Big in Japan: The Nissan Pivo2 can pivot on a dime

This week (and last), Big in Japan will be bringing you scenes from the 2007 Tokyo Motor Show (???????????????????????) at Makuhari Messe in Chiba City.

For an overview of this biennial event, check out Scenes from the Tokyo Motor Show. For all of you road warriors out there, don’t miss A look at the future of motorcycles.

Do you love concept cars? So do I.

In case you’re wondering about all of the crazy concept cars that are being highlighted at this year’s Tokyo Motor Show, check out the new Nissan Pivo2, which easily steals the spotlight.

According to Nissan, this environmentally friendly, electric-powered urban commuter car features a cabin capable of rotating 360 degrees, which is perfect for drivers with a fear of parallel parking.

The Pivo2 also caters to futurists out there with the introduction of ‘intelligent life form design,’ which is intended to revolutionize the interaction between car and driver.

Have I peaked your interest yet? Keep reading for more on this unbelievable concept car.


Adhering to its mantra of ‘Always enjoyable, everywhere convenient,’ the Pivo2 was designed to meet the specific needs of the urban commuter. The signature feature of the Pivo2, which was inherited from the first generation, is its revolving cabin.

Thanks to its variable geometry system dubbed Metamo, the revolving interior of the Pivo2 means that the driver can always face forward while driving, even when parallel parking or leaving a front-in parking space.

As a result of the disk-shaped traction motor housed in each wheel unit, the Pivo 2 can also be maneuvered in ways that would be difficult for an ordinary vehicle. With the ability to control all four wheel units independently, the Pivo2 can actually move sideways, which is advantageous when you’re negotiating parking lots and congested streets.

In regards to safety, the Metamo system also contributes to the overall performance and safety of the Pivo2. For instance, the system automatically controls the position of the wheels according to driving conditions in order to equalize the overall load.

The coolest aspect of the Pivo2 is its intelligent life form design. Basically, Nissan believes that a vehicle can also evoke feelings of affection, creating actual partner relationships. As a result, the Pivo2 employs a robotic agent (RA) that actually talks and listens to the driver.


In addition to providing information needed for driving, the RA can actually infer the mood of the driver, and respond with the appropriate emotion. The RA accomplishes this task by scanning facial gestures, and analyzing the tone and pitch of the driver’s voice.

The engineers at Nissan hope that this interactive interface will put the driver in a calmer frame of mind, which they believe will result in safer driving. They also hope that the RA will forge feelings of trust and affection between the car and driver.

Awesome. I mean, I’ve named every car I’ve ever owned, but none of them actually knew mine!

For more scenes from the Tokyo Motor Show, tune in tomorrow for another installment of Big in Japan.

For photos of the 2007 Tokyo Motor Show, check out the gallery below: