Nissan counts on tech upgrades to boost Note's appeal
Nissan believes that a stronger focus on design and technology will boost the next-generation Note's appeal, allowing it to expand its customer base beyond its core small minivan buyers.
"The new Note isn't just a direct replacement for the current Note, it's a completely different car with a completely different place in the market," Paul Willcox, senior vice president for Nissan sales and marketing in Europe, said in a statement.
The new car, which debuts at next month's Geneva auto show and goes on sale in Europe this autumn, includes technology "that has never been offered in the subcompact segment before," said Geraldine Ingham, Nissan Europe's chief marketing manager.
One example of a first for the segment is the automaker's multicamera parking aid called Around View Monitor, which gives the driver a bird's-eye view of the surroundings to help maneuvers into a spot.
Using the multicamera system as a base, Nissan is able to offer blind-spot warning, lane departure warning and a rear-view camera that warns the driver of moving or stationary objects such as a child.
The trio of features, which the automaker calls Nissan Safety Shield, are standard on top-of-the-line Notes and optional on other trim levels.
Nissan says that by linking the safety features to the parking aid system it has kept the cost technology affordable, but the company declined to say how much it will charge for the features because the new Note's price has not been announced.
Made in England
The new car will be built on Nissan's V-platform, which also underpins the Micra subcompact, and will be produced in Sunderland, northeast England. Nissan previewed the Note at last year's Geneva show with the Invitation concept. That model also inspired the U.S. production version of the small minivan, the Versa Note, which debuted at the Detroit auto show in January. Nissan says that it changed the overall look of the Note to create a car that "combines elegant, fluid lines with original and bold details," adding that the new car is more aerodynamic than the current model.
"We have designed a completely new hatchback which is dynamic, energetic and sporty while also managing to keep the previous generation Note's practicality and versatility," Atsushi Maeda, chief designer for new Note, said in the statement.
The European and U.S. models have virtually the same design; one exception is that the European variant has a slightly different grille treatment.
CO2 below 100g/km
Two of the three available engine choices reduce the Note's CO2 figure below 100 grams per kilometer. A 1.2-liter three-cylinder gasoline unit, which the Note shares with the new Micra, is available either naturally aspirated with 80 hp or supercharged with 98 hp. The supercharged Note's engine emits 99g/km with fuel economy of 4.3 liters per 100km when mated with a manual transmission. The current Note's most frugal gasoline engine is a 1.4-liter unit with CO2 emissions of 139g/km and fuel economy of 5.9 l/100km.
The new Note's 1.5-liter diesel has CO2 of 95g/km and its fuel economy is 3.6 l/100km. The rating in the current Note's 1.5-liter diesel are 110g/km and 4.2 l/100km.
All new Notes are equipped with start-stop as standard.
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