It may just lure us away from the Nissan Z - if it were to be produced.
Nissan enthusiasts had their prayers answered this year when the latest Nissan Z was revealed, continuing a long line of high-performance Nissan coupes. But what about the Nissan Silvia? This sporty coupe was badged as the 200SX and later the 240SX in the United States but it went out of production two decades ago.
As electric restomods are all the rage right now, Matthew Weaver, vice president of Nissan Design Europe, was tasked with reimagining the original 1960s Silvia CSP311 as an electric coupe for the future. What he has come up with is something we'd love to see Nissan actually build. The similarities between the original and Weaver's modern design are evident in the profiles of the two cars.
Both have a strong character line running along the body and a similar roofline. The dual headlight design of the original has also been carried over, but the EV version is a far more futuristic thing. The lines were cleaned up and the grille of the original was removed. The taillights are a lot sleeker and the squared-off wheel arches partially conceal the tops of each wheel. Blacked-out A-pillars create the effect of a floating roof and, overall, it's an EV with a lot of appeal.
"The Silvia was ahead of its time in a very quiet, understated way," said Weaver. "By redesigning this car for the future, we wanted to pay homage to that heritage. One of the most distinguishable features is the one clean line connecting the upper and lower body."
Weaver also explained that because the components of an EV are quite different from those of a car with an internal combustion engine, the packaging is different and this allows for more freedom when penning new designs. Previously, designers had to work closely with engineers to find solutions for components like an exhaust pipe and radiators. Like the new Nissan Ariya, the Silvia imagined here is more spacious than its compact dimensions would lead you to believe.
More than this, Nissan is learning how to infuse a level of design flair in its EVs that evoke the passion of sports cars from decades gone by. That's something to be admired.