Nissan unveils all-electric sedan prototype

EV platform, which promises a 100-mile range and online services to find charging stations, is large plank of an efficiency strategy to be further detailed next week.

Martin LaMonica Former Staff writer, CNET News
Martin LaMonica is a senior writer covering green tech and cutting-edge technologies. He joined CNET in 2002 to cover enterprise IT and Web development and was previously executive editor of IT publication InfoWorld.
Martin LaMonica
2 min read

Nissan gave a glimpse of its plans to make an all-electric sedan that will go 100 miles on a charge and have a suite of online features to aid drivers.

The company on Monday showed off an electric car prototype, based on the Tiida mid-size sedan. It said that an all-electric production car with a unique design will be unveiled on August 2 at its Yokohama, Japan, headquarters and go on sale in 2010 in Japan and the U.S.

The electric sedan will connect to Nissan's data centers to provide drivers with information and support, according to the carmaker.

Nissan's EV prototype, an electric power train fitted onto a Tiida/Versa mid-size Versa sedan. Nissan

The EV-IT system will display on a map how much driving range they have left and can calculate whether a car can make it to a pre-set destination. The system can point drivers to available charging stations within driving range.

The driver can also remotely view a battery's charge and turn on the air conditioner from a Web-connected computer or phone. Charging can be scheduled to take advantage of off-peak rates, too.

The car itself is built around Nissan's electric motor and a 24-kilowatt-hour battery pack which is placed under the car. With generative braking that charges the car during deceleration and braking, Nissan estimates that drivers can get 100 miles on a charge, although it notes that range depends on conditions and driving styles.

Although it lags in hybrids, Nissan has been one of the most aggressive in developing all-electric sedans. It is already testing the EV-02, which is based on the Nissan Cube chassis. It also has a partnership to work with Better Place, which provides consumers with charging points and access to battery-swapping stations in exchange for subscription plans.

Nissan has not announced prices, but a company representative told the Associated Press in Japan that the electric vehicle would be "competitive" with gasoline cars.

Because of the limitations on driving range and the high cost of batteries, other automakers including Toyota and General Motors have said they expect consumers will favor gasoline-electric cars.

Along with Tesla Motors, start-ups Coda Automotive and Detroit Electric are making all-electric cars which they say will have enough range for daily driving for many people.