2004 Paris Auto Show, Part IV

September 24, 2004

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2004 Paris Auto Show by TCC Team (9/20/2004)
The well-loved lights of the City of Light take the stage.

Bugatti Sets Sights On First Sale

The buzz around the Bugatti booth at this year’s editions of the Paris Mondial De L’Automobile is that the luxury car maker expects to deliver its first car in its current iteration at the end of 2005. Production of the first new Bugatti under Volkswagen control, at an asking price more than $1 million, will begin next summer at the Bugatti factory in Mulhouse, France. The Bugatti plant is capable of building 50 cars annually or little more than one per week. Engineers from Bugatti have already put more than 60,000 miles of test drives on the 11 prototypes developed to push the program ahead. The sleek ultra-luxury sports car is capable of top speeds in excess of 240 miles per hour and comes with an engine capable of producing 1100 horsepower as well as seven-speed transmission. The Bugatti also will come with all-wheel drive; two diffuser flaps over the front wheels and a wing and a spoiler at the rear of the vehicle that produce a significant downdraft at higher speeds.

Nissan Plans Tone For By 2006

2006 Nissan Tone

2006 Nissan Tone

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Nissan unveiled the design study for a brand new car that will be added to the Nissan lineup in Europe in 2006.  Patrick Pelata, Nissan executive vice president and head of worldwide product planning, said the new Tone will replace the Almera, the current car that the Japanese automaker now sells across Europe. The wheelbase on the Tone will be just 20 millimeters longer than the wheelbase of the Volkswagen Golf but the overall length of the new vehicle is just over 4 meters. Nissan plans to market the new car to young families across Europe. “We learnt that busy young families didn’t have the car they need. They want a car that is easy to live with every day - particularly if they have young children. But they also need a car that’s fun to drive and affordable because it be the only car in the family,”

Pelata also announced that Nissan would start to sell the 350Z Roadster in Europe this fall. Nissan also plans to begin selling the Pathfinder, a traditional body-on-frame sport-utility vehicle, for the first time in Europe this year. The Pathfinder is designed to appeal to a growing number of active families who use their vehicle to escape the city. The new Pathfinder has three rows of seats and room for seven occupants as well as four-wheel-drive and a 2.5 liter, common-rail turbodiesel engine. The new 350Z and the Pathfinder are only two of six new products that Nissan plans to introduce in Europe over the next year. Nissan hopes the new models will help boost its presence in the European market, added Pelata.

Pelata said Nissan had to become more visible on European streets. “To have healthy growth here, we can not just do what everyone else is doing. We have to offer something different but which is relevant to new customers,” he added.

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