• Dec 12, 2007

One of the knocks against hybrids is that they're best around town, but once you get on the highway, it's back to full-time fossil fuels. Nissan is developing its own hybrid tech that it plans to launch in the Infiniti FX, in which the electric component will assist the engine at highway speeds as well, not just around town.

We don't know how close, if at all, it will be to the hybrid system in the Porsche Cayenne -- that (as-yet-untested) one can run the vehicle entirely on electric power at 75 MPH. Nissan's offering is slated to arrive some time in the next decade, presumably in the next generation FX. When it does, that will put at least four different types of major manufacturer hybrids on the roads, making their way through streets also littered with clean diesels. When we get that kind of concentration, the shakeout will really begin to decide who'll win the altpower war.

[Source: Channel 4]



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  • 6 Comments
      • 7 Years Ago
      The more choices the better.
      However I would like solar panels on my garage to charge my midsize diesel/plug-in hybrid pickup truck.
      • 7 Years Ago
      In the US, there hasn't been much said about diesel hybrids b/c of the push to get many of the units certified to even be sold in the US market first.

      I like the Touareg V10 TDI. Imagine it with a Bluetec V10 TDI engine or even a V10 Bluetec TDI-electric hybrid system...

      The 310hp/553lb-ft V10 TDI engine already gets 17mpg city/23 mpg highway (20 mpg avg). That's better than the V8 version and a whole lot of other comparable SUVs and some large wagons and sedans. Add a hybrid system and this vehicle would be on everybody's shopping list (save for actual costs).
      • 7 Years Ago
      Where is this energy coming from???

      Electric power to supplement IC power at cruising speed? That won't take any sort of electricity source or anything...

      I swear this is the modern search for perpetual motion. Let's improve efficiency by adding more weight and more complexity, and more 'more'; while the added complication doesn't provide enough benefit to offset it's weight and reliability and long term maintenance drawbacks.

      Does the engine produce power for the electric system that supplements that engine? Does it plug in, and further tax our power grid infrastructure, which is even less efficient at transmitting quantities of energy without losses, and use fuel by proxy?

      fuel on board makes more sense... Oh, wait. That is what we already have. That isn't new and politically chic. That doesn't garner attention from the famous ignoramuses
        • 7 Years Ago
        @farris,

        diesel turbines driving electric motors is not a bad idea. it works great for locomotives and ships. It makes sense there. But those systems are heavy, and are long-running, but not suited to stop and go, and regular shut downs. They also don't suit a vehicle that requires more precise handling than riding on pre-laid and gradual-change steel tracks.

        IF the system gets shrunk down to a more manageable size, it would make more sense on long-haul trucks and maybe agricultural or heavy construction equipment first.

        Passenger cars are comparatively light, and as light as possible is more efficient. Clean diesel, gasoline, and even HCCI are more than powerful enough to power a vehicle without the losses of converting kinetic energy to electricity, and back to kinetic energy.

        Locomotives are a different situation. Very little stop and go, and lots of inertia to recoup. (electric motors become generators during deceleration of that much mass.)

        Automobiles are much more efficient to be directly gear-ratio driven. Less complication and less weight are less parasitic. Less energy loss is more efficient.

        Refine the system, sure; but metaphorically re-inventing a wheel with angles, for political correctness is a shell game, and no one ever wins those but the ones moving the shells. They don't win either, if the rest of us are smart enough not to bet and lose.

        Making the existing "round wheel" lighter, truer, with better traction and less rolling resistance is all fine. but trying to change it's shape to something else, and still have it work the same doesn't really work. it throws more problems into the mix than it solves.
        • 7 Years Ago
        ahahahahha. So true...

        I literally lol'd at your comment. The guy walking down the hall had to poke his head in and ask why I laughed.

        I also find it funny that all the manufacturers are pushing gasoline hybrids when they could be pushing cars with setups similar to locomotives (electric drive with a diesel generator). (flame suit "at the ready," but not necessarily "on")
      • 7 Years Ago
      How about Nissan just put a 6 speed automatic into the FX & EX first.