MOTORING NEWS - Last year's Leaf overhaul not only delivered a huge range bump, more power and more torque, but it also came wrapped in a much less awkward body style than the vehicle that preceded it.
Nissan treated the world's best-selling electric car to a sporty makeover in July and has now revealed a powerful track variant - the Nismo RC.
Nissan's motor sport division has intensified power and torque output, while treating the new all-wheel drive RC to an aggressive restyling.
"The all-new Leaf Nismo RC shows how we're setting our sights even higher when it comes to raw power and performance - making electric vehicles even more exciting for customers," said Daniele Schillaci, head of global sales at Nissan.
"It's our most thrilling expression yet of the philosophy of Nissan Intelligent Mobility."
At each end of the car's chassis is an electric motor, which combines to produce 240kW and 640Nm of instant torque to the wheels. That's more than double the figures of the first Leaf Nismo RC in 2011. This allows for a standstill to 100km sprint in 3,4 seconds.
Some drivetrain technology from the Leaf road car has made its way to the RC, including the batteries positioned in the middle of the car for optimum weight distribution and the inverters that sit with the motors to the front and rear. Nissan says that power is independently managed at each axle so that the tyre with the most grip on the tarmac can be supplied with instant torque.
The RC has been given a silver and black paint job with red accenting. It measures 4 546mm in length and crouches low at 1 212mm from roof to tarmac.
A full carbon fibre racing monocoque design means that the car's weight comes in at just 1 220kg. The body has removable front and rear sections and an adjustable rear wing.
The Leaf Nismo RC made its track debut in early December at the Fuji International Speedway for the annual Nismo Festival, together with Nissan's new Formula E electric race car.
Only six Leaf Nismo RC cars are scheduled for production. They will be sent around the world as demonstration models for Nissan electric vehicle racing technology.
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