There are certain inescapable truths in this world: bacon is delicious, man buns should be outlawed, and car dealerships endure a reputation of being a refuge for the ethically bankrupt.
I — like many others around here — am no stranger to witnessing the unscrupulous debauchery occurring on some showroom floors. However, there are exceptions to every rule, and a fledgling dealer in small-market rural Canada puts the lie to the claim that backwards thinking is a trait of all car dealerships. There are bright spots out there, as proven by the team at Truro Nissan.
Renault and Nissan will build the next-generation Zoe and Leaf electric cars using a shared platform. The cooperative endeavor should result in leaner, cleaner, and better EV technologies — something the Japanese automaker needs to implement immediately in the helplessly floundering Leaf.
While the models will have their own distinct styling, they will share the same basic framework and electric motors. Arnaud Deboeuf, senior vice president of Renault-Nissan BV, said that the new generations of the Zoe and Leaf would compete in the same segment. However, since the current Zoe is a supermini, it will need to be sized up into a compact or the Leaf will need to be miniaturized slightly.
America’s pickup truck market exploded with significant year-over-year growth in November 2016. After the U.S. auto industry reported three consecutive months of decline through the end of October, auto sales jumped 4 percent in November, year-over-year.
Pickup trucks were responsible for half of the industry’s growth last month.
All 11 truck nameplates on offer in the United States — from the Chevrolet Silverado that posted a modest 0.6-percent uptick to the Honda Ridgeline that shot up 115,367 percent — got in on the action.
Even the Nissan Titan.
I despised all of the cross-promotion taking place between Nissan and Star Wars this fall, especially now that it has devolved into dealerships offering free worthless collectables to lure in prospective buyers. However, you have to admit that they did a phenomenal job implementing the campaign.
It was a perfect storm of coincidences that allowed this cooperative marketing strategy to emerge from Nissan’s womb. The Rogue shared a name with the upcoming Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, the timing of the film’s release roughly coincided with the model’s 2017 face-lift, and the automaker wanted to put a lot of money behind the advertising of its best-selling model.
Although it probably didn’t hurt that Nissan’s North America marketing chief, Jeremy Tucker, joined Nissan from Disney — the company that now owns Lucasfilm and Star Wars — in 2014.
The Kids Are Fighting Again: Renault-Nissan Swaps Out Powertrain Chief to Stamp Out a Family Squabble
Nissan and Renault consummated their marriage in 1999, but some family members still aren’t happy living under the same roof.
In an effort to put a lid on infighting, Renault-Nissan has asked its head of powertrain engineering to take a walk, replacing him with a company veteran who — the company hopes — can bring both sides together.
The alliance needs a hug-filled happy ending in a hurry, as regulators are gunning for the automaker’s not-so-clean engines.
You can still buy a brand new Nissan Quest.
In fact, you’ll be able to do so in 2017, as well.
To be honest, we had our doubts about the Quest’s U.S. future. Nissan Canada killed the Quest in 2013. Fast forward three years, and Nissan USA’s lingering Quest suffered a massive 73-percent year-over-year sales decline between August and November of this year. During that period, only 0.5 percent of American minivan buyers, just one out of every 200, opted for a Nissan Quest.
The second-generation Nissan Pulsar NX (known as the Nissan EXA outside of North America) was a cheap, mildly sporty two-seater that never sold as well as the Honda CRX or even the Ford EXP. In this series, we’ve seen this Colorado ’87 and this California ’89, and now we have a rusty ’88 in the weeds at the edge of a Wisconsin yard.
After several stellar space-themed puns and a pyrotechnic display that was out of this world, Nissan unveiled the Rogue One Star Wars Limited Edition package at the Los Angeles Auto Show.
For under two grand, you can have the package added to a front- or all-wheel-drive Nissan Rogue and let the whole world know you are the sort of person willing to pay money to drive around in a commercial.
Two months after bringing the Juke’s 1.6-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine to the Sentra lineup, Nissan is one-upping the Sentra SR Turbo with the 2017 Nissan Sentra NISMO.
It’s been three years since Nissan showcased a Sentra NISMO concept at the 2013 Los Angeles Auto Show, but the 2016 Los Angeles Auto Show sees the arrival of a production version that is, according to Nissan, more than just a bodykit.
In this case, NISMO also means a stiffened structure, unique suspension tuning, and the requisite exterior upgrades.
Toyota’s going to market the new Prius Prime with laser-like precision. Is it because they want to embrace cutting-edge advertising methods, or is it because they don’t see it as a vehicle with particularly broad appeal?
That, BMW thinks it might want to keep an unpopular model around for another generation, Volvo issues a voluntary recall on seat belts, and Toyota and Nissan agree that their prospects have looked better in North America… after the break!
Nissan has created a strange new backwards working hybrid powerplant that includes an internal combustion engine but doesn’t use it to drive the wheels at all.
It’s called e-Power, it’s going to be in the Japanese-market Note first, and it’s essentially a Nissan Leaf that you don’t ever plug in. It also keeps the oil companies somewhat happy. Allow me to explain…
After over two decades of uninterrupted production, Nissan’s Mexican division is finally killing off one of the oldest cars currently on the global market — the Tsuru compact sedan. Virtually unchanged since 1992, Mexico manufactured it for 24 years, selling a grand total of 1,849,289 units in that time.
However the re-badged B13 Sentra’s rich history of reliable transportation and status as Mexico’s favorite taxi won’t save it from the axe. This popular little deathtrap has overstayed its welcome. Here’s why the blade needs to fall.
Nissan owners hoping for relief on a coolant issue that has been causing transmission failures on 2005-2010 Frontier, Pathfinder, and Xterra trucks will be disappointed to find out that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has closed a petition to issue a recall. The petition filed by the North Carolina Consumers Council claimed that failures were possible in over 857,000 vehicles.
The Associated Press (via CNBC) reports that the NHTSA declined to investigate further, stating that the majority of the complaints didn’t describe a safety hazard and that further investigation is not warranted, given its “limited resources.”
That means over three-quarters of a million vehicles have ticking transmission time bombs, and the manufacturer’s half-hearted solution seems designed to help very few owners.
Since the 1980s, draconian federal importation laws have meant enthusiasts in the United States must wait a full 25 years before some of their favorite brand’s models are legal on these shores. And every year, groups of enthusiasts take to the internet to contemplate what cars will be available for importation with the turn of the new year. The arrival of each new calendar year then becomes a celebration of the past, a revisit of forsaken models, a festival of other-market obscurity.
The Land of the Rising Sun is becoming more than just a source for tuners looking for their next drift car. That’s right, Japanese cars are now collectible.
Suppose an automaker improved a terrible-selling vehicle but didn’t bother to tell anyone about it. Chances are they didn’t just forget, so there has to be some fundamental reasoning behind that choice. This is the mystery Nissan has left us with after silently and suddenly replacing the battery in their base model Leaf with a larger one.
We only know about this change due to an eagle-eyed staff member at Green Car Reports, who noticed that Nissan increased the size of the Leaf S battery in a September order guide.
Remaining relatively faithful to the Sway Concept from last year’s Geneva Motor Show, Nissan unveiled the fifth-generation Micra at the 2016 Paris Motor Show, more than six years after the fourth-generation Micra arrived.
Directed at the European market, which Nissan says is the world’s largest market for hatchbacks, the Micra is not at all intended for sale in the United States. But what about Canada, where Nissan has racked up 27,000 Micra sales in 29 months and the Micra is the brand’s second-best-selling passenger car?
“We don’t have current plans to announce for Micra in Canada for now,” Nissan Canada’s director of corporate communications, Didier Marsaud, told TTAC in an email today. “But Micra remains an important product in our portfolio in the Canadian market.”
So he’s saying there’s a chance.
Nissan is filling in all the unfilled niches today.
The automaker unveiled a turbocharged variant of the sensible and unexciting Sentra today at the Miami International Auto Show, promising a performance version of a sedan known mostly for its value and grocery capacity.
In doing so, Nissan implies that a hotter NISMO version is around the corner, while closing the casket lid on the IDx concept once and for all.
The crossover market isn’t just hot — it’s radiating the brilliant, scorching intensity of a million suns.
Naturally, any automaker with the means to do so would prefer to offer a lineup as diverse as possible, allowing even greater numbers of utility-hungry buyers to fall into its arms. Nissan looked around, saw some spare cash, then looked over at the Toyota RAV4, America’s best-selling compact crossover, with its regular and hybrid variants.
“Gotta get us a hybrid Rogue,” Nissan execs thought.
Car shoppers who need to carry more than four people should buy vans. Full stop. The minivan form factor is superior in nearly every manner to the SUV; from passenger comfort, to cargo room, to flexibility, the van wins. Yet American shoppers have largely abandoned the symbol of Eighties momness for the three-row crossover, this decade’s mom taxi.
While Nissan has offered minivans in various forms since the mid-80s, it’s a relative newcomer to the three-row CUV market with the 2013 Pathfinder. For 2017, Nissan has refreshed the Pathfinder — inside, outside, and underneath — all in an effort to make this big wagon appeal to all manner of drivers.
Including those who should be buying vans.
The Maxima has been with us since the 1981 Datsun 810 Maxima, which became the Datsun Maxima, then the Datsun Maxima by Nissan, and finally the Nissan Maxima.
Starting out as a Z-car-based sporty sedan, it grew into an electronic-gadget-packed luxury sedan, then became bigger, more powerful, and less crazy with each successive generation until we arrived at the current competent-but-not-particularly-exciting Maxima.
The fifth-generation Maxima, made for the 1994 through 1999 model years, seems to be the last for which the manual-transmission option was selected by a significant minority of buyers; you could get one after 1999, but I never see anything but automatics in my junkyard travels.
Here’s a mean-looking ’96 that I spotted in a San Francisco Bay Area wrecking yard.
Just north of the Vermont border, you’ll find 3,712 very disappointed would-be Nissan Leaf owners.
A Montreal-based group seeking a low-priced bulk buy of Nissan’s electric car has had their dreams dashed by Nissan Canada, after the automaker seemed to grow wary of the group’s size, Quebec’s La Presse reports.
At a recent Nissan truck and SUV event in Carmel, a senior Nissan rep indicated there is zero chance the Smyrna, Tennessee based operation will alter its winning mid-size pickup formula.
When asked about the prospects of a unibody Frontier, Dan Passe, Senior Manager of Nissan Brand Communications, laughingly responded, “We don’t normally comment on future product, but a unibody Frontier is not happening.”
It makes sense that an advertising blitz during the year’s most-watched event will boost your brand, but that wasn’t the case for automakers during the Rio Olympics.
According to a brand interest study, automakers who spent the most money saw no improvement in consumer perception, Automotive News reports.
After 25 years in production, the Nissan B13 chassis is not long for this world. New Mexican safety regulations will spell the end of the Nissan Tsuru, according to a report in La Jornada Aguascalientes.
While the Tsuru — sold here as the Sentra from 1991 through 1994 — remains one of the most popular vehicles in the Mexican market due to remarkably low prices and ownership costs, the lack of airbags and anti-lock brakes mean doom as the Mexican government begins to bring cars sold in the country up to the safety standards required in the U.S. and Europe.
Nissan’s second-generation Titan arrives in crew cab, V8 form with a U.S. base price of $35,975, including $1,195 for destination and handling.
A terribly long run for Nissan’s first full-size pickup truck effort resulted in only 471,242 U.S. sales between 2002 and 2015, roughly the total number of Ford F-Series pickups sold every seven months. Nissan has forged a unique strategy for the Titan’s relaunch, with the heavier-duty — though not quite Heavy Duty — Titan XD already on the market with a 310-horsepower Cummins 5.0-liter V8 diesel powerplant.
Now the regular-duty 2017 Nissan Titan is arriving in concert with an upgraded full-size pickup truck warranty that matches Nissan’s commercial van coverage: bumper-to-bumper, five years/100,000 miles.
With Nissan Leaf sales falling like autumn foliage, a few enterprising EV fans hope to reverse the trend (or at least slow it) through group discounts.
After a Colorado group negotiated a 248-vehicle Leaf purchase for the you’re kidding me price of $12,130 per unit, other groups now wants a piece of the cheap Leaf action. In Montreal, 2,500 Quebec residents just signed up for a reduced group price, while a Wisconsin group negotiated a similar discount.
Wherever roads fade to tracks, bridges give way to fords, and addresses become coordinates, an intense internecine war is under way. Since the Land Cruiser and Patrol were born in 1951, Nissan and Toyota have battled over which automaker produces the best large, go-anywhere, do-anything SUV. It’s a competition that has spawned battle wagons of ever increasing size, off-road capability, passenger comfort, and refinement.
Unfortunately, American consumers have been sidelined.
Sure, Toyota will sell you a Land Cruiser, but the average Toyota store sells fewer than three Land Cruisers a year. It’s the Tundra-derived Sequoia that leads Toyota’s full-size SUV campaign in North America. Likewise, Nissan began offering the Titan-based Armada in 2004. Although the Nissan has consistently outsold its Indiana-built rival, it has long been a battle for third and fourth place.
Nissan is now taking aim at loftier objectives.
Nissan is closing in on its goal of owning 10 percent of the North American market, but it opened itself up to plenty of risk along the way.
The surging automaker beat rival Honda in sales during the first half of this year, but only because of boosted incentives and increased fleet sales, Bloomberg reports. Big volume doesn’t always mean big profits.
With so many parents using crew cab pickups as family haulers, it’s gotten to the point where a regular cab full-sizer starts to look weird. Well, Nissan has one on tap that looks weirder.
Nissan will offer a regular cab Titan and Titan XD this fall, part of its plan to flesh out the lineup to three body styles. An extended “King Cab” version will follow the “Single Cab”, which is somewhat jarring when viewed from the side.
Subcompact Cars Are Dying, Yet Nissan Is Selling Five-Year-Old Versas Like They're Crossovers or Something
Through the first-half of 2016, passenger car sales volume is down 8 percent in the United States.
It’s not quite that bad in the subcompact car category, but sharp declines from the Chevrolet Sonic, Ford Fiesta, Honda Fit, Toyota Prius C, Toyota Yaris, plus the disappearance of the Mazda2 pushed subcompact car volume down 6 percent.
Yet U.S. sales of the Nissan Versa are on the rise.
Not only are Nissan Versa sales on the rise, the Versa is consistently America’s top-selling subcompact car.
Not only are Versa sales rising now, Versa sales have been on the rise for the last seven years.
The recent introduction of a thoroughly re-engineered Toyota Tacoma is propelling sales of the segment’s top seller to all-time highs. After an elongated hiatus, there are new options from General Motors, and they’re selling more frequently than GM anticipated. Just last month, Honda began selling an all new, second-generation Ridgeline, a pickup at the opposite end of the spectrum from the rough and tumble Frontier. That Ridgeline, we told you yesterday, is selling like it’s 2008.
Moreover, demand for small/midsize pickup trucks is roughly 30-percent smaller than it was a decade ago.
At Nissan, there are plenty of factors, internal and external, working against the Frontier. The current-generation pickup is more than a decade old. Yet Nissan USA is on track to sell more Frontiers in 2016 than at any point since the current truck debuted on the Titan’s F-Alpha platform in January 2004 at Detroit’s North American International Auto Show.
When the Pathfinder Hybrid quietly ended production early last year, it didn’t spell the end of Nissan’s electrified crossover plans in the U.S. The powertrain has now been resurrected in another model, but there’ll be slim pickings for U.S. buyers, according to AutoGuide (via Hybrid Cars).
The Nissan Murano Hybrid bows as a 2016 model, and its specifications can more or less be directly imported from a 2014 Pathfinder brochure. However, the new model’s fuel economy is higher than its spiritual predecessor.
The Leaf is nowhere to be seen — unless you’re staring at a Nissan dealer lot — and American buyers are barely budging their electric vehicle take up rate. Nissan, it seems, needs another incentive to sweeten its EV pot.
The solution? More free electricity. It’s not a new idea (actually, it’s an expanded version of two-year-old promotion), but the automaker probably figured, why the hell not?
Nissan doesn’t want its aging Leaf electric hatchback to be left in the dust when the long-legged Chevrolet Bolt and Tesla Model 3 hit the market.
To counter the threat, Nissan will double the size of the Leaf’s battery, giving it a range of more than 200 miles, the automaker’s green chief told Autoblog. Exactly when the upgraded EV will show up remains a mystery.
Electrified transportation isn’t catching fire in the new vehicle market, but sales are positively scorching at used car lots.
The top three fastest-selling one- to three-year-old vehicles in the U.S. today aren’t pickups or SUVs, but a low-volume plug-in hybrid and two EVs, according to automotive data and research company iSeeCars.com.
A vehicle that hasn’t changed in years won’t get a price change for 2017, which shouldn’t impact sales figures that also haven’t changed in years.
Got that? Nissan just released details on the 2017 370Z, and you have to dig deep before finding anything that’s new on the automaker’s rear-drive sport coupe.
Nissan’s hot GT-R receives new looks and equipment upgrades for 2017, but it also gets a price that pushes the performance coupe into near-supercar territory.
Getting into Nissan’s range-topper will now set you back $109,990 — a price that doesn’t include a $1,595 destination and handling charge, the automaker revealed today. Updates to the model piled on cost over the past decade, but enthusiasts continue to pull out their wallets.
Nissan Leaf sales have all the buoyancy of a cinder block, meaning buyers clearly weren’t impressed with the extra miles of range added for 2016.
The venerable electric vehicle recorded 979 U.S. sales in May, up from the previous month’s 787 units, but down a whopping 53.5 percent from a year earlier. If the model’s perpetually smiling face could frown, it would.
A top Nissan executive is packing his bags and getting ready to take on Mitsubishi’s shadowy and scandal-prone technology arm.
Yesterday’s reports proved true, with Mitsuhiko Yamashita, Nissan’s chief technology adviser, announced today as Mitsubishi’s new head of research and development. He will take on the position starting June 24.
There’s a tough job waiting for Yamashita.
In this play, Nissan is President Jimmy Carter and Mitsubishi is a bankrupt New York City.
It’s nowhere near the scale of the Volkswagen debacle, but Nissan is in hot water with the South Korean government over dodgy emissions from its diesel SUV.
That country’s environment ministry accuses Nissan of using a “defeat device” to disable the emissions controls on its UK-built Qashqai SUV, Automotive News reports.
Yesterday’s vague Japanese media reports proved right this morning, as Nissan Motor Co. announced it will purchase a 34 percent controlling stake in scandal-plagued Mitsubishi Motors.
Taking advantage of Mitsubishi’s reduced market value following the company’s admission of cheating on Japanese fuel economy tests, Nissan’s 237 billion yen ($2.2 billion) bulk buy of shares makes it the automaker’s largest shareholder.
It’s a big win for Nissan, which can take credit for exposing the gas mileage scandal less than a month ago.
Upon its introduction in 2003, the Murano possessed a unique combination of traits that, in retrospect, make its La Jolla, California design studio and Design Chief Taiji Toyota look genius.
The Murano was built on the Altima platform, making it relatively inexpensive to build. It had a segment-first four-wheel independent suspension, imparting a genuine car-like driving experience. It featured generous proportions, yet eschewed three-rows in favor of spacious seating for five. Combined with its catchy anti-establishment styling, snappy 245-horsepower V6, and total lack of off-road pretension, it was the 21st century spiritual successor to the personal luxury car.
Nissan is trying to play Tesla’s lengthy Model 3 waiting list to its advantage.
A print ad that landed in the country’s most-read newspapers this morning is playing up the Model 3’s wait times, according to Automotive News, and encouraging EV buyers to go the faster route by buying a Leaf.
There’s nothing subtle about the ad, which would have been green-lit by Nissan’s intimidating sales and marketing head Christian Meunier. Since taking on the role in January, Meunier has laid out an aggressive marketing strategy, meaning the Leaf spot could be the first of many cheeky ads.
The Russian automaker that manufactures Lada vehicles won’t see Carlos Ghosn at its board meetings after this June.
The Renault-Nissan CEO and chairman is expected to be replaced as chairman of AvtoVAZ at the company’s June 23 shareholders meeting, the automaker has stated, with Dr. Serguey Skvortsov taking his place.
Ghosn remains the chairman of Alliance Rostec Auto BV, the holding company that controls AvtoVAZ. Renault-Nissan bought a majority stake in the company, which is a joint venture with Russian Technologies, in 2012.
I wonder how many of the Best and Brightest have been watching, waiting for this column to descend once again upon a subject automobile that has had a truly mystical device bestowed upon it by its creator. I’m talking about the equipment that blew the expression right off your neighbor’s face when showing off your new purchase in the driveway. A true novelty lost to time. Something that probably should be capitalized on currently by automakers in an updated form in this age of “let’s fill this humorless pod full of unusable gadgetry so it doesn’t look like a rolling flip-phone.”
I’m talking, of course, about a little thing called voice warning.
You see kids, something magical happens when that speaker chimes in to apprise you of things you probably already knew about. And while we’re on the subject of cars so equipped, why not focus on something with … soul?
Japanese car companies have been trying to break into the American full-sized pickup market for decades. Despite Japanese trucks having a sterling reputation for dependability and reliability internationally, ‘Muricans are a different bunch. Not even Ford’s switch to “European-style” twin-turbo engines and aluminum bodies could stop the freight train that is the F-Series sales chart.
On the opposite end of that sales chart is the last-place Titan. Nissan sold just 12,140 Titans last year, 1/10th of Toyota’s own meager volume and 1/65th of Ford’s truck sales.
Rather than picking up its marbles and going home, Nissan thought outside the box and came up with a novel idea. Why not “right-size” a 3/4 ton truck and sell it for a little more than your average 1/2 ton? With the Detroit Three engaged in serious towing and payload wars, the heavy-duty pickup segment looks more like a Freightliner convention.
That’s where the diesel Titan XD comes in.
Is there a Nissan competitor to the BMW i8 in the works? A senior executive has hinted there might be.
Speaking to Auto Express, senior vice-president Shiro Nakamura said an electric sports car is one option the automaker is considering for its upcoming modular vehicle platform.
The first-generation Nissan Sentra first appeared on American roads in 1982, early in the very costly Datsun-to-Nissan rebranding process. The lightweight, fuel-efficient Sentra was a big sales hit, because drivers in the early 1980s (with vivid memories of the gas lines of a few years earlier) were willing to put up with double-digit horsepower and lots of NVH in a car that promised decent reliability and cheap point-A-to-point-B costs. Now, of course, nearly all of the early Sentras are gone, so this well-worn example in a San Francisco Bay Area yard gives us an interesting history lesson.
Last fall, we had a typical-for-TTAC slap fight between Bark and Mark, centered around Nissan. I’ve been ruminating on this argument for months, but my conversation last week with NISMO chief Hiroshi Tamura — and seeing what Nissan chose to feature in New York — finally pushed me over the edge.
As I walked through the glass doors in the Jacob Javits Center last Wednesday morning, preparing for my first auto show as a member of the press, the automaker that’s defined much of my motoring life was front and center.
Somewhat inexplicably, Nissan had rented possibly the best, highest-traffic space in the entire hall and filled it with a tribute to a six-figure supercar, complete with a bunch of old cars the U.S. never saw when new.
Nissan’s U.S. sales boss delivered some Glengarry Glen Ross-style “motivation” to its ad agencies in order to pump up the brand’s weak messaging via a new campaign.
Christian Meunier, who took control of Nissan’s U.S. sales and marketing in January, dressed down a roomful of agency reps a week into his new job, according to Automotive News (via Ad Age).
Spy shots of the next-generation Nissan Micra undergoing road testing have rolled in from southern Europe.
Despite the camoflage, it’s the clear the next sub-subcompact Micra will be a departure from the bulbous current model, no doubt influenced by the Nissan Sway concept car unveiled at the 2015 Geneva International Motor Show.
The newly refreshed 2017 Nissan GT-R on the rostrum drew the focus of many, but it was the five historic vehicles Nissan decided to bring to the New York International Auto Show that shouted for my attention in the crowd.
These five Skylines represent the race-bred heritage of the GT-R, while simultaneously taunting American enthusiasts who could never buy these iconic sports cars when they arrived new to dealerships.
The R35 Nissan GT-R is getting another facelift to keep the eight year old chassis going for 2017. The changes include a corporate “V-Motion” grille along with updated bodywork and a small boost in power.
The grille change is accompanied by an updated reinforced hood and a new front bumper treatment that is slated to give better downforce and stability. The sides and rear have also received updates to give a wider stance while the signature taillights have been kept.
Ask people in the know which full-size pickup is arguably the worst new purchase you can make today and you’ll receive a resounding answer: the Titan.
Nissan’s foray into full-size pickups was a breath of fresh air when it debuted for the 2004 model year. But like all merchandise that sits stagnant on retail shelves, it quickly went out of style, became unrefined in comparison to ever-improving competitors, and could only be had with a thirsty V8 during the doldrums of the Great Recession.
It’s this languishing at the low end of the totem pole that must have cajoled Nissan engineers to seriously analyze its truck strategy going forward. Surely, if Nissan was to compete in the pickup game, it would need to update its model at the same pace as everyone else — or, the very least, at the same pace as Toyota. That’s an expensive undertaking considering an all-new model’s development is now priced well into the billions of dollars. And it’s a risky bet to invest that much cash in a segment known for ownership loyalty and domestic domination.
So, Nissan had an idea: hit ’em where they ain’t, and steal a seasoned truck guy to push the new-“class” pickup.
As wonderful as the American marketplace is, there’s an entire world — literally — of cars out there that we just can’t get our hands on. In TTAC’s new series, “Foreign Affairs,” we look at forbidden fruit that you can buy brand new around the world.
The Mexican new car market is remarkable. While plenty of good new cars come across the border, inciting at least one presidential candidate to threaten penalty taxes, its domestic market still continues to sell older gems, some of which are built to older safety standards. Even the Beetle was built there long after its sell-by date.
It’s Spy Shot Weekend at TTAC. In addition to the Chinese metal driving around Ann Arbor we published yesterday, here are images of what could be a next-generation Nissan NV200 Compact Passenger van plying the highways of California by way of eagle-eyed TTAC reader Felix.
The van in the photos has all the hallmarks of being a Nissan prototype, including similar camo to that used on other Nissan models, explained spy photographer Brian Williams in an email.
Like cockroaches scattering in the light, Americans are fleeing sedans for the upright comfort and wagon-like space of crossovers.
The full-size sedan segment has recently been hit hard, Maxima included. Since 2012, the auto market has expanded 20 percent, while full-size sedan sales have contracted 14 percent. Based on an aging design and the entrance of Korean rivals, the Maxima’s 12-percent market share in 2012 dwindled to eight percent in 2015.
There is a fair chance no more than six people will read this review, and five of those readers will be future doctoral students deconstructing the final days of the sedan. Does that mean no matter how good the Maxima is — or could be — it’s doomed to fail?
Electric vehicles aren’t rollin’ coal anymore — or, at least, not nearly as much as they used to.
Reuters reports coal-fired electricity generation is now at a 35-year low in the U.S., and November 2015 was the fifth month in a row more natural gas than coal was used to produce electricity.
That’s not all. From Reuters:
With just one month of data missing in 2015, some analysts think power companies may have burned more gas than coal for the full year for the first time in history.
Oh, and guess what’s dirtier than natural gas when burned? You bet: gasoline.
Traditional car shoppers are moving away from small sedans and toward compact crossovers. That’s the conventional wisdom used to explain the slowing sales we see in some models. But could there be another reason? Could it simply be a lack of focus and attention to the compact segment?
There is one model that’s seen a meteoric rise in sales since 2013: the Sentra. Nissan’s complete overhaul three years ago and aggressive pricing doubled Sentra sales since then, moving it from a “top 15” player in sales to number five in 2015.
In an effort to maintain the trajectory, Nissan opted for a major refresh after just three years on sale. (Sounds like the Honda plan with the Civic, doesn’t it?) Perhaps the key to compact success is a combination of frequent updates and more gadgets for shoppers to choose from. That sums up the 2016 Sentra perfectly.
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- The Oracle Good news is that based on the model years many of these have already been junked or experienced terminal engine failure.
- Lou_BC I'm confused, isn't a Prologue a preview? This would be a preview of a preview.
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- Tre65688381 Definitely more attractive than it's German rivals, but I'd still rather have the standard GV80. One of the best looking mid size SUV/Crossovers on the road, in my opinion. And the updates for 2024 hone it gently in the right direction with more tasteful but subtle changes.