Infiniti Could Reveal a New Electric Model in January

By · September 22, 2017

The Inifniti LE all-electric concept was first shown in 2012. The company is now said to be working on a new EV for 2019.

After years of promises dating back more than five years, Infiniti appears once again ready to introduce an all-electric luxury vehicle. Its previous Infiniti LE, which had become a fixture of major auto shows, was killed in 2014. Alfonsa Albaisa, Infiniti’s design chief, this week confirmed that the luxury marque will launch a standalone EV in 2019. Albaisa said it would be a new model—not a luxury version of the Nissan LEAF or an electric version of an existing gas-powered vehicle.

When the LE was unveiled in 2012, it featured a 24-kWh lithium-ion battery pack identical to the unit found in the existing LEAF. The LE’s 134 horsepower and 240 pound-feet of torque were more powerful than what was offered in the LEAF. Times have changed since 2012. Today, a new competitive electric vehicle is expected to offer about 200 miles of range.

Infiniti has not yet released any details about the possible new Infiniti EV.

Speaking at the recent Monterey Car Week—where Infiniti was showing a classic-inspired electric racer concept—Albaisa said the company would bring a new electric concept to the next Detroit auto show.

Roland Krueger, Infiniti’s chief executive, told Autocar that a new electric model was already in prototype form. “We want it to have a unique Infiniti driving experience,” he said. “There are lots of engineering competencies we can tap into and utilize.” Infiniti is the luxury brand for Nissan, which makes the LEAF—the best-selling EV of all time.

Nearly a year ago, Bloomberg reported that Infiniti was internally discussing the right timing for introducing an electric car in China. At the time, Bloomberg indicated that Infiniti wanted to leverage Nissan’s investment in batteries and electric powertrains—and could move “very fast” to offer an electric after it decides to go ahead.

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