OK, laugh all you want, but I would buy one of these Nissan Cubes in a second if they ever sold them here. Turns out the Scion B is only the US-legal tip of the Japanese box-car iceberg. The current Cube is a highly successful third-generation design, one of literally dozens of funky-but-great-looking Japan-only family cars that are mini on the outside while feeling reasonably spacious on the inside. [For size comparison, even the Scion is kind of big compared to some of these cars; the rest make a Honda Element feel like a Cadillac Escalade.]
While we were in Japan last August, I started cataloging all the ones I liked, and the Cube was near the top of my list.
Anyway, Autoweek reports that Nissan is considering bringing the Cube to the US as part of a small-car push, and that it might cost as little as $13-14,000 base. "Our target is Generation Y - children of Generation X - aged between 20 and 25 years old," said Norio Matsumura, Nissan's marketing chief.
That's great, Norio, but you should put down that Autoweek and pick up a copy of Adweek instead. Gen Y are the people who barely didn't make the age cut for Gen X they're the ones Gen X'ers try to hook up with. The 20-25 year olds you're targeting in 2006 are the Baby Boomers' kids, aka the Echo Boomers. And anyway, you sell a car that good that cheap, and your main buyers'll be a bunch of empty nest Boomers and grandparents, which'll throw your whole demo off anyway. That's what happened to the Element.
Nissan to target under-25 buyers with inexpensive, new small car for U.S. [Autoweek, via Jalopnik]
The Influence of The Toaster On Japanese Car Design [greg.org]
Badass Buddy Icons and The Honda Element [greg.org]