Nissan at the 2015 Le Mans 24 Hours

2015 Nissan GT-R LM NISMO

The Le Mans 24 Hours held each summer in France is one of the most difficult and prestigious endurance races. This is why Nissan’s main goal for the race was to get at least one of its three cars across the finish line, which is exactly what Nissan did.  It was exciting to see Nissan at the 2015 Le Mans

This year’s race was the debut of the Nissan GT-R LM NISMO and, while it didn’t land on the podium, the fact that it crossed the finish line after 24 hours is a feat unto itself.

“For sure we have had problems, but that’s what happens when you innovate,” said Darren Cox, NISMO’s Global Head of Brand, after the race. He said, “Most LM P1 manufacturers don’t finish Le Mans at their first attempt, so it was important for us to hit this target…We have done exactly what we needed to do: We dug in. We solved our problems. We exploited the limits of our current performance, and we finished the Le Mans 24 Hours.”

During the 2015 Le Mans 24 Hours, Nissan said all the teams learned invaluable information they can put to use for next year’s race to improve the GT-R car, which is still in its infancy stage of development.

Crossing the finish line was the #22 Nissan GT-R LM NISMO driven by Harry Ticknell, Michael Krumm, and Alex Buncombe. The #21 Nissan made it through ten hours of the race before it had to withdraw after losing a wheel and being unable to return to the pits for repair.

Perhaps the most painful experience from the race was when the #23 Nissan had to retire from the race because of a suspension issue just one hour shy from the finish.

Join with us at Nissan of Lake Charles as we congratulate Nissan on this great accomplishment. We can’t wait to see what will happen in the 2016 Le Mans 24 Hours.

Preparing Your Car for a Summer Road Trip

Family Road Trip

Summer is here, which means it’s time for some fun. If you’re planning a road trip in the next few months, here are some tips on preparing your car for a summer road trip:

  • Get a tune-up. Nobody wants any mechanical issues while they’re travelling. Take your car in for some routine maintenance to make sure you won’t be hit with any surprise repairs while on vacation.
  • Clean your car. While you don’t need to do a full wash and wax, clean out the interior from any built-up junk. This will eliminate excess weight and make it much easier to pack the car when you’re getting ready to leave.
  • Be prepared for issues. Yes, you took your car in for a tune-up, but that won’t guarantee you won’t have any issues. Be sure to pack an emergency kit so you’re prepared for the unexpected. You never know when you might accidentally leave your headlights on and need a jump. In that case, something like this portable, rechargeable jump starter will be a life saver.

These tips on preparing your car for a summer road trip are sure to make your travels even more relaxing. Do you have any additional tips to make sure your car is ready for the road?  Tell us at Nissan of Lake Charles in the comments below!

Around View Monitor Helps 2015 Nissan Versa Note Make 10 Best Tech-Savviest Cars Under $20k List

2015 Nissan Versa NoteWhat does it mean to be the tech-savviest in this increasingly tech-savvy world?  Ask the 2015 Nissan Versa Note.  The hatchback just made Kelley Blue Book’s 10 Best Tech-Savviest Cars Under $20k list.  We’ll give you a few reasons why the Nissan Versa Note has made the list!

The inclusion of Nissan’s Around View Monitor (AVM) in the Versa Note’s suite of tech features certainly went a long way in helping the hatchback make the list.  AVM is a highly advanced tech to be found in an entry-level offering.

Nissan explains how AVM works by giving “drivers a virtual bird’s-eye view of the vehicle,” making parking an absolute cinch.  When activated, AVM will take over control of the steering wheel, allowing the driver to focus on the accelerator and brakes.

As Torque News points out, “under $20,000” essentially means the entry-level segment, a segment that still lags a bit in terms of technological advancements. This is what makes the cars on the list, like the 2015 Nissan Versa Note, such standout models. They are in a category that typically is lacking of these technological features, in order to make them cheaper than their higher trim levels.  We at Nissan of Lake Charles are glad that the Nissan Versa Note isn’t sacrificing technology to become cheaper.

Nissan CEO Sounds Off on the Truth about Autonomous Cars

Nissan's Autonomous Vehicle

What would a world with driverless cars be like? Well, we at Nissan of Lake Charles don’t rightly know, but Nissan president and CEO, Carlos Ghosn, offered his thoughts on the truth about autonomous cars in a series of LinkedIn Influencer articles. We’ll cover a few of the most common questions we’ve heard.

In defining autonomous drive, Ghosn stated, “Autonomous drive combines the technology of robotics, artificial intelligence, sensors and car-to-car connectivity.”

We have already begun to see autonomous drive technology in today’s vehicles through the use of advanced safety features like parking assist, lane departure warning, active cruise control, and even anti-lock brakes.

Ghosn believes we will begin seeing a “near-term technology” in which vehicles will include a full package of autonomous drive features and drivers will be able to drive hands free while monitoring the vehicle. Nissan’s goal for this technology to become available is the year 2020, but Ghosn believes that goal will be made possible by introducing one at a time before the goal deadline.

The Nissan CEO also expressed he believes even further down the line that autonomous cars will become so advanced that they can be fully driverless. But that date is “at least a decade away.”

Importantly, for those of us who actually like getting behind the driver’s wheel, Ghosn emphasized the goal of autonomous tech is to improve safety and increase the joy of driving.

We will simply have to wait and see what the future holds here.

Nissan Race Team Videos Showcase the NISMO Racing Technology

Nissan NISMO

Nissan is surging to the lead in racing transparency with a digital behind the scenes tour. More to the point – it is a series of videos that brings the viewer alongside some of the best Nissan engineers, drivers, and managers to see the race process from the inside. We are referring to the Nissan Race Team Videos.

“We want to provide an experience akin to being in the dugout at Yankee Stadium of a baseball game, or on the sideline with a manager in the Champions League of soccer,” says Nissan’s announcement of the videos.

This year marks the return to Le Mans 24 Hour Prototype racing for Team Nissan and their high tech racecar takes center-stage in the videos, which cover topics ranging from the difference between endurance and sprint racing, to the importance of lubricants and cooling fluids.

This “Nissan University” experience seeks to familiarize ordinary car drivers with the highest levels of racing technology and point out how Nissan is drawing from its race experience in their line of consumer cars. Check out the Nissan Race Team videos and learn how the ultra-high tech race cars are related to our cars at Nissan of Lake Charles.

Nissan Announces Details on 2016 370Z Roadster Performance

2015 Nissan 370z

2015 Nissan 370z

Car enthusiasts everywhere were ecstatic to hear that the pricing for the new 2016 370Z was announced. The new model comes in three versions, the Coupe, NISMO, and Roadster models. While the Coupe and NISMO models are certainly getting a lot of attention, most gear-heads can’t stop talking about the 2016 370Z Roadster performance.

Although the Roadster is one of the more expensive options, you definitely get what you pay for. This version of the 370Z comes in three grades: Touring Sport, Touring, and Standard. According to Nissan, the Roadster was designed with high-octane performance in mind. It features a 3.7-liter DOHC V6 engine that pumps out a whopping 332 hp. Mated to an electronically controlled 7-speed automatic transmission, the new Roadster is incredibly fast.

So what are the exclusive features on the 370Z Roadster? Aside from mechanical upgrades, drivers also get a Hands-free system, 18-inch alloy wheels, a Nissan Navigation system, 7-inch touch screen display, Bose Audio, and cooled, heated, and ventilated leather seats. The new 370Z is for owners that are looking for a truly one-of-a-kind driving experience.

We at Nissan of Lake Charles would love to see the 2016 370z Roadster in person!  Wouldn’t you?

All-New 2016 Maxima Goes On Sale This Summer

Nissan has finally divulged all the details on the latest Maxima sedan, which it originally showed in a surprise ad at the Super Bowl.

The all-new 2016 Maxima will go on sale this summer at Nissan of Lake Charles and set “a new standard for style, performance and technology in the mid-size sedan segment.”

Thanks to a new 3.5-liter VQ-series V6 producing 300 horsepower, the Nissan Maxima is touting a power-to-weight ratio that exceeds that of the Acura TLX V6 and BMW 335i.

That’s not all though. Nissan rebuilt more than half of last year’s V6, with over 60 percent of the parts being new, contributing to a 15 percent improvement in highway fuel economy. The CTV is also new and, according to the automaker, “performance oriented.” All of these make the 2016 Maxima even more desirable than ever!

Those are only a few of the details, however, and details do abound. The Maxima has many new features to make it hold true to Nissan’s promise, so check out the official press release for the rest of it!

Titan Truckumentary Releases Chapter 5: Heart of Cold

If you haven’t been following Nissan’s Titan Truckumentary series, we recommend you start with Chapter One, and get caught up to the newly released Chapter 5. The fascinating video series takes viewers behind the scenes of the design, construction, and capabilities of Nissan’s workhorse pickup truck. The fifth installment, just released, takes a peek into how engineers test the truck’s cold weather capabilities.

Heart of Cold” was appropriately shot in late 2014 and early 2015 in Colorado, Alaska, and Michigan, as engineers tested the next-generation Titan’s performance in some of the U.S.’s most frigid and snowy terrain. The tests highlighted in the video focus on the kinds of things that could never be replicated on-site in Arizona (where much of the Titan’s other types of testing takes place).

Planning manager Carl Phillips points out that, “There is a lot that our engineers can do behind the computer screen and in the laboratory or in the proving grounds. But you can never replicate what goes on in the real world.”

Here in Lake Charles, we don’t see the same cold temperatures and snow that other parts of the country fight every winter, but as Craig Pike, Nissan Titan’s durability engineer says, “If it can survive here, it can survive anywhere.”

Stop by Nissan of Lake Charles today to get behind the wheel of the pickup that’s capable of taking you anywhere – even Alaska!

Nissan’s Glow in the Dark LEAF Lights Up Smart Highway

If you didn’t know there was such-a-thing as a glow in the dark car, now you do thanks to Nissan! The automaker was the first one to bring the eye-popping, neon color to life. Nissan’s glow in the dark LEAF recently made its way down the luminous Smart Highway in the Netherlands, and it was pretty amazing.

With the innovative glow in the dark paint developed by Nissan in Europe, the LEAF is definitely one of the most recognizable cars there is right now! The special paint technology was created in efforts to encourage people to convert solar energy at home. The glow in the dark paint actually absorbs UV energy during the day and then glows for 8-10 hours after the sun goes down.

The Smart Highway that the LEAF was displayed on was developed by Daan Roosegaarde in order to help drivers see better in the dark, while also saving energy that would have been used in street lights. Roosegaarde said, “To have the world’s first glow in the dark car on our road is a privilege, and it mirrors goals that we want to achieve with our Smart Highway.”

Nissan has been a key leader in creating innovative products like the 100% organic glow in the dark park coating the LEAF, which is used to help inspire other products and people to think and act more efficiently.

For more information about the glow in the dark LEAF or Smart Highway, please visit us at Nissan of Lake Charles.

Redesigned Nissan Juke Arrives in 2015

2015 Nissan JukeNissan is continuing to refresh its models, giving drivers something eye catching year after year. For 2015, we’re getting a redesigned Nissan Juke. Along with this redesign are pricing changes, new styling, more cargo capacity, and a new model range.

The new Juke is coming out with some blinding LEDs. In addition, daytime running lights, mirror turn signals, and taillights all received the upgrade, already making the vehicle flashier than ever. The grille has also been revised and there is a more noticeable trim around the front bumper.

With a new Juke come a few new colors, as well. Options include magnetic red, ink blue, and bumblebee yellow. All models also sit on 17 inch alloy wheels. Speaking of models…

Nissan has dropped the ST-S model altogether. Remaining are the Ti-S and ST models. The entry model ST features a 1.2L four cylinder turbo engine, which is only available in a six speed manual. For an automatic, you’ll have to jump up to the ST 1.6L non-turbo four cylinder with a CVT. Front wheel drive only on the ST.

The Ti-S is the bombshell of the Juke. There are two models, both with a 1.6L four cylinder turbo engine. In the less expensive model you get the engine, front wheel drive, and a six speed manual. In the more expensive one, you can expect a CVT with all-wheel drive. No matter which of the two you choose, Nissan delivers. Included in the Ti-S is the “Safety Shield” technology suite (lane departure, blind spot, and moving object detection, just to name a few), 5.8 inch touchscreen with internet app connectivity, satellite navigation,Bluetooth connectivity, and audio streaming.

So what’s this going to cost you? Car Advice has that answer with a nice little comparison to the Nissan Juke’s previous pricing.  We at Nissan of Lake Charles can’t wait to see the changes in person!