The unveil of the new Concept 20-23 took place on a floating barge moored directly outside NDE on the Paddington Basin stretch of the Grand Union Canal, which is a key part of the unique landscape around NDE which makes it such a distinctive and inspiring location.
The Nissan Concept 20-23 was designed by a team including some the younger members of NDE, with the simple brief to design a car – with no constraints – which they would like to drive on the streets of the city where they work.
The Concept 20-23 name reflects 20 years of NDE’s position in the heart of London, as well as the company’s traditional number 2 (ni) 3 (san) and the current year. It also continues a long Nissan tradition of bringing eye-catching playfulness to the world of hatchbacks and city cars. With the heritage of Nissan’s so-called Pike cars, such as the Be-1, Pao, Figaro and S-Cargo, Concept 20-23 brings a 21st century twist to this small-car tradition.
Speaking about the Concept 20-23 at its unveil in London, Alfonso Albaisa, Nissan’s Senior Vice President for global design, said: “The young team here at NDE was given a simple brief: design a fun electric city car that you’d like to drive every day in London. The 20-23 Concept that they designed is a compact hatchback which is strongly influenced by the online racing world. I love the story it tells about how the worlds of modern city living, online gaming and zero emissions mobility intersect.”
The modern twist on this small car playfulness reflects both the world of online racing and Nissan’s participation in Formula E. The Concept 20-23’s basic 3-door hatchback body-style features extreme aerodynamic addenda front and rear, with deep skirts which direct the airflow away from the front of the car, through apertures to cool the brakes and out through vents just behind the front wheels.
The nose of the car consists of a flat plane from which angles up to the top of the hood, giving the front an unexpectedly clean surface. This is where the front headlights are positioned, with their distinctive appearance consisting of a thin upper and lower semi-circle and enhanced by a sharp beam thanks to LED technology. The turn signal is part of the same semi-circle LED unit.
They give the front of the Concept 20-23 a friendly appearance, in among the complex shapes which govern the airflow.
From the side, the car’s muscularity comes from extended wheel arches which shroud large wheels with low profile tyres. The top side of the wheel arches front and rear feature vented louvres to reduce the pressure that can create air resistance in the wheel bay.