Nissan E-4orce Awd Will Make Future Dual-motor Nissan Evs Dual Threats

Nissan e-4ORCE AWD will make future dual-motor Nissan EVs dual threats

Compromise used to be the unfortunate truth in auto manufacturing. The hardware needed to build an enthusiast-pleasing machine wasn't necessarily compatible with producing a comfortable, safe vehicle. With the advent of modern electric vehicles, this situation is changing, and our recent drive of Nissan's e-4ORCE prototype all-wheel drive system shows how. The vehicle in question is a regular Nissan Leaf Plus that's been outfitted with two Leaf Plus motors (one in front and one in back) and Nissan's e-4ORCE all-wheel drive system. A variety of tests were laid out for us at the Las Vegas Motor Speedway during CES last week to let us try out Nissan's new dual-motor EV system. Turns out, e-4ORCE offers more than just increased traction. All the proof is in the driving. Our first test was a straight-line acceleration run. Two Leaf Plus motors combine for a system output of 304 horsepower and 502 pound-feet of torque. To put it lightly, the e-4ORCE test car made the regular Leaf Plus feel as though it was hardly moving. The quick response from the go-pedal was just as impressive — Nissan claims its powertrain responds quicker than any other dual-motor EV system that it benchmarked. Next up, Nissan had us experience the benefit of rear motor regenerative braking. Instead of a swift nosedive when lifting off the accelerator pedal in the single front-motor Leaf Plus, the e-4ORCE keeps its nose steady and close to level with where we started from after lifting off the accelerator. It's able to accomplish this by using the rear motor instead of the front motor for regenerative braking, significantly reducing head-toss and squat. This will make a huge difference for folks who get carsick easily.

2021 Nissan Pathfinder Three-row Crossover Spied For The First Time

2021 Nissan Pathfinder three-row crossover spied for the first time

With an introduction for the 2013 model year and only mild updates since, the Nissan Pathfinder is overdue for a new generation. Fortunately, it seems that new generation is coming based on these spy photos. They show what looks to be the 2021 Pathfinder wearing thoroughly updated sheet metal that follows in the footsteps of other recent Nissans. The new Pathfinder's exterior still fits the mold of the old one, with a more aerodynamic, car-like shape as opposed to a traditionally boxy SUV design. The nose looks like it will have a giant chrome "V" grille like the latest Altima, and the headlights are tall and swept back. The sides feature large, crisp shoulder lines over the wheel arches, seemingly inspired by the new Juke. The roofline is still similar to the old one, but it looks a little lower. The window treatment looks different with the rear windows seemingly wrapping around the D-pillar, rather than being interrupted by it. The C-pillar may now divide the side windows from the rear portion. At the back, the taillights are thinner and wider. They blend right into the rear shoulder lines. The hatch glass lacks the bevels of the current one, further suggesting the wrap-around look. Not much is known about the new Pathfinder. It will likely continue to be a unibody crossover with a transverse-mounted engine and front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive. We'll be curious if the aging 3.5-liter V6 continues to be offered, or if it will be supplanted by a version of the turbocharged 2.0-liter variable-compression four-cylinder available as an option on the Nissan Altima. Since this prototype looks close to production ready, we expect to see the Pathfinder revealed sometime in the next year as a 2021 model.

Next-gen Nissan Z To Feature Heritage-inspired Design, Sources Say

Next-gen Nissan Z to feature heritage-inspired design, sources say

Nissan is reportedly hard at work on the next-generation of its legendary Z car (although the company won't explicitly confirm), and we're hearing it will have a familiar look. Sources who have seen the upcoming sports car at dealer meetings told us it will feature heritage-inspired design. "They're going back to the roots of the car," one source told us.  The silhouette and general shape is similar to the current Z, but the design is all new. The front end mimics that of a 240Z with a square mouth and near-round headlights. Its rear taillights are meant to follow that of the 300ZX from the 1990s. On the inside, Nissan is finally going to move the Z into the new age. The 370Z doesn't even have a modern infotainment system today — where one might expect a screen, Nissan instead has a storage cubby. The next-gen Z will get an interior design similar to other new Nissans like the redesigned Altima and Sentra. Finally, it will get a real infotainment system. From a powertrain perspective, we're told that a version of the 3.0-liter twin-turbo V6 from the Infiniti Q50/Q60 400 Red Sport will be pulled for duty. That engine is paired with a nine-speed automatic transmission only right now, but we're told a manual transmission will be offered alongside the automatic. As a reminder, Nissan did pair the 3.0-liter twin-turbo V6 with a manual in a 370Z SEMA show car previously, but it still hasn't seen a production application. As for a possible Nismo variant in the future, one of our sources also tells us it's likely that we'll see this version join the next-generation Z car eventually. Close to 500 horsepower is rumored for this specific flavor of Z. The 370Z, which is still a wonderfully fun car to drive, is fairly long in the tooth at this point. It's been on sale since 2009, and it's hard to tell the difference between one of those first models and a brand-new 2020 370Z. That's when you know it's time for a change. Stephanie Brinley, IHS Markit principal automotive analyst thinks Nissan needs to move along, too. "It's getting old. I think that some direction in the next couple years would be good. I think it'll get to the point that safety compliance issues will need to be addressed," Brinley told us. Nissan seems to want a change, too. We've seen spy shots of what could be a mule on the Nurburgring, and a previous Motor Trend report has essentially confirmed that the car is in the works and on the way. There's no hard date for a reveal at this point, but it's rumored to be a year and a half to two years out still. Nissan has given us a steadfast no comment on everything, but that's the usual for matters like this. We were told that Nissan has plans to introduce 12 new products in the next 20 months. There's a chance this is one of them, but we wouldn't doubt it if a low-profit sports car were delayed. As it gets closer to a final reveal, we'll be on the hunt for spy photos and every scrap of detail we can find on the next-gen Z. It'll be an exciting road, as this sports car is essential to the automaker's lineup. "It's part of Nissan's reputation. It's part of what makes Nissan, Nissan," Brinley says. We agree.

Nissan Wants Ghosn To Leave Company Home In Beirut

Nissan wants Ghosn to leave company home in Beirut

Nissan Motor says it intends to keep demanding that former chairman Carlos Ghosn leave a Beirut residence owned by the carmaker.

Nissan officials say the firm asked Ghosn and his family to stop using the property in January last year as part of efforts to protect its corporate assets.

Renault Chairman Dismisses Reports Nissan Wants To Split From Alliance

Renault chairman dismisses reports Nissan wants to split from alliance

PARIS — Renault Chairman Jean-Dominique Senard said on Thursday there was a "real desire" within the top ranks of both companies for its alliance with Nissan to succeed, dismissing suggestions the partnership was on the rocks. Turmoil within the Franco-Japanese alliance, long dogged by internal rivalries, deepened following the November 2018 arrest in Tokyo of its architect and long-time boss Carlos Ghosn on charges of financial crimes, which he denies. Attempts to restore calm were dealt a fresh blow by Ghosn's dramatic flight from Japanese justice and a series of no-holds-barred allegations he has made from his refuge in Lebanon, including that he was the victim of a plot to oust him and that the alliance is now a "masquerade". Nissan has vigorously rejected Ghosn's stance, while both the Japanese firm and Renault have tried to rubbish suggestions their two decades old partnership is falling apart. "We have a board overseeing the alliance which is made up of people who are all extremely in favor of the alliance," Renault Chairman Senard told a briefing with reporters. "There is a common desire to associate our strategic plans and a real desire to make this alliance a success," he added, dismissing a report that Nissan was examining scenarios for a possible future outside of the alliance as "fake news." The 66-year-old declined to comment on anything related to Ghosn, adding: "I only think about the future." Renault shares were down 2% by 1123 GMT, underperfoming the broader auto sector which was down on news that Washington has threatened to impose tariffs on European car imports due to Europe's stance on Iran. Renault's French rival and Peugeot maker PSA Group also gave a flavor of some industry headwinds, reporting a 10% fall in its global sales last year as Chinese demand tanked. Renault is due to publish its 2019 global sales on Friday.


Analysts see Renault-Nissan's cost-saving alliance as vital to both companies as the car industry battles a slowdown and huge investments in cleaner vehicles and automated driving, particularly as rivals PSA and Fiat Chrysler are merging to help meet these challenges. Renault held ultimately unsuccessful talks to combine with Fiat Chrysler last year, which Ghosn described at a Beirut news conference as a huge missed opportunity. Senard, who chairs the alliance's operating board, said on Thursday that once the partnership has been rebooted, other firms might potentially want to join. The executive, who used to run tyre maker Michelin, has become the de facto senior figure in Renault and Nissan's alliance, though without Ghosn's commander-in-chief aura, which had helped hold it together. While that is partly deliberate — both parties are keen to avoid another strongman situation and created a four-member operating board to oversee the alliance — Senard will now have to show he can push through new joint projects. He declined to give details of these beyond saying potential cost savings could be substantial, and that the alliance's board would meet soon to decide on its industrial plan. The meeting is scheduled for Jan. 30, a source close to Renault said. The firms are meanwhile finalizing a management revamp, with Renault close to appointing a new CEO after ousting Ghosn-ally Thierry Bollore in October. A new CEO started at Nissan in December. Luca de Meo, who recently stepped down as the head of Volkswagen's Seat brand, is seen as the frontrunner for the Renault job, although a non-compete clause in his contract is proving a problem, sources have said. Interim CEO Clotilde Delbos is also in the frame. Senard said shaking up the shareholder structure in the alliance was not a priority for either side. Renault, which is part-owned by the French state, has 43% of Nissan, while the Japanese firm has 15% of the French carmaker, with no voting rights attached — a structure that has caused friction.

Nissan Ariya Electric Crossover Is Quicker Than A Z Car

Nissan Ariya electric crossover is quicker than a Z car

Nissan is busily transforming the electric Ariya concept unveiled at the 2019 Tokyo Auto Show into a production model tentatively due out in 2021. It will be positioned as a bigger, more spacious alternative to the Leaf, and it will receive a dose of performance the cheerful hatchback has never benefited from. The Ariya is an evolution of the 2017 IMX concept, and it's closer to production than it might seem. The sheetmetal hides the e-4ORCE twin-motor powertrain we recently drove, which promises to deliver acceleration and grip in spades. The Japanese firm hasn't released final horsepower and torque figures, but it hinted the Ariya will be quick. "Electric motors have changed the world, because this idea of a pure 0-60 is less a differentiator. How you use it, how you deliver it, what it means, and, for the supercars, how many laps you can do, that matters. Naturally, it's exciting. Even the real version of the Ariya is fast — faster or as fast as a Z car," revealed Alfonso Albaisa, Nissan's senior vice president of global design, in an interview with Green Car Reports. The 370Z takes 5.1 seconds to reach 60 mph from a stop, so Albaisa's comments suggest the Ariya could slip under the five-second mark. He qualified the crossover's handling as "extremely good" thanks in part to the battery pack mounted under the passenger compartment, a configuration which lowers the center of gravity. Hitting freeway speeds in under five seconds is less important than driving range, but the Ariya should deliver in that department, too. Nissan previously floated a 300-mile range, and Albaisa affirmed that's still the development team's goal. Whether it will achieve that number on the WLTP testing cycle or the EPA's isn't known. We expect the production version of the Nissan Ariya — a name that might not end up on the tailgate — will reach showrooms in 2021. The company's American dealers got a preview of it in late 2019, so the project has reached an advanced stage. When it lands, it will compete in the same burgeoning segment as the Tesla Model Y, the Ford Mustang Mach-E, the Fisker Ocean, and the Audi Q4 E-Tron. Pricing will start in the vicinity of $40,000.

Ghosn Says French Ambassador Informed Him Of Nissan Plot Against Him

Ghosn says French ambassador informed him of Nissan plot against him

BEIRUT — Former Nissan chairman Carlos Ghosn said on Tuesday that the French ambassador had warned him shortly after his arrest that his own company was plotting against him. "Frankly, I was shocked by the arrest, and the first thing I asked is make sure Nissan knows so they can send me a lawyer," Ghosn told Reuters in an interview in Beirut. "And the second day, 24 hours from this, I received a visit from the French ambassador who told me: 'Nissan is turning against you'. And this is where I realized that the whole thing was a plot." Former Nissan CEO Hiroto Saikawa, who was forced to resign last year after admitting that he had received improper compensation, told a news conference shortly after Ghosn's arrest that Ghosn had been using corporate money for personal purposes and under-reporting his income for years. The arrest of Ghosn, widely respected for rescuing the carmaker from near-bankruptcy, has put Japan's criminal justice system under international scrutiny. Among the practices now under the spotlight are keeping suspects in detention for long periods and excluding defense lawyers from interrogations, which can last eight hours a day. "When he told me that 'two hours or three hours later, after your arrest, Saikawa went in a press conference and made his infamous statement where he said, you know, 'I am horrified, but what I'm learning...'' — so when he told me he made these statements, I said 'Oh my God this is a plot'." Ghosn, 65, fled Japan last month while awaiting trial on charges of under-reporting earnings, breach of trust and misappropriation of company funds, all of which he denies. The one-time titan of the car industry said the alternative to fleeing would have been to spend the rest of his life languishing in Japan without a fair trial. Ghosn said he had escaped to his childhood home of Lebanon in order to clear his name. He noted that there were conflicting stories about his astonishing escape, but declined to say how he had managed to flee. Tokyo prosecutors said his allegations of a conspiracy were false and that he had failed to justify his acts. The 14-month saga has shaken the global auto industry and jeopardized the Renault-Nissan alliance, of which Ghosn was the mastermind. Japan's Ministry of Justice has said it will try to find a way to bring Ghosn back from Lebanon, even the countries have no extradition treaty. Ghosn said the Japanese authorities were intent on preventing him from having a just trial.

2021 Nissan Frontier Will Be All-new: Here's What To Expect

2021 Nissan Frontier will be all-new: Here's what to expect

The next-generation Nissan Frontier is poised to arrive in 2021, and through interviews with multiple sources we've been able to piece together a picture of what's in store. Yes, Nissan has neglected its midsize pickup, and today, the company markets the Frontier as a value proposition. It's cheaper than the Ford Ranger, Toyota Tacoma and Chevy Colorado. Those trucks have a whole lot more to offer in nearly every way, but they can also come in at prices encroaching on fullsize pickups. Nissan wants and should strive for more, says Stephanie Brinley, principal automotive analyst at IHS Markit. "It needs to adapt to some of the creature comforts and some of the technology, not because the other guys have them, but because consumers are indicating that they want them," Brinley says. Our dealer sources (with knowledge of the product via Nissan) tell us the design is completely new, retaining next to nothing of the current Frontier. We're told to expect an interpretation of the Warrior design seen on the new Titan. It'll be squared-off, much more masculine and Titan-esque — the folks who described the truck to us say they've seen it at various closed-door Nissan events. This macho design language matches what other manufacturers (and Nissan) have aimed for with new pickups. We've previously heard that Nissan will use an updated version of the current Frontier's platform for the new truck. However, other sources have said that it's riding on a shortened and modified Titan chassis. We can't definitively say which one it will be at this point, but the Titan is the new kid on the block. A new powertrain is also along for the ride. Nissan still sells the Frontier with a 2.5-liter four-cylinder and 4.0-liter V6 options. The four-cylinder can even be had with a five-speed manual transmission. A five-speed automatic is optional. None of this will make it into the 2021 Frontier. Instead, we're told to expect a new 3.8-liter naturally aspirated V6 and nine-speed automatic transmission. The 3.8-liter displacement is the same as the GT-R's displacement, but the two won't be anything alike if Nissan ultimately uses the purported engine in the Frontier. We'd wager a guess that the nine-speed heading toward the Frontier is a version of the transmission that was recently adopted by the Titan. One source gave us a 300-horsepower estimate. Expect superior fuel economy and more towing/hauling capability thanks to the updated chassis and powertrain. We're told that the new V6 is even more efficient than the outgoing four-cylinder truck. This move upscale is also rumored to be the end of the line for the King Cab, as our sources tell us the Crew Cab might be the only truck available. There are also rumors of a possible off-road high-performance Frontier from a couple sources. If the Frontier is on the Titan's platform, Nissan could theoretically shoehorn the 5.6-liter V8 under the hood for some extra go. It's only speculation for now, but we'd love to see such a creation outside the SEMA fantasy land. "It's a natural fit for the Frontier to have an off-road performance package," Brinley told us. From a timing perspective, the fully redesigned next-gen Frontier is said to be a 2021 model with a launch happening sometime within a year. A source tells us that we'll have to wait until February 2021 to see the truck actually hit dealer lots, leaving a lot of auto shows open for reveals between now and then. This timing was reportedly just revised backwards for unspecified reasons. Nissan will be gearing up for production of the new truck soon at the plant in Canton, MS. Nissan public relations declined to comment for this report, but a spokesperson said Nissan plans to launch 12 new products in the next 20 months. This will be one of the most important.