Home » Nissan’s Four New Concept Cars Hint At A New Lightning Design That Reminds Me Of An Old One

Nissan’s Four New Concept Cars Hint At A New Lightning Design That Reminds Me Of An Old One

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We live in a golden age of automotive lighting. It’s a fascinating time, with technologies like LEDs and new manufacturing techniques allowing for shapes and styles and functions never before possible back in the dark (well, dim) ages of two shapes of sealed beams and plastic bezels. Nissan – in partnership with Dong Feng – just showed four concept cars at the Beijing Auto Show, which I was supposed to be at, but, thanks to some unpleasant slowness in getting my visa, I’m not. Maybe I’m a little bitter. Geely said they’d get me out there soon to see all the Good Stuff, so hopefully soon I’ll have all manner of exciting eyewitness Chinese car news for you. Until then, I’ll just have to tell you about things the PR people want to show me. Like these four Nissan concept cars.

The cars are the Epoch, Epic, Era, and Evo, which, ironically, was the original name for the Pep Boys until Era ran off to become the actor we now know as Nathan Lane and the rest of the brothers changed their names to Manny, Moe, and Jack. True story, look it up if you don’t believe me. Anyway, all of these are EV concepts, with Epoch and Epic being a battery EV sedan and SUV, respectively, and the Era and Evo being plug-in hybrids, this time SUV and sedan, respectively.

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It’s interesting to note that Nissan, like Toyota, sees the immediate-term value of plug-in hybrids. Also that the sedan is still a viable body style, in this very SUV-saturated world.

Here’s a nice slick video Nissan produced for the event:

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There’s not a lot of specs or anything to go on here – they’re concept cars, after all, so I wouldn’t really believe any numbers they say now, anyway, though I will relay what Nissan is saying about each car in their press release:

  • The Nissan Epoch Concept is an EV sedan for urban and suburban go-getters who wish to enhance their lifestyles with design and technologies. The concept has an AI-expanded Internet of Things, and its virtual personal assistant makes life easier and more comfortable through communication that recognizes emotions.

  • The Nissan Epic Concept is an EV SUV perfectly suited for adventurous city couples who explore on weekends, with autonomous driving for both the city and on highways. The vehicle can function as a mobile power source, with electricity to power equipment, campsites or parties. Meanwhile, its on-board technologies support and create a relaxing atmosphere.

  • The Nissan Era Concept is a plug-in hybrid SUV that supports urban lifestyles and is well suited to young businesspeople who treat their car as a second home. With an interconnected entertainment system and zero-gravity seats, its advanced e-4ORCE all-wheel control and active air suspension provide both a comfortable and confident drive.

  • The Nissan Evo Concept plug-in hybrid sedan is perfect for weekend getaways and creating special moments for the whole family. In addition to its advanced driver support and safety functions, its AI-enhanced virtual personal assistant helps properly deliver the intended drive and journey.

So, you know, the usual PR bullshit about exploring and lifestyles and cars as second homes and creating special moments and all that shit, which, frankly, you can accomplish just as readily in a 1994 Mercury Villager. For a lot less money, too.

But what I can talk about definitively now is the very interesting lighting design that we’re seeing on these concepts, and how that lighting design is informing what could be the new corporate face of Nissan. Here, take a look at the Epic:

240425 Nissan Auto China 2024 Epic Press Images 02 Large

Slashes! Slashes of light! Of varying thicknesses! And look how they wrap around the body corners:

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240425 Nissan Auto China 2024 Epic Press Images 01 Large

It’s exciting stuff, and it’s nice to know future owners can make pretty good representations of the face of their cars in one line of normal text, like how VW people can do (O\_!_/O) or Jeep people can do [O|||||||O], so these new Nissans could be \\\\\\\\\O/////////. That’s pretty cool.

The slashy goodness continues around the back, too:

240425 Nissan Auto China 2024 Epic Press Images 04 Large

The other SUV, the Epoch, has a similar lighting signature:

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240425 Nissan Auto China 2024 Era Images 01 Large

240425 Nissan Auto China 2024 Era Images 06 Large

I like how the slashes recline and turn into the side marker lamps at the corners there, especially. I don’t see evidence of a reverse lamp or where the indicators would be (China requires amber ones) but I think we can attribute that to concept car freedom.

The sedans sport a slightly more toned-down variation of the slash design at the front. Here’s the Evo:

240425 Nissan Auto China 2024 Evo Press Images 06 Large

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Fewer slashes, wider slash-spacing, which means the email-signature version may look like this: \ \ \ \ \——o——/ / / / /. The rear seems to dispense with the slash look entirely:

240425 Nissan Auto China 2024 Evo Press Images 03 Large

That’s a very Volvo-looking rear end, if you ask me. The Epoch’s lighting design is similar, with even more toned-down slashes in favor of a light bar above, and hockey stick-like slashes below:

240425 Nissan Auto China 2024 Epoch Images 02 Large

 

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240425 Nissan Auto China 2024 Epoch Images 07 Large

The rear end light treatment here is quite different, with a full-width light bar and those little schematic bowl-shapes below.

All of these lighting concepts I think are distinctive and work well, and if Nissan wants to tie them back to a heritage design, I think they can, thanks to this fantastic old Nissan:

Nissan Pulsarnx

Yes! The Pulsar NX! The OG slash-taillight-haver! This was a deeply clever and novel car, and a worthy source of inspiration. So, I hope this thing was on some mood boards at the styling department when they were coming up with these.

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Nissan desperately needs an injection of novelty and interest into their lineup, so these concepts and their associated design language seem like a good start. Let’s see if they can actually bring them to reality.

 

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Erik McCullough
Erik McCullough
9 days ago

I had an ’88 Pulsar NX SE, it was a fun car with T-Tops and the removable back. I never had the sport-bak option. Great car at 18 years old!

AlfaWhiz
AlfaWhiz
29 days ago

That’s kind of what ends up happening when you think you have no legacy to base on? So you make a “statement”? Also, Evo looks totally like a Hyundai/Volvo mash-up.

NosrednaNod
NosrednaNod
29 days ago

“ A New Lightning Design”

Get editor Grammarly on the phone…

Rafael
Rafael
29 days ago

I’m sleepy and didn’t fully process the headline, so I assumed those were VW cars used to illustrate a story on Kia. Was really confused when I zoomed in and saw “Nissan”.
Hate to be that guy, but those cars look like what Mid journey will spew out if you ask for “modern car”. Come to think of it, this press release looks a lot like ChatGPT to me as well.

Church
Church
29 days ago

I hate this trend of putting fifty lights on the front of the vehicle. See also the Santa Cruz. What is the benefit?

Winsome Badger
Winsome Badger
29 days ago
Reply to  Church

1. Each light will cost several hundred dollars to replace
2. Minor accidents will be very expensive
3. Insurance will write them all off
4.You have to buy another car
5. Profits

Marc Fuhrman
Marc Fuhrman
1 month ago

The cars themselves don’t really do much for me, they seem a bit generic. But The wheel designs on all for concepts are really neat and I wouldn’t mind seeing something like those going into production.

Mr E
Mr E
1 month ago

Hopefully the Nissans of the future will all have automatic headlights, unlike the countless Rogues I’ve seen on the road driving at night with only their DRLs…

Whilst I think innovation and fresh ideas are great things, those SUV slashy headlights are a bridge too far for me.

Citrus
Citrus
1 month ago

The base model 1992 Mercury Tracer foretold the future.

https://www.flickr.com/photos/ajmstudios/48834572011

Attila the Hatchback
Attila the Hatchback
1 month ago

2029 Nissan Epic rolls in for service in 2034: “Sorry dude, your 3rd to the left front LED burned out due to a shorted lighting control board. You’ll have to replace the front clip. Only $14,000 with paint matching included!”

Andy Individual
Andy Individual
1 month ago

I didn’t think lightning was designed. Isn’t it a natural phenomena, induced by atmospheric conditions? 😉

Drew
Drew
1 month ago

I thought it was the wrath of Zeus raining down on us. (But I’m glad you mentioned it, because I’ve been looking at the headline and wondering how long before they corrected it.)

Toecutter
Toecutter
1 month ago

I like how the Epoch throws so much fad stylistic bullshit into the dustbin where it belongs. No grille, it has normal sized wheels, no plastic cladding, no fake vents… Now if they added a rear-wheel skirt, it would be even better.

Trust Doesn't Rust
Trust Doesn't Rust
1 month ago

I’m looking forward to an Epoch cutting me off to get across three lanes of traffic in the near future.

Strangek
Strangek
1 month ago

The sedans look alright, I can do without those SUVs though. I certainly don’t want AI IOT in my car.

Lockleaf
Lockleaf
1 month ago

The epic looks like the design brief read “Inexpensive Lucid Air”

DialMforMiata
DialMforMiata
1 month ago

Every single one of those descriptions reads like what ChatGPT would come up with if you typed in “boring future car”.

Pisco Sour
Pisco Sour
1 month ago

These cars look like the generic cars you’d see in the background of a futuristic video game.

The descriptions feel like they came from a “creative” meeting where an employee was fired for making fun of the boss for using the words “paradigm” and “proactive.”

Andy Individual
Andy Individual
1 month ago
Reply to  Pisco Sour

Great bullshit bingo material though.

Taargus Taargus
Taargus Taargus
1 month ago

I appreciate the Pulsar pic at the bottom. It’s lovely, and a palate cleanser for all the modern Nissan’ing going on above.

Man, those concepts do absolutely nothing for me. They’re concepts, but they look like the existing crop of EVs that are already available from other brands, except more tortured looking. I both find them all ugly, and simultaneously, uninteresting.

I do like that there’s basically infinite possibilities for lighting in this age of LEDs, but based on this, I’m going to trust just about anyone other than Nissan to use them well.

Bongo Friendee Harvey Park
Bongo Friendee Harvey Park
28 days ago

You may be the only person on the internet who spells “palate cleanser” correctly.

Rod Millington
Rod Millington
25 days ago

I take my pallet cleaning seriously.

Miles Long
Miles Long
1 month ago

“The Nissan Epoch Concept is an EV sedan for urban and suburban go-getters who wish to enhance their lifestyles with design and technologies. The concept has an AI-expanded Internet of Things, and its virtual personal assistant makes life easier and more comfortable through communication that recognizes emotions.”

Drivers need not apply.

Jim Stock
Jim Stock
1 month ago

My buddy in high school had silver Pulsar NX with all the available tops. It was so cool back then. His was even new at the time because he had a rich grandmother.

DialMforMiata
DialMforMiata
1 month ago

Leave it to Nissan to suck all of the coolness out of the name “Evo”.

Tagarito
Tagarito
29 days ago
Reply to  DialMforMiata

The Evo lives on… as a Nissan?? Platform sharing is fine and all, but name stealing says a lot

Arch Duke Maxyenko
Arch Duke Maxyenko
1 month ago

All of those concepts just scream, “car.”

Eric Gonzalez
Eric Gonzalez
1 month ago

I almost fell asleep until you got to the NX. Two questions about it:

  1. What happens if you remove what I’m guessing is a plastic wrap covering the tail lights? How do they look? Never seen one without the slashes.
  2. If you broke a tail light, did you need to color-match it to your car? I’m guessing yes, which would’ve been a royal PITA back then and even more so now.
Andy Individual
Andy Individual
1 month ago
Reply to  Eric Gonzalez

They just ran with the idea that actually having bumpers would make it less likely to have a broken tail light. What were they thinking?!

Eric Gonzalez
Eric Gonzalez
1 month ago

Bumpers are great and all, but not so much when you own an 80’s small coupe that has tail lights at the same level as the bumper on pretty much any modern SUV.

Jatco Xtronic CVT
Jatco Xtronic CVT
1 month ago

The EV marks the end of the tried and true, proven, reliable, smooth, and efficient Jatco CVT. These cars are terrible for their omission of such a refined and capable component.

Last edited 1 month ago by Jatco Xtronic CVT
DialMforMiata
DialMforMiata
1 month ago

Don’t worry, I’m sure they’ll live up to the reliablity, smoothness and efficiency you’d expect.

Andy Individual
Andy Individual
1 month ago

Yeah, and when these are on their second/third owner how will the kids attach their fart cans?

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