TATESHINA, Japan -- When cruising along at about 65 kph on a sheet of super-slick ice, it pays to have an ultraresponsive vehicle stability system that won't skate you right off the road.
Nissan's new e-4orce all-wheel-drive technology, offered in the new Ariya electric crossover, keeps the driver in control, even in situations like this, thanks to its sophisticated software and motor setup.
On a recent test of the system on a frozen lake, high in the snow-draped mountains of central Japan, an e-4orce-equipped Ariya sprung quickly off the start with zero slippage, braked with ease in an unwavering beeline and proved nearly impossible to oversteer on an icy skid pad.
The all-electric awd system debuted last summer and is so far deployed in only two nameplates -- the Ariya and the X-Trail sold in Europe and Japan. But expect to see more of it as Nissan positions e-4orce as one of the killer apps in its coming wave of electrified vehicles.
The technology is tailored to make the most of electric-motor mobility and can be deployed in Nissan's all-electric vehicles or its e-Power hybrid models. In these powertrains, only electric motors turn the wheels, allowing for ultraquick, super-accurate tweaking of torque.