with both powertrain options being efficient, but still fun to drive. Our approach to the new electrified Qashqai has been without compromise and that is clearly evident with both the 1.3 petrol, with mild hybrid technology and the unique e-Power option,” said Matthew Wright, Vice President, Powertrain Design and Development, Nissan Technical Centre Europe.
Sales of the new Nissan Qashqai equipped with e-POWER will begin in 2022.