Kia to debut 48-volt diesel mild-hybrid powertrain

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"Kia's mild-hybrid powertrain is created to fit seamlessly into consumers' lives, with no plug-in recharging required". The new powertrain, called EcoDynamics+, reduces Carbon dioxide emissions by supplementing acceleration with electric power from an additional 48V battery and extending combustion engine off time using a new mild-hybrid starter-generator unit.

Kia says that the compact packaging of the system means that it'll be relatively straightforward to install in the brand's current model ranges. The system switches seamlessly between two modes: motor and generator.

Adding electric assistance to the Sportage's diesel engine upon take off and under partial loads, the electric motor provides 10kW of power and is said to improve overall efficiency by 4 per cent. In "generator" mode, the system harvests kinetic energy from the vehicle during in-gear deceleration and braking and uses the power to recharge the batteries.

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Kia has announced plans to introduce new mild hybrid technology to its line-up, similar to the drivetrains now utilised by Audi.

The diesel mild-hybrid powertrain will enable Kia to offer cleaner diesel engines. It does so by extending the "off time" of the start/stop system in traffic as well as reducing the engine load on the diesel while driving. According to Car Magazine, the Korean automaker is making the system available on its diesel-engine equipped Sportage and has plans to expand that to gasoline engines next year.

This battery is also able to connect to the vehicle's on-board power supply, meaning the regular 12V battery and the starter motor can be smaller. The MHSG can then quickly restart the engine the moment the driver presses the accelerator pedal.

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Kia says the system can be adapted for front, rear and four-wheel drive vehicles, and will also be adapted for use with petrol engines.

More detailed plans for the roll-out of its new mild-hybrid technology in the United Kingdom will be announced by Kia in due course.

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