Xmo­tion show car blends tra­di­tion with high-tech

New Zealand LCV - - NEWS | DETROIT SHOW -

NIS­SAN BILLED ITS DETROIT MO­TOR show Xmo­tion con­cept car as “a de­sign ex­plo­ration for a po­ten­tially ground­break­ing com­pact SUV.”

It says the six-pas­sen­ger, three-row Xmo­tion (pro­nounced “cross mo­tion”) con­cept “fuses Ja­panese cul­ture and tra­di­tional crafts­man­ship with Amer­i­can-style util­ity and new-gen­er­a­tion Nis­san In­tel­li­gent Mo­bil­ity tech­nol­ogy.”

Al­fonso Al­baisa, Nis­san’s se­nior vice pres­i­dent of global de­sign, says that “in the Xmo­tion con­cept, we ex­plored the more rugged and pow­er­ful side of Nis­san In­tel­li­gent Mo­bil­ity.

“Bold and pow­er­ful forms and pro­por­tions are, upon closer in­spec­tion, con­trasted with as­pects of tra­di­tional Ja­panese crafts­man­ship ex­pressed in a con­tem­po­rary way.

“The ex­te­rior’s com­bi­na­tion of west­ern and east­ern con­cepts con­tin­ues in­side the Xmo­tion, where ad­vanced con­nec­tiv­ity and au­ton­o­mous technologies mix with mod­ern Ja­panese dig­i­tal art and cul­tural crafts­man­ship.”

Sig­nalling the fu­ture of Nis­san de­sign, the Xmo­tion’s ex­te­rior uses un­der­stated sculp­tural lines, in­clud­ing unique U-shaped head­lights and an evo­lu­tion of the brand’s sig­na­ture V-mo­tion grille.

The vis­ual sim­plic­ity of the body­work con­trasts with the metal-crafted wheels. The me­chan­i­cal tool-in­spired wheels and all-ter­rain tyres are one piece, with the tyre tread phys­i­cally lam­i­nated over the 21-inch alu­minium-al­loy wheels.

Ad­di­tional ex­te­rior fea­tures in­clude a re­tractable rooftop box and a unique tail light de­sign in­spired by Ja­panese wood­work.

The Xmo­tion’s long wheel­base and wheels pushed out to the ex­tremes of the cor­ners, al­lowed de­sign­ers to cre­ate a four­plus-two seat­ing lay­out.

There are three rows of side-by-side in­di­vid­ual seats, and the cabin has been de­signed to pro­vide “a per­fect space for a young cou­ple, an­other cou­ple and two chil­dren or pets in the third row,” says Nis­san.

The crafted in­te­rior de­sign sym­bol­ises a Ja­panese land­scape, honour­ing Nis­san’s roots while in­cor­po­rat­ing ad­vanced graphic user in­ter­faces and au­ton­o­mous driv­ing technologies.

The in­te­rior it­self was cre­ated with the im­agery of a river on the floor, with the cen­tre con­sole act­ing as a bridge.

The con­sole is the core of the in­te­rior de­sign and uses a tra­di­tional Ja­panese ar­chi­tec­tural wood join­ery tech­nique, kanawa tsugi, which is found in the car­pen­try used to build tem­ples and shrines.

The Xmo­tion con­cept’s in­stru­ment panel de­sign is a mod­ern in­ter­pre­ta­tion of tra­di­tional Ja­panese kigumi wood join­ery. Nis­san says that by us­ing the kigumi struc­ture in the in­stru­ment panel and con­sole, the ve­hi­cle’s in­te­rior sug­gests “a ro­bust bone struc­ture, cre­at­ing a sense of strength and trust.”

The in­te­rior in­cludes seven dig­i­tal screen por­tions. Three main dis­plays and left and right end dis­plays span the width of the in­stru­ment panel. There’s also a “dig­i­tal room mir­ror” in the ceil­ing and a cen­tre con­sole dis­play.

Users can con­trol the dis­plays and in­fo­tain­ment sys­tem us­ing ges­tures and eye move­ments. In­tu­itive con­trols and a voice com­mand sys­tem al­low drivers to fo­cus on driv­ing, help­ing them ac­cess var­i­ous in­for­ma­tion eas­ily and safely.

“We en­vi­sion the Xmo­tion con­cept to be a highly func­tional SUV that can be driven ev­ery day, yet can take the own­ers and friends to a na­tional park or recre­ation area on a whim,” Al­baisa adds.

Nis­san is no stranger to cut­ting edge SUV de­sign. It in­tro­duced the Juke com­pact cross­over in the early years of this decade, and the car was an in­stant suc­cess in Ja­pan and Europe.

It’s a rel­a­tively-small seller here, but has been enor­mously suc­cess­ful else­where, help­ing to spur the growth of the then-new com­pact cross­over class into the ma­jor mar­ket seg­ment it is to­day.

Above: Nis­san says it Xmo­tion con­cept un­veiled at Detroit hints at styling theme for its fu­ture SUVS (left); U-shaped LED head­lights and mod­i­fied ver­sion of Nis­san fam­ily grille dom­i­nate frontal styling (cen­tre); Long wheel­base and wheel-at-each-cor­ner lay­out al­lowed three rows of seats (right).

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