TOKYO - Nissan Motor Co. has launched a fuel-efficient Bluebird sedan in Japan powered by a new 1.8-liter direct-injection gasoline engine mated to a continuously variable transmission.
Nissan says the combination, which it claims is a world first in a production vehicle, yields a 50 percent improvement in fuel economy and a 35 percent reduction in CO2 emissions over a conventional engine of the same capacity - while still improving driving performance.
The 130-hp unit generates maximum output of 128 pounds-feet of torque at just 2,800 rpm. It features the Nissan Torque Demand system, which automatically changes combustion patterns in response to throttle demand. This contributes to low fuel consumption and improved performance.
The CVT provides smooth, powerful acceleration and gives much better fuel economy than a conventional automatic.
Starting in 2000, Nissan will produce a new direct-injection diesel engine and a transmission at its plants in Barcelona and Madrid.