What is it?
This is the new Nissan Cube, which is clearly the ideal town car for fans of Japanese popular culture. For the rest of us, if you can embrace the unconventional looks, you’ll find that the new Note-based Nissan Cube is actually very effective urban transport.
From launch the Cube is only available with a 108bhp 1.6-litre engine and the choice of a five-speed manual or CVT auto ’box. A 1.5-litre turbodiesel is due to join the range in May 2010.
We’re testing the manual petrol model in limited LDN (or Lounge Design) trim, of which there will be 500 examples available. All get a questionable brown suede interior, panoramic glass roof (which is standard across all three trim levels), cruise control, climate control and automatic headlights and wipers.
What’s it like?
It is the interior as much as the boxy body of the Cube that makes it good urban transport. The upright seating position is comfortable and aids visibility, and the sculpted dashboard (though as quirky and interesting as the rest of the car) is easy to read and use.
Refinement at town speeds is very good, and thanks to generous amounts of head and elbow space the Cube is a relaxing place to be. Sliding and reclining rear seats are also a great standard addition, though the side-hinged rear door is less than practical, given the amount of room you need to open it fully.