December 4, 2002

Nissan to unveil five vehicles at Detroit auto show

Detroit, Michigan – Nissan and Infiniti announced they will unveil four new production vehicles and a concept vehicle at the 2003 North American International Auto Show in January.

For the first time at any auto show, Nissan will display its first-ever full-size pickup truck, along with the redesigned 2004 Maxima sedan and Quest minivan, which made its international debut at last year’s NAIAS as a concept vehicle.

Nissan’s luxury division, Infiniti, will unveil to the world the production version of the Infiniti FX45 crossover, which made its international debut in concept form at past shows. Infiniti also will premiere a new concept vehicle called the Triant.

Nissan’s first entry in the full-size pickup market represents one of the biggest undertakings in Nissan history, company executives acknowledge.

“Though Nissan has been an innovator and leader in compact pickups in North America for over 40 years, the full-size pickup segment offers unique challenges,” said Bill Kirrane, Nissan Division vice president and general manager. “It’s a new category for Nissan, one with well-entrenched brands and highly loyal buyers. To succeed, we not only have to meet the high standards set by the leaders in the class, we also have to offer new features, style and innovation. The Nissan full-size pickup delivers on all counts.”

The truck will be built at Nissan’s new, state-of-the-art manufacturing facility in Canton, Mississippi, which represents a U.S.$1-billion investment by Nissan.

The new 2004 Nissan Maxima is restyled and more powerful than before. Production of the 2004 Maxima shifts to Nissan’s award-winning Smyrna, Tennessee assembly facility, which has been building Nissan trucks and sedans for nearly 20 years.

Like the concept shown at the NAIAS 2002, the production version of the Quest features an innovative, long wheelbase platform shared with the award-winning Nissan Altima to offer a new level of roominess, comfort and drivability in the class.

After making its debut as a show-stopping concept at past shows in Detroit, the Infiniti FX45 springs to life as a production model at NAIAS 2003. “The 2003 Infiniti FX45 has a special relationship with the NAIAS,” said Mark McNabb, Infiniti Division vice president and general manager. “It’s where we debuted the original FX45 concept, the second generation FX45 concept and, now, the first official public showing of the production 2003 FX45 premium crossover SUV.”

Infiniti also will unveil a completely new concept called the Triant at the NAIAS 2003. “Infiniti continues its tradition of worldwide debuts at the NAIAS with the appearance of the dramatic Triant Concept,” said McNabb. He described the Triant as “a highly emotional vehicle that is a perfect fit for active lifestyles – a combination of performance, luxury and practicality with both on-road and off-road capabilities.”

He added: “The advanced Infiniti Triant Concept addresses customers’ needs for utility with a number of innovative features, including a distinctive gullwing door opening system, a gullwing rear tailgate and an Information Technology-enhanced interior. It’s a compact, affordable ‘dream’ vehicle that offers a striking design and functionality.”

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