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Detroit show: Nissan unveils working class hero

Tough truck: Nissan's NV2500 concept is based on the Titan pick-up.

Concept van has everything that opens and shuts

12 Jan 2009

NISSAN used this week’s North American International Auto Show in Detroit to unveil another forward-looking light commercial vehicle in the NV2500 concept – a medium-large van that previews the Japanese manufacturer’s entry into the LCV market in the US in 2010.

The NV2500 has a three-zone interior and offers range of storage solutions and flexible work spaces with items such as fold-down tables, cargo and tool tie-down racks (including door-mounted storage compartments for power saws, drills, etc) and a side panel that opens like an awning to created a standing exterior work bench.

Nissan claims all elements of the interior are designed to be multifunctional and durable enough to stand the rigours of use at a construction site. The interior can also hold objects up to 3.2m long.

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“The Nissan NV2500 is a rolling idea lab, bringing a new perspective to the commercial vehicle segment,” said Nissan Design America vice-president Bruce Campbell.

“We see the NV2500 concept as an ongoing exploration of ways to make these vehicles more than just a box on four wheels. Our goal is to enhance utility through creative design solutions, providing a platform for a wide variety of specific professional applications.

“The key to the NV2500 concept’s interior is ingenuity as much as innovation. Every element needs to serve high-utility needs for multi-tasking users.” Right-hand drive production remains unconfirmed at this stage for the NV2500, which is based on the Titan full-size pick-up platform that includes a ladder frame chassis, solid rear axle and a range of powerful engines, although details of the latter are still to be confirmed. It rests on a 3749mm wheelbase and measures a substantial 5944mm in overall length. It also stands 2438mm tall and is 2012mm wide.

Meanwhile, Nissan’s all-new NV200 compact van is drawing closer to production, with details beginning to emerge ahead of its Japanese launch in the first half of 2009 and its rollout to other markets in the second half.

Its Australian release is still to be confirmed, although the model would add an extra dimension to Nissan’s ute-dominated light-commercial-vehicle line-up and has been designed to appeal to markets worldwide. Part of this appeal includes a cargo floor layout that enables a standard pallet to fit between the rear wheel arches and a maximum load capacity of 4.1 cubic metres within the compact exterior.

“The NV200 is a key product for the future success of the Nissan LCV business,” said Nissan LCV corporate vice-president Andy Palmer. “It will allow us to enter key markets with an innovative proposition based on customers’ unmet needs. The NV200 creates a new segment in the small van sector.”

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