The Romans already said it, or at least it’s Latin: “de gustibus non disputandum est”. Means as much as “there’s no arguing about taste”. But if you ask me this is not so likely to apply to the replacement of the Nissan Note, which – let’s be honest – manywill find a bit of a boring car. The Japanese carmaker presented the replacement’s concept at the Geneva Motor Show this week: it’s called “Invitation” and, truth be told, it’s one fresh looking set of wheels!
But its fresh face isn’t the only reason why many will take a liking to this little car. Nissan has announced it plans to manufacture the to-be competitor in the supermini segment in its Sunderland factory, the largest car plant in the UK. This involves a £125m investment by Nissan and another £9.3m by the UK Government Regional Growth Fund. The best part is that building around 100,000 Invitations annually will create 2,000 additional UK jobs.
I had to look at the Invitation concept a couple of times, but the more I see of it, the more I’m liking it. Best feature in my opinion is that nifty headlight-grill combination that shows bits of the slightly nutty Juke, the curvature of the Murano’s front and even hints of the beautiful GT-R sports car. Too bad Nissan has already stated the production version of the car will feature more “normal” headlights. Second best feature is the prominent rear end with very pronounced buttocks and a pair of serious-looking exhaust tips. Yep, it definitely looks sporty!
At the same time the large doors in the back and a considerable overall height – which should mean sufficient headroom on the second row – suggest the Invitation will be a very practical car as well. Nissan hasn’t let go of any information regarding engines and gearboxes yet, but I think it’s safe to assume a selection of small-displacement, directly-injected gasoline and diesel engines with a focus on efficiency and cutting emissions. With Nissan’s recent focus on electric propulsion vehicles there may even be an EV version of the car.
It seems the Fiesta, the Polo and the rest of the superminis will soon have some more serious competition to battle from Nissan.