The INFINITI Project Black S


October 2, 2018 By Mike
Last updated on October 2, 2018

  • Project Black S development prototype with world-first dual-hybrid powertrain
  • Evolving collaboration between INFINITI and the Renault Sport Formula One™ Team
  • Inspired by Formula One®, INFINITI is developing world-first dual-hybrid technology specifically for the road
  • Smart energy management and supersport performance from an electrified, motorsport-inspired powertrain
  • Performance-biased Project Black S prototype a springboard for high-performance engineering and a motorsport-inspired interior

Based on the INFINITI Q60 sports coupe, ‘Project Black S’ is an engineering test-bed exploring how Renault Sport Formula One™ Team-inspired dual-hybrid powertrain technology could be deployed in a road car. The Q60 Project Black S development prototype represents the maximum level of performance, dynamic capability, effective aerodynamics and intelligent energy management offered by INFINITI.

Moving on from the Geneva 2017 design study of the same name, the Project Black S prototype now boasts many developments. These include weight reduction, a motorsport-inspired interior, an aero-effective and purposeful bodywork update, and significant powertrain advancements with a world-first energy recovery system that harvests energy under braking and acceleration. The result of INFINITI’s Alliance partnerships, Project Black S represents an ongoing learning venture between INFINITI and the Renault Sport Formula One Team, exploring the potential for motorsport-inspired products and processes.

The world-first dual-hybrid technology is derived from Formula One and engineered specifically for the road to create a potential new performance flagship. It also illustrates INFINITI’s commitment to developing exciting high-performance electrified powertrains.

A focused, agile team of designers and engineers has enabled the rapid development of early prototypes, with feasibility and performance testing due to continue into 2019. A test-bed based on the INFINITI Q60 and its 400 hp ‘VR30’ twin-turbo V6 engine, the Formula One®-inspired dual-hybrid system combines supersport performance with smart energy management. Recuperating heat and kinetic energy, the system could transform the performance of the brand’s road cars.

The VR30 engine has been developed using two heat energy harvesting systems (‘MGU-H’: motor generator unit – heat) which develop electricity under acceleration. Paired with a kinetic harvesting system (‘MGU-K’: motor generator unit – kinetic), generating electricity under braking, Project Black S is a unique and exciting electrified performance hybrid prototype.

Designed and engineered in collaboration with the Renault Sport Formula One Team, the Project Black S prototype represents the ultimate expression of INFINITI DNA. The development prototype builds on the organic, artistic design of the Q60 sports coupe, giving it greater aerodynamic efficiency and high levels of downforce, as well as a functional motorsport-inspired look. Its high-performance design is matched by the creative packaging and engineering of its unique dual-hybrid powertrain.

“INFINITI has reached another milestone on its road to electrification. Building on the strength and success of the electric vehicle expertise of the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi alliance, INFINITI is showing the Project Black S, a high-performance prototype with F1 technology resulting from collaboration within the Alliance. The Project Black S represents the very top end of electrification in the Alliance portfolio, and is another example of INFINITI’s entrepreneurial spirit on its journey to electrification from 2021 onward. ‘Project Black S’ utilises high power and smart energy management from advanced powertrains, a thrilling dynamic capability on road and track, and a performance-oriented aesthetic. A collaborative venture between INFINITI and the Renault Sport Formula One Team, the Project Black S prototype is a test-bed for new ideas and technologies, demonstrating how our Alliance partnerships could make our ambitious visions a reality.”

Roland Krueger, President, INFINITI