After the Leaf, Nissan PH preparing to launch its first e-Power model
When Nissan Philippines Inc. first launched the all-new Leaf last year, it was the precursor of things to come from the Japanese automaker. With their commitment to launch more environmentally-friendly vehicles, it was only a matter of time before Nissan revealed more fuel-efficient (and zero emissions) models for the country.
Aside from offering the Leaf EV, Nissan is also set to launch their other electrified drive tech in the country: e-Power.
According to a well-placed source, the automaker is already preparing to reveal its first-ever e-Power unit for the Philippine market. But what e-Power model will Nissan actually debut in the country?
While it has yet to be confirmed, we do know that it will not be the Note. That's because the five-door hatchback is only made in right-hand drive (RHD). This leaves us with the Kicks e-Power as the only possible model Nissan will reveal for the Philippines.
First launched in Thailand last May 2020, the Kicks e-Power comes with a unique hybrid system. Unlike a conventional parallel hybrid (i.e. Prius and Camry Hybrid), the electric motors power the wheels directly. It also has a 1.2-liter three-cylinder gasoline engine which only serves as a generator to the inverter and electric motors. Overall, the Kicks has 129 PS and 260 Nm of torque.
Assuming the Thai-made Kicks e-Power arrives in the country, our source said that the hybrid crossover will be competitively priced. Combined with the ASEAN Free Trade Agreement (AFTA) and the tax breaks for hybrids, the Kicks e-Power might also give other hybrid models (like the Corolla Cross HEV) a run for their money. Currently, Toyota's crossover hybrid retails for PHP 1,665,000.
There's no word yet as to when the vehicle will be revealed in the country, but the 2022 Manila International Auto Show (MIAS) is only just a few weeks away. Perhaps it might make its official debut during the annual motor show, but it may be unlikely. Nissan usually reserves their major reveals for the CAMPI show.
With Toyota now having 5 hybrid models available in the country (i.e. Prius, Corolla Cross, RAV4, Camry, and Corolla Altis), perhaps Nissan now wants a piece of the hybrid market. Will they be able to sway buyers from the T badge? We'll find out once they officially launch it in the country.