Mazda will begin leasing its new Demio EV in October, beginning with 100 units that will go to local governments and corporate customers near the company’s Japanese headquarters. The electric version of Mazda’s Demio hatchback (known outside of Japan as the Mazda2) features a 20 kWh, 346 V Li-ion battery pack and a 75 kW motor. Mazda has measured the range at up to 124 miles.
The Demio EV uses a permanent-magnet three-phase AC synchronous motor featuring a coil-switching system. Conventional electric motors provide either high torque at low revolutions, or low torque at high revolutions. According to Mazda, the coil switching system enables the motor to have both of these characteristics, and also allows it to be smaller than an ordinary motor with the same power output.
The Demio EV’s Li-ion battery uses 18650-type cells connected both in parallel and in series, giving it a high energy density, the company says. Thanks to the compact battery and the coil-switching motor, the new EV offers the same cabin space and cargo volume as the gas model, and weighs only 419 lb more.