Remember when we reported about Nissan Thailand's plans to manufacture vehicles with the e-Power drive system? Well, the automaker has just confirmed that it has indeed arrived in the country.
Nissan Thailand said that the innovative e-Power technology will soon be making its way to Thailand-built vehicles. This makes Thailand the first country after Japan to manufacture Nissan's innovative drive system. Unlike a typical battery electric vehicle (BEV) which solely relies on recharging the batteries via a charging station, the e-Power makes use of an internal combustion engine which acts as a generator to recharge the batteries while on the go.
This essentially makes e-Power work like a hybrid system as the engine itself plays no direct part in actually moving the vehicle. In addition, the engine also provides electricity, through an inverter, directly to the electric motors. Should the driver need extra power when climbing a steep hill, the electric motor gets a helping hand from the batteries and an internal combustion engine.
“Nissan's commitment is to change the way we all drive and live. As leaders in electrification, we decided to pledge to continue our timeline to bring this ground-breaking technology, e-POWER, to Thailand. This is because Nissan commits to Thailand and our employees, as the regional leader in driving the company's vision for the electrification of mobility. And as a key global production and export hub for Nissan,” said Ramesh Narasimhan, president of Nissan Thailand.
But now the bigger question, what exact vehicle will come with the e-Power drive system? Based on our previous report, it is highly likely that the upcoming Kicks crossover will be the first to have e-Power. That would make sense as the ASEAN market responds very well to crossovers. But there is another vehicle that might have e-Power instead, the all-new Sylphy. With Toyota already selling the Corolla Altis Hybrid in the region, the Sylphy e-Power would make for a direct competitor in terms of size and drivetrain.
Despite not stating what vehicle will benefit from e-Power, Nissan reiterated that this technology will play a key role in the company's electrification vision in Thailand, as well as in the rest of Southeast Asia. The e-Power drive system will be produced Nissan's facility in Samut Prakan following Nissan's THB 10.96 billion (about PhP 17.1 billion) investment.
With the Nissan Leaf set to make its debut in the Philippines soon, perhaps the Philippines and the rest of ASEAN might also get e-Power models in the not so distant future as it will not require costly charging stations.