Infiniti’s new metal at the 2011 Frankfurt motor show was a special FX SUV co-developed with reigning F1 champion Sebastian Vettel, but the Japanese manufacturer has also unveiled a sketch of its forthcoming electric vehicle.
Hang on! Hasn’t Infiniti already released a sketch of its upcoming EV?
Yes it has, but the production date has slipped from 2013 to 2014 so a bit of PR teasing is needed to keep the press and public interested. The new image is a little clearer than the last blurry shot and shows a saloon-style body. Nissan and Infiniti design director Shiro Nakamura admitted to CAR that the company’s first EV platform (as used in the Leaf and underpinning this new Infiniti) is quite similar to that of conventional petrol and diesel cars, so the first generation of its EVs will also appear quite conventional.
Infiniti promises that its new EV will be ‘befitting the brand’s promise of Inspired Performance’ and be ‘a stylish, high performance five-seat luxury vehicle’. Beyond a different bodystyle to the Leaf, the Infiniti EV will also use a more powerful electric motor to give it the performance worthy of a brand that aims itself at BMW. But while the Nissan Leaf is built in Sunderland and Japan, the Infiniti EV will only roll out of a Japanese factory.
The new EV is part of Infiniti’s plans to take 10% of the global luxury market by 2016, a huge leap forward from today. By 2016 the company promises its global model line-up will have expanded to ten cars; that includes this new EV, the new JX crossover, and the Mercedes-based Etherea, a rival for the BMW 1-series.
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