Nissan has launched its first range-extended electric vehicle, the Note e-Power; it's for Japan only but its tech looks destined for UK models

The Nissan Note e-Power has been revealed as Nissan’s first range-extended electric vehicle.

Although the Note e-Power is for the Japanese market only – Nissan will discontinue the Note once the new Micra goes on sale next spring – the tech could make it into a number of upcoming models from Nissan.

Read our review of the BMW i3 here

Nissan’s e-Power system couples a small petrol engine to the electric powertrain developed in the Leaf to create the brand’s first range-extended electric vehicle. The car has been developed for the Japanese market using research and data collected in Japan. Nissan said the system is aimed predominantly at urban markets.

A Nissan spokesman couldn’t reveal whether the powertrain will be used on other models but did confirm that the system can be adapted to fit into cars occupying different segments from the Note's. This implies the system could appear in any of Nissan’s upcoming cars. The system which features in the Note e-Power eschews a traditional charger though, and runs only on electricity generated by the small petrol motor.

As a result, range-extended electric versions of the next Juke, Leaf, Qashqai and Micra are all possibilities. “We’re not ruling anything out,” said the Nissan spokesman. A range-extender system is typically better suited to smaller vehicles, so it’s likely that this is where it will be used in the Nissan range.

Nissan sister company Renault recently revealed a more capacious battery pack for its updated Zoe electric vehicle, although it’s not yet known if this will make it into any Nissan cars.

Nissan is also pursuing other alternative fuel sources and powertrains and is continuing to develop its ‘solid oxide fuel cell’, which is powered by electricity generated from reacting bioethanol and air electrochemically.

Our Verdict

Nissan Note

The second-generation Nissan Note is a spacious Fiesta alternative, despite dynamic dullness compared to the Ford

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2 November 2016
Good to see another large car maker getting close to launching a mass market hybrid car. Nissan's early entry into the electric foray made many sit up and take notice but convinced few to open their pockets. Hybrid is a credible half way house as motorists are weaned off conventional power trains.

2 November 2016
Nissan using pure ICE to power an electric car? Why no plug in charger? All manufacturers are moving to pure EV when Nissan is moving back to hybrids. It. May make sense if you live in an area where there are no charging facilities,flats etc but why no option?
Will it be congestion charge free as it is only low emission not zero, there will be a point only EVs will qualify.
Think again Nissan

3 November 2016
The Leaf powertrain is already developed, so seeing what other variations can be eked out of it is a sensible approach. I wonder how many I will see on the roads here, though, as the Prius has long been the biggest seller in Japan and I cannot imagine its status being threatened.

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