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by Tim Beissmann

The Nissan PIVO 3 has been teased ahead of its unveiling at the 2011 Tokyo Motor Show, giving the world its first look at what Nissan describes as a ‘realistic EV of the near future’.

The PIVO 3 is the Japanese manufacturer’s eighth electric concept car, and the third in the PIVO series, following PIVO 1 from 2005 and PIVO 2 from 2007.

While PIVO 2 was an innovative and imaginative concept, Nissan says PIVO 3 is a “fully evolved vehicle … with greater flexibility, credibility and an extended scope of mobile performance”.

Nissan believes PIVO 3 is “very close” to the next step in urban mobility. The ultra-compact 1+2 city car has been designed for singles and couples living urban lifestyles.

Among the PIVO 3’s advanced features is Automated Valet Parking (AVP). The system allows the driver to leave their car on the street and let it find a park for itself in a specially equipped smart parking lot. The car can be summoned by smartphone when the driver is ready to take off again.

Measuring just under 3000mm long, the three-seater can perform a U-turn in just four metres, making it tremendously agile and almost effortless to manoeuvre in the city.

Like its predecessors, PIVO 3 is driven by in-wheel motors, giving the wheels greater freedom of movement creating more space in the chassis.

The exterior design is more mature than previous concepts, with bold surfaces and long body lines creating a dynamically active appearance.

The driver-focused interior incorporates side-view monitors (which take the place of mirrors), Nissan’s Around View Monitor system that minimises blind spots, and an ultra-wide display for GPS and other information.

The surfaces combine stitched leather and silver trim, while the ‘snow white’ and ‘EV blue’ colour scheme produces a high quality ambiance.

Nissan product strategy and product planning deputy division general manager, Francois Bancon, said the PIVO 3 is one of the vehicles it is considering for its second wave of production EVs. If it is approved, Mr Bancon said the first examples could hit the streets as early as 2016.

The Nissan PIVO 3 will debut in Tokyo on November 30.




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