Nissan has been parading their IDx concept cars all over SoCal recently, and this weekend they ended up in the garage of car enthusiast and comedian Jay Leno.
Tonight Show prop master Greg Elliot joins the show once again with his restomod Voodoo Blue 510. Accompanying him is Nissan Creative Design Manager Giovanny Arroba and the head-turning, charismatic Nissan IDx NISMO Concept.
Arroba, who was responsible for the current Altima, Maxima and Titan, explains that the three-box, front engine, rear wheel drive design resulted from a unique collaboration between Nissan designers and younger Nissan employees (shout out to friend of JNC DesignerD), who were asked what elements would appeal to Generation Y. He describes the concept as, “[Not] an appliance that gets you from Point A to Point B, this is all about fun and excitement, and getting people excited about Nissan.” Leno praises many of its aggressive, Japanese elements, notably the fender flares and the classic-race-inspired fender
mirrors rearview cameras.
We’ve been told that the concept was based on a Silvia, likely S15, chassis so it is in fact drivable, and Jay takes Nissan’s newest pride and joy around the streets of Los Angeles. The gorgeous greenhouse created by the “floating roof” is made even more evident in the video, showcasing a much open, airy interior, a nice break from today’s rising beltlines and claustrophobic cabins. The prototype seems to be too functional, as Leno accidentally opens the door while reaching for the door pull-latch! Watch the hilarity unfold above.
Back in 2011 I wrote the following blueprint and posted it here on JNC and also on the Grassroots Motorsports website. Hopefully Nissan was listening.
No, here’s a better idea. Nissan stays Nissan but they create a new brand like Toyota did with Scion. And, they call it Datsun. The mission of the new Datsun, build small, sporty cars that are retro inspired, get good gas mileage and are all rear wheel drive. Here’s the line up:
The Roadster. A two seat convertible styled after the Fairlady roadsters that preceded the Z car. More minimalist than a Miata, no power folding hard tops, power windows or mirrors. Just an honest, fun and light sports car.
The Truck. A real mini pickup, sized like the last of the Hardbody pickups. Give it a six foot bed, a regular or super cab, and make sure that it’s tough as nails. The sport truck guys are starving for something fun to drive and reasonably priced, plus all the projected fleet sales would be a big bonus.
The Patrol. A two door, four cylinder, four wheel drive sport utility offered with real solid axles and a real low range. Small like the original Ford Bronco but not as small as the Suzuki Samurai. Soft top with an optional hard top. Basically build an inexpensive, stripped down Jeep now the Chrysler has taken theirs too far upmarket.
The 510. Yes, bring it back. Coupe, sedan and wagon versions should all be available. Sized like the real deal, just updated for today’s market. It’s gotta look like a 510, handle like a 510 and most importantly, be factory raced like a 510.
Bean counters and enthusiasts will rejoice if the Roadster and 510 share the same fully independent suspension front and back and give the Truck the same front suspension with a typical solid rear with leafs. Four cylinder engines for all, no sixes for options, just a turbo on the sportiest versions. All start off with a base line, then a sport which gives you a better suspension and wheels and a top of the line which is the GT with a turbo engine. No paddle shifters or tipronic BS, just an honest 5 or 6 speed manual and an optional automatic on the base and sport lines (not available on the turbo).
Retro styling for all vehicles for the first generation with retro advertising (Datsun Saves, Drive a Datsun and Decide, etc). This puts Datsun back in all the Nissan dealerships where they won’t overlap any existing products and can cash in on the existing goodwill and name recognition the brand still enjoys after decades of being off the market. Keep prices low and offer dealer installed options like Scion. Throw some free vehicles to noted tuners and customizers so they show up at Sema, drifting events, custom car shows and get a ton of free PR.
How is this not a winning idea? People are cutting back, gas prices are rising and classic Japanese cars are gaining attention. Nissan needs to try something new, target some new markets and build some niche vehicles that will garner some very positive press for them.
In return for these awesome ideas, I only ask for a tour of the plant they build them in and a free Roadster. Nissan can PM me for details on where I want to take delivery of my car.
So your taking credit for the new IDx/510?
I hope they’re listening too!
and the LENO did this for free right? hahaha
I for one can’t stand the look of the 10x nismo. The idea is cool but the styling is just crazy. I like the way the body sits but the front clip is just strange.
well it’s a good thing you’re not president of nissan isn’t it?
Sad to see LENO retire. It will never be the same anymore when I turn the channel to NBC at 11:30pm.
He did a nice video on the concept. A true car enthusiast.
the cvt transmission sounded so annoying, gotta be stick shifts or atleast trip-tronic