Spanish automaker SEAT continues to explore helping the development of green cars in its native country, not only recently hosting the closing event of a research project focused on introducing electric vehicles to this European nation, but also unveiling the Leon Verde, a plug-in hybrid with an electric driving only range of 50 km (31 miles).
The Leon Verde, according to SEAT, “is equipped with a 75 kW zero-emissions electric motor as well as a 1.4l 90 kW internal combustion engine with a 6-speed gearbox adapted and optimised for hybrid driving.” The vehicle’s electric drivetrain is powered by an 8.8 kWh Ficosa battery, and has an integrated advanced cooling system for the optimization of heat management. It is based upon the new SEAT Lion.
The vehicle, when connected to a local power grid, it can also feed electricity back into the network as needed. It is equipped with what’s described as
advanced HMI (Human Machine Interface) systems integrated into a smartphone app which connects to the vehicle via NFC-CAN-Wifi to manage the main functions such as energy consumption, battery status, reserve management for recharges or estimated savings in CO2, during electric mode. These systems have given rise to two patents.
Additionally, a special smart system has been developed that’s said to help improve the efficiency experience those behind the wheel. The system, in the form of a device, “predicts habitual routes and detects drivers’ mood-associated driving styles so as to optimise energy consumption and cut CO2 emissions.”
The project SEAT was taking part in, CENIT VERDE, spanned over four years. It involved more than 800 professionals from 16 companies and 14 public bodies from different spheres that “joined forces to develop sustainable alternatives in automotive, infrastructures and energy.” Through the resulting study, not only was the Leon Verde prototype developed, but also serious headway was made into various fields ranging from battery research, through recharge infrastructure and vehicle communication with the electricity grid, to vehicle integration into the electric system.