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16/09/2013 900

Nissan - Friend-ME Concept

Nissan Friend-ME concept for a new generation

Head-turning style for youth who clock mobility in kilobits per second

- Response to dreams of young Chinese soon to be world's largest customer segment

- Private-yet-connected space for peers makes just hanging out an adventure

- Proof of Nissan's determination to lead the way in delivering Chinese customer aspirations

SHANGHAI, China - Nissan today revealed its Friend-Me concept, a four-passenger sedan designed for a generation with a very different automotive outlook. With an assertive, imposing exterior featuring boldly flowing sculpted lines, Friend-Me is a confident creature of the night, meant to be seen in bright city lights.

The concept is applicable globally, but the genesis of Friend-Me was Nissan's exploring the aspirations of customers destined to emerge as the world's largest single market segment: the "Bālínghòu," around 240 million Chinese born in the 1980s are known. Specifically, Friend-Me addresses the social dynamics of Chinese men in their mid-20s.

"Bālínghòu males are a huge cohort in the world's largest market, and they're now reaching their prime," said François Bancon, Division General Manager of product strategy and advanced planning at Nissan. "Clearly, their tastes will shape automotive trends worldwide for decades to come. So we believe it's important to listen with respect, and respond by putting dreams within their reach. That's why Friend-Me is our first proposition in an ongoing dialogue."

For a generation that grew up without siblings, leisure time shared with peers is treasured.

Edgy, but mannered enough to go with the flow

This car asserts an imposing presence - solidity and flowing lines give it an edgy muscularity.

With its exterior design, Friend-Me addresses a fine balance that middle-class Bālínghòu youth must heed. "We call our solution ‘Distilled Da Qi,'" said Taiji Toyota, Vice President of Nissan Design China. "'Da Qi is about casting an aura, about standing out, but at the same time going with the flow, fitting in. It's a question of balance, and we've worked to refine it right down to the essence. The result adds an entirely new and youthful dimension to the sedan category."

A low and wide stance with short front and rear overhang emphasizes more chunky, aggressive and sporty impression rather than authentic sedans.  Together with this challenging proportion, distinctive design aspects are presenting one of the new directions of Nissan appearance. The energetic and fluid momentum which arises from ‘V-motion' shaped grille streams through the hood to shoulder creates the impressive cadence with emotional aura.

The headlamps and rear combination lamps are accentuated by its unique boomerang shaped lighting signature.

The profile of the vehicle completely describes the progressive translation of ‘Distilled Da Qi'. The thin and light floating roof and kick-up shape around the C-pillar resonates well and produces sophisticated harmony.  Likewise, the Neon Gray exterior colour - specially developed to appeal to tech-savvy youthful tastes - show its lines to full effect at night.

‘Oracle stone' empowers shared adventure

Inside, front and back, driver and passenger, all four seats are separate with the same high-tech style and status, because in this cabin all aboard are peers - equals. And all share the same information as the driver: speed, navigation, fuel remaining - everything.

Empowering all four adventurers is a unique centre console stretching from the dash to between the rear seats - an iconic monolith in an onyx-black finish. Screens visible from each seat blend seamlessly with the surface, only becoming apparent as they display whatever contents the buzz of the moment demands. Whoever finds cool content can transfer it from his mobile to the on-board screens so all can share in the fun.

A dream within reach

Nissan Friend-Me has been carefully designed as a dream within reach of young customers in China. Based on an existing Nissan sedan architecture, it requires a minimum of unique components. The ecologically efficient PureDrive hybrid powertrain envisioned for Friend-Me would deliver more than enough zip for city driving.

That's the dream Nissan Friend-Me delivers, thanks to the collaboration between design teams from Nissan Design China (NDC) - the Beijing studio established in 2011 - and Nissan Global Design Center (NGDC) under the leadership and direction of Shiro Nakamura, Nissan's Senior Vice President and Chief Creative Officer. One of NDC's most ambitious designs so far, Friend-Me is one of many in-depth explorations of China's customer needs and aspirations now underway.

"If there's one thing we want Nissan to be known for, it's uniquely powerful insight into what excites and delights customers across China," said Bancon. "Friend-Me is just the beginning."


NISSAN SAYS ‘FRIEND-ME' AT AUTO SHANGHAI 2013 WITH NEW CONCEPT CAR

- Innovation and excitement to be brought to life at Auto Shanghai 2013

- First concept car with key input by Chinese designers to star; 20 exciting vehicles to be on display

- Shanghai motor show website to be launched for all to stay updated on the latest news from Nissan

 HONG KONG, China (March 27, 2013) - Nissan is set to excite Auto Shanghai 2013 with the global unveiling of their new concept car, Friend-ME, on April 20. Chinese designers working at Nissan Design China in Beijing were fully engaged in the design and development process of Friend-ME, which features an unique center console that allows "Four Seats, One Mind Connectivity" - equal information sharing among all aboard. Friend-ME is designed for the vibrant, young generation in China, one of most exciting segments in the fastest-growing automobile markets in the world.

Among the 20 vehicles displayed, Nissan (China) Investment Co., Ltd., together with Dongfeng Nissan Passenger Vehicle Company (DFL-PV) and Zhengzhou Nissan Automobile Co., Ltd. (ZNA), will showcase new and exciting models such as the Nissan GT-R, Quest and Murano. Also featured at Nissan's booth will be its recently-launched global sedan, Teana.

Besides the car displays, an Innovation Wall will allow visitors to develop a deeper understanding of the technologies behind the wheels, and experience the unique driving sensation that Nissan vehicles have to offer. In a special Teana technology corner, all-around details of the new luxury sedan, from driving performance to comfort and safety, will be highlighted.

Auto Shanghai 2013 will mark Nissan's first deployment of its new global exhibit space design for motor shows in Asia. The new design was first used this January at the North American International Auto Show 2013 in Detroit. The booth is designed to immerse guests completely into a Nissan world, appealing throughout with sight, sound, touch and even smell, with a new green tea-inspired "Nissan fragrance."

2013 will also mark a commemorate year for Nissan. Since the first Nissan vehicle arrived in China, Nissan has grown deep roots in the country. This year, ZNA and DFL achieve key milestones, marking their 20th and 10th anniversaries, respectively. Nissan looks forward to many more years ahead in the country and is committed to continue delivering innovative and exciting products to the Chinese community.

Look for the latest from Nissan at its more than 2,300m2 exhibit area from April 20 (press day) to 29 in Hall E3 at the Shanghai International Exhibition Center. Also stay tuned online for the most current information about Nissan at Auto Shanghai 2013 through our new website at: www.nissan.com.cn/minisite/autoshow_2013SH. The site will roll out on Thursday, March 28 and will be updated weekly with our latest information, including exciting stories about our products and motor show stand, as well as exclusive previews of Friend-ME.

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