25 May
Nissan Friend-Me Nissan Friend-Me

Nissan's Friend-ME a Multimedia Man Cave on Wheels

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If the push to stuff infotainment options into new cars keeps going at its recent pace, there may never be any reason to leave your car, other than for the barest of life's necessities.

The Nissan Friend-ME, a concept car reportedly aimed at young males in China, allows smartphone users to share content via strategically placed display screens. Mockups show a long, central screen -- known as the "oracle stone" -- that begins in the middle of the front dashboard and extends rearward toward a console that divides the back seat.

The idea is that a driver and three male friends in their mid-20s -- all products of China's one-child policy from the 1980s -- can share music and videos with one another via their smartphones and the screen. All of the occupants of the car have the exact same kind of seating area (designed almost like gamer chairs), and all have access to the same information as the driver -- speed, navigation, fuel in the tank, etc. Plus, "Whoever finds cool content can 'toss' it from his mobile to the on-board screens so all can share in the fun," a press release gushes.

The car's exterior doesn't look like anything to sneeze atr. Ultra-sculpted features from the fenders to the front and rear lights all scream "youth" -- something that Nissan knows the car has to exude if it's going to capture the attention of the estimated 240 million Chinese twenty-somethings.

No word yet on whether the Friend-ME might enjoy a succession of product lives overseas. If it catches on in China, though, it may be some time before worldwide supply catches up with demand.

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Read 2630 times Last modified on Saturday, 25 May 2013 10:50
Jim Lillie

Jim began writing for newspapers and designing for publishing companies at a time when both industries were just beginning to make the switch from manual to digital platforms. Jim lives in Boulder, Colorado with his teenage son.



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