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Nissan Note

Second hand Nissan Note | Bunjoo Motors

All About Nissan Japanese motoring giant Nissan is well established as one of the biggest names in the industry and the purveyor of some of recent history's most popular and enduring cars. These days Nissan combines with Renault to form an alliance that also encompasses Infiniti, Datsun and NISMO - collectively the fourth biggest automaker in the world - and its history has rarely been straightforward. Indeed, the company's initial emergence was via a complicated web of subsidiaries that can be linked back to the Kwaishinsha Motor Car Company, which built its first car, the DAT, in 1914. A smaller follow up car emerged in 1931 and with it the Datsun brand (literally, son of DAT) was born. Nissan later took control of DAT Motors and in 1937 started to produce cars under the Nissan brand. One of the early hallmarks of Nissan was its keen adoption of cutting edge, high volume American auto assembly processes inspired by the influence of chief DAT designer William R. Gorham. By the 50s Nissan was enjoying global success thanks in part to the Datsun car that had been enthusiastically embraced by the American market. Nissan developed a reputation for small, likeable European style cars including Datsun variations like the Fair lady and 411 Series. Sticking with this winning formula Nissan's first generation of Z cars - small, affordable sports cars with the same accessibly chic European styling that had already won favour in the American market - rolled off the production line in time for the start of the 70s. The first Z car proved to be a pivotal release for Nissan, catapulting the company to new levels of success and establishing it as one of the biggest exporters of cars in the world. Nissan hasn't looked back since; the Z car series continues to this day with the sixth generation 370Z and the company's reputation for well-priced accessible cars has remained key to its continuing global success. Nissan's knack for producing great small cars is best exemplified by the evergreen Micra, one of recent history's most enduring and popular cars. The company is also earning a reputation for leading the way when it comes to clever new concepts like the Qashquai, which combines the elevated driving position, space and practicality of an SUV with the convenient size and affordability of a hatchback. Further recent models like the Juke, effectively a supermini sized SUV, and the new X-Trail, which adds car-like characteristics to the conventional 4x4 template, emphasise Nissan's willingness to look beyond orthodox auto design forms to develop effective everyday motoring solutions. Bunjoo's Top Nissan Models NISSAN QASHQAI CROSSOVER When it first hit the UK market in 2006 as a replacement for the Almera, a small family car, the Qashqai looked like a bit of a risky concept. It was a gamble that paid off for Nissan, the car buying public responded enthusiastically to the Qashqai's compact SUV styling and no doubt appreciated the competitive pricing and low running costs on offer. The Qashqai was pretty ground breaking at the time and, while there are plenty of decent crossovers on the market today (the Peugeot 3008, Kia Sportage, Dacia Duster and Skoda Yeti all spring to mind), the latest model more than keeps pace and remains one of the best all-rounders on the market. NISSAN NOTE Another fine example of Nissan's knack for developing effective crossovers, the Note is a supermini that looks rather like a diminutive MPV and the resulting car really does combine the low running costs and accessibility of a small hatchback with the load-bearing practicality of a big people-carrier. The boot is genuinely roomy, the cabin is spacious enough to accommodate five adults and the engines really are pretty frugal (go for the 1.5-litre diesel and you'll get 80.7mpg and C02 emissions that are sufficiently low to avoid road tax). All things considered the Note is an excellent small family solution. NISSAN X-TRAIL More evidence that Nissan has gone crossover crazy, the X-Trail - formerly a more straightforward 4X4 - has taken its cues from the successful Qashqai and morphed into a rather more ambiguous vehicle. The X-Trail now feels more like a pumped-up car than a rugged off-roader and gains plenty of practicality as a result. Both the 7-seat cabin and the boot space are expansive and flexible, the ride is composed and smooth and running costs are highly competitive. NISSAN LEAF Nissan's entry into the burgeoning all-electric car market was an important release for electric motoring and makes a pretty convincing case for taking the plunge. The usual limitations apply of course, some will have fundamental problems with the inherent range limitation of electric cars but there's no denying that the Leaf can deliver seriously impressive running costs. It makes even more sense when you consider the £5,000 government contribution to all purchases as well as the significant savings you can make on the initial outlay by opting to lease a battery. NISSAN MICRA A stalwart of the supermini scene the Micra is now 33 years old and into its fourth generation. It still makes sense as a low-cost small car, but the latest model has attracted some criticism for its generic styling and underwhelming interior. Pre 2011 models make sense as a good value town car with a bit more vim and character than the current models.