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Nissan to show mystery crossover

Cross trainer: Nissan's unnamed concept might preview a new sub-compact SUV, but the company is keeping mum until the reveal on October 28.

Nissan crossover concept to step out at this month's Sao Paulo motor show

Nissan logo15 Oct 2014

By TIM NICHOLSON

NISSAN has released a teaser image of a mysterious crossover concept – potentially previewing a new compact SUV – to be shown at the Sao Paulo motor show in Brazil later this month.

While the company has released little information about the vehicle, the sole shadowy image reveals a crossover shape with a squat stance and a sloping rear roofline.

The unnamed show car will carry Nissan's current V-Motion design language that includes a V-shaped chrome bar as the most prominent feature of the grille.

The bonnet sits high, with the headlights edging out from underneath, while roof-racks are also evident.

Brazilian media is reporting that the concept will be a reworking of the wild Extrem concept that Nissan tore the covers off at the 2012 Sao Paulo show, and that it will go into production in 2016 at the company's factory in Resende, in Rio de Janeiro.

The Extrem was an American-designed, Brazilian-built two-door crossover concept with Micra light-car underpinnings. It was described as a “new genre of urban compact sportscar”.

It is unclear if the concept will form the basis of a production car solely for emerging markets such as Brazil or whether it previews a global product.

It is unlikely that the concept previews a replacement for the Juke sub-compact SUV, with a European show debut more plausible given its popularity on the Continent.

If it gets the green light for production, the vehicle would boost Nissan's burgeoning SUV line-up that already includes the Juke crossover, newly launched Qashqai, X-Trail/Rogue, Pathfinder, Murano and Patrol, not to mention market-specific models such as the Xterra and Armada.

Nissan is one of a number of global car-makers to preview crossover concepts at Sao Paulo, with Volkswagen uncovering its Up-based Taigun SUV in 2012 and Hyundai showcasing its baby HB20X the same year.

The compact crossover segment is booming, with most mainstream brands offering, or planning to launch, high-riding models based on light cars.

In Australia, Holden sells the Barina-based Trax, Ford offers the Indian-built Fiesta-based EcoSport, while the Peugeot 2008, Suzuki S-Cross and Mitsubishi ASX are also contenders in the segment.

More are on the way soon, with the Renault Captur and the Jazz-based Honda HR-V both set for debut in the first-quarter of 2015.

Nissan's mystery concept will be revealed on October 28.

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