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Photos: Nissan Denki Cube concept

Nissan's Cube is one of the company's coolest models, especially compared to the eye-wateringly awkward Tiida. Now the house of GT-R has brought forth an all-electric concept version of its funk mobile.

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Wayne Cunningham
Wayne Cunningham reviews cars and writes about automotive technology for CNET's Roadshow. Prior to the automotive beat, he covered spyware, Web building technologies, and computer hardware. He began covering technology and the Web in 1994 as an editor of The Net magazine.
Wayne Cunningham
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Nissan's Cube is one of the company's coolest models, especially compared to the eye-wateringly awkward Tiida. Now the house of GT-R has brought forth an all-electric concept version of its funk mobile.

The Denki Cube electric-powered concept vehicle was unveiled at the 2008 New York Auto Show, and is based on the Cube small car currently sold in Japan.

Nissan Denki Cube concept
The look of the Denki Cube is already well known in Japan, where it is powered by a 1.3-litre four-cylinder petrol engine. This electric version has been stretched 238mm to accommodate the battery pack.

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Electric grille
The front of the Denki Cube incorporates headlights ringed by LEDs, while the grille has a pattern of electricity symbol cut-outs. A charging port is also located in the front.

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Rear hatch
The rear window on the Cube is asymmetrical, wrapping around only on the left side. The hatch is hinged on the right side, so it swings outwards, from left to right, to open.

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Interior space
The Denki Cube concept is fitted with big, plush seats both front and rear. Naturally being a tall-boy car the interior is roomy. In Japan, there's even a long wheelbase version that's been fitted with three rows of seats called the Cube³ -- geddit, geddit?

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Dashboard
As a concept, the Denki Cube gets a futuristic dashboard, with an LCD instead of an instrument cluster, plus a centre display with icons for navigation and other car functions. A big display also shows whether the car is in park, drive, reverse, or neutral.

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Ceiling
The Denki Cube uses a glass roof which, uniquely, is split into multiple panes.

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Laminated lithium-ion battery
Next to the car, Nissan showed off the Denki Cube's battery module which is made up of four thin cells. Comprising 24 modules, the battery pack gives the car an estimated range of 160km, with a 120km/h top speed.

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Nissan Cube art car
Nissan also displayed a couple of Cube models that have been decorated by art students. These cars herald the petrol-powered Cube's introduction to the U.S. in the spring of 2009. We can only hope that the brains trust at Nissan Australia follow the Americans' lead.

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