Kia confirms 48-volt mild hybrid Sportage is coming

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With the new unit Kia claims to be the first manufacturer to offer consumers hybrid, plug-in hybrid, battery-electric and 48-volt technology across its model line-up. In the 1st mode, when accelerating the vehicle gets up to 10 kW extra electricity, thereby facilitates the work of the main engine and as a effect decreases the number of harmful emissions.

New Kia Ceed will be second model to gain hybrid tech. Because the MHSG integrates directly with the engine, driving the crankshaft via a belt, there is little need to repackage the engine bay. In "motor" mode, under acceleration, it uses battery charge to add torque to the engine to aid acceleration. When decelerating, and inverter switches the current of the motor, effectively turning it into a generator to top up the 0.46kWh battery.

The battery recovers energy from the diesel engine's crankshaft when the auto is decelerating or driving downhill.

The system is controlled by an advanced Electronic Control Unit (ECU), which calculates the most efficient use of the available energy, and adjusts accordingly, taking into account the amount of charge remaining in the car's batteries.

Kia's latest electrified drivetrain follows the brand's announcement of plans to launch 16 advanced powertrain vehicles by 2025, including five new hybrids, five plug-in hybrids, five battery-electric vehicles and - in 2020 - a new fuel-cell EV. The 48 volt generator recharges the vehicle's battery when the diesel engine is running. The MHSG can then quickly restart the engine the moment the driver presses the accelerator pedal.

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The system uses a mild-hybrid starter/generator (MHSG) unit which replaces the standard alternator found in 12V vehicles.

In most cases, the battery will sit below the floor, and in a further packaging boost, will encourage development of smaller, more compact engine components such as the traditional starter motor - owed to the fact it takes strain off the engine. If the battery has sufficient charge, the combustion engine turns off automatically during deceleration and braking. In "motor", the powertrain reduces engine load and emissions, and in "generator", it harvests kinetic energy during in-gear deceleration and braking, using it to recharge the batteries.

EcoDynamics+ can be used in petrol and diesel cars with front, rear or four-wheel drive, so it could appear in any future Kia model.

Details of the pricing, performance and specification of the new Kia Sportage SUV have yet to be announced.

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