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Nissan picks Thailand as first export market for unique hybrid

Automaker positions e-Power cars as alternative to electrics in Southeast Asia

Bangkok during rush hour. Nissan will bring its own gasoline-electric hybrids to Thailand, which is promoting low-emission vehicles. (Photo by Takaki Kashiwabara)

TOKYO -- Nissan Motor will release a car powered by its proprietary hybrid drive system in Thailand next year, marking the automaker's first time selling the alternative to electric vehicles outside Japan.

The e-Power system uses the gasoline engine solely to charge the battery for the electric motor that turns the wheels. This setup, different from hybrids like Toyota Motor's Prius, combines the range of conventional vehicles and the acceleration of electric cars.

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