Nissan has shown off the Nissan PIVO 3, the latest generation of its PIVO electric microcar concept at the Tokyo motor show, and company boss Carlos Ghosn says it proves Nissan is "focused on innovation and excitement".
Andy Palmer, Nissan product planning chief commented: "We could build the car tomorrow. The tech is that far advanced already, but it's too early to market that car. EVs need to look like the Leaf at the moment as we don't want to alienate people from the technology."
The new Nissan PIVO 3 is deliberately much closer to conventional EVs on sale today than the previous outlandish PIVO of 2005 and PIVO 2 of 2007 concepts, and could be a production reality by 2016.
Ghosn said: “It [the PIVO 3] is a unique mobility service. It can park itself and hunt for spaces. When charging, it can either recharge or supply excess power to the grid.”
Nissan has confirmed the concept is all-wheel-drive and features an electric motor mounted in each wheel.
Nissan’s product-planning chief Francois Bancon says the PIVO 3 offers “a very new driving sensation”. This, he claims, is down to its McLaren F1-style central driving position, which offers much improved visibility and allows the driver to feel “like a driver in a one-seat race car”. The central front seat is flanked either side by a rear seat to create a 1+2 configuration.
Bancon also claims the PIVO 3’s agility in urban driving conditions is “a revelation”. The PIVO 3 has a turning circle of just four metres, a vast improvement over the typical 8-10 metres in a regular production car. “This provides you a sensation of freedom,” says Bancon. “You can almost move like people.”