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Posts Tagged ‘nissan news’

Death-Free Highways Have Become a Real Possibility

New study will show it is already starting to happen.

by on Aug.22, 2014

Volvo's near AstaZero safety proving grounds.

With the opening of its new proving grounds in western Sweden, the Volvo Car Group says it is moving “a step closer” to its goal of having no one killed or seriously injured in one of its cars by 2020.

Not long ago, such claims might have seemed the stuff of fantasy, or worse, cynical over-promise. While there’s no question that, in the U.S., highway fatalities have fallen nearly 40% from their peak, more than 30,000 Americans are still being killed each year. Nonetheless, we may very well be approaching an era when the highway death toll sinks to zero, industry experts believe.

The Last Word!

A sign of that possibility will come with the release of a new study next month by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety which will show a record number of vehicles experienced no deaths during the four-year study period from 2009 through the end of 2012.

“It’s a tall order,” says IIHS Senior Vice President Russ Rader, “But the goal is definitely feasible. We’re already seeing this happen.”

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Russia Ready to Retaliate – and Automakers Could Take a Big Hit

One unexpected winner could emerge.

by on Aug.19, 2014

A worker on the AvtoVAZ assembly line in Togliatti, Russia, a plant now run by Renault-Nissan.

Slammed by sanction for its role in the Ukranian revolt, Russia is warning it may tighten retaliatory sanctions against the West by banning automotive imports.

The crisis in the Ukraine has made stock traders around the world nervous, leading to some major swings in key indexes and raising fears about the overall strength of the European economy, which is just beginning to recover from a steep recession.

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But retaliating against Western automakers could have unforeseen consequences for Russia itself as it struggles to build momentum for its own economy. Car sales in the heart of the former Soviet Union also slumped badly along with the rest of Europe.

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Infiniti Prepping Flagship Concept for Paris Motor Show

A long-awaited Q45 replacement?

by on Aug.19, 2014

Infiniti offers a tease of a concept coming to Paris.

The cryptic statement reveals little beyond suggesting that Infiniti has something big coming. But TheDetroitBureau.com has learned that the maker is readying a new concept vehicle for the upcoming Paris Motor Show that could fill the yawning gap left open since the brand’s old flagship sedan, the Q45, went away.

The concept vehicle is expected to flag the grand changes coming at Infiniti, Nissan’s luxury brand, while also underscoring that the brand hasn’t lost direction or momentum despite the recent departure of its global chief, Johan de Nysschen who is just reporting for duty this week as the new head of Cadillac.

Global Perspective!

“This will show people the vision lives on and we have a bright future,” said one of several sources who spoke to TheDetroitBureau.com on background only.

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Nissan Earnings Surge 37% on Weak Yen, Strong Sales

Net profit significantly beats analysts’ forecasts.

by on Jul.28, 2014

The Nissan Sentra has helped drive strong demand for the maker, especially in the U.S. market.

Nissan saw a big surge in earnings for the latest quarter, with analysts crediting both strong sales in China and the U.S., as well as a boost from favorable exchange rates.

The second-largest Japanese maker reported a net profit of 112 billion yen, or $1.1 billion, a 37% year-over-year increase from 82 billion. The figures far and away exceeded analysts’ consensus forecast of 85 billion yen, or $835 million, according to data gathered by FactSet.

By the Numbers!

“Nissan continued to make progress in the first three months of the fiscal year as encouraging demand for new products, benefits from recent plant investments, and improving market conditions in North America, China and Europe combined to lift both revenues and profits,” said Nissan President and CEO Carlos Ghosn.

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Nissan Won’t Wait for 2020 to Begin Rolling Out Autonomous Technologies, Says Ghosn

New study forecasts annual sales of 95 mil self-driving cars by 2035.

by on Jul.17, 2014

A prototype Nissan Leaf autonomous vehicle negotiates traffic at a simulated urban intersection.

Betting on huge demand from motorists in the world’s increasingly crowded mega-cities, Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn has laid out an aggressive timetable for bringing the maker’s autonomous vehicles to market.

Even before the first of those self-driving cars goes on sale in 2020, said Ghosn, Nissan will launch new technologies, such as automated lane controls and highway traffic management systems that will begin to supplement the driver behind the wheel.

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We're Not on Autopilot!

Nissan is aiming to take the lead in the development of autonomous technologies but is likely to face a battle as other automakers enter the field – as well as tech giant Google which will begin launching field tests this year of a new prototype self-driving vehicle it has developed. The race could find a willing public, according to a new study by Navigant Research forecasting annual sales of autonomous vehicles could reach 95 million by 2035.

“By the end of 2016, Nissan will make available the next two technologies under its autonomous drive strategy,” said Mr. Ghosn.

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Nissan Leaf Buyers Getting Free Car Charging

New program allows owners to use stations at no cost.

by on Jul.09, 2014

Nissan Leaf buyers not only don't have to pay for gas as owners of an electric vehicle, under a new program, they'll be able to charge their cars free of charge.

One of the standing arguments in favor of electric vehicle ownership is that it costs far less to charge a car than to fill it with gasoline. Nissan is strengthening that argument by making that cost zero.

The Japanese maker’s new “No Charge to Charge” promotion gives Nissan Leaf buyers two years of free charging at selected public charging stations in 10 markets around the country: San Francisco, Sacramento, San Diego, Seattle, Nashville, Phoenix, Dallas-Ft. Worth, Houston, Portland, Oregon, and Washington, D.C.

A Real Performer!

“Free charging is a great way for Nissan and our charging partners to make Leaf an unbeatable value for the average American driver,” said Brendan Jones, director, Nissan Electric Vehicle Sales and Infrastructure. “The popularity of ‘No Charge to Charge’ since our April announcement shows that public charging spurs range confidence and additional Leaf sales.” (more…)

Daimler and Nissan to Partner on New Mexican Luxury Car Plant

New factory will produce both Mercedes-Benz and Infiniti models.

by on Jun.27, 2014

Nissan opened up its Aguascalientes plant last year. But it left plenty of room to expand once it locked down its joint venture with Daimler's Mercedes-Benz.

Nissan Motor Co. and Daimler AG will announce a significant expansion of their four-year-old alliance this morning, the two partners planning to set up a new plant in Aguascaliente, Mexico that will produce small luxury cars for the Japanese maker’s Infiniti brand and the German manufacturer’s Mercedes-Benz.

The project, first reported last year by TheDetroitBureau.com, takes the three-way partnership between Daimler, Nissan and French automaker Renault to a significant new level. The maker’s initially agreed to jointly produce engines and, among other things, develop a small car platform to be used for both Daimler’s Smart brand and as a replacement for the little Renault Twingo. Just this week, a new Nissan plant in Decherd, Tennessee launched production of engines for both the Infiniti and Mercedes brands.

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The new luxury car plant will be set up alongside an existing assembly line Nissan opened in the central Mexican city of Aguascalientes next year. Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn and Daimler CEO Dieter Zetsche has previously both confirmed they were discussing the possibility of a new joint production facility but insiders say it took longer than expected to work out the details.

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Nissan Set to Launch “Smart” Mirror

Could cameras could soon replace conventional mirrors?

by on Jun.18, 2014

The Nissan Smart Rearview Mirror's image is virtually identical to a conventional mirror - but it eliminates obstacles inside the car.

At first glance, it looks like any ordinary Nissan Rogue, but slipping behind the wheel you might notice that the mirror is just a little bit larger, with an oversized black frame that looks a bit like nerdy tortoiseshell glasses.

And despite how you might try to adjust the rearview mirror, the image stays exactly the same – until you flip a small hidden switch. That, it turns out, shuts off the camera mounted near the top of the Rogue’s back window.

What a Concept!

The compact crossover, it turns out, is fitted with a prototype version of Nissan’s so-called Smart Rearview mirror. Set to go on sale in Japan in 2015, it gives the driver the choice of using it as a conventional mirror or, with the flip of a switch, it becomes a video monitor connected to that little camera.  That approach has a number of advantages, according to the Japanese maker. Among other things, the driver’s line of sight is no longer obstructed by backseat occupants, cargo or a narrow rear window.

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Nissan Concept 2020 Vision Gran Turismo Offers “Hints” of the Future

"Watch this space..." maker says.

by on Jun.16, 2014

The Nissan Concept 2020 Vision Gran Turismo is apparently more than just a virtual fantasy.

The great thing about the digital world is that you can do just about anything with the right programmer.  A little bit of code and your latest Mario Brothers game allows you to drive upside-down. But when it comes to the long-running Gran Turismo series, the goal has been to craft something as real as possible, from the look of the cars to the way they perform “on track.”

And with the new Nissan Concept 2020 Vision Gran Turismo, the maker is broadly hinting that its latest entrant into the PlayStation driving franchise might eventually become a case of life imitating art.

Beyond the Headlines!

The Concept 2020, it says, “gives hints as to how a supercar of the future might look.” There is, of course, a yawning gap between saying this “is” a look at a future Nissan supercar and a more waffling “might be.” But it’s not all that much a stretch to connect a few dots to see how this virtual concept could be the missing link between today’s Nissan GT-R and the model that might follow.

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Nissan, Daimler Power up their Growing Alliance

New Infiniti plant will also provide engines for Mercedes C-Class.

by on Jun.13, 2014

Infiniti's new Decherd plant will eventually have capacity to produce 250,000 engines annually.

The growing, three-way alliance between Nissan, Renault and Daimler is about to take a critical next step with opening later this month of an engine plant in Decherd, Tennessee.

Officially known as the Infiniti Decherd Powertrain Plant, the facility will serve not only the Nissan luxury brand but also provide engines for the Mercedes-Benz assembly line in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.

Insight!

The three makers first agreed to work together in 2010, announcing a variety of projects that included joint vehicle development and a powertrain swap – the latter leading to the Decherd program. The factory will initially produce a turbocharged 2.0-liter inline-four that will be used in European versions of the Infiniti Q50 and the Mercedes-Benz C-Class.

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