February 1, 2006
Nissan at the Geneva Motor Show 2006
Two new concept vehicles for Europe
Full display of Nissan's six new vehicles
Nissan Europe will present two bold and innovative concept cars at the 2006 Geneva Motor Show.
The Geneva Motor Show represents the world premiere of the Nissan Terranaut, a 4x4 vehicle which is intended for explorers and those customers with a spirit of adventure who want to travel to the extreme corners of the globe. While, at the other extreme is the Pivo battery-powered city car, first seen at the Tokyo Motor Show in October 2005, which has been designed to serve customers who want freedom and mobility in the busiest of urban environments.
The Terranaut was conceived to serve as a mobile working environment for scientists, geologists, archaeologists or other adventurers who travel to the most challenging environments on the planet either for their work - or pleasure.
Its cabin is designed to accommodate three people – a driver, a passenger and, in the rear, where a scientist or specialist is well served with a computer console, as well as communication and analysis equipment to support them in their work.
A creation of London-based Nissan Design Europe, the overriding theme behind the concept is one of function. Project leader Felipe Roo Clefas, Assistant Chief Designer, NDE, says: “Terranaut has been designed for observation and communication in all four corners of the world.”
To accommodate the laboratory area within the cabin, the co-pilot’s side of the car has just one door, while the other side has a pair of swing doors and no central B-pillar. By hinging the doors at the front and rear respectively, ingress and egress is made easy.
Nineteen-inch wheels are covered by tyres specially constructed for Terranaut by Goodyear. Puncture proof, they function as conventional road tyres when the vehicle is being driven on metalled roads but, by changing air pressure, transform themselves into chunky off-road tyres.
Inside the vehicle, the spherical science laboratory dominates the entire cabin area behind the two front seats. A single revolving seat with an integrated computer keyboard is situated beneath the glass roof dome and gives the scientist complete 360-degree access to the various workstations found in Terranaut.
At the other end of the scale, the Pivo examines the future potential of the electric vehicle in a city environment. It is powered by a Nissan-developed high performance Compact Lithium-ion battery and Nissan’s own electric Super Motor.
Nissan’s design team in Japan has been able to develop an extremely compact body to give Pivo the perfect footprint for the city. Although just 2,700mm from bumper to bumper, Pivo will seat three in comfort, with the driver placed centrally and ahead of the two passengers in the rear of the cabin. Thanks to its narrow width – just 1,600 mm – it can be squeezed down busy streets and parked almost anywhere with ease.
But Pivo’s pièce de résistance lies in its cabin which, as its names implies, pivots through 360 degrees and means you’ll never have to reverse again: Pivo can be driven straight into a parking slot and, once the body has been swivelled around to face the opposite direction, driven straight out again.
The egg-shaped revolving body has other benefits. The tall, electrically-powered sliding doors, for example, make ingress and egress easy with little or no chance for bumped heads while ‘see-through’ pillars and Nissan’s Around View Monitor mean that blind spots are all but eliminated.
Cameras mounted on the outside of each A-pillar relay an accurate picture of the surroundings to screens within the pillars turning them into virtual windows. More cameras mounted at both ends and on both sides of the car allows the Around View Monitor to generate a 360-degree view of the car’s surroundings on a dashboard monitor. An innovative image processing technique converts these images into a single bird’s-eye view.
“When creating these two concepts, our objective was to explore the ultimate diversity of consumer needs. And, in common with the entire Nissan range, they have been created to provide drivers with an experience that goes beyond mere transportation. Both are built on Nissan’s key strengths: the capability to scrutinise specific consumer needs and the power to deliver the best of technology,” said Carlos Tavares, Executive Vice President, Product Planning and Corporate Strategy, Nissan Motor Limited.
In addition, the Nissan stand will display all six vehicles which have been launched in 2005: Murano, 350Z Roadster, Pathfinder SUV, Navara King and Double Cab pick ups and the Micra C+C. In addition, the NOTE, Nissan’s new compact family car, will be on display just as sales start across Europe.