Nissan Cube

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Nissan Cube
NISSAN CUBE Z12 KOREA.jpg
Overview
Manufacturer Nissan
Production 1998–2014
Assembly Oppama, Japan
Body and chassis
Class Subcompact

The Nissan Cube is a mini MPV produced by Japanese carmaker Nissan since 1998. Initially sold in Japan, the Cube has been in North American and European markets since 2009. In Japan, it was exclusive to Japanese Nissan dealerships called Nissan Red Stage locations. It was essentially a slightly larger load carrying alternative to the Nissan March hatchback.

First generation (1998-2002)[edit]

First generation (Z10)
1999 Nissan Cube 01.jpg
Overview
Production 1998–2002
Body and chassis
Body style 5-door hatchback
Layout Front engine, front-wheel drive / Four-wheel drive (Special version)
Platform Nissan B platform
Related Nissan Micra
Renault Modus
Powertrain
Engine 1.3L CG13DE I4
1.3L CGA3DE I4
Transmission 4-speed automatic
CVT
Nissan Cube Z10

The first generation of the Cube (designated Z10) was introduced in 1998. It shared the same platform as the Nissan Micra (known as the March in Japan and Southeast Asia), as well as the same 1.3 L engine. A CVT gearbox and four-wheel drive were optional. The Cube covered the gap in the Nissan lineup between the March and the Sunny internationally. The first generation was sold only in Japan, though they have also been privately exported to the United Kingdom, Australia, and to Hong Kong.

Second generation (2002-2008)[edit]

Second generation (Z11)
2005 Nissan Cube³ 01.jpg
Overview
Production 2002–2008
Body and chassis
Body style 5-door hatchback
Layout Front engine, front-wheel drive / Four-wheel drive
Platform Nissan B platform
Related Nissan Micra
Nissan Tiida/Versa
Powertrain
Engine 1.4L CR14DE I4
1.5L HR15DE I4
Transmission 4-speed automatic
CVT
Dimensions
Wheelbase 2,360 mm (92.9 in)
Length 3,720 mm (146.5 in)
Width 1,610 mm (63.4 in)
Height 1,625 mm (64.0 in)
Nissan Cube Z11
Nissan Cube Z11 rear view

The second generation of the Cube was released in 2002 with a larger interior than the previous model. The combination of angled and curved surfaces was based on the third generation of the March, powered by a 1.4 L I4 engine. The model included the "e4WD" system as an option, which transfers power to the rear wheels when the front wheels spin via a small electric motor on the rear underside of the floor. The electrically powered system allows for reduced drivetrain drag when only driving in FWD mode.

A CVT transmission was optional, and was made available in a stretched wheelbase version with seven seats, called the Cube³. With a CVT equipped Cube, the steering wheel button controls and the sport wheel button on the dash panel are located next to the hazard. In mid-2005, the cube had an optional upgrade with the new HR-series 1.5 L engine from the Nissan Tiida.

All Cube models have optional extras including an Ion filter for cleaning the air and Nissan's 'smart key' which allows the driver to enter the car without having to use a key. Other options include a sunroof, 12 different styles of front grill and satellite navigation. Other specific models also have different styles of bodykits and fender flares. They come with optional 14 or 15 inch wheels and the Autech version with chrome stylings and a vinyl style of seat covering.

European availability[edit]

Although only officially produced for the Japanese domestic market, a UK-based independent importer Car Imports Direct Ltd, imported over 500 BZ11 / BGZ11 Cubes between 2002 and 2008. These were a mixture of new and used models and were registered for UK use or exported to other EU markets.[citation needed]

Third generation (2009-2014)[edit]

Third generation (Z12)
2009 Nissan cube 1.8SL -- 11-23-2009.jpg
Overview
Production 2009–2014
Assembly Oppama, Japan
Body and chassis
Body style 5-door hatchback
Layout Front engine, front-wheel drive / Four-wheel drive
Platform Nissan B platform
Related Nissan Tiida/Versa
Powertrain
Engine 1.5L HR15DE I4
1.6L HR16DE I4
1.8L MR18DE I4
1.5L K9K I4 dCi
Transmission 5-speed manual
6-speed manual
CVT
Dimensions
Wheelbase 2,530 mm (99.6 in)
Length 3,980 mm (156.7 in)
Width 1,695 mm (66.7 in)
Height 1,680 mm (66.1 in)
Nissan Cube rear view

The third generation Nissan Cube was revealed for the first time at the Los Angeles International Auto Show, on November 19, 2008. While this is the third generation of the vehicle, it is being offered for export markets, including European and North American markets, for the first time. The Cube went on sale in Japan on November 19, 2008 and the U.S. on May 5, 2009.

The updated Nissan Cube features more rounded and curved styling cues than its predecessors. This evolution is most striking in the rear bumper area, in the asymmetrical rear window, which wraps around to the passenger side, and in the oval-shaped driver and front passenger windows. The rear hatch is hinged to open along its vertical axis, towards the curb. This helps loading and unloading when street parking in a crowded urban environment. The hatch hinge is on the right side for right-hand-drive countries such as Japan and the UK, but it is on the left side for left-hand-drive markets such as North America.

Seating capacity remains at five. According to Nissan designers, the interior is inspired by the 'enveloping curves of a jacuzzi to promote a comfortable and social atmosphere.' Design cues include a water ripple motif that appears in the headliner and is repeated in details like the speaker covers and cup holders. Nissan has developed an extended line of accessories for Cube to encourage personalization. These include multicolor appliqués that can be placed around air vents and window switches, utility hooks and elastic bands in different colors, variable color LED accent lighting for the footwell and cup holders, and a sculptured piece of color-coordinated shag carpet that sits in a shallow well on the top of the dash.[1]

The third generation Cube is built on the Renault-Nissan Alliance's front-wheel-drive B platform and powered by a 1.5 L HR engine, 16-valve engine with 109 PS (80 kW; 108 bhp). For North America, it uses the 1.8 L four-cylinder engine of the MR family, it produces 122 hp (91 kW) and 127 lb·ft (172 N·m) of torque. Europe uses the HR 1.6 petrol and 1.5 dCi Diesel. All are also used for the Nissan Note and Tiida/Versa. Depending on the engine, it is available with a 5- or 6-speed manual transmission or Nissan's automatic Continuously Variable Transmission. The Cube is capable of averaging 20 km/l (5 l/100 km; 47 mpg-US) in Japan and doing 28 mpg-US (8.4 l/100 km) city, and 30 mpg-US (7.8 l/100 km) highway with its Xtronic CVT transmission. The e-4WD trim contains an electric rear wheel drive motor to assist the gasoline engine powered front wheels.

As a result of power shortages in Japan caused by the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami, the 2012 Cube made a delayed appearance in the United States in January 2012. The 2012 model has no mechanical or styling changes, but Nissan did introduce a special edition version (the S Indigo, which includes a navigation system, rear view monitor, upgraded audio system, intelligent key and upgraded wheels) and added new colors (Pearl White, Brilliant Silver, Gun Metallic, Cayenne Red, Bali Blue) and new equipment features to certain trim levels. Pricing of the base model went up $240.[2]

In early 2011, Nissan announced the Z12 Cube was to be withdrawn from sale in the UK and the rest of Europe, following its disappointing sales performance. Nissan cited a poor exchange rate as one of the reasons why the model failed to be competitive.[3]

EV-02 (2008)[edit]

It is a test vehicle with 80 kW motor and lithium-ion batteries.

Nissan claimed the production version would be introduced in 2010 will have a unique bodystyle and is not based on any existing Nissan model.[4] However, the only production electric vehicle announced since then was Nissan LEAF, which was based on Nissan Tiida.

Marketing[edit]

Nissan provided visitors at the 2008 LA Auto show with a brochure featuring the car using augmented reality technology by Total Immersion (augmented reality). The brochure is held up to a webcam of which various 3D models of the vehicle will pop out offering views of the car's exterior and interior in real-time interaction with the brochure.[5]

To promote the first Cube model to arrive in Canada, Nissan Canada ran a contest in early and mid-2009 to give away 50 Nissan Cubes to "creative Canadians". The marketing campaign, called 'hypercube', picked 500 Canadians to compete for 50 Cubes by showing their creative talents. The winners received their Cubes at events held in Toronto, Vancouver, and Montreal.[6]

2010 recall and discontiuation for 2015[edit]

A recall was announced in the United States by Nissan on July 21, 2010, that affected 46,000 MY 2009 and 2010 Cube vehicles for failing to comply with Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) 301, "Fuel System Integrity", due to excessive fuel leakage after a rear-end collision.[7][citation needed]

The Nissan Cube has been discontinued for 2015 in spite of poor sales and ending its five-years production since 2009 of this generation Nissan Cube.

Awards and recognition[edit]

  • 2009 Kelley Blue Book named the Nissan Cube one of its Top 10 Coolest Cars Under $18,000.
  • 2010 Nissan Cube rated a Top Safety Pick by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).
  • 2010 Automobile Design of the Year Award.
  • 2010 Kelley Blue Book lists the Nissan Cube as one of its Top 10 Road Trip Cars.
  • 2010 AAA Top vehicle picks for dog owners.[8]
  • 2010 Nissan Cube wins AutoPacific's Best in Class Vehicle Satisfaction Award.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]