One More Lightweight Coupe Rumor: Guess Who?

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YSSMAN

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When will it stop?


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Japan's top two auto makers have a long and sordid history of ripping off each other's successful designs. No sooner had the Nissan Cube become a run away success in its home market than Toyota came up with the similarly boxy bB (Scion xB). Many years earlier, after the Toyota HiLux Surf (4Runner) proved a hit with, well, surfers, Nissan restyled their Terrano with nigh on identical lines, hoping to ride on the coattails of the Toyota. And let's not get in to the Supra vs. Z and Celica vs. Skyline wars.

Now, just weeks after confirming that Toyota does indeed have a successor to the lauded AE86 in the pipeline, Best Car magazine claims to have evidence that Nissan has got a team working on building a new Silvia. Like the final 2002 S15 Spec R Silvia the new car is reckoned to be powered by a turbocharged two-liter good for 247 HP, but will just be 10 kgs heavier at one and a quarter metric tons (2450lbs).

The new range should sell for between 2.5 and 2.8 million Yen ($21,000 - $23,700), but not until 2010. Best Car's scoop ties in nicely with photographs of a shortened Z, most likely a mule testing a new, smaller FR drive train, taken at the ring earlier in the summer. If the new Silvia is indeed to be based on a modified Z/Skyline LM platform, expect a similar wheelbase of 8' 6", but smaller overall dimensions, around 14' 4" long by 5' 8" wide.

Chances of Nissan bringing a concept car, possibly derived from the URGE shown in Detroit last year, to October's Tokyo Motor Show? 60-percet according to the magazine.

[Source: Best Car]

Well, lets put it this way. I find it far more believable and thereby achievable under Nissan to have a cheap RWD coupe than over at Toyota. The big difference here is that we've already seen the shrunken 350Z prototypes, had the Urge Concept, and best of all Nissan's general preference towards performance in their vehicles overall attitude.

Who knows, maybe this is what spurs Toyota to get their buts in gear as well. Now all we need is a Honda, and I'll be very happy. But I'll probably buy a Pontiac anyway...
 

Kent

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Typical... Dis-believe anything good about Toyota and believe it when something good about another company comes around. :indiff:

I believe this about as much as I believe the Toyota thing, which means I believe both will be on US shores before the end of the decade.

Then again, I'm not entirely sure Nissan would want this car in the US since it could easily prove to be just as fun and fast as the Z while keeping a price of 10,000 dollars less... To me it wouldn't make much sense but then again, you never know. :confused:
By that logic Mazda wouldn't have the RX8 and MX5 in the same market but they do so I guess it is very possible that Nissan would do the same thing. 👍

In any case, I can already tell this car would be much faster than the Toyota design just based on the power and weight figures... I doubt Toyota will be able to produce anything under 2200lbs so I doubt the expected 200hp will be enough to keep up with this car's expected 250.

I suppose all will come to light in good time but until then I'm just keeping my fingers crossed hoping to see all of these rumors come true. 👍
 

Dave A

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Only the MX5 is strictly a 2 seater cabriolet (though a folding hard top model can be bought), the RX8 is stricktly a 4 seater (though cramped in the back) coupe. I think a lot of the marketability of this car will depend on if it's a 4 seater (which it should be) or not, since the Z has just 2. Isn't the 350Z ending production in a couple of years time anyway though.
 

V1P3R

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If it gets Toyota to do it and do it WELL then I'm all for it. I just don't think I'll ever be a Nissan guy unfortunately.
 

Danny

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Are you kidding?
But I'll probably buy a Pontiac anyway...


Goodness me! I didn't see that one coming.

I really hope Toyota can make it work. Their sporting collection has been extremely limited since the demise or the MR and Celica.
 

YSSMAN

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Goodness me! I didn't see that one coming.

Hey, if VW would have built the GX3 I would have been screaming that from the rooftops...

Although their new "City" car might be interesting with the RR setup...
 
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No it won't, since they promised to make it as safe as possible when there's an R in both of the drivetrain letters. ESP, probably without disable-function, looks to be set. They said - it won't be a sporty car.
 

ND4SPD

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Hmm, this could be the reason for that shrunken 350Z test mule thing on the Nurburgring a few months ago.
 
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-> Hmm, an S16 Silvia (or RPS16 given hatchback nature)? That might e a possibility, but just like the S15 before it, it would not see or touch Americaland. :indiff:

-> But who knows, Nissan and Toyota might will release the S16 and the AE86-II sooner than Honda finally decided what will the NSX will look like. :dunce:
 

JCE

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S16 = check
350Z-like styling = double check
2.0L turbocharged I4 = triple check
2450lbs = quadruple check
verdict = omg
 

Sage

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Hey, if VW would have built the GX3 I would have been screaming that from the rooftops...
I’m still royally pissed that they canceled that wonderful little thing. That’s a wound that’s probably going to fester for the rest of my life.
 

YSSMAN

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Yes, I'm having that issue as well. Even when outside companies wanted to work with them and make it an "unofficial" VW product, they still turned them down. It really, truthfully, sucks. I know VW can build a fun car, and if they really wanted to, a RWD model for us crazy folks, but you never know. We'll have to wait for the Panamera to drop, and then I want to see what the city car turns out like...

I'd be willing to bet HPA and Neuspeed will go crazy on it if they ever think about selling it in the US.
 

Philly

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So we'll have three Nissan sports cars again? Awesome. I had always thought the Silvia would be a really cool car to have over here. Hopefully this one will come too.

As for the production date, I'm not so sure. Seeing the pace the other Japanese marques are working at to debut their new sports cars, I wouldn't count on this being in any showroom anytime soon.

I see little liklihood in this (mostly because of the car's size), but I wonder if Nissan would dare make this a replacement for the 350Z. The Z has been aound for a while and they might want to replace it soon.
 

YSSMAN

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I think the problem is that the difference between the "S16" and the GT-R would be far too great without a Z to split the difference. The hardest part for Nissan would likely be how to balance the performance offerings between the three cars. You can't have the "S16" too close to the Z, and just the same, you can't have the Z too close to the GT-R. Then you have to consider the Infiniti G37, and things get even more messed up.

I dunno. They should take the Toyota/Mazda route and just stick a moderately-powered engine into a chassis that is well-tuned for handling dynamics. Keep it simple, keep it cheap, and they won't have a problem. Rip the 200 BHP engine out of the Sentra, use some off-the-shelf parts from the current Z (axles, gearboxes, etc), maybe steal some other parts from the lineup (headlights, tail lights, door handles, etc), and build it as quick as possible. Hand it off to an outside tuner to get the chassis tune right, offer performance parts out of the box, make it something for owners to tinker with, and to make different...

IMO, do it like how Ford did it in 1964. Cheap, simple, and attractive.
 

niky

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I don't see a 250 bhp lightweight as eating into the Z's market. It won't be as expensive, it won't be as exclusive, and it won't be as torquey (but it might be as fast or faster around a track).

As long as the Z doesn't succumb to any more "engine-bloat", they'll all be perfectly positioned when the GTR and the theoretical "S16" come out.

But I can't help longing to see a 185-200 bhp naturally aspirated "S16", though. It won't be ungodly fast, but it should be good for 7-8 second 0-60s, which is just fast enough to have fun on the highway, and would have no negative effect on how fun it'll be on canyon-runs.

-----

RE: GX3... hear. hear.
 

Muzaffar

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Well its good to hear then Nissan are reviving an old badge again.But i don't know if this plays a roll but i thought Nissa were still struggling with their losses? I mean Carlos Ghosn did have a big part to play in Nissan's sale don't it? Being the "le cost killer",would that mean almost all the parts would be shared between the S,Z,and GT-R model?(not to mentioned the G37)

Enough about this,i still wonder how would the GT-R and the Z will sell next year.If it has a major profit,then the S model could be on the market sooner than we all expected.If the sales were low (and beaten by Toyota) then the possibility of the S model coming out could be very little.Thats just my opinion,no bad feelings about it...
 

Bram Turismo

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Who knows, maybe this is what spurs Toyota to get their buts in gear as well.


I'd be nice, but Toyota doesn't care what Nissan does. American Nissan's are way nicer then the Toyota's, but here in Europe, it's defenitly the other way round, except for the Nissan Navara, which is a beautiful pickup. I can't see Toyota reacting "Oops, time to get a gear higher guys!" Toyota's nearly the number 1, if not already. Surely they don't care about some other Japanese car manufacturer?
 

YSSMAN

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Toyota is the top Japanese automaker, or the top one overall? I thought VW still had the steel grip on that market share...

Either way, I do find that surprising, the whole Toyota/Nissan game in Europe. In the US, it largely depends on what you're looking for when you go to either dealer. I'd say the Toyota crowd is a bit older, say in their 50s, of whom are looking for solid and reliable transportation at a good price... Sure, Nissan does much the same, but I've always seen them as the most "youthful" in many cases of the Japanese brands, building cars for thirty-somethings who still want to have fun.

Nissan has a great US lineup, but I'm surprised you guys aren't getting the good stuff. The Altima is quite good now that they've addressed the quality issues, the Maxima is still an excelent car (not a 4DSC any more, though...), not to mention the excellent truck line.
 

Bram Turismo

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Seconded, this is what we're getting here:

http://www.nissan.be/nl/modellen/modellen_pw.aspx

And:

http://www.nissan.be/nl/modellen/modellen_4x4.aspx


I find that a very dissapointing line-up, not even a station to challenge Toyota's Avensis or VW's very popular latest Passat.

However, I do find Toyota's line-up a lot more interesting:

http://nl.toyota.be/# (Scroll a little further down to click on the car names).

In my opinion, the only Nissan which is able to beat a Toyota would be the Nissan Navara, although my statement is based upon sales figures in Norway. We all know how popular the new Aygo and Yaris models are, and the Auris seems to hold it's ground against the Golf pretty well, beating it in comfort and customer survice. But that's not what this is about, Nissan has got some great sporty cars like you mentioned (Maxima, Altima), we in Europe have pretty much none (The Z is rather an expensive car then a sportier sedan...)
 
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Over in Israel, Nissans are marginal compared to Toyota - their dealers don't push the 1.6l Slushbox Sedans to the Leasing Companies, so they're forgotten compared to Toyota's Corolla, Mitsubishi's Lancer, and even Citroen's C4.

But again, as usual, the sporty models won't even hit our dealers in the first place, just like they didn't ship over the Celica, MR2, Supra, 350Z, Silvia or any other sporty model.
 

YSSMAN

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Oh, your Nissan and Toyota lineups aren't that different compared to ours. The big differences between our Nissan and yours is that we don't have the Micra, but we've got the Versa, Sentra, and Altima in the lineup. The Quashi will become the Rouge in the US at some point, otherwise the only truck you guys have that we don't is the Patrol. Everything else is either sold under the same name in the US, or its slightly different.

...The Toyota lineup is much the same, although we don't have the Aygo or the Avenisis (outside of the obvious ones like Dina and Hiace). The Auris will eventually become our Corolla, and your Hilux is called the Tacoma here. But, we've got the Scion (Dihatsus and a re-bodied Avenisis) brand, not to mention the Matrix, Camry, Highlander, Avalon, and Tundra.

Personally I rate Nissan higher in the US simply because they're actually involving enough to be "different" in the marketplace. Their vehicle are usually pretty competitive, but always maintain that Nissan quirk to keep me coming back. I mean I would rather buy a Honda in most cases when it comes down to Japanese models, but Nissan is a close second.
 

Jim Prower

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The Quashi will become the Rouge in the US at some point, otherwise the only truck you guys have that we don't is the Patrol.

Oh, I'm just nitpicking, but I believe you're trying to say "Rogue." "Rouge" is French for Red, or a female Bat from recent Sonic the Hedgehog Games.
 

R1600Turbo

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What?
That is incorrect.


Nissan used 300ZX for the Z31 and the Z32, it was never called 300Z and they stopped selling them in 1996 in the US.

Someone already corrected them in the comments. They'll probably fix it if they feel like it, usually how it goes.