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NISSAN RANGE SUMMARY
Revisions to Pixo, special versions of Juke, Note and Micra, introduction of new Pure Drive Qashqai and much more from one of the broadest model ranges available
GENEVA, Switzerland (6 March 2012) - Invitation, e-NV200, Juke Nismo Concept and the dramatic Hi-Cross Concept might steal most of the headlines, but the busy Nissan stand at the Geneva Motor Show is full of news. Nissan's policy of continual improvement means virtually every model in the wide range boasts changes for the 2012 model year.
The entry point to the Nissan range, Pixo has been refreshed for the new year with new exterior colours, a revised dashboard for greater quality and, most significantly, a drop in CO2 emissions to below 100g/km.
Detail changes to the engine tune and minor aerodynamic improvements have combined to drop CO2 levels to 99g/km from 103g/km, allowing Pixo to enjoy tax benefits in many European countries. Power from the frugal 1.0-litre three cylinder engine remains at 68PS.
The two new metallic colours - ‘Glistening Grey' and ‘Dusk' shade (the latter shade unique to Nissan) - add a sense of sophistication to the Indian-built five-door hatchback, as does the new darker material used for the dashboard and door trims. An anti-dazzle rearview mirror is now standard.
With sales across Europe of almost 76,000 last year, the new Micra is continuing where its predecessor left off... as the city car of choice for many. Encapsulating innovation and excitement in equal measures is the range-topping model, powered by Nissan's advanced 1.2-litre DIG-S engine. One of the world's cleanest petrol engines, the supercharged three cylinder direct injection unit produces just 95 g/km of CO2 yet still develops 98PS for spirited performance.
Its first full year on sale was marked by the arrival of two special versions, Kuro and Shiro (Japanese for black and white respectively) which are fully equipped with advanced equipment, a sophisticated interior and, depending on the model, Sapphire Black metallic or pearlescent Pearl White exterior colours.
Standard equipment in the two models include Nisan's helpful Parking Slot Measurement technology, designed to make city parking as easy as possible, fully automatic air conditioning and Nissan Connect, the innovative touch screen satellite navigation, entertainment and communication system.
As versatile and good to drive as ever, Nissan Note enters 2012 with the addition of a high value special edition in its armoury. Building on mid-range Acenta grade, the special edition has a bold look thanks to a new Haptic Blue exterior colour, dark 16-inch alloy wheels and a chrome finisher for the fog lamps.
Inside the cloth trim from the top Tekna model features sophisticated new blue stitching. Standard equipment includes fully automatic air conditioning and automatic control of the lights and wipers.
A range of value for money option packs have been developed for the model. The Tech Pack includes the Nissan Connect satellite navigation and entertainment system - complete with a smart piano black surround - privacy glass and a rear-parking sensor. The Security pack adds ESP and side airbags while the Easy Pack includes folding door mirrors and Nissan's acclaimed Intelligent Key.
In its first full year on sale, Juke has captured the imagination of the car buying public, much as its big brother Qashqai did five years ago. From a standing start, Juke sold more than 123,700 examples across Europe, making it Nissan's second most popular model behind Qashqai.
Such has been demand for Juke that the decision was taken in the middle of last year to move production of four-wheel drive versions from Japan to the UK, where it is now built alongside the two-wheel drive versions. The move has allowed Nissan to reduce waiting lists, especially in the mountainous regions of Europe where four-wheel drive is highly desirable during the winter months.
Like Micra and Note, there's a special version of Juke now available across Europe. Called Juke Shiro (Japanese for white) it builds on top-of-the-range Tekna specification and is available across all three engine options: 110PS 1.5-litre dCI; 117PS normally aspirated 1.6-litre petrol and 190PS direct injection turbocharged 1.6-litre petrol DIG-T. Standard equipment includes stylish dark grey 17-inch alloy wheels, a leather covered centre armrest, illuminated chrome-plated sill protectors and Juke-branded velour mats. The door mirrors and exterior door handles have a satin silver finish while the B pillar is a premium glossy black to differentiate it from regular Juke models. There's also a unique exterior colour available: Nightshade, a refined deep aubergine colour.
The ‘Shiro-effect' can be found inside where a number of white elements come together to differentiate the model from other Jukes. These include the ‘motorcycle tank' centre console, door panels and window switch surrounds. The seats and leather wrapped steering wheel have white stitching while the seat facings have a double layer fabric with a white background colour visible through the perforated leather facing.
Juke also set the internet on fire towards the end of the 2011 when details of a ‘Super Juke' began to leak out on social network sites. Called Juke-R, it married the looks and style of Juke with the four-wheel drive chassis and the 485PS bi-turbo running gear of the awesome Nissan GT-R supercar.
Two fully road-legal models were built, one left-hand drive and the other with right-hand drive, by specialist racing team RML. They were taken to Dubai at the start of 2012 when they took on lead-out car duties for the Dubai 24 Hours motor race.
By the time it reaches its fifth year on sale, demand for a car usually starts to dwindle. Not Qashqai. In 2011, more than a quarter of a million examples of Qashqai and seven-seat Qashqai+2 were sold across Europe, its best year yet. Since launch, more than one million examples have been sold, making it one of the most successful Nissan models of all time.
The most recent big news from Qashqai has been the arrival of a technically advanced 1.6-litre dCi engine, developed by Alliance partners Renault, and the availability of Around View Monitor (AVM), a first for a car in the C-segment.
The new 130PS dCi provides similar levels of performance as the previous 2.0-litre dCi range-topper, but with lower emissions and considerably improved levels of fuel economy. Coupled with automatic Stop / Start System and Smart Energy Management systems such as a regenerative braking system, CO2 emissions have dropped to just 119g/km (from 155g/km for the 2.0-litre dCi) while fuel economy is 24 per cent better (4.5 l/100km vs. 5.9 l/100km), allowing it to wear the Nissan Pure Drive badge - awarded to any Nissan that produces less than 130g/km - with pride.
AVM, first seen in Europe on luxury Infiniti models, uses cameras mounted on the grille, tailgate and both door mirrors to create a helicopter view on the car. This is transmitted to the satellite navigation screen to give a real time view of the area around the car when parking or during slow speed maneuvering for added safety. The latest Qashqai also benefits from technically advanced equipment such as the latest generation CVT, an option on the 1.6-litre petrol engine.
Nissan's premium crossover remains highly popular across Europe, and especially in Russia where it is now being built at Nissan's new facility in St Petersburg. Now more luxurious than ever, updates to the interior, revisions to the tail-lights, a new design of alloy wheel and changes to the instrumentation enhance even further the already high levels of comfort and style found in Nissan's flagship model.
Most of the changes take place inside the well-appointed cabin. More sophisticated white lighting (replacing the orange used previously) and revised lettering feature on the instrument dials. At the same time, the centre stack surround is now better integrated into the cabin by being finished in the same colour as the rest of the dashboard.
Perhaps the most obvious change, though, is to the leather seat facing and the leather on the door panels which now use pleated stitching rather than the ruched effect seen previously. In the rear compartment, the optional DVD screen previously mounted in the roof has been replaced by two individual screens integrated into the rear of the front seat headrests.
Almost 90 per cent of Western European sales are accounted for by models powered by Nissan's smooth 2.5-litre dCi four-cylinder diesel. With 190PS and a class leading 450Nm of torque, Murano dCi combines smooth power delivery with levels of quietness and refinement expected from a 6-cylinder engine. A 3.5-litre V6 petrol version developing 256PS is also available.
Featuring superb levels of grip afforded by ALL-MODE 4x4-i, X-Trail is one of the most practical and comfortable SUVs on the market.
A recent facelift introduced a redesigned grille, new bumper and revised lights, as well as LED taillights. Modifications to both the manual and automatic gearboxes, plus aerodynamic improvements for a lower Cd figure and extensive revisions the 2.0-litre diesel engine all result in greater efficiency. Fuel economy has improved and emissions reduced.
Improved materials have given the interior a greater feeling of quality while new equipment includes the integration of the X-Trail's rear-view camera display into the central ceiling mounted mirror for models not equipped with a satellite navigation screen. The changes have proved popular, X-Trail seeing a 38 per cent jump in sales in Europe last year, with 33,752 examples sold.
A recent major update saw the arrival of a new flagship model with a class-leading 3.0-litre V6 diesel as well as a revised version of the 2.5-litre four cylinder diesel with more performance, improved emissions and better economy.
Subtle exterior changes include a new bonnet and grille, while interior quality has been improved and more equipment offered as standard. Advanced options include Nissan Connect premium, Nissan's combined communication and music system incorporating a 40GB hard drive system with an advanced satellite navigation system, high resolution touch screen and a 9.3GB Music Box, large enough to store music from 300 CDs.
Pathfinder has Nissan's electronically controlled ALL-MODE 4x4 system for grip in extreme conditions making it an ideal tow car, while the availably of seven seats make it a perfect family car, too.
Like Pathfinder, the Navara Pick Up has benefited from a recent refresh, gaining improvements to the popular 2.5 dCi engine and a new 3.0-litre V6 diesel flagship model.
The changes have clearly been popular, Navara enjoying a rise in sales on more than 50 per cent in 2011. Versatile, tough and extremely practical, it is available in King Cab and Double Cab versions with generous load bed lengths. The pick-up bed behind the five seat Double Cab offers 2.36m2 of space, with the King Cab, which has two occasional seats in the rear of the cab, boasts a load bed area of 2.9m2.
Navara uses Nissan's proven part-time four-wheel drive system which provides drive to the rear wheels under normal conditions or a 50/50 torque split to all four wheels when 4WD mode is engaged. There are also high and low ratio modes, the crawl ratio being best in class and providing outstanding levels of traction over slippery surfaces, especially on tricky hill descents.
The latest version of Nissan's iconic Z-car continues to set the pace on road and track. An essential element in Nissan's innovative GT Academy programme - developed in conjunction with Sony PlayStation - the 370Z is the track star used by Gran Turismo computer gamers making the transition from bedroom to race circuit, from virtual to actual race winners.
At the heart of the car, available in both coupé and roadster forms, is its exceptional all-alloy 24-valve 3.7-litre V6 engine. Incorporating Variable Valve Event and Lift (VVEL), the unit develops 328PS and 366Nm of torque for strong performance whether mated to the six-speed manual transmission or seven-speed automatic.
Standard specification includes an engine Start button, complete with Nissan's Intelligent Key, a tyre pressure monitoring system, 18-inch cast alloy wheels, sports brakes and a viscous limited slip differential. GT Pack models add heated and ventilated leather/suede seats, a premium Bose sound system and 19-inch forged alloys. They also have Synchro Rev Control which ensures perfect manual gear changes every time. Available as an option is a rear-view parking camera integrated in the Nissan Premium Connect infotainment system.
Anyone looking for explosive performance at half the cost of a traditional supercar need look no further than the Nissan GT-R, the car that re-writes the supercar rule book. The latest GT-R rockets to 100kph from rest in just 2.8 seconds making it quicker than most supercars
Improvements to the engine, chassis and transmission to unleash even more of the performance potential are the key changes to Nissan's flagship model for 2012. The changes, which include improved intake and exhaust efficiency, add 20PS to the output from the remarkable 3.8-litre twin turbo V6, taking maximum power to 550PS.
Yet, despite the power increase, the engine is more efficient than ever, with improvements in fuel economy and lower emissions. Shift ‘feel' has been improved thanks to a stronger shift fork arm and the transmission is operationally quieter than before.
There have been changes to the body rigidity, notably at the rear of the engine compartment and dash panel, which translates directly into even more responsive handling, while standard equipment now includes a rear-view parking camera. Further improvements to the quality of the Bose® sound system and the cabin ambience help keep GT-R as desirable as ever.