Kia Sportage to introduce 48-volt mild-hybrid drivetrain

Kia 48V Mild Hybrid Diesel powertrain

In a bid to reduce emissions, Kia is delivering a new 48V mild hybrid diesel powerplant to its United Kingdom cars this year (Kia say in the second half of 2018) initially in the Kia Sportage but likely to be offered more extensively across the Kia range.

"Kia's mild-hybrid powertrain is created to fit seamlessly into consumers' lives, with no plug-in recharging required". By electronically controlling the MHSG using the inverter, the system switches seamlessly between two modes: "motor" or "generator".

Kia said this technology offers a cost-to-performance ratio compared to full hybrid powertrains and will enable it to offer a cleaner diesel engine. The compact design means the technology can be integrated into many existing vehicle and powertrain architectures.

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In the diesel Sportage, Kia says the 48-volt system improves fuel efficiency by 4 percent in Worldwide Harmonized Light Vehicles Test Procedures and 7 percent in the New European Driving Cycle tests.

An electric motor adds 10kW - that's 13bhp - to boost performance under hard acceleration, but it also adds assistance under part throttle loads to take strain off the internal combustion engine. In "generator" mode, the system collects kinetic energy from the vehicle during deceleration and braking and uses the power to recharge the batteries.

Kia will launch an updated Sportage SUV in the second half of 2018, debuting its first mild-hybrid diesel drivetrain ahead of the roll-out in other models next year.

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The mild hybrid system will eventually expanded for use beyond just diesel engines, which means that we'll likely see it bolted onto a gas engine in the U.S.in the not too distant future.

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

Battery power can also be used to provide a new "Moving Stop & Start" function. The MHSG can then quickly restart the engine the moment the driver presses the accelerator pedal.

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