New Nissan concept teased ahead of Sao Paulo auto show

Trevor Hofmann - CAP staff
Send to a friend

Send this article to a friend.

Here in Canada, at the other end of the Americas, it's understandable why we don't really understand the significance of Brazil in the global scheme of things, especially when it comes to the automotive marketplace. The country has more of a European flavour than anywhere north of the 42nd parallel, and the cars reflect this.

Unlike most of North America, where Toyota, Honda and Nissan are dominant amongst imports, Brazil is a battlefield for Fiat and Volkswagen, with French carmakers Citroen, Renault and Peugeot offering strong competition, while similar to our markets, Ford and GM mix it up amongst the sales leaders. Nissan, on the other hand, is forced to make a big splash just to get noticed.

It's about to do just that during the 27th annual Sao Paulo International Motor Show, later this month. Nissan will launch an all-new "high-character concept" sports car, and ahead of the show it has teased us with a set of front and rear photos showing just enough of the car to get our curiosity piqued.

"The showcar will dazzle on two counts," said Nissan's Senior VP and Chief Creative Officer Shiro Nakamura. "It is a genuinely new and exciting concept, and it will explode with energetic design and impressive colour that fully express our impression toward the country."

Using a creative paint splatter effect in the teaser images, the car looks to be a 2+2 sports coupe featuring rear venting engine ducts ahead of its doors and a glass liftback above unique L-shaped taillights.

"When our designers arrived in Brazil to start work on the project, they loved the vibrancy and passion of the country but were a little surprised in the rather conservative colours of the cars on the streets... they all seemed to be monochrome – silver or black."

While Nakamura may not yet realize that most Sao Paulo motorists would rather go unnoticed due to a high rate of street crime, the new concept's design team has given it a bright yellow livery that should stand out. That yellow is also one of the country's national hues probably won't be lost on Sao Paulo show-goers either.

"Finally, they've made sure our showcar might have a colour as lively as the country."   

Just what the new sports concept will be based on is unknown to those outside of Nissan's inner circle, but it's likely the updated global B platform that also underpins the subcompact Micra in Brazil, and Versa, Cube and Juke models. Nissan has long been expected to offer a sporty model on the economical platform architecture, and such a car would do well to pull young Brazilians into the brand family. Why this might matter to Canadian enthusiasts is that such a car would likely also make it into the North American market.

In the meantime, Nissan has more than doubled its sales in Brazil to claim close to two-percent of that country's market in 2011, but it has its sights on more than five-percent of new car sales in South America's largest and most populous country by 2016; Brazil is the fourth largest democracy and fifth largest country by land mass and populated by close to 200-million. In order to competitively price its vehicles an automaker must manufacture within Brazil, and Nissan is banking on a new production facility currently under construction in the city of Resende, RJ (the state of Rio de Janeiro), to eliminate the high tariffs charged to its imported vehicles. The Resende plant will be capable of producing up to 200,000 units annually after operations begin in 2014.
©(Copyright Canadian Auto Press)

Topics: Sports Coupe, Nissan, Brazil, Compact,

Geographic location: Sao Paulo, Brazil

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

Thanks for voting!

Top of page