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Nissan shows off Hi-Cross Concept ahead of Geneva Motor Show

Nissan has just shown off its latest concept vehicle, the Nissan Hi-Cross which is set to be unveiled at the Geneva Motor Show.

The Nissan Hi-Cross Concept is clearly looking at ways to extend Nissan's range in the crossover market. The Hi-Cross would be expanding on Nissan's other models the Juke, Qashqai, and Murano portfolio.

Created in Japan, the Hi-Cross Concept is compact yet surprisingly roomy, elegant yet purposeful and has a smartly designed interior.

Despite its fairly small external proportions, the Hi-Cross has a highly space efficient interior with three rows of seats for seven passengers.

Equally as smart as the interior is the hybrid drive train, coupling an electric motor, powered by a Nissan-developed compact lithium-ion battery, with a 2.0-liter direct injection gas engine to provide the performance potential of a 2.5-liter with the economy and emissions expected from a much smaller engine.

"Nissan created the crossover segment with Murano and has expanded the genre with top selling cars like Qashqai and Juke. Hi-Cross Concept shows we are not sitting still, resting on our laurels, but exploring ways of cementing our crossover leadership by exploring new ideas." said Andy Palmer, Executive Vice President of Nissan.

For the concept, the HEV drivetrain is based on new technology developed by Nissan for front-wheel drive models. However, interestingly this technology can provide four-wheel drive. The new system's innovative approach to affordability and packaging adopts ‘one-motor, two clutch system linked to Nissan's new generation XTRONIC continuously variable transmission (CVT). The new CVT achieves a 10 percent improvement in fuel economy over comparable previous generation CVTs.

The hybrid drivetrain makes extensive use of battery technology which was developed for all electric Nissan Leaf. The high output, fast-charging compact lithium-ion battery, linked to high-level motor control technology, provides acceleration assist when needed and permits downsizing of the gas engine for optimum economy and emissions.

In city driving, the presence of the electric motor and lithium-ion battery allow the engine to be turned off frequently. It can also be disengaged completely with the clutch, and energy can be recovered effectively when braking.

The Hi-Cross measures 183.4 inches long, 72.8 inches wide and 65.7 inches tall, with 21-inch alloy wheels. The styling combines existing Nissan design cues with new elements, at the front it has a characteristic V-shaped grille set off by distinctive lighting signatures provided by stylish new headlamps.

A potential new direction is showcased on the Hi-Cross, in particular, by a bold character line which extends from the bonnet down the flanks of the car to the D-pillar. At the rear it has distinctive lighting signatures provided by stylish rear combination lamps echoing with headlamp lighting signature. Inside, the seven-seat cockpit is dominated by a new T-wing shaped dashboard.