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Archive for the ‘Nissan’ Category

PostHeaderIcon Money Talks: The 10 Most Valuable Car Brands In The World

Ford F-150

Determining the value of a car brand can be a tricky exercise. There are so many variables to consider that ultimately, the results may differ from one study or another. What we do know is that, at the very least, the cream always rises to the top. The standings may be different depending on who the author of the study is, but it’s pretty much the same automakers making up a majority of the list.

In this exercise, we’re taking a look at the ten most valuable car brands, at least through the eyes of Interbrand, an independent agency that specializes in determining the world’s most valuable brands. Obviously, such a task involves creating a specific set of formulas and calculations using a variety of available information, including a company’s financial forecast and then using it with its own in-house-developed “role of brand” and “brand strength” calculations. If it sounds complicated, it’s because it is, especially in the current automotive climate where buzz words like “electrification,” “ride-sharing,” and “autonomous driving technology” have staked bigger pieces of influence among automakers of all shapes and sizes.

Even then, there are also certain requirements that each automaker has to meet to be eligible to be included in the list. These requirements include having a sales presence on at least three continents and having a third of a company’s revenue coming from its home market. Ultimately, it all boils down to a lot of tech jargon that’s a little above my head. What I can tell you, though, is that the final list that Interbrand came up with is both expected and revealing. A few notable names made it in predictable spots while a few surprise inclusions definitely raised our eyebrows.

Continue after the jump to read the full story.

10. Porsche


Money Talks: The 10 Most Valuable Car Brands In The World - image 644852

Brand value: $10.13 billion

Top-selling model: Porsche 911

It seems crazy to think that at one point in the last 20 years, Porsche was a struggling automaker that somehow couldn’t get out of its own way. Things have definitely changed since then, and a big part of that is tied into the German automaker’s decision to enter a market that it previously shied away from. Taking a risk, Porsche ultimately decided to build the Cayenne SUV, and the rest is history. Today, Porsche cracks the top 10 list of “most valuable auto brands in the world” for good reason. It’s arguably one of the most beloved automakers in the world, and it’s rounded its model lineup to include a performance saloon known as the Panamera to go with a steady diet of sports cars led by the Porsche 911 Turbo.

9. Volkswagen


Money Talks: The 10 Most Valuable Car Brands In The World - image 569578

Brand value: $11.52 billion

Top-selling model: Volkswagen Beetle

If you’re surprised that Volkswagen is so far down on this list, don’t be. This is Volkswagen the automaker, not the auto conglomerate that owns three brands on this list. On the bright side, VW actually posted improvements in terms of its brand value compared to last year. It’s incremental growth of just one percent, but it’s growth compared to 2016 when it actually posted a drop of one percent in value. Still, it could’ve been a lot better for Volkswagen had it not gotten itself mixed into the Dieselgate scandal. Look for a better year ahead for the German automaker when the calendar flips to 2018.

8. Nissan


Money Talks: The 10 Most Valuable Car Brands In The World - image 656181

Brand value: $11.54 billion

Top-selling model: Nissan Sentra

If there was an automaker that earned its place in this ranking, it has to be Nissan. That’s not an indictment on the automaker’s past, but a celebration of what it has achieved in recent years. Between launching models that have been positively received and maintaining a level-headed approach in an industry that’s continues to evolve like this one, Nissan has turned in one growth year after another, culminating in a four-percent growth for this year that was good enough to land it in the top 10 list of most valuable car brands in the world.

7. Audi


Money Talks: The 10 Most Valuable Car Brands In The World - image 635406

Brand value: $12.02 billion

Top-selling model: Audi A4

The Nissan of Europe, or is Nissan the Audi of Japan? Either way, the comparison fits because Audi always seems to be third fiddle in Europe to BMW and Mercedes-Benz, just like Nissan plays the same role in Japan to Toyota and Honda. That’s not a slight towards either Audi or Nissan because both companies have thrived doing their own thing. In Audi’s case, it has managed to build up a brand that’s worth $12.02 billion, becoming the most valuable auto brand under the Volkswagen Group. This year, Audi even posted a two-percent growth that probably should be bigger had it not been weighed down by Dieselgate. Still, look for Audi to remain competitive to BMW and Mercedes-Benz, as it always has been in recent years.

6. Hyundai


Money Talks: The 10 Most Valuable Car Brands In The World - image 533707

Brand Value: $13.2 billion

Top-selling model: Hyundai Elantra

It says a lot about Hyundai’s growth as an automaker that it finds itself on this list with some of the most established brands in the auto industry. This wasn’t always the case though, as the Korean automaker’s surge up to mainstream popularity didn’t happen until the last decade. But, thanks to an aggressive push towards relevancy and the introduction of popular models like the Elantra, Tucson, and Santa Fe, Hyundai’s ascension up the ranks is looking less fluky and more of a result of hard work and dedication. Don’t even be surprised if, by next year, Hyundai finds itself in going up the ladder into a more prominent spot on this list. That’s the kind of outlook we’re now expecting from a company that already increased its value year-on-year by at least five percent.

5. Ford


Money Talks: The 10 Most Valuable Car Brands In The World - image 700456

Brand value: $13.64 billion

Top-selling model: Ford F-Series Trucks

Ford is the only American automaker on this list. It is a little bit embarrassing to see what’s become of General Motors and Chrysler, but at least Ford is representing the US here to a certain extent. The good news for the Blue Oval is that it posted a five-percent increase in its own value and getting it up to $13.64 billion. The bad news is that a lot of the automakers its ahead of have as good a chance as any to move up the rankings for next year’s list at the expense of Ford. I personally don’t think that’s going to happen because of the company’s strong foothold in one of the world’s biggest markets, but then again, stranger things have happened so it’s not a certainty that the automaker will retain its spot in the rankings. It is worth pointing out though that of the ten auto brands that made it on this list, only Ford can boast of having a pickup truck as its top-selling model. That counts for a win, right?

4. Honda


Money Talks: The 10 Most Valuable Car Brands In The World - image 651046

Brand value: $22.70 billion

Top-selling model: Honda Civic

Barring the unlikely event of seeing something catastrophic come out of Honda, it looks like a certainty that Honda’s going to retain its status as the fourth most valuable auto brand in the world for the next few years. That’s because it’s brand value of $22.70 billion is on an island by itself. Ford needs to almost double its value to be able to even sniff Honda’s, and conversely, the Japanese automaker needs to double its own value in order to come close to competing against the company that sits third on this list. Still, a value of $22.7 billion is nothing to sneeze at, especially when it comes as a result of a three-percent growth compared to its value from the previous year. The timeless popularity of the Honda Civic has a lot to do with Honda being where it is, but so does the continuing presence of its robust crossover and SUV lineup that’s led by the CR-V. Look for Honda to remain one of the most valuable auto brands in the world for all the reasons I just mentioned.

3. BMW


Money Talks: The 10 Most Valuable Car Brands In The World - image 629375

Brand value: $41.62 billion

Top-selling model: BMW 3 Series

Well, that was a huge leap, wasn’t it? From Honda’s $22.7 billion in brand value, we move up to BMW’s, which has a brand value of $41.62 billion. This is the power of what BMW has to offer and the niche it has carved for itself – sportier than an Audi, less uptight than a Mercedes – tells you exactly how the German automaker has built up its own brand to become a force to be reckoned with it in the industry. It still has a few miles to go before it can catch up to its biggest rival, but rest assured, the blueprint towards long-term success and sustainability is being put to good use. For one, a plethora of new models with more advanced tech features are scheduled to be released soon to complement some of Bimmer’s most popular model lines. Imagine what kind of cache it can gain with the release of the BMW 8 Series? For all of its success, it is quite ironic that BMW finds itself in this enviable position despite minimal movement on its brand value.

2. Mercedes-Benz


Money Talks: The 10 Most Valuable Car Brands In The World - image 536045

Brand value: $47.83 billion

Top-selling model: Mercedes C-Class

The king of German automakers finds itself in the second spot, trailing only the king of Japanese automakers. It should be said that Mercedes’ ascension up the ranks didn’t happen by luck or sheer happenstance. It comes as a result of record-breaking sales that helped pave the way for the company to enjoy its highest profits and revenue in its entire history. Add that to its ever-increasing global popularity and the introduction of affordable models like the CLA-Class, and it becomes clearer and clearer as to why Mercedes-Benz actually increased its brand value by a whopping 10% year-on-year. At the very least, it created a big separation with BMW’s own brand value, something I’m sure the fine folks over at Mercedes are more than happy to point out.

1. Toyota


Money Talks: The 10 Most Valuable Car Brands In The World - image 509693

Brand value: $50.30

Best-selling model: Toyota Corolla

Sitting pretty at the number one spot is Toyota, a position it has held for a few years now on the back of being the biggest automaker in the world. Toyota’s dominance as a carmaker can be best seen in the fact that it still holds a pretty good lead over Mercedes-Benz despite seeing its value take a dip by six percent. That tells you that there’s room for Toyota to have a down year and still reign supreme as the most valuable auto brand in the world. I don’t see the company’s status get challenged for at least a few more years, but that loss in value could become more worrisome if it starts becoming a trend. For now, the auto world still kneels at the feet of Toyota, as do companies like Netflix, Facebook, McDonalds and Disney for that matter.

PostHeaderIcon 2018 Nissan Midnight Edition Lineup MSRP Announced

One of the best special edition series Nissan ever launched in the U.S. has been the Midnight series. The cool and menacing treatment this package gives to certain models has become very popular, especially as it’s very reasonably priced. Here’s how much it will cost you to Midnight-ify your own Nissan. 

That is, if your Nissan is one of these models:  Altima, Frontier, Maxima, Murano, Pathfinder, Rogue, Sentra, TITAN and TITAN XD. Each models gets its own unique Nissan Midnight touches, but some of the common features include black alloy wheels, “Midnight Edition” badge and black exterior accents. Available exterior colors include Black, Gun Metal and White.

2018 Nissan Midnight package for available models is priced as follows:

Altima SR Midnight Edition $1,095 USD
Frontier SV Midnight Edition $995 USD
Maxima SR Midnight Edition $1,195USD
Pathfinder SL Midnight Edition $1,395 USD
Rogue SV Midnight Edition $1,095 USD
Sentra SR Midnight Edition $495 USD







As for the what you get with each Nissan Midnight model, the Altima 2.5 SR Midnight comes with 18-inch SR aluminum alloy wheels, black mirror caps, black spoiler, black “Altima” and “SR” rear emblems, and Prima-Tex-appointed seats, heated front seats, navigation. The Maxima SR Midnight gets sport spoiler, 19-inch gloss black alloys, Intelligent Around View Monitor (I-RVM), driver-side seat memory, Intelligent Driver Alertness (I-DA). Murano Midnight SL features 20-inch black aluminum alloy wheels, black outside mirrors, black roof rails, black license plate finisher, black V-Motion grille, black front and rear lower bumper accents and moldings. Pathfinder Midnight offers black outside mirrors, black roof rails, black license plate finisher, black V-Motion grille and 20-inch wheels. Rogue Midnight comes with black front and rear fascia accents, black V-motion grille, black roof rails, black rear license plate finisher and black badges. Sentra Midnight boasts 17-inch black aluminum alloy wheels, black outside heated mirrors, black rear spoiler, black license plat finisher, black V-Motion grille, black fog light surround and black badging. Frontier Midnight (Crew Cab SV 4×2 and 4×4 automatic) comes with Gloss-black grille, 18-inch gloss black aluminum alloy wheels, semi-gloss-black step rails, body-color front and rear bumpers, black outside rearview mirrors and door handles. And finally the TITAN and TITAN XD Midnight Editions, they get front grille with dark insert, dark headlights, black fog light finishers, black fender louvers and 20 inch black wheels.

The post 2018 Nissan Midnight Edition Lineup MSRP Announced appeared first on Motorward.

PostHeaderIcon 2018 Nissan GT-R Pure Starts from $99,990

Remember how back when it was new the Nissan GT-R was supposed to be the “affordable” alternative to high-speed sports car? Well, that dream was never quite realized. But now they are having another crack at it with the 2018 Nissan GT-R Pure. Starting at just under 100 grand, the Pure is the cheapest new GT-R you can buy in America. 

Now, $99,990 is not exactly cheap. But you have to take into account that the most expensive new GT-R, the Nismo edition, cost a mind-boggling $175,490. Compared to that the Nissan GT-R Pure seems like a bargain. And it’s the better choice anyway. Unless you are into the red accents and the really geeky details of the Nismo, the Pure is fast enough to satisfy the more hard-core speed freak.

It is not like Nissan GT-R Pure is a stripped-out model, either. The differences between the Pure and Premium grade, which is priced at $110,490, includes an 11-speaker Bose audio system, Active Noise Cancellation and Active Sound Enhancement systems, and Titanium exhaust system. Of course, if you are planning to track your new GT-R, then you should spend $128,490 and get the GT-R Track Edition which delivers  a higher level of performance than the GT-R Pure and Premium models and features elements of the Nismo. Speaking of Nismo, the main highlights of that model include optimized aerodynamics, suspension and powertrain.








Powering the non-Nismo 2018 GT-R models in all trims is a 3.8-liter DOHC 24-valve V6 rated at 565 horsepower and 467 lb-ft of torque, coupled with dual-clutch sequential 6-speed transmission, electronically controlled ATTESA E-TS all-wheel-drive system. The Nismo gets an uprated version of this powertrain with 600 horsepower and 481 lb-ft of torque.

The post 2018 Nissan GT-R Pure Starts from $99,990 appeared first on Motorward.

PostHeaderIcon Nissan Titan XD Snow Plow Package Is Ready for a White Christmas

Recent U.S. winters have had greater than average snowfall, and it seems that the upcoming cold season won’t be any different. Nissan is doing something about it, though, by offering the Titan XD with snow plow and all the accessories needed to turn the pickup truck into a reliable, commercial or personal snow remover. Called the Snow Plow Prep Package, this special winter upgrade was showcased at the 2017 SEMA Show and will become available this fall.

The bundle includes snow plows from five leading manufacturers, so you get to choose between Boss, Fisher, Meyer, SnowEx, and Western. The package also comes with higher capacity front springs that increase front gross axle weight rating (GAWR) capacity by from 4,325 to 4,900 pounds). This allows fitment of snow plows on all three body configurations of the Titan XD (Single Cab, King Cab, and Crew Cab). It’s worth mentioning that the heavy-duty springs aren’t anything new, being already available for the Titan XD with the Heavy Duty GAWR Package, which makes vehicles equipped with that package snow plow-capable.

All these vehicles are powered by the massive, 5.6-liter V-8 engine rated at 390 horsepower and 394 pound-feet of torque, which is enough to move large quantities of snow off anything from neighborhood alleys to interstate highways. There’s no word as to how much the Snow Plow Prep Package costs, but commercial buyers will benefit from a $500 Nissan Upfit Allowance to help defer the cost of the equipment.

References

Nissan Titan


2016 Nissan Titan XD - image 610121

Read our full review on the 2017 Nissan Titan XD.


2017 SEMA Show – Preview - image 741107

Read more news on the 2017 SEMA Show.

PostHeaderIcon Scoop: Is the Nissan Xterra in for a resurgence?

After running for a decade and a half, Toyota stopped the Xterra’s production in 2015; the obvious reason being dwindling sales. While this mid-size SUV came with a body-on-frame design and impressive off-road skills, it all came at the cost of good city and highway driving. But, rumor has it that the Renault Nissan Mitsubishi alliance is planning to revive the Xterra again at the 2018 Beijing Motor Show.

While the 4Runner is not precisely a new model, the 2018 Jeep Wrangler sure is. With one veteran being too long in the tooth, the Xterra would try to foil the Wrangler’s monopoly in the mid-sized SUV segment. Ford has thrown its hat in as well with the Bronco, but its planned 2020 launch is still far away.

Author’s Take

The new generation today is looking for SUV’s that not only provide a relaxed Point A to Point B drive but also some off-roading fun for the weekends. While the Xterra excelled at the latter, comfortable rides on smooth terrain were not its cup of tea. And, when coupled with poor fuel efficiency, the Xterra had to be laid to rest.
But now, when its chief rivals – the Jeep Wrangler and Toyota 4Runner – are seeing the sales rise steadily, Nissan is planning a comeback to enjoy its share of the pie. Hopefully, this time Nissan gets the right blend of both, along with an engine that’s not so thirsty and gives cut-throat competition to its competitors.

References

Nissan Xterra


2014 Nissan Xterra - image 542025

Read our full review on the2014 Nissan Xterra.

Jeep Wrangler


2018 Jeep Wrangler - image 669920

Read our full speculative review on the 2018 Jeep Wrangler.

Toyota 4Runner


2015 Toyota 4Runner - Driven - image 658689

Read our full driven review on the 2015 Toyota 4Runner.

PostHeaderIcon Hanging in the Balance: Nissan Shows Confusion, Uncertainty over the Next Z-Car

We all want to know about the next Z-car, but Phillip Klein – Nissan’s Chief Planning Officer – couldn’t even give us a slight glimmer of hope last week during the Tokyo Auto Show. Long story short: It sounds like a new Z-Car may not happen and, even if it does, it will be a long time before we see it.

Let’s face it; sports cars are freaking awesome, but they all have expiration dates. Most automakers understand this – there’s a reason cars like the Porsche 911 and Chevy Corvette have been through more generations than you can count on one hand. Automakers like Mitsubishi, and Nissan, apparently, seem to have missed that memo, though. If you remember right, Mitsubishi let the Lancer go one for a decade without an update, and then let it die a slow, miserable death. Well, as it turns out, Nissan could very well do the same with the Z-car. When the Tokyo Auto Show kicked off, we were expecting to the Nissan 390Z concept, but instead, all we got was an executive that refused to even confirm the car exists let alone offer up information of when the next production Z will actually arrive.

“There’s a lot of passion behind this vehicle…. At the same time, it’s a segment that’s gradually declining, making the case more difficult. We have no intention to quit excitement, but we’re going to make it happen in different ways,” said Klein. Design Chief, Alfonso Albaisa, got in on it on it too, saying, “I can say we don’t have a fixed thing yet… but how can we be completely blind to the importance of that name to the company? Maybe you can feel that I love these cars… but I can’t say too much, or I’ll be taking a train home [instead of my company car]!”

So, at this point, the 370Z is almost a decade old, and Nissan isn’t even sure what to do about a successor. It has said that the GT-R is a better halo car, so the GT-R is safe for now, but perhaps if the brand showed the Z-car some love, it might experience better sales as well. After all, it’s a super senior as far as car generations go. As I said about Mitsubishi and the Lancer – you can’t not bring about something fresh and then use declining sales as a good reason to let it die a pitiful death. But, then again, rumor has it that Nissan is going to take the same approach Mitsubishi did with the Eclipse name. Keep reading to learn more about what could happen to the Z name…

The Stench of Stupid Just Keeps Getting Stronger


2016 Nissan Gripz Concept - image 646230
“The Nissan Gripz is a model that was supposedly modeled after the 240Z”

So, here’s the deal. Mitsubishi decided to scrap the Eclipse after the fourth generation because, well, consumers were blind to it. We could argue all day long about why they were blind to it, but it had to do with its horrible design, piss poor engineering, the fact that it was still based on the Galant, and it was just a bit too large. But, that’s just my opinion, and I’m starting to get off topic. The point is that Mitsubishi has brought back the Eclipse name, but it has done so on an SUV. Why? Because everyone is buying them up like they are the next best thing since the invention of condoms. Fast forward to today and poke your head in the boardroom at Nissan, and I bet you anything you’ll hear them talking about why the next vehicle wearing a Z-badge will be a dumb SUV or Crossover. Want evidence? Well, they already hinted at it a couple of years ago with the Nissan Gripz, a model that was supposedly modeled after the 240Z. And, let’s not forget that at least one outlet heard from an “insider” that the next Z will be a “small, sporty crossover about the size of the current Juke.” Ugh…

So, why not shift yet another SUV into production and throw a well-known badge on it. Mitsubishi seems to think it’ll work with the Eclipse Cross, so it can work for the Nissan Z too, right? I’m not so sure, folks. I have a feeling Nissan is going to take this path, and everyone who loved the Z cars for what they were (and rightfully so) is going to turn their backs and walk away because the Z badge deserves better than that. The world has enough crossovers and, if Nissan would not let the current model live longer than my grandmother, consumers might be interested in it again.
I don’t know, though. Maybe I’m just tired of seeing awesome names die needlessly and automakers try to hang onto the fame that those names once garnered by using them for something else. What do you guys think? Would you buy a new Z-badged crossover, or should Nissan usher in a new RWD coupe as a successor? Or, should they just kill off the car altogether and let the GT-R do all of the work in this niche? Let us know in the comments section below.

References

Nissan Z


2018 Nissan Z - image 660951

Read our full speculative review on the 2019 Nissan Z.

Nissan 370Z


2009 - 2017 Nissan 370Z - image 420367

Read our full review on the 2017 Nissan 370Z.


2016 Nissan Gripz Concept - image 646366

Read our full review on the 2016 Nissan Gripz Concept.

PostHeaderIcon Nissan Testing Next-Gen ProPILOT with Autonomous Infiniti Q50

When Nissan introduced the semi-autonomous ProPILOT system on the new 2018 LEAF they thought they’d accomplished a great feat. But then they realized the pace at which the autonomous technology is moving forward was way faster than they had anticipated. So they are scrambling to advance the ProPILOT system and they’ve got themselves an autonomous Infiniti Q50 to do so with. 

Deployed on the streets of Tokyo with a couple of chaperones to make sure it won’t go astray, the autonomous Infiniti Q50 is putting to the test the next-generation ProPILOT self-driving functions.The technology enables the vehicle to operate autonomously on urban roads and freeways, beginning when the driver selects a destination using the navigation system, until arrival. In other words it provides full autonomy, as opposed to most other current systems which have partial self-driving capabilities, or can do it only on certain kinds of roads.

The autonomous Infiniti Q50 which is the test bed for the next-generation ProPILOT technology is outfitted with a host of sensors, cameras and radars, and it uses an artificial intelligence brain to make sense of the incoming data. The car has 12 sonars, 12 cameras, nine millimeter-wave radars, six laser scanners and a high-definition map. The powerful hardware is backed up by a software clever enough to ensure human-like driving feel and, more importantly, optima reaction in the face of the challenges the car faces navigating around the town.



“Ingenuity is at the heart of everything we do at Nissan,” said Takao Asami, Nissan’s senior vice president in charge of research and advanced engineering. “Our next-generation ProPILOT prototype showcases technology that will be available for real-world use from 2020. Today’s demonstration is another example of our successful work toward creating an autonomous driving future for all.”

The post Nissan Testing Next-Gen ProPILOT with Autonomous Infiniti Q50 appeared first on Motorward.

PostHeaderIcon Nissan IMx

2017 Nissan IMx Concept

Back in 2013, Nissan unveiled the IDx concept, getting everyone excited about a competitor for the Toyota 86 and a revival of the iconic Datsun 510. But that didn’t happen as of 2017, with Nissan going back and forth with the idea. Four years have passed, and the Japanese firm returned with a new concept car using a similar nameplate. the IMx. But, while it sports a similar badge, the new concept, which made its debut at the 2017 Tokyo Motor Show, is actually entirely different in terms of layout and technology.

To be more specific, the IDx was a tribute to the Datsun 510, a compact sports car that made a name for itself on both public roads and race tracks, the IMx is a sleek crossover that provides a glimpse into the future of Nissan Intelligent Mobility, or the company’s approach to how cars are “powered, driven, and integrated with society.” In simpler terms, it previews the brand’s upcoming electric drivetrain and autonomous system. It also hints at Nissan’s future design language, which may bring sleeker, sportier SUVs in showrooms.

Continue reading to learn more about the Nissan IMx concept.

Nissan IMx unveiled in Tokyo

Exterior

  • Unique, modern design
  • V-motion grille
  • Muscular beltline
  • Shooting brake rear end
  • Massive front end

2017 Nissan IMx - image 740402
“The IMx's design is as exotic as concept cars get, but it does incorporate some of Nissan's familiar cues”

The IMx’s design is as exotic as concept cars get, but it does incorporate some of the brand’s familiar cues. The V-motion grille is the first that catches the eye, but the greenhouse and the beltine remind me a bit of the latest Nissan Leaf. But other than that, I see a unique design with plenty of interesting cues.

While clean and sporty overall, the IMx boasts a few disruptive features, line a character line that rises from the front grille over the front fenders, descends at the doors, and the rises again abruptly at the rear wheel arches, before going down smoothly toward the rear. This, combined with the equally unique sense of layers coming from the muscular surfaces and the sharp line, give the concept car a high-tech look. Pretty much what you expect from a modern concept and all future automotive designs.


2017 Nissan IMx - image 740399
“The rear roof section combines the features of a sporty SUV with that of a shooting brake”

The front fascia is a tad too massive for my taste, but I like the aggressive, vertical side vents and the really sharp headlamps that extend all the way to the front doors. The glowing grille, seeminly borrowed from the Leaf, is a nice touch too. The coupe-like roofline, the broad shoulders, and the neat, four-spoke wheel design further enhance the sporty stance of the crossover.

The rear is also pretty exciting, especially the upper section, which combines the styling of sporty SUVs (think BMW X6) with design cues usually seen on shooting brakes. The low-slung rear glass extends almost to the edge of the decklid, while the LED taillights split at the outer edges and run into the C-pillars and the rear fenders. The fascia itself is almost featureless, but the sporty bumper and the diffuser make up for that.

All told, I wouldn’t mind seeing a design like this go into production.

Interior

  • No-nonsense, spacious packaging
  • Flat floor
  • Four ergonomic seats
  • No center console
  • Wood grain-patterned screen all around
  • Panoramic OLED display
  • Detects eye movement and hand gestures

2017 Nissan IMx - image 740406
“All unnecessary elements from a standard car were ignored for this concept in order to obtain as much room as possible”

The interior is fancy, but very simple at the same time. This isn’t surprising, as Nissan built it around the basic concept of space from the traditional Japanese house. In short, all unnecessary elements from a standard car were ignored for this concept in order to obtain as much room as possible. The fact that the IMx uses an electric drivetrain also helps, as Nissan was able to create a flat floor. Unlike conventional cars, the IMx also lacks a center stack and center tunnel, which provides enormous legroom even in the most compact designs.

There are four individual seats, each feturing a “katanagare” diagonal pattern etches witha laser cutter. The headrests, which are patterned like kumiki, a Japanese interlocking wood puzzle, are made from silicon cushioning and a frame produced by a 3D printer. The dashboard is covered by a big wood grain-patterned material that wraps around the door panels. This artsy design element is also a display that “gives occupants a subtle sense of the outside, similar to a shoji, a traditional Japanese paper screen.” There’s no explanation as to how it works, but it looks as if LED lights have been integrated into a swirly pattern cut into wood. Pretty fancy!


2017 Nissan IMx - image 740405
“The dash includes a panoramic OLED panel displays a view of the outer environment in the background”

Speaking of displays, the dash includes a panoramic OLED panel displays a view of the outer environment in the background. Again, there isn’t much info about it, but it’s likely connected to an array of cameras fitted around the car’s exterior.

Finally, Nissan showcases some new artificial intelligence technology that enables the driver to control the instrument panel with eye movements and hand gestures. This basically most physical controls and switches, making the cabin of the IMx as simple as possible. Things become even more simpler when the autonomous mode is selected and the steering wheel is concealed inside the dashboard. At the same time, all four seats are reclined to enhance comfort for the driver and passengers. This feature is obviously not yet ready for production since fully autonomous aren’t yet approved for public roads, but it could become a thing in a few years.

Drivetrain

  • Two electric motors
  • 429 horsepower
  • 516 pound-feet of torque
  • Increased density battery
  • More than 370 miles of range
  • Fully autonomous
  • Self-parking feature

2017 Nissan IMx - image 740403
“The electric motors generate a solid 429 horsepower and 516 pound-feet of torque”

As you’d expect from a futuristic, fully autonomous concept car, the IMx is an all electric vehicle. Motivation is provided by two “high-output” motor, one for each axle, that produce a solid 429 horsepower and 516 pound-feet of torque. That’s nowhere near as much as you get with a range-topping Tesla Model X, but the IMx has an impressive battery to brag about. Developed and engineered for increased density, the high-capacity battery in the concept car can provide a driving range of more than 372 miles on a single charge. That’s at least 77 miles more than the most efficient Model X available right now, and a feat I’d sacrifice supercar-worthy 0 to 60 mph sprints.

Of course, this figure doesn’t matter much until we can get it in a production car, but it’s certainly doable with today’s technology.

“The concept is able to park in a certain spot to connect to the local power grid”

Nissan didn’t have much to say about the car’s autonomous drive potential, but did mention a self-parking feature. What’s more, the concept is reportedly able to park in a certain spot to connect to the local power grid and act live a small power plant and return electricity to the grid. This is part of Nissan’s plan to make its vehicles part of the “social infrastructure” and it’s an extension of its “vehicle-to-home and vehicle-to-building” features. Again, not much information available, but it’s a good philosophy given that most governments are struggling to develop more complex electric car infrastructures and charging stations.

Conclusion


2017 Nissan IMx - image 740657

I’m usually a bit sceptic about concept cars going into production without major changes, but I must admit that the IMx is one of those show cars that I’d like to buy as is. Granted, I’m not very exciting about a future in which we can’t drive, but at list the IMx gives me the option to take control. But what I like most about it is roomy, no-nonsense interior. You’d have to be incredibly tall to not have enough legroom and it seems that there is no way you could hurt your elbow no matter the seat you’re using. Then there’s the 350+ mile range, which eliminates the range anxiety associated with most current electric cars. Unfortunately, putting the IMx into production in this form would make it very expensive and would defeat the purpose of having increasingly more affordable EVs. So I guess it will only spawn some sort of Leaf-based crossover in the future. Not that this would be a bad thing, but it most certainly won’t have that ergonomic interior.

  • Leave it
    • Not scheduled for production
    • Production counterpart won’t be as roomy

References


2013 Nissan IDx Nismo - image 532944

Read our full review on the 2013 Nissan IDx Nismo.


2014 Nissan IDx Freeflow - image 532996

Read our full review on the 2013 Nissan IDx Freeflow.


2017 Toyota GR HV Sports Concept - image 736613

Read more Tokyo Motor Show news.

PostHeaderIcon Nissan IMx Electric SUV Revealed at Tokyo Motor Show

When Nissan unveiled the new LEAF they announced a major expansion of their EV game. Now at the Tokyo Motor Show 2017 they are showing us what the next step in that grand plan is about. This is Nissan IMx, and SUV version of the LEAF with an excellent range of 600 kilometres (373miles).

Nope, Nissan has not achieved a breakthrough in battery technology. Nissan IMx has good range because it’s a sizable SUV and there’s room to pack more batteries in it. It also gets two high-output electric motors at the front and rear, giving it all-wheel-drive capability, and an output of 320 kW with 700 Nm of torque. So performance-wise, there really is nothing to complain about. And this system is virtually production-ready. The IMx is even autonomous ready, boasting Nissan’s ProPILOT technology.

What you may want to complain about is the looks of the car. While the new LEAF is a handsome little thing, Nissan IMx tries to separate itself from the ordinary SUVs with daring new lines and angels. It is not a design that everyone would agree is good or bad, but it sure looks futuristic. You have to take into account this is still a concept. The production version could be a little tamer. The IMx also introduces some new concepts for interior design. It features katanagare diagonal patterns,  kumiki, a Japanese interlocking wood puzzle, and shoji, a traditional Japanese paper screen.








“The IMx zero-emission crossover concept vehicle embodies the future of Nissan Intelligent Mobility,” said Daniele Schillaci, executive vice president for global marketing and sales, zero-emission vehicles and the battery business. “Through Nissan Intelligent Mobility, Nissan is committed to changing the way people and cars communicate, as well as how cars interact with society in the near future and beyond.”

The post Nissan IMx Electric SUV Revealed at Tokyo Motor Show appeared first on Motorward.

PostHeaderIcon 2018 Nissan Sentra Pricing and Specs

In the near future we may all have to resort to Chinese cars if we something really affordable, but for now let us rejoice that there are choices like 2018 Nissan Sentra. What you have here is a well-equipped, quality Japanese product with four doors and five seats. And it starts from just $16,990.

Of course, such a blend is possible through compromising on the garnish and a little bit on styling. And it’s not a very nice drive to be honest. But 2018 Nissan Sentra is perfect for someone who just needs a reliable and affordable car to get from A to B. What’s more, you can make this car a little bit more exciting is you spend more and get one of the  Sentra NISMO and Sentra SR Turbo models.

The major changes on the 2018 Nissan Sentra include the addition as standard of Automatic Emergency Braking (AEB). The basic S model is nice, but if you spend another two grand and get the SV yo get pleasant features such as 16 inch alloys, dual zone air con, and RearView Monitor and 5.0-inch color display with Streaming, Bluetooth and Siri. If you want a loaded Sentra then you can have the SL grade which comes with moonroof, Bose Premium Audio System and NissanConnect Services.

2018 Nissan Sentra MSRP

Model Engine/Transmission MSRP
Sentra S 1.8-liter 6MT $16,990 USD
Sentra S 1.8-liter Xtronic $18,140 USD
Sentra SV 1.8-liter Xtronic $18,960 USD
Sentra SR 1.8-liter Xtronic $20,370 USD
Sentra SL 1.8-liter Xtronic $23,440 USD
Sentra SR Turbo 1.6-liter 6MT $22,200 USD
Sentra SR Turbo 1.6-liter Xtronic $22,490 USD
Sentra NISMO 1.6-liter 6MT $25,790 USD
Sentra NISMO 1.6-liter Xtronic $25,790 USD

Destination and Handling $885.

The post 2018 Nissan Sentra Pricing and Specs appeared first on Motorward.

PostHeaderIcon Nissan Removed the Fender Badge From 2018 Titan And Nobody Noticed

It looks like Nissan snuck a cosmetic change onto the 2018 Titan half-ton pickup without anybody noticing – even two months after the automaker released photos of the 2018 Titan Midnight Edition. Gone is the large fender badge that denoted the V-8 engine was under the hood. The badge was styled like a heat vent designed to keep engine bay temperatures down but offered no such functionality.

So, how did the change get noticed?

Well, it was a commenter who noticed the missing badge on Nissan’s new No Lazy Horses commercial – at least that’s the first mention I had seen. Digging deeper shows Nissan made zero mention of the missing badge in its press release on the 2018 Titan Midnight Edition back in August, nor has Nissan released info on changes for the standard 2018 Titan. Reading the commercial’s on-screen fine print does confirm the truck is a 2018 half-ton model. How about that?

The heavier-duty Titan XD will keep the fender badge, however, since it has two engine options – the 5.6-liter V-8 and the 5.0-liter Cummins V-8 turbodiesel. Originally, the half-ton Titan was slated to get a V-6 as standard equipment soon after it launched, making the fender badge necessary for distinguishing between the engine choices. That begs the question: does the missing fender badge mean the Titan isn’t getting a V-6 option?

On the other hand, you’ll notice the door badge now reads “Titan V8” on the No Lazy Horses truck. That’s new. The 2017 Titan doors didn’t have the V8 designation and only said “Titan.” Maybe this is Nissan’s way of better separating the Titan from the Titan XD? I’ve reached out to Nissan and will update this story if I hear back.

What do you think? Does this mean Nissan killed the V-6 development? Did you notice the badge was missing before I did? Let me know in the comments below.

References

Nissan Titan


2017 Nissan Titan - image 665129

Read our full review on the 2017 Nissan Titan.


2016 Nissan Titan XD - image 610121

Read our full review on the 2017 Nissan Titan XD.


2016 Nissan Titan XD - Driven - image 659452

Read our driven review on the 2016 Nissan Titan XD.

PostHeaderIcon Nissan’s New 2018 Titan Commercial Is Hilariously Catchy

Nissan is fighting tooth and nail to gain ground in the highly competitive half-ton pickup market. Sales have been slower than expected, but that might change with this commercial. It’s about the funniest truck commercial we’ve seen in a while – mostly because truck ads usually take a more serious approach. It’s called No Lazy Horses and it’s Super Bowl-quality funny thanks to a catchy song, a memorably pudgy main character, and some antagonizing lazy “horses” that are impossible to unsee.

Besides being funny, the one-minute, 30-second commercial takes a hard swing at the Ford F-150. Of course, the truck’s badges are removed, but anybody with any sense knows the white, Crew Cab truck is a Ford. Truck fans will easily place it as the previous-generation, steel-bodied F-150.

As the story goes, the F-150 gets stuck in the mud and its driver, Clark, must coax the truck’s “horses” to perform by doing an embarrassing song and dance routine. Pretty pretty ponies, pretty pretty please, I’m a dancing ponyboy, begging pretty please Well, unfortunately for Clark’s pride, the hero pulls up to witness the scene in his shiny new, 2018 Nissan Titan Crew Cab 4×4. The hero, Clark’s payload of pipes, and what’s left of Clark’s dignity ride off into the sunset, abandoning the F-150 to rot away.

Despite horsepower not having anything to do with a 2WD truck being buried axle-deep in mud, the commercial is incredibly memorable and should even resonate with people who know nothing about truck, payload, or lazy horses. That stupid song is a verifiable earworm, and those trashy, basement-dwelling horses are the stuff of Internet legends.

Nicely done, Nissan. Thanks for the laugh.

References

Nissan Titan


2017 Nissan Titan - image 665129

Read our full review on the 2017 Nissan Titan.


2016 Nissan Titan XD - image 610121

Read our full review on the 2017 Nissan Titan XD.

PostHeaderIcon 2018 Nissan Maxima MSRP and Specs Announced

Nissan America revealed the pricing and specs for the popular underdog of the sports sedan segment. The new 2018 Nissan Maxima offers a nice blend of performance, style, quality, and features. It comes in five trim levels, starting from $33,020 and going up to $40,690.

Most European rivals start where 2018 Nissan Maxima ends.And pretty much none of them offers 300 horsepower for that kind of money. But then again, none of them still uses a big V6 engine. It’s good to know there is still a choice for those who prefer comfort, smoothness and power to saving a bit of fuel and reduce air pollution. The Maxima comes with a performance-oriented Xtronic transmission featuring D-Step shifting logic that provides rapid shifts at high throttle openings. It also has 4-wheel independent suspension with monotube rear shock absorbers and 19 inch wheels. So handling is pretty sweet as well.

As for the features, standard on all 2018 Nissan Maxima models is NissanConnect with Navigation featuring Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. You also get Intelligent Forward Collision Warning (I-FCW) and Automatic Emergency Braking (AEB) on all grade levels. in fact 2018 Maxima also offers an extensive range of available safety, security and driving aids, including Intelligent Forward Collision Warning (I-FCW), Intelligent Cruise Control (ICC), Automatic Emergency Braking (AEB), Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA) and Blind Spot Warning (BSW) and Intelligent Driver Alertness (I-DA).

2018 Nissan Maxima Trims and MSRP:

Maxima S $33,020 USD
Maxima SV $35,020 USD
Maxima SL $37,440 USD
Maxima SR $38,280 USD
Maxima Platinum $40,690 USD

Destination and Handling $885.

The post 2018 Nissan Maxima MSRP and Specs Announced appeared first on Motorward.

PostHeaderIcon 2018 Nissan Maxima MSRP and Specs Announced

Nissan America revealed the pricing and specs for the popular underdog of the sports sedan segment. The new 2018 Nissan Maxima offers a nice blend of performance, style, quality, and features. It comes in five trim levels, starting from $33,020 and going up to $40,690.

Most European rivals start where 2018 Nissan Maxima ends.And pretty much none of them offers 300 horsepower for that kind of money. But then again, none of them still uses a big V6 engine. It’s good to know there is still a choice for those who prefer comfort, smoothness and power to saving a bit of fuel and reduce air pollution. The Maxima comes with a performance-oriented Xtronic transmission featuring D-Step shifting logic that provides rapid shifts at high throttle openings. It also has 4-wheel independent suspension with monotube rear shock absorbers and 19 inch wheels. So handling is pretty sweet as well.

As for the features, standard on all 2018 Nissan Maxima models is NissanConnect with Navigation featuring Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. You also get Intelligent Forward Collision Warning (I-FCW) and Automatic Emergency Braking (AEB) on all grade levels. in fact 2018 Maxima also offers an extensive range of available safety, security and driving aids, including Intelligent Forward Collision Warning (I-FCW), Intelligent Cruise Control (ICC), Automatic Emergency Braking (AEB), Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA) and Blind Spot Warning (BSW) and Intelligent Driver Alertness (I-DA).

2018 Nissan Maxima Trims and MSRP:

Maxima S $33,020 USD
Maxima SV $35,020 USD
Maxima SL $37,440 USD
Maxima SR $38,280 USD
Maxima Platinum $40,690 USD

Destination and Handling $885.

The post 2018 Nissan Maxima MSRP and Specs Announced appeared first on Motorward.

PostHeaderIcon 2018 Nissan Rogue Goes on Sale in U.S. with ProPilot Technology

Starting from next week the new 2018 Nissan Rogue will hit the showrooms across America, starting from $24,680. What sets this crossover apart from the other million choices you have in this segment is the presence of ProPilot Assist technology, which is a semi-autonomous system paving the way for full autonomy in the future. 

That is quite a system to have on an average crossover, although you don’t get it with base models. The ProPilot Assist on 2018 Nissan Rogue helps drivers maintain lane control, navigate stop-and-go traffic, maintain a set vehicle speed and maintain a set distance to the vehicle ahead. The video below gives you a better understanding of how the system works. ProPILOT Assist is available on the 2018 Rogue SL grade as part of the Platinum Package.

As for the other notable updates for the 2018 Nissan Rogue include the addition of Motion-Activated Liftgate on some grades, as well as Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, Intelligent Cruise Control (ICC), Lane Departure Warning (LDW), Intelligent Lane Intervention (I-LI) and Automatic Emergency Braking (AEB) with Pedestrian Detection. The Rogue, known as the X-Trail in other markets, comes with a 2.5-liter 4-cylinder engine rated at 170 horsepower and 175 lb-ft or torque,mated to an advanced Xtronic transmission. AWD is available on select models.






2018 Nissan Rogue U.S. MSRP:

Rogue S FWD $24,680 USD
Rogue SV FWD $25,900 USD
Rogue SL FWD $31,060 USD
Rogue S AWD $26,030 USD
Rogue SV AWD $27,250 USD
Rogue SL AWD $32,410 USD

Destination and Handling $975.

The post 2018 Nissan Rogue Goes on Sale in U.S. with ProPilot Technology appeared first on Motorward.

PostHeaderIcon Nissan Turns Godzilla Into A Full-Sized Remote-Controlled Car

There are times when the automotive industry amazes you to no end that you just have to sit back, relax, and enjoy the show. Take what Nissan did recently in partnership with Sony in the promotion of Gran Turismo Sport for, example. Not content with just sticking with the usual PR and market scripts that we’ve so gotten used to, Nissan decided to take it to another level by modifying an actual Nissan GT-R and turning it into a full-sized remote-controlled car. Not only that, but the automaker even brought it to Silverstone for a few laps, all while being controlled by nothing more than a stock Playstation Dualshock 4 controller. Fantastic!

So how exactly did Nissan manage to do this? Well, the first order of business was to fit the GT-R – now called the GT-R/C because, you know, awesome – with four individual robots, each controlling specific features of the actual car, including steering, transmission, brakes, and throttle. Once that bit of technical wizardry was accomplished, the unmodified PS4 controller was connected to a micro-computer, which in turn was in charge of interpreting the controller inputs and then transmitting them to the car. Adding to the scope of the stunt was professional racer and GT Academy winner Jann Mardenborough, who hopped into the passenger seat of a helicopter and controlled the GT-R/C from there with his PS4 controller. If that’s not the absolute best view to play with a life-sized Nissan GT-R remote-controlled car using a PS4 controller, then I don’t know what to tell you.

Continue after the jump to read the full story.

Nissan should take the concept of the GT-R/C further and start a remote-controlled racing series!

“Jann Mardenborough actually drove the car around Silverstone, completing a lap of 1:17.47 in the process while averaging 76 mph and clocking in a top speed of 131 mph”

To say that this stunt is nothing short of incredible would be an understatement. It’s the stuff that people think about in their daydreams, except that Nissan actually brought it to life. The sight of seeing a life-sized, remote-controlled car already makes me want to turn my car into one. But, I won’t because I can’t. Instead, I’ll marvel at how Nissan was able to accomplish this, which by the way didn’t end by just turning Godzilla into the GT-R/C. Jann Mardenborough, a man of professional racing fame, actually drove the car around Silverstone, completing a lap of 1:17.47 in the process while averaging 76 mph and clocking in a top speed of 131 mph. Epic stuff.

Mardenborough seems to thinks so too. “This was once-in-a-lifetime, truly epic stuff,” he said. “The GT-R /C has brought my two worlds together – the virtual of gaming and the reality of motorsport – in a way I never thought possible. The response from the car when using the controller was far more engaging than I thought it would be.”


Nissan Turns Godzilla Into A Full-Sized Remote-Controlled Car - image 738152

Nissan Turns Godzilla Into A Full-Sized Remote-Controlled Car - image 738154
“The Nissan GT-R/C brought a kind of synergy between virtual gaming and real-life motorsport racing”

He’s absolutely right in that regard. The Nissan GT-R/C brought a kind of synergy between virtual gaming and real-life motorsport racing in a way that has never been done before. It seems obvious to think that the next stop in this new frontier would be to build a number of Nissan GT-R/Cs and have them race against one another as their drivers control the cars from the comforts of their own paddocks. I don’t know the logistics behind it or how much that kind of endeavor is going to cost, but it is brilliant on some levels. For one, nobody’s going to have to worry about driver’s safety anymore, and another, it’s never been done before. Imagine the spectacle of something like that coming to life.

I’d certainly pay to see it, and I’m quite sure that I won’t be the only one who’d love to see it happen.

References

Nissan GT-R


2017 Nissan GT-R - image 670401

Read our full review on the 2017 Nissan GT-R.


2017 Nissan Leaf Nismo Concept - image 736206

Read more Nissan news.

PostHeaderIcon Nissan Leaf Nismo

Nissan Leaf Nismo by X-Tomi Design

Introduced in 2010, the Nissan Leaf set many benchmarks in the electric car market and has become one of the most popular EVs out there. But, after seven years on the market, the Leaf got a bit long in the tooth, and with other companies having introduced more modern EVs in this niche, Nissan had no choice but to develop a second-generation model. Unveiled for the 2018 model year, the new Leaf is better in just about any department, but it’s still not as powerful and efficient as the recently unveiled Chevrolet Bolt and Tesla Model 3. This could change in 2018 when Nissan is reportedly planning to launch a Nismo version of its electric hatchback.

Although Nissan has yet to confirm that a Leaf Nismo is underway, the concept unveiled at the 2017 Tokyo Motor Show pretty much confirms that the Japanese firm is working on one. What’s more, the brand already announced that a “higher power, longer range version at a higher price” variant of the Leaf is in the works for the 2019 model year. Specs are still a mystery at this point, but the Nismo concept provides a few valuable hints as to what we may get in dealerships soon. Find out what we already know about the upcoming Nismo Leaf in the speculative review below.

Continue reading to learn more about the Nissan Leaf Nismo.

Previous Leaf Nismo Creations


2011 Nissan LEAF NISMO RC - image 404683
“Although it has yet to launch a production Leaf Nismo as of 2017, Nissan has been toying with the idea since 2010”

Although it has yet to launch a production Leaf Nismo as of 2017, Nissan has been toying with the idea since the first-generation Leaf arrived back in 2010. The first Nismo concept based on the Leaf, the Nismo RC, was actually a very radical interpretation. Showcased at the 2011 New York Auto Show, it had a race-inspired aerodynamic kit and a full carbon-fiber monocoque body which made it about 40-percent lighter than the standard model. The Nismo RC was designed to run for around 20 minutes under full racing conditions and testing revealed a 0-to-62 mph sprint of 6.8 seconds and a top speed of 93 mph. The drivetrain was identical to the production Leaf. Nissan reportedly built eight units, but none was sold to customers.

A second Nismo concept was launched at the 2011 Tokyo Motor Show, this time around in a more production-friendly format. Although not as aggressive as the Nismo RC, this concept has a revised aerodynamic kit inspired by the race car, new alloy wheels, and bespoke features inside the cabin. The drivetrain, on the other hand, was again identical to the standard Leaf’s. In early 2013, Nissan announced that the Leaf Nismo will be produced in small numbers for the Japanese market, but no production model was launched so far.

Exterior


2017 Nissan Leaf Nismo Concept - image 735737

Note: 2017 Nissan Leaf Nismo Concept pictured here.

“The concept car sports a range of familiar Nismo upgrades, starting with a red-painted front splitter”

With Nissan having already unveiled what appears to be a production-ready Leaf Nismo at the 2017 Tokyo Motor Show, the sportier version of the company’s already familiar EV isn’t much of a mystery. However, while the concept car may look ready to go into production with the exact same body features, the Japanese firm may choose to change a thing or two. And this rendering by X-Tomi Design shows what we may get at dealerships.

The concept car sports a range of familiar Nismo upgrades, starting with a red-painted front splitter and slimmer LED daytime running lights integrated into black trim with a honeycomb structure. The center hood is finished in black for a sportier look. While these features are very plausible for a production model, Nissan may choose to give the EV a redesigned bumper with a larger grille, as well as bigger daytime running lights. The rendering also includes an actual honeycomb grille instead of the blue 3D mesh and I think this would be a really cool feature, despite the Leaf not needing an actual grille for cooling.


2017 Nissan Leaf Nismo Concept - image 735736

Note: 2017 Nissan Leaf Nismo Concept pictured here.

“Onto the sides, the production model should look very similar to the concept and include more aggressive side skirts”

Onto the sides, the production model should look very similar to the concept and include more aggressive side skirts with red detailing and matching mirror caps. A set of new, larger wheels is also on the table, but it remains to be seen whether the production model will get the concept’s two-tone rims. A slightly lower ride should add extra sportiness.

Around back, Nismo upgrades should include a revised roof spoiler in black to match the C-pillars, and a diffuser-like element. The concept car features a two-piece device with red accents and a Formula One style brake light in the middle and I think it’s very similar to what we should see on the production model.

All told, the Leaf Nismo will get the full Nismo treatment on the outside, which will make appealing to hot-hatch enthusiasts all over the world.

Interior


2017 Nissan Leaf Nismo Concept - image 735740

Note: 2017 Nissan Leaf Nismo Concept pictured here.

“Just like the concept car, the production Leaf Nismo will get sportier front seats”

The interior should also have a few extra features, but don’t expect it to be radically different. Just like the concept car, the production Leaf Nismo will get only a handful of add-ons in the form of Nismo-specific trim and minor changes to the infotainment display. Look for red accents around the A/C vents and the start button, as well as red contrast stitching on the door panels and seats. The concept’s red stripe on the 12-o’clock position of the flat-bottom steering wheel should also find its way into the production model.

Arguably the biggest upgrade will be the sportier front seats. These will have heavier bolstering on the sides and a different upholstery layout. Some Nismo badge and logos could also adorn the headrests and the dashboard. Finally, we should find some Nismo goodness in the infotainment display. There should be a unique Nismo start-up screen and a few extra apps to monitor performance. Similar upgrades will be made to the digital instrument cluster too.

Drivetrain


2018 Nissan Leaf - image 729721

Note: Standard Nissan Leaf pictured here.

“If previous Nismo models are any indication, there's a big chance that the Leaf won't get a power bump with the Nismo package”

Here’s where things are a little unclear as Nissan didn’t say a thing about the Leaf Nismo’s concept electric motor. This could mean two things. Either the Leaf Nismo will get the same drivetrain as the standard model or Nissan hasn’t decided on how much extra power and torque the EV will get.

Unfortunately, given that Nissan has launched quite a few Nismo models that are only as powerful as their standard siblings in recent years — including the Sentra, Note, and Micra — there’s a big chance that the Leaf won’t get a power bump with the Nismo package. And this is a pretty big issues because although the new Leaf is more powerful and returns better range compared to its predecessor, it’s still significantly inferior to the competition.


2017 Nissan Leaf Nismo Concept - image 735735

Note: 2017 Nissan Leaf Nismo Concept pictured here.

“The update will include a sport-tuned suspension and revised ECU for improved performance”

Specifically, the new Leaf comes with 147 horsepower and 236 pound-feet on tap. That’s 40 horses and 49 pound-feet more than the old Leaf, but 53 horsepower and 30 pound-feet below the Chevy Bolt. Output figures for the new Tesla Model 3 aren’t yet out, but it will most definitely have at least 200 horsepower in its entry-level version. The Leaf also comes behind when it comes to range, returning up to 150 miles on a single charge. The Chevy Bolt is good for up to 238 miles, while Tesla promises 220 miles in the least expensive model and up to 310 miles in the range-topping Model 3.

You can see why Nissan needs a Nismo version with a larger battery, more oomph, and better range.


2017 Nissan Leaf Nismo Concept - image 735738

Note: 2017 Nissan Leaf Nismo Concept pictured here.

“Nissan is in dire need of a more powerful Leaf in order to remain relevant in this market”

But while the Leaf Nismo concept uses the standard drivetrain, not all hope is lost. When it launched the new Leaf, Nissan promised that a “higher power, longer ranger version at a higher price” will be launched for the 2019 model year. This could very well be the Leaf Nismo or just a normal Leaf with increased power and range. In the latter scenario the Nismo could be just an equipment update, meaning we’ll get two models with different outputs.

Whatever the case, Nissan is in dire need of a more powerful Leaf in order to remain relevant in this market.

Nissan also mentioned something about a sport-tuned suspension and a “custom-tuned computer that delivers instant acceleration at all speeds” and it’s safe to assume that the production model will get something similar. Hopefully the revised computer will make the Nismo at least a tenth-second quicker to 60 mph, even with the same drivetrain as the standard model, while the revised suspension will make it a more exciting car. A set of higher performance tires are also on the table for this model.

Prices

As with all Nismo products, it’s safe to assume that the upcoming Leaf Nismo will cost more than the standard model. The second-gen Leaf retails from $29,990 in base guise, while the range-topping Leaf SL costs $36,200 before options. The Leaf Nismo will probably cost a bit more than the SL, so expect it to fetch close to $40,000. However, with incentives and all, pricing should drop below the $35,000 mark.

Competition

Chevrolet Bolt


2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV - image 660933

Chevrolet isn’t planning on doing a higher performance version of the Bolt anytime soon — although a Bolt RS would be a good idea — but the American EV is already more powerful than the Leaf and would be on par with a souped-up Leaf Nismo. Launched for the 2017 model year, the Bolt is Chevy’s first mass-produced EV and aimed at the already popular Leaf. It’s about as big as the Leaf and boasts a premium feel on the inside, as well as a comprehensive tech package. You get Bluetooth connectivity, personalized settings, MyChevrolet App, 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot, Apple CarPlay, and Android Auto, among other modern apps and features. Additionally, the Bolt is the better machine when it comes to performance, as the electric drivetrain cranks out a solid 200 horsepower and 266 pound-feet of torque. The range is estimated at up to 238 miles on paper and up to 210 miles in everyday driving conditions, so you get far more than in the 150-mile Leaf. Charging takes 9.5 hours, a bit longer than the Leaf, while pricing starts at $37,495 before incentives.

Read our full story on the 2017 Chevrolet Bolt.

Tesla Model 3


2018 Tesla Model 3 - image 727994

Tesla’s latest and most affordable offering, the Model 3 is not yet in production and deliveries won’t commence until 2018, but once it arrives, it will be one of the best EVs on the market. While aimed at the Nissan Leaf, as Elon Musk himself pointed out a dew years ago, the Model 3 is actually slightly larger, being similar to the BMW 3 Series in size. It’s also more of a notchback rather than a classic hatchback. What’s more, it should be more powerful and quicker than the Leaf and Bolt, while providing more range than the Japanese EV. The range is estimated at 220 miles for the base model, but opt for the Long Range upgrade, and it goes up to a whopping 310 miles, double than what you get with the Leaf. Tesla’s Supercharger network also brings impressive charging time, with 30 minutes being enough for a 130-mile range in the base model. On the other hand, while the entry-level model comes in at $35,000, the Long Range upgrade and other options increase the sticker to more than $50,000. Not exactly competitive, even when compared to the Leaf Nismo.

Read our full review of the Tesla Model 3.

Conclusion


2019 Nissan Leaf Nismo - image 734726

The Leaf Nismo is a car that Nissan needs badly at this point, but only if this version brings increased output and better range. If Nissan chooses to sell it with the same drivetrain as the standard model, the Nismo won’t be more than a marketing scheme aimed at Millennials and EV enthusiasts who want a sportier looking vehicle. It had already been confirmed that Nissan will indeed offer a more powerful version of the Leaf, but it remains to be seen if it will be able to match the Bolt and Model 3. If this model will carry the Nismo nameplate, it will not only make a proper introduction of the badge to the electric car market, but it would also enable Nissan to stand out as the only mainstream carmaker that actually uses its high-performance division to create EVs.

  • Leave it
    • Could use the standard Leaf drivetrain
    • Stiff competition from Chevrolet and Tesla

References

Nissan Leaf


2017 Nissan Leaf Nismo Concept - image 736206

Read our full review on the 2017 Nissan Leaf Nismo Concept.


2018 Nissan Leaf - image 729747

Read our full review on the 2018 Nissan Leaf.


2011 Nissan LEAF NISMO RC - image 404686

Read our full review on the 2011 Nissan LEAF NISMO RC Concept.


2012 Nissan Leaf Nismo - image 428707

Read our full review on the 2011 Nissan Leaf Nismo.

PostHeaderIcon Gaming Controller Operated Nissan GT-R Tackles Silverstone

Nissan has always been a big supporter of car-related video games, so much so that they regularly sponsors video game stars for real-world racing. Now they are taking this to a whole new level with the introduction of the world’s first Gaming Controller Operated Nissan GT-R. It’s basically a life-size GT-R RC and it has already shown it’s perfectly functional around Silverstone. 

The Silverstone stunt with the Gaming Controller Operated Nissan GT-R was to celebrate the release of Gran Turismo Sport and mark Nissan’s 20-year involvement with the gaming franchise. The remote-controlled GT-R prepared for the occasion was a R35 modified to be operated via a DualShock PS4 controller, and the man in charge of controlling it was NISMO racing driver Jann Mardenborough. The fastest lap he banged in was 1:17:47, during which the GT-R /C averaged 76mph/122kph and reached a top speed of 131mph/211kph.

If you want a toy like this, you should know that it is rather expensive. To complete the Silverstone lap, for instance, Jann had to climb into a Robinson R44 Raven II helicopter and chase the RC GT-R. But before all that you need an engineering firm like JLB Design to do teh modifications. And before that even you need a standard Nissan GT-R. The car Nissan used for this stunt was a 542bhp V6-powered 2011 R35.

The way this Gaming Controller Operated Nissan GT-R operates is fairly simple. It uses four robots that operate the steering, transmission, brakes and throttle, and six computers that update the controls at up to 100 times a second. The GT-R /C is also fitted with two independent safety systems, operating on different radio frequencies, which allow two additional operators to apply full ABS braking and cut the engine in the event of the main operator losing control of the vehicle.









Jann Mardenborough added; “This was once-in-a-lifetime, truly epic stuff. The GT-R /C has brought my two worlds together – the virtual of gaming and the reality of motorsport – in a way I never thought possible. The response from the car when using the controller was far more engaging than I thought it would be. JLB Design has done an incredible job at making everything respond really well. Steering, acceleration and braking were all intelligently configured, allowing for controlled application so I could really get a feel through the corners and hold it steady down the fast straights. Driving a full-size, remote-control GT-R to 131mph at Silverstone whilst chasing it down in a helicopter was an unforgettable experience. Now that’s innovation that excites!”

The post Gaming Controller Operated Nissan GT-R Tackles Silverstone appeared first on Motorward.

PostHeaderIcon Nissan Wants To Let You Know When You Need A Swig Of Water

Most of you have probably heard about the study conducted by the European Hydration Institute back in 2015 that concluded that dehydration has the same effects on a person as driving under the influence of alcohol. Whether its tiredness, headaches, dizziness, and slower reactions times, these symptoms have been suggested as being evident in cases of people who are dehydrated or are under the influence. Nissan is well aware of the situation and is addressing it with Dutch design brand Droog. Their solution? A sweat-sensing material on the steering wheel and driver’s seat that informs drivers when they’re dehydrated and in need of some rehydration.

The video provides a proper demonstration of how the technology works, though, in a nutshell, it essentially involves a material called SOAK coating that’s placed on the two aforementioned locations. The material works by changing colors to indicate the driver’s hydration levels with “yellow” indicating that they’re dehydrated and “blue” signifying that they’re fully hydrated. It is worth mentioning that Droog actually owns the rights to the equipment, which it initially developed to help and inform athletes of their own hydration levels. Now that it’s partnered with Nissan, there’s the possibility that the technology can be applied to the auto industry. There’s no telling when that’s going to be since Nissan itself hasn’t indicated its plans for the SOAK technology and its potential application for its model lineup. That said, the Japanese automaker must be intrigued enough with the product to enlist Nismo racer Lucas Ordoñez to help spread awareness regarding the real state of affairs as far as driving while dehydrated is concerned.

Smart technology although not pleasant to look at

If you’ve seen the video, you probably know by now how the technology works. The SOAK material is placed on the steering wheel where the driver grips it. Once it comes in contact with perspiration, it starts to change color depending on whether a person is hydrated or not. If he or she is, the color of the SOAK coating turns to blue. If he isn’t, it turns to yellow. In cases of the later it means the driver is being informed that he needs to chug down water. Once he does and he’s properly hydrated, the yellow color turns blue. The same principle applies in the SOAK coating located in the driver’s seat.

It’s a simple enough tool, though I will point out that the yellow color on the seats reminds me of the color of yellow pee, the surest indicator of dehydration. I don’t know about you, but the image of all that yellow on the seats is vivid enough for me to think of it as, well, you know.


Nissan Wants To Let You Know When You Need A Swig Of Water - image 736249

Nissan Wants To Let You Know When You Need A Swig Of Water - image 736248

On a more serious note, the study’s revelation about the effects of dehydration on a driver is ironically sobering. Further studies even qualified the research, saying that the number of road errors dehydrated drivers make was equivalent to the number of errors a person with a blood alcohol content of 0.08 percent finds himself making. It may not seem like much, but that 0.08 percent is the legal limit across most of the US.

The pertinent question to ask now is whether or not we’ll see this kind of technology on future Nissan models. It’s too early to say at this point since Nissan itself hasn’t fully committed to using the product. I think it should though, uncomfortable visuals notwithstanding. I’ve always been a proponent of enhancing driver’s safety on the road through means that are meaningful and yield positive results. This kind of technology does that to a certain degree. It doesn’t have any of the usual physical restraints so it shouldn’t be of inconvenience to any of us. And, if it the application of this technology means that we have a better focus on the road, then I’m all for it.

References

Nissan Juke


2014 Nissan Juke - image 546025

Read our full review on the 2017 Nissan Juke.


2017 Nissan Leaf Nismo Concept - image 736206

Read more Nissan news.

PostHeaderIcon Nissan Wants To Let You Know When You Need A Swig Of Water

Most of you have probably heard about the study conducted by the European Hydration Institute back in 2015 that concluded that dehydration has the same effects on a person as driving under the influence of alcohol. Whether its tiredness, headaches, dizziness, and slower reactions times, these symptoms have been suggested as being evident in cases of people who are dehydrated or are under the influence. Nissan is well aware of the situation and is addressing it with Dutch design brand Droog. Their solution? A sweat-sensing material on the steering wheel and driver’s seat that informs drivers when they’re dehydrated and in need of some rehydration.

The video provides a proper demonstration of how the technology works, though, in a nutshell, it essentially involves a material called SOAK coating that’s placed on the two aforementioned locations. The material works by changing colors to indicate the driver’s hydration levels with “yellow” indicating that they’re dehydrated and “blue” signifying that they’re fully hydrated. It is worth mentioning that Droog actually owns the rights to the equipment, which it initially developed to help and inform athletes of their own hydration levels. Now that it’s partnered with Nissan, there’s the possibility that the technology can be applied to the auto industry. There’s no telling when that’s going to be since Nissan itself hasn’t indicated its plans for the SOAK technology and its potential application for its model lineup. That said, the Japanese automaker must be intrigued enough with the product to enlist Nismo racer Lucas Ordoñez to help spread awareness regarding the real state of affairs as far as driving while dehydrated is concerned.

Smart technology although not pleasant to look at

If you’ve seen the video, you probably know by now how the technology works. The SOAK material is placed on the steering wheel where the driver grips it. Once it comes in contact with perspiration, it starts to change color depending on whether a person is hydrated or not. If he or she is, the color of the SOAK coating turns to blue. If he isn’t, it turns to yellow. In cases of the later it means the driver is being informed that he needs to chug down water. Once he does and he’s properly hydrated, the yellow color turns blue. The same principle applies in the SOAK coating located in the driver’s seat.

It’s a simple enough tool, though I will point out that the yellow color on the seats reminds me of the color of yellow pee, the surest indicator of dehydration. I don’t know about you, but the image of all that yellow on the seats is vivid enough for me to think of it as, well, you know.


Nissan Wants To Let You Know When You Need A Swig Of Water - image 736249

Nissan Wants To Let You Know When You Need A Swig Of Water - image 736248

On a more serious note, the study’s revelation about the effects of dehydration on a driver is ironically sobering. Further studies even qualified the research, saying that the number of road errors dehydrated drivers make was equivalent to the number of errors a person with a blood alcohol content of 0.08 percent finds himself making. It may not seem like much, but that 0.08 percent is the legal limit across most of the US.

The pertinent question to ask now is whether or not we’ll see this kind of technology on future Nissan models. It’s too early to say at this point since Nissan itself hasn’t fully committed to using the product. I think it should though, uncomfortable visuals notwithstanding. I’ve always been a proponent of enhancing driver’s safety on the road through means that are meaningful and yield positive results. This kind of technology does that to a certain degree. It doesn’t have any of the usual physical restraints so it shouldn’t be of inconvenience to any of us. And, if it the application of this technology means that we have a better focus on the road, then I’m all for it.

References

Nissan Juke


2014 Nissan Juke - image 546025

Read our full review on the 2017 Nissan Juke.


2017 Nissan Leaf Nismo Concept - image 736206

Read more Nissan news.

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