Infiniti sheds (some) light on new sports car

Engine bit to go 'here'...
Engine bit to go 'here'...
Infiniti's snappily titled 'Deputy Division General Manager of Product Planning and Strategy' (and breathe), Francois Bancon, has shed a touch more light on Infiniti's planned Geneva sports car concept.

The new car, which will be a range-extender hybrid, will consist of a 1.2-litre internal combustion engine that powers a battery pack and electric motor, rather than directly driving the wheels. "This is not the only solution, but this is a very promising one", says Bancon.

"The capability to combine the potency of an internal combustion engine on one side and the battery - EV - on the other...is appealing on many levels: to achieve an uncompromised level of performance for a sports car, but on top of this it's possible during an urban drive to be just zero emissions."

The Geneva concept will also be Infiniti's first-ever mid-engined model as it's "the most rational way to distribute the weight and to deliver a high level of handling and performance".

But why go for a range-extender rather than the less ambitious 'mild hybrid' sports car that other manufacturers seem to be toying with?

"When you have more and more cities, especially in Europe, who are kind of banning the internal combustion engine at whatever the level of emission," says Bancon, "with this car you're going to be able to run downtown to London, for example, with no guilt. You are not guilty - you are on zero emissions. At the same time you can have fun on the race track with the maximum performance the car can enjoy."

Sounds reasonable to us, Francois...

 

 

Comments (21) Join the discussion on the forum

  • Hellbound 12 Jan 2012

    I really hope this car doesn't have the trademark Infiniti swoopy muscular design language. I can't stand that sort of thing, it's old and ugly.

    Whatever people think of the validity of the tech in this car, it's going to sell on looks and price first.

  • EliseKSK 12 Jan 2012

    So many problems here it's hard to decide where to begin.
    An internal combustion engine is actually a very efficient way to convert fuel into motive power. Inserting a battery and electric motor into the process just adds inefficiency. Hardly an "uncompromised" solution.
    "Guilt-free" zero-emmission town driving with "maximum" on-track performance. Both limited by the compromises of lugging around an un-used petrol engine when in zero mode, and half a tonne of batteries when on track.

  • Hellbound 12 Jan 2012

    EliseKSK said:
    So many problems here it's hard to decide where to begin.
    An internal combustion engine is actually a very efficient way to convert fuel into motive power. Inserting a battery and electric motor into the process just adds inefficiency. Hardly an "uncompromised" solution.
    "Guilt-free" zero-emmission town driving with "maximum" on-track performance. Both limited by the compromises of lugging around an un-used petrol engine when in zero mode, and half a tonne of batteries when on track.
    The whole point of EV in town is to improve air quality in cities. London has awful air quality with respiratory failure being the second most common cause of death (eg. lung cancer). I couldn't give a monkeys ass about percentage points in efficiency as long as it gets the smog out of the city.

  • vz-r_dave 12 Jan 2012

    Not for me, you cant call any car a sports car with a 1.2 engine no matter how much you dress it up. If it were to be fully electric like the Tesla than yes but when someone asks you the size of the engine and you spout 1.2 they will laugh in your face.

  • kambites 12 Jan 2012

    EliseKSK said:
    So many problems here it's hard to decide where to begin.
    An internal combustion engine is actually a very efficient way to convert fuel into motive power. Inserting a battery and electric motor into the process just adds inefficiency. Hardly an "uncompromised" solution.
    Not really true. A high powered petrol engine driving the wheels directly, mostly at vastly below peak efficiency, will struggle to break the 15% efficiency mark (depending on just how high powered). A smaller engine running at peak efficiency when needed and switched off the rest of the time will achieve something like 45% efficiency. A battery/motor combination will easily be efficient enough to make that worthwhile.

    Yes the "guilt free" bit is rubbish though.

    Edited by kambites on Thursday 12th January 11:20

View all comments in the forums Make a comment