This thread is a follow on to http://forums.nissan...er-train/page-2 and I’ve started it because it turns out the subject wasn’t quite accurate! Firstly, apologies for how long this has taken me to post. As is often the case, life has got in the way of drafting this report!
I attended the meeting with Nissan at my Dealership, my invitation coming about as described in the previous thread. It turns out the Nissan representatives wanted to interview me separately from the Dealership sales specialist so that part was done first without me present.
I was then invited in to meet the group of five persons attending. We were only introduced by name and I wasn’t made aware of their roles until the day following the interview. The interview was video recorded and turned out to be a question and answer session where I would be doing all the answering! I was told that I should express my opinions honestly… More of that later…
I was invited to give an introduction so I said who I was, my ownership experience, and my membership of nissansportz, etc. I also handed them a document that I’d prepared from the responses that several of you made in the previous thread. FYI a copy of that document is attached here: FutureZ.pdf 505.01KB 19 downloads
Then the questions started and it became obvious that the information they were collecting was much more generic than that for a successor to the 370. In fact, later questions lead me to believe it was more relevant to a future top of the range sportscar (e.g. an R36?).
So I spent over an hour telling them my opinions…
- They produced photos of various other make sportscars and asked which one did I think looked best – my answer was that they should adhere to the uniqueness of the GT-R’s looks and the Nissan family. Its not German, its not British, Its not American and trying to mimic any of those would lose their image.
- They asked about future power train, and my answer was pretty much as in the document I’d produced from your input – if it has to be a hybrid it should not be a plug-in. I did say the recently announced use of a F1 powerpack (all made by McLaren) in an Infiniti had really excited me. Perhaps a roadgoing sportscar partnership between McLaren and Nissan?
- I was asked various other questions: How many seats? Four-wheel drive? Type of gearbox controls? Etc.
- I was also asked for criticisms of the existing R35 (that’s when I really twigged this wasn’t about just a future Z!).
- I was also asked my opinions regarding the Nismo variants of that and other models. I said that in my opinion they need to be careful not to degrade the Nismo brand (like Mercedes have risked with “AMG” badges!). I did say the seats in the Juke Nismo were the nicest I’ve ever sat in (I think I got brownie points for that – see attendees roles later).
When the time ran out I realised they’d given very little away. There were no leading questions, and not much positive or negative expressions at my answers. I think they did a far better job at that than I did.
But it was great to meet them and I got the feeling this was a genuine attempt to shape their future plans… Hope I’m around for an R36!
- Jamie McLean – Nismo Product Planning (Europe)
- Kosuke Arai – Product Planning (Japan)
- Takashi Noguchi – Design (Japan)
- Tatsuya Shindou – Engineering (Japan)
- Jorge Paganetto – Product Planning (Europe)