マイブログ リスト


Nissan Leaf: Less demo cars due to strong demand

Nissan's US dealers will each give up one of their Leaf demo cars as the factory tries to satisfy initial demand for the car. Initially, dealers were promised two demo Leafs, but now they will get just one. This move translates in as many as 1,000 extra Leafs going to consumers.

Only 20,000 Leafs will arrive in the US in the first year, due to the limited production volume. Nissan is investing $1.6 billion to construct another lithium-ion battery plant in Smyrna, Tenn., where it will also assemble the Leaf, but that supply will not come on line until late in 2012.

The USDM Leaf will be launched in December.

[Source: Automotive News]

Revised Subaru Legacy Sports Tourer comes in Europe

  • Fresh, modern styling for longer, wider, taller Legacy Sports Tourer (wider by 50mm, taller by 65mm and longer by 55mm)
  • Updated Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive
  • Several technical refinements and enhanced environmentally-friendly features for Boxer diesel engine
  • Completely reviewed and re-engineered bodyshell
  • All-new ‘Cradle Mount System’ adopted where the engine and transmission are mounted on a sub-frame to reduce NVH
  • Revised MacPherson strut front suspension design
  • New ‘short height’ compact double-wishbone rear suspension
  • New electronic parking brake and hill-hold function
  • More room inside high-quality cabin (e.g. legroom for rear-seat passengers increases by 99mm, aided by an 80mm increase in wheelbase), and up to 1,726-litres of luggage space
  • New Multi-Information Display (MID) positioned on centre stack’s upper surface 
  • Recently awarded 5-Star Euro NCAP crash safety rating 
  • Available from December 2010, retailing at €41,995

Get ready for Toyota / Subaru FT-86 related cracking post...!!!

One thing that I really enjoy is searching for info... and one car that I really look forward hitting the markets is the Toyota / Subaru FT-86. I just hope that I will be financially sound in order to buy it...

Anyway, I have found some interesting shots from a a number of Japanese magazines, so stay tuned for the post... it's coming soon ;-)

Murano CrossCabriolet: Just some thoughts...

To be honest, I don't like SUVs and neither cabriolets, but somehow I do like the Murano CrossCabriolet (earlier post). For sure, it takes some balls to bring a car like that in production and although it's a niche market, I really hope that it will be successful. Sadly, this model won't really come in Europe and thus, I will never be able to see it in person...

For sure at the LA Auto Show, out of all Japanese manufacturers, Nissan had the best presense. A wicked prototype, the world's first AWD crossover convertible, my favourite sports car on sale at the moment, best coverage via Twitter... what else can someone ask...?!

Nissan has a great lineup in Japan and the US, while in Europe it's a different case. It tries to penetrate the market by discovering new segments, which is not a bad thing, but some of its "standard" models are rather disappointing (e.g. current Tiida and new Micra).

Honda refreshes Life in Japan

Honda Life (ライフ), Honda's Wagon R competitor, gets some minor changes for 2011. The most noticeable change is the front mask, while another change is the design of the headlight projectors for better visibility. All versions will now come with a wiper at the back.

The same changes apply for the Diva version, which now comes standard with sports seats and turn signal mirrors.

Of course, new exterior colours and interior trims have been added.

Pricing of new 2011 Vitz / Yaris in Japan (新型ヴィッツ価格情報)

Those are the prices of the new Toyota Vitz, going on sale in December in Japan.

1.0 F M-Package 105.8万円 *
1.0 F 111.8万円
1.3 F 128.8万円
1.3 F SMART STOP Package 134.8万円

1.3 U 149.8万円
1.5 U 159.8万円

1.0 Jewela 125.8万円
1.3 Jewela 135.8万円

1.5 RS C-Package 159.8万円
1.5 RS CVT 178.8万円
1.5 RS 5MT 171.8万円

* 万円 means million in Japanese

[Source: LoVitz]

Nissan Fairlady Z (300ZX) concept for sale on eBay

A Nissan Fairlady Z Z32 (aka 300ZX) - one of nicest Japanese sports cars in my opinion - convertible is not big news, however one with a folding hardtop is! The production cabriolet version went on sale in 1993, along with the T-top and standard versions, but before this, in 1991 Nissan produced a concept version that was shown at a number of auto shows. The concept featured a power-folding, retractable hardtop.

The concept was built  with American Sunroof Corporation (ASC) and it is now for sale on eBay, with a Buy-It-Now price of $62,000. Power is provided by the standard 3.0L V6, mated to a five-speed manual gearbox. The car has only 8,202 miles on the clock. According to the seller's listing, the original build cost was in excess of $800,000.

And just some history... Nissan utilized the Cray-II supercomputer to completely design the 300ZX with a form of CAD software. This made the 300ZX one of the first production cars to be developed in a CAD program!

Infiniti M35h (Fuga Hybrid) with standard VSP tech in Europe

The Infiniti M35h (earlier post), aka Nissan Fuga Hybrid in Japan - 日産フーガ ハイブリッド, will become the world's first hybrid to feature an audible pedestrian warning system as standard when it goes on sale in six months’ time in Europe. 

"The new Approaching Vehicle Sound for Pedestrians (VSP) system – is computer controlled and links an in-car sound synthesiser with a speaker built in to the front bumper. It automatically works from start-up to 30 km/h, cutting back in at 25 km/h as the vehicle slows.

Instead of just a single tone, a range of high-low sounds at different volume levels was chosen after an extensive research programme to find the most effective, but least intrusive, noise. The team developing the system in Infiniti’s parent group worked with cognitive and acoustic psychologists studying areas from pedestrian behavioural patterns to noise pollution.
The result is a sine-wave sound that extends from 2.5kHz at the high end to a low of 600Hz. It is a range readily audible to all age groups while avoiding a sound range (around 1,000Hz) that would add unnecessary noise to the environment.

... and a couple more LFA shots

[Source: Twitter]

Lexus LFA at LA Auto Show

The colour is not my cup of tea, but it still remains a masterpiece. Oh, with an amazing sound as well...!!!