NEWS: Nissan IDx gets a nose job for North American debut

Nissan IDx NISMO Concepts

Remember how Nissan said the Sports Sedan Concept was going to redefine the marque’s future design language? They wasted no time and have already given the Nissan IDx, unveiled in Tokyo less than two months ago, a facelift for its North American debut. 

This is the first showing on US soil of both the IDx Freeflow and IDx NISMO, which stole the 2013 Tokyo Motor Show last November. In the intervening weeks designers have updated both concepts with what is now known as the V-motion grille. This will be the new corporate face of Nissan, like it or not, though you might like it a little better upon learning the history behind it.

Last month we had a conversation about the SSC with Executive Chief Designer Mamoru Aoki, a veteran designer at Nissan who joined the company in the late 1980s. Some of Aoki’s projects have included the P10 Primera (Infiniti G20), Cima (Infiniti Q), and 350Z. During our chat, Aoki revealed a secret history of the V-motion grille not mentioned in any official announcements or press releases.

Aoki told us the the V is an evolution of the twin-eggcrate grille found on the 2004-08 Maxima, 2003-07 Murano, 2003-09 Quest and other models. That grille, in turn, was an evolution of the twin-wing grille found on cars like the 2002-10 March and 2007-10 Pino. However, go back 26 years and you might discover that the basis for this design was established, albeit subtly, in the iconic zenki (pre-facelift) S13 240SX, affectionately known to fans as the “pignose.” As it happens, that was Aoki’s first project when he started at Nissan.

Additionally, now that we’ve seen the Sport Sedan Concept’s other key trait, what Aoki calls the “floating roof,” the IDx’s C-pillars IDx make a lot more sense. What do JNCers think, do you prefer the old nose or new? Here are photos from Tokyo for reference:

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22 Responses to NEWS: Nissan IDx gets a nose job for North American debut

  1. Will said:

    From a first impression, the Idx still looks aethstetically pleasing with the new nose treatment and doesn’t look anything like a blemish just tacked on as an afterthought. However, from a distance in those renders, I could imagine someone could mistake the Freeflow Idx as some sort of Alfa concept or even more loosely a Saab 99 (at least in my opinion).

    I’m reminded that this is much like the original 510, which had a variety of grill styles as production went on. I think the Idx is a stunning looking form, and the ‘V’ ties the model the rest of the current Nissan lineup without detracting from the first unveiled examples. Exciting to know this is moving another step closer to being out there to drive.

    • E-AT_me said:

      Looks like a Saab? I’m ok with that.

    • pstar said:

      Yeah “Alfa ripoff” was the first thought that came to mind, but I can see the Saab thing as well.

      And what is the point of these stupid “corporate fascias” in the first place if they look like a DIFFERENT corporation’s product?

      BTW, nobody likes the 89 240sx front bumper/grille. But hey, lets make some shit up and say its iconic, and combine it with all the hideous cheapass shiny plastic slabs that have been in the middle of our ugly North-American built models’ (Altima, Maxima, Sentra, Titan, Armada, etc.) grilles for the last 15 years, and say we have some awesome grill “tradition”!

  2. Michael said:

    Sorry guys (Nissan), but I think the IDx is very, very far from being “spot-on”, regardless of the nose treatment.

    Nissan please work harder if you wish to bring back anything even remotely close to any of the S-chassis Sylvias. All of them (especially the 180SX) trump the IDx ten fold.

  3. Randy said:

    New addition to the nose still works.

    Is DesignerD still around? Sick to death of us yet?

    Though not likely, the Nismo-type headlight surrounds/assemblies in translucent/light-up would be awesome as one of the optional parts for the regular version, or a sport package! They look lighted in the various pix; hence the idea. OOooooooooh!

    Unrelated to this car, but why is the 240SX called “pignose?”

  4. Turbo Pete said:

    The v nose looks great, defiantly more 1969 alfa romeo gtv then anything else, but that’s a good thing. Please keep the wheels. whare do I send my deposit?

  5. Dave said:

    The nose works for me, but it’s a bit unnecessary. Some people might confuse it with the “framed logo” grille from other manufacturers (Subaru, old SAAB, etc.). It’s too much of a corporate thing, but I suppose if everyone else is doing it. I’ve always thought the *pig nose* 240SX looked better than the later, naked version. I’m going to the Detroit auto show on Saturday; can’t wait to see the s***load of awesome stuff in person!!!!!! IDx, FT-1 (!!!), RC/RC-F, new Honda Fit, this might be the best NAIAS in recent years!

  6. Brandon said:

    I’d say it hurts the freeflow, since it had such a simple and recognizable grill shape. The Nismo is sort of just a “didn’t hurt, but didn’t really help either” deal. For some reason it makes them look more European, but not in a good way.

  7. Thedezineboy said:

    Nothing a can of Plasti Dip can’t fix. ;)

  8. Cason said:

    Honestly I’m feeling the old look… It was simpler and far more recognizable as 510ish. Just my opinion. But nonetheless the new design is pretty dope on the nismo. I personally don’t like the lights on the nismo at all.

  9. dankan said:

    I prefer the old nose as it is simpler, but it works better on the Freeflow than the Nismo.

  10. Matt said:

    cool infobit! nissan primera for reference:

    plimeya

  11. Nick Edwards said:

    Old nose is better, and they still need to get rid of the bump up at the c pillar. The roof is fine, but the bottom is not.

    Also the yellow one still needs a grill or something in that massive grey expanse on the front. The back is just as bad. It’s looks like both front and rear bumpers are too heavy and are dragging plastic under the lights down…. maybe bring the bumpers up, or the hood and trunk down.

  12. adil yellow 510 said:

    the V nose looks better, its more harmonic to the bodyshape than the 1st version nose grill..

  13. Jin said:

    Is it just me that thinks these two vehicles are just terrible designs?
    I mean really awful!

  14. Aaron said:

    It works with the Nismo’s spaceship lights, but kills the one thing the IDx had going. Looks went from clean, minimal and classic to cross eyed and lethargic (think.. unibrow frown/hairlip).

    And tracing the roots of the current V trim back to the s13 isn’t a solid argument for these additions… There is a reason the kouki is more pleasing the eyes. I would however, be interested in the addition of a manual gearbox… Which can be traced back even further in Nissan’s heritage!

  15. Jin said:

    I looked at the IDx again and realized they’re also trying to revive the “ko-gyaru”(コギャル) look as well.

  16. HW said:

    Prefer grill version 1.0

  17. luik said:

    quiero dos!!!!1

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