In addition to improving air quality by lowering or eliminating polluted engine emissions, today’s automakers are working to improve the quality of the air inside their new offerings.
Nissan Motor Company has announced that it will offer its new “Forest Air” climate control system on its 2011 model Infiniti M’s. The Forest Air system will offer humidity control and an air purification system that is capable of detecting and eliminating offensive odors in the vehicle’s passenger cabin. Infinity says it chose the name “Forest Air” because its engineers “looked to the forest for inspiration” and claims that “most people rank forest air as the cleanest and most refreshing.”
The system is designed to automatically adjust humidity levels to prevent the formation of dry, stale air typically associated with traditional air conditioning systems. The system also prevents windshield fogging through the use of sensors on the interior and exterior surfaces of the glass. According to Nissan spokesman, Kyle Bazemore, as long as the air conditioning system is engaged for either heating or cooling, it will automatically adjust the interior humidity to prevent window fogging.
Bazemore says that the air delivery system is designed to modulate the air flow as it enters the passenger cabin. The effect, he says, is more like a gentle breeze than the forced air blast produced by standard automotive air conditioning systems. Despite the gentle delivery, Bazemore says the Forest Air system cools and heats as quickly and efficiently as traditional systems.
Special sensors automatically shut down the air intake system when an offensive odor is detected outside the vehicle and any objectionable odors detected inside the cabin are quickly eliminated by the systems Plasmacluster air purifiers. The Plasmacluster system generates high-density, electrically charged ions to quickly neutralize odors and also reduces bacteria, mold, allergens and viruses in the air. As with any air purification system, the Plasmacluster system requires periodic filter changes.
The Plasmacluster air purification system uses high-efficiency filters that incorporate natural grape-seed polyphenol to prevent allergens from entering the system. According to Infinity, “The effect of cedar pollen allergens, for example, is cut by 88% compared to a regular filter.”
The automaker claims that its new Forest Air system is designed to keep passengers comfortable and the drive alert but relaxed. The result, says Infiniti, is a more enjoyable driving experience overall.
The Infinity M will be in dealer showrooms in the spring of 2010.