Nissan ESFLOW concept

13 Apr 2011 | 3,097 views | No Comment
By Don Hammonds For every auto show, there's one car  that gets away from us. As diligent as we at Automobile Journal try to be as we cover auto shows, there's always one astonishing car or concept that we inadvertently overlook. For this year's recently concluded Geneva Motor Show in Switzerland, the choice has to be Nissan's remarkable ESFLOW all-electric sports car concept. As diehard lovers of all things automotive, we took one look at this one and asked,"So when is this one  going into production?"  It uses technology Nissan already had on hand from the Nissan Leaf, considered by many to be the first true, mass produced all-electric family sedan. ESFLOW is a two seat, rear wheel drive two seat sports car powered by two electric motors that each drive a wheel. It has laminated lithium-ion batteries mounted low for best weight distribution, and Nissan says it can hit 0-100km/h in under 5 seconds. It can go over 240 kilometers on one electrical charge. "ESFLOW has been created from the ground up as a pure electric vehicle, to give an idea how a Zero Emission sports car of the future might look. Living ecologically has often been seen as an act of austerity - to save one's environmental conscience sacrifices must be made. ESFLOW is here to address that misconception,"  a Nissan news release says. "Owning an ecologically sound car does not have to come at the expense of driving enjoyment. The briefest glance at the ESFLOW is enough to tell you what kind of car it is: a long hood leading into a steeply raked, wrap around windscreen, the compact cabin placing the occupants bang on the car's center of gravity, hunched arches over ultra-low profile tires wrapped around six spoke wheels. ESFLOW is unmistakably a sports car, and those in the know will recognize its heritage - hints of classic and contemporary Nissan sports cars abound."      There's no denying that the ESFLOW resembles Nissan's 370Z, so it's easy to wonder if what we're really looking at here is the next Z car. Could it be? But there's somuch distinctiveness in ESFLOW's look that it certainly deserves to stand alone as a whole new entry.        When you look at ESFLOW, you'll probably notice that i'ts got a pretty high waistline. But having that waistline, Nissan says,  "allows  strong, yet unobtrusive roll bars incorporated in to the structure behind the seats to safely take the entire load of the car in the event of a roll over, negating the need for obtrusive, thick, reinforced A-pillars and the blind spots they inevitably create." This almost unobstructed view ahead will not be unfamiliar to fighter pilots, and just as such pilots speak of "strapping their planes on to their backs", we hope ESFLOW owners will also feel the car to be an extension of their bodies, reacting to their slightest whims. The driver must be at the centre of the sports car both physically and metaphorically. The Body The ESFLOW is undoubtedly an attractive car. Crisp, clean lines not only convey the purity of its sporting potential, but suggest the clarity of electric power. Byh the way, Nissan says the ESFLOW's color scheme "is inspired by glaciers - highly reflective solidified liquid with blue tints in its shadows. Like its ZEV concept forebears and contemporary stable mate the ESFLOW's headlights and Nissan emblem are tinted cool blue. The six spoke wheels contain blue carbon inserts while the same material adorns the side sill, roof mounted lip spoiler and lower rear bumper." "Blue LEDs accentuate the futuristic lights slashed into the bodywork both front and rear" Nissan says. " Where the Nissan LEAF's protrusive headlights are used to guide airflow around the door mirrors, this is not needed on ESFLOW as the mirrors have been replaced with minute rear view cameras at the base of its A-pillars. The ESFLOW's front lights do protect a secret of their own however: flip out charging points built in to the air ducts beneath." Nissan says that "Ecological minimalism need not come at the expense of luxury. The cabin of the ESFLOW is clean and open and weight saving has been a priority throughout its design, but it is still a comfortable and pleasant place to sit. By far the heaviest components in modern cars' interiors are the steel framed, thickly upholstered and increasingly motorized seats. In ESFLOW the seats are sculpted into the rear bulkhead of the car, negating the need for a heavy frame. This of course means that they are immobile, but this is of no consequence as the fly-by-wire steering and pedals adjust electrically to the best spot to suit each individual driver's size and preferred driving position." A very, very cool car! The seats themselves are upholstered in gold leather and perforated gold suede while the doors are trimmed in dark blue leather and suede. The blue and gold motif, the colour of sparks, is continued across the dashboard, which is also adorned with silver carbon trim, and features four multifunction illuminated LCD displays.

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