Nissan offers mirth in Geneva

The company's Qazana concept crossover vehicle is meant to inspire thoughts of fun-in-the-sun dune buggies amidst trying times.

Nissan's Qazana concept crossover vehicle includes rear-hinged back doors and oversized tires. Nissan

Nissan unveiled its Qazana crossover vehicle at the 2009 Geneva Motor Show on Wednesday.

The concept was inspired by beach buggies, according to Nissan. With its oversized tires it does look like some sort of futuristic rally car.

The Qazana includes ultra-low rolling resistance tires made from nano technology materials by Kumho Tyres. Kumho Tyres

The ultra-low rolling resistance tires, which enable a car to get better gas mileage, were made from nano technology materials by Kumho Tyres, a U.K. company known for its eco-credentials.

An obvious younger sibling to the Qashqai SUV sold in Europe, the Qazana is a very compact hatchback at approximately 13 feet long and 6 feet wide. (For comparison, BMW's Mini is about 12 feet by 5.5 feet.)

Instead of being just a coupe as is often the case with compacts, the Qazana concept sports two rear-hinged half doors (aka suicide doors) for easier backseat access in addition to its front seat doors.

Automotive journalists have already jumped in with skepticism, saying that the funky doors will never make it to the street-legal version. They may be too hasty in their negativity.

Mazda successfully kept its suicide doors from the concept to the street version for the RX-8 as did Toyota with its FJ Cruiser.

About the author

In a software-driven world, it's easy to forget about the nuts and bolts. Whether it's cars, robots, personal gadgetry or industrial machines, Candace Lombardi examines the moving parts that keep our world rotating. A journalist who divides her time between the United States and the United Kingdom, Lombardi has written about technology for the sites of The New York Times, CNET, USA Today, MSN, ZDNet,, and GameSpot. She is a member of the CNET Blog Network and is not a current employee of CNET.



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