Get excited: Nissan is plotting an affordable electric performance car to take on the Toyota 86 and Subaru BRZ to win back young car buyers

Nissan has admitted that it is considering reintroducing a fast, affordable and all-electric sports
car to win over a new legion of young car fans.

It would slot into the range below the current Z coupe and flagship, supercar-humbling GT-R in
a place that used to be inhabited by the likes of the Nissan 200SX, or Pulser GT-R.

According to the car-maker’s global product planning boss, Ivan Espinosa, the new car being
plotted will be designed to snare buyers in their early 20s.

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“I think car manufacturers – in general – have forgotten about the passion for cars,”
Espinosa told Top Gear.

“It depends on the country, but you can see that young customers are less and less
attracted to cars.”

Fuelling speculation the new Nissan sports car will be a spiritual successor to the 200SX
when asked specifically if the car-maker was readying a hot hatch Espinosa replied:

“I’m not sure about a hot hatch, but maybe a smaller electric sportscar you could think of.
Something smaller, a bit more affordable. Definitely.”

Nissan has always had a three-tiered performance car offering, and it’s something he wants
to work towards.

“Depending on which point in time you take, we’ve always had the GT-R,
we’ve always had Z, and we’ve always had an entry [level car] – either a hot hatch like
Pulsar, or something else down there [at that price and performance point],” he says.

To help attract the young, the senior Nissan exec said the next-gen sports car would be both
“exciting” and “engaging” to drive, but also offer the levels of connectivity demanded from
younger buyers.

When and if it arrives, the new Nissan sport car will be a direct rival to the Toyota GR 86 and
its twin, the Subaru BRZ.

Both car brands at the show also revealed their visions of an affordable all-electric sports
car – Toyota with its FT-Se coupe and Subaru unwrapped its Sport Mobility concept at the
recent Japan Mobility Show.

It’s not known if Toyota and Subaru have plans to once again join forces to share the cost of
developing a small sports coupe but the evidence of both concepts suggests a common
belief that sports cars will have a bright future in the electric age.

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