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Nissan Cube
2006 Nissan Cube
Manufacturer Nissan
Production 1998-present
Assembly Oppama, Japan
Class Mini MPV

The Nissan Cube is a mini MPV produced by Nissan and currently sold only in Japan, North America and Europe.


First generation

First generation
2000 Nissan Cube
Production 1998-2002
Layout FF layout
Platform Nissan B platform
Engine(s) 1.3L I4
4-speed automatic
Continuously variable transmission
Related Nissan Micra

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 and four-wheel drive were optional. The Cube covered the gap in the Nissan lineup between the March and the Sunny. The first generation was sold in Japan and Hong Kong.

Second generation

Second generation
2005 Nissan Cube
Production 2002-2008
Body style(s) 5-door hatchback
Layout Front engine, front-wheel drive / Four-wheel drive
Platform Nissan B platform
Engine(s) 1.3L I4 1.5L I4
Transmission(s) 4-speed automatic
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)
Related Nissan Micra
Nissan Tiida/Versa

The second generation of the Cube, 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 powerloss when only driving in FWD mode.

A CVT 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.


Electric version

In 2008, Nissan revealed the Nissan Denki (Japanese for “electric”) Cube Concept. Making its debut at the March 2008 New York International Auto Show,[1] the Denki Cube Concept is a lithium-ion battery-powered electric vehicle.[2] Nissan’s compact lithium-ion battery technology provides batteries with twice as much energy compared with a conventional cylindrical battery of the same type.

The Denki Cube Concept also serves as a preview of Nissan’s future plans to sell a redesigned gasoline-powered (would be a new generation) Cube at Nissan dealers in the United States and Canada beginning in 2009 (called Nissan EV). Prototypes have been test driven by journalists and reports published in spring 2009.[3][4]

Third generation

Third generation
Nissan Cube
Production 2008–present
Assembly Oppama, Japan
Body style(s) 5-door hatchback
Platform Nissan B platform
Engine(s) 1.5L I4, 1.6L I4, 1.8L I4, 1.5L I4 dCi
Transmission(s) 5-speed manual
6-speed manual
Wheelbase 2,530 mm (99.6 in)
Length 3,980 mm (156.7 in)
Width 1,695 mm (66.7 in)
Height 1,650 mm (65.0 in)
Related Nissan Tiida/Versa
2009 Nissan Cube 1.8 (US)

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 Europe and North American market, for the first time. The Cube went on sale in Japan in November 2008 and the U.S. in May 2009.

Brian Cooley shows the 2009 Nissan Cube 1.8, will also featured the 2009 CNET web news Car Tech.

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.

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.

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 122 hp (91 kW; 124 PS) 1.8 L four-cylinder engine of the MR family, while for Europe it 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.

EV-02 (2008)

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.[5] However, the only production electric vehicle announced since then was Nissan LEAF, which was based on Nissan Tiida.


Nissan provided visitors at the 2008 LA Auto show with a brochure featuring the car using augmented reality technology. 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.[6]

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.[7]

Reviewers comments

The Nissan Cube has received some positive reviews amidst the negative:

  • "The Cube is ... accessible, fun and deeply strange in an authentically Japanese way.... The Cube is undiluted Tokyo chic, from its asymmetrical rear window to its shag-carpet dashboard pad to the bungee cords on the doors, which Nissan says are useful for holding 'stuffed driving mascots'." -- Ezra Dyer, New York Times [8]

However, some reviewers feel strongly against the boxy design:

  • The Los Angeles Times stated "And then there's the air-hating box of ugly, the 2009 Nissan Cube", where they revealed that the car has extremely poor aerodynamics as well as being ugly. [9]
  • The Toronto Star released an extremely negative review in its Wheels section on October 17, 2009. It rated the Cube's driving quality on North American highways as severely poor.[10]


External links


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