Nissan Motor Company Ltd or simply Nissan has gone through a long and intriguing history. The company’s past is marked by many unusual spins and turns. Read more to find out how.
1. Nissan Motor Company was created as a result of a gradual merger of several automakers. The whole process began in 1914, when a few employees of the Kwaishinsha Co, namely Kenjiro Den, Rokuro Aoyama and Meitaro Takeuchi decided to construct a passenger vehicle. The car, powered by a 10 HP engine got a name “DAT”, which is an abbreviation, formed from the names of its creators. In addition, the word “dat” means “lively” or “agile” in Japanese. The same year, Kwaishinsha Co. merged with the Lila Company and started producing trucks.
2. In 1919, Jitsuyo Jidosha Co, which made a name by producing three-wheeled cars, designed by an American William Gorham also merged with the Kwaishinsha Company. The newly created automaker was named Dat Jidosha Seizo Co. In 1931, Dat Jidosha Seizo Co started the production of Datson passenger cars in a partnership with Tobata Casting Company. The name “Datson”, formed by combining the word “Dat” and a suffix “son” (“son of Dat”), was later changed to Datsun (the suffix “son” was converted to “sun” as in “Sun, the national symbol of Japan”). After a while, Tobata Casting reached an agreement with another manufacturer – Nihon Sanyo, resulting in creation of the Jidosha Seizo Company. On June 1, 1934 the name Jidosha Seizo was changed to Nissan Motors.
3. Nowadays, the Nissan brand is known all over the world as a manufacturer of reliable, comfortable, excellent quality cars, with a pleasant service cost.
4. Like many other companies of that time, during World War II Nissan had to shift its focus from car manufacturing to the production of military equipment. Japanese car manufacturer was forced to produce army trucks, aircraft engines and engines for motor boats. However, in following years this experience turned out to be very useful for the company, as it resulted in creation of independent shipbuilding and engine building divisions, both of which still exist.
5. Japanese automaker always strives to be at the forefront of technological progress. In 2013, during the CEATEC exhibition in Japan, Nissan received the highest award for his autonomous driving system. The system, created by engineers of Nissan is aimed to improve driver and passenger safety by reducing significantly the risk of accidents. There is no doubt that such technology has a great potential to become a game changer in the automobile market.
6. In 2010, Nissan introduced the Nissan LEAF – the first mass-produced, affordable car that runs exclusively on electricity, which is by far the best-selling electric vehicle in the world. The company is planning to develop more electric vehicles continue and increase the number of electric-powered models in future.
7. The model range of Nissan and Infiniti includes more than 60 models of in all classes, which is a big number when you think about it.
8. Currently, Nissan is the second biggest Japanese automaker and one of the world’s leading automobile manufacturers. Apart from Japan, the company has its divisions and subsidiaries in 17 countries. The Japanese automaker has offices in the United States, Europe, Australia, South America, and Asia.
9. In 1989, the company created its luxury cars division under the name of Infiniti Division of Nissan North America. The main goal of new entity was to compete with European luxury brands, such us Mercedes-Benz and BMW. In November 1989, the famous Infiniti Q45 appeared on the market.
10. In 1951, the Japanese automaker launched production of its famous model Nissan Patrol. This legendary car has many aficionados all around the world. It is easy to forget that the first version of the renowned full-size SUV debuted as a modest, low-maintenance vehicle with a rigid axle. Only in its last, sixth generation, in addition to all of its merits, the Nissan Patrol received a status of a luxury vehicle.
11. In 1993, the Nissan Micra won the prestigious European car competition “Car of the Year”.
12. Nissan was the first automaker to use a Continuously Variable Transmission with fixed gear ratios. In 1997, this design was used for the gearbox of Nissan Hyper CVT-M6 for the first time.
13. This may be a surprise for many people, but Nissan holds a record for the fastest production model in the world. The Nissan GT-R surpassed Ferrari and Porsche, showing the best time on the famous racing track Nürburgring. Therefore, it is now rightfully considered the fastest street-legal.
14. During the 1964 Olympics, Nissan Cedric was chosen to carry out an important task of transporting the Olympic torch from Greece to Japan.
15. 1967 was the year of great success and pride for the company. It was marked by creation of the first limousine. More importantly, this vehicle was made for the client, most Japanese companies can only dream about – the Emperor of Japan himself. The Emperors limo is outstanding: Nissan Prince Royal is 6,155 мм long, 2,100 мм wide and 1,770 мм high. It is powered by 6373 см3 V8 engine.
16. In 1972, the number of vehicles produced by Nissan in Japan only exceeded the mark of 10 million vehicles. By 1977, the number of produced cars supposed the 20-million mark.
17. On 27 March 1999, Nissan and the French company Renault SA signed an agreement to create a global alliance to achieve profitable growth of both companies. Carlos Ghosn become the new CEO of Nissan.
18. For more than 10 years, from 1992 to 2003, all Nissan models for the European market were created in the Nissan Design Center in Munich, which in January 2003 was moved to London, the heart of the European design industry.
19. Nissan Patrol holds the record for heaviest aircraft pulled by a production car. To set this record, regular, unmodified SUV was used to haul a 170 tonne plane to a distance of 50 meters at Dubai Airport, UAE.
20. Japanese company created its first electro car back in 1948. The very first electric-powered Nissan was produced under the name of Tama Electric Vehicle.