Nissan Hypermini Wins Award
February 5, 2000 - The Nissan Motor Company has designed a small electric car, called the Hypermini, designed specifically as an energy-efficient vehicle for commuting. The Hypermini is a compact, high-performance, lithium-ion battery-powered electric vehicle.
The Hypermini recently won the fourth annual "New Energy Grand Prize." The prize is sponsored by the New Energy Foundation which is associated with Japan's Ministry of International Trade & Industry.
The award recognizes the Hypermini's driving performance. The ceremony will take place at the Tokyo Big Sight, an exhibition and convention center.
Bill Garlin phone: 310/771-5351
Corporate Manager, New Model, Design & Technology PR
Fred Standish phone: 248/488-4227
Manager, R&D, Manufacturing & Environmental PR
(Thanks to EIN Publishing & the Kyodo news service for this item. ET will update this page as soon as we find out more... Remy C ET Ed.)
Nissan Debuts Hypermini Ultra-Compact Concept Electric Vehicle at 1999 Los Angeles International Auto Show
LOS ANGELES (December 30, 1998) – Nissan North America shared its vision of urban motoring in the 21st century with the United States debut of the Nissan Hypermini – an ultra-small concept electric vehicle tailored for real-world, emissions-free driving – during a press conference today at the 1999 Los Angeles International Auto Show.
"Hypermini, with its ultra-compact elliptical design, offers a totally new approach to city driving that transcends conventional notions of the automobile," said John Schutz, director, Nissan Research and Development, Inc. "Hypermini is one of many convenient, enjoyable and comfortable next generation vehicles Nissan is evaluating."
Designed especially for short trips by one or two people, Hypermini is ideal for commuting, shopping and other short-haul activities. In addition to Hypermini's emissions-free electric motor, the vehicle's ultra-compact, two-passenger design offers an intelligent solution to the traffic congestion concerns facing cities around the world.
Traffic survey data indicates that approximately 90 percent of all passenger cars are driven less than 42 miles a day and that roughly 90 percent of compact vehicles carry only one or two occupants. Designed with these trends in mind, Hypermini's interior has ample room to accommodate two people in complete comfort, while a rear cargo compartment provides enough space for everyday items such as groceries, sporting equipment and luggage.
There are two exterior styling packages available for Hypermini – a chic town package and a casual leisure package – both tailored to specific consumer tastes. The Hypermini's "tallboy" body proportions, with the tires positioned at the outer corners, exude a confident stance and feeling of stability. Hypermini makes an impressive styling statement with its glass shell and tall headlamps.
Hypermini's interior design features a "pillars and beams" motif, transmitting a feeling of rigidity and security. A large liquid crystal display (LCD) positioned in the center of the instrument panel enables the driver to access essential information, including air conditioning and stereo status. Control switches are arranged by frequency of use – the most frequently used switches are positioned at the front, while the remaining controls are concealed in the instrument panel, for a clean and sleek appearance.
An offset seating arrangement provides a spacious area in front of the passenger's seat and creates a side pass-through for easy entry and exit from either side of the vehicle. For additional interior and cargo space, the passenger's seat cushion can be folded up. The seat can also be easily removed for even more space. The interior makes extensive use of recycled materials, including bottle plastic and other materials recycled from scrapped vehicles.
Comfort and Convenience
Hypermini is equipped with a full range of comfort and convenience amenities, including a state-of-the-art air conditioning system that can be operated while the batteries are being charged to pre-cool or pre-heat the cabin before the car is driven. This feature ensures a comfortable interior climate on short trips where people often reach their destination before a conventional air conditioner begins to function. Other features include a keyless remote entry system, which can operate the air conditioning precool/preheat function and a tilt/sliding glass power sunroof.
An advanced communications system makes it easy for passengers to obtain a variety of information, including traffic reports, parking availability, charging locations and digital navigation/mapping technology. This information is displayed on the instrument panel LCD.
Driving Performance and Safety
Like the Nissan Altra EV, Hypermini utilizes lightweight Lithium-ion batteries offering high energy and power densities in a compact unit. Hypermini can travel nearly 80 miles on a single charge in urban driving conditions. Smooth acceleration characteristics and a top speed of 60 miles per hour enable Hypermini to comfortably coexist with conventional vehicles in city driving environments.
A low center of gravity and superb driving stability have been achieved by placing the batteries at the lowest position on the vehicle and placing the tires at the outer corners. Vehicle efficiency is further enhanced by tires manufactured of a rubber compound that reduces energy loss. The result is exceptional road-gripping performance and reduced rolling resistance.
Hypermini includes safety features such as the application of Nissan's Zone Body concept, dual air bags and an Anti-lock Braking System (ABS).
Hypermini uses inductive charging to re-energize its Lithium-ion battery pack. The non-contact charging system utilizes a plastic paddle with a built-in coil that generates a high frequency magnetic field. A portable battery charger can be stored on board, enabling batteries to be charged anywhere an ordinary electric outlet can be found.
Recycling and Economy
To ensure effective utilization of finite natural resources, Hypermini makes extensive use of recycled materials and is 90 percent recyclable by weight. This high recycling rate has been achieved through vigorous application of easily recyclable materials and adoption of easy-to-dismantle structures.
Nissan estimates that Hypermini can be operated at one-fifth the cost of a gasoline-powered vehicle.