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Home » Green Car News » Pininfarina Electric Car

Pininfarina NIDO electric car

24 May 2010

Pininfarina NIDO electric car

It is the first prototype of the "Nido Development Programme", a modular platform from which new types of hybrid and electric cars will be developed

To mark the celebrations of its 80th anniversary, Pininfarina unveils the Nido EV, the first running prototype of the "Nido Development Programme", the project for an electric car conceived, designed and built entirely by the Pininfarina Style and Engineering Centre of Cambiano (Turin). The Nido EV bears witness to the skills and experience that Pininfarina has built up in the development of electric vehicles, paying particular attention to the Segment A city cars that will populate the streets of the future to make our towns more pleasant to live in.

The Nido EV is one outcome of the pioneering, far-sighted decision taken by Pininfarina three years ago, to focus on sustainable mobility, approaching it from various angles: not only the adoption of a hybrid or electric driveline, but also research focusing on reducing consumption and "wheel to wheel" emissions, the use of alternative materials that are lighter and recyclable, active and passive safety, and IT, which will have to combine the sustainable use of means of transport with intelligent traffic management.

The exterior design of the Nido EV takes up and updates the lines and volumes that won the Nido of 2004 the award for the Most Beautiful Car in the World in the Prototypes and concept cars category, the Compasso d'Oro 2008 and a place in the temple of modern art, the MoMA of New York. On the other hand, the interiors of this first Nido EV project are still those of a technical prototype, with no attempt at stylistic research.

The Nido EV is a veritable laboratory designed both to explore the electrification of a small city car and to develop a modular floorpan. The body structure of this first prototype is a tubular steel frame, while the final version will have an aluminium space frame. The structure was designed to adapt to four different, completely electric or hybrid vehicles: 2-seater, 2+2, pickup and light van.

The Nido EV, a small city car (marginally larger than a Smart), has 2 seats and a permanent magneto rear engine. The "Nido Development Programme" also envisages the development of two more, slightly larger versions: the first will be a hybrid with an endothermic engine positioned at the front and an electrical engine at the rear; the second will be electric with a front engine. In both cases, the position of the engine makes it possible to increase roominess to seat 4, and to improve weight distribution. The Nido EV prototype is powered by a Zebra Z5 Ni-NaCl battery, which guarantees very high levels of safety and reliability. When fully charged, it has a range of 140 km and a top speed of 120 km/h (limited electronically), and accelerates 0-60 km/h in 6.7 seconds. The environmental compatibility of the Zebra Z5 battery is enhanced by the total absence of harmful or polluting chemical substances and the fact that it is 100% recyclable at the end of its life, in fact the batteries are recycled in the foundry and used to produce stainless steel. The prototype is also equipped with "green" tyres, developed by Pirelli paying particular attention to safety, environmental sustainability and saving.

Where climate control is concerned, the "Nido Development Programme" will use an AC electrical compressor and a high voltage electric heater making it possible to implement automatic control strategies which will help to reduce consumption in most conditions. The Programme will also cover research into solutions and light-weight components with a high mechanical/electrical efficiency, and energy saving solutions (batteries with outstanding charging performance) and braking systems specifically for hybrid/electrical applications.


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