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Nissan says hybrid Pathfinder on the way

Oil-free: The next Nissan Pathfinder will be more fuel efficient but it wont be thanks to a diesel engine.

Supercharged four-pot Nissan Pathfinder to cut fuel bill by 20 per cent

1 Nov 2013

NISSAN will expand its Pathfinder line-up with a more fuel-sipping version next year, although it won’t wear a diesel engine under the bonnet.

Instead, the Pathfinder Hybrid will mate a battery-powered electric motor to a supercharged 2.5-litre four-cylinder engine, a move that will help the seven-seat SUV cut its fuel use to around 7.5 litres per 100 kilometres – about the same as a five-seat hatchback.

Due on sale in Australia before the middle of next year, the petrol-electric Pathfinder provides almost the same amount of performance as the V6 version that went on sale this week.

Where the 3.5-litre V6 engine in the Pathfinder on sale now produces 190kW of power and 325Nm of torque, the hybrid version is expected to produce 184kW of power and a slightly more robust 330Nm of torque.

On paper, the smaller and lighter 2.5-litre engine under the hybrid’s bonnet produces about 227kW of power, while the electric motor attached to the Pathfinder’s continuously variable transmission adds another 15kW.

However, while performance is on par with the V6, the addition of a bank of batteries beneath the two third-row seats down the back of the soft-roader means the hybrid version carries an extra 80kg of mass, pushing the vehicle’s kerb weight over the 2000kg mark.

Nissan Australia was not keen to talk in much detail about the hybrid, although in the US the vehicle is priced at a 20 per cent premium to the entry-level front-wheel-drive Pathfinder.

That would mean the Australian version could carry up to a $8000 premium when it goes on sale here, pushing the price of the entry-level, front-drive version up to about $47,000.

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