Nissan continues its fascination with winter sports, this time creating a 7-seat bobsleigh in tribute to the Nissan Rogue.
You’ll recall that a couple weeks back, Nissan Canada unveiled the Rogue Warrior conversion, a stock Rogue fitted with a snow-track system that allows it to tackle the harshest snow conditions up or down the ski slopes.
And although it didn’t go quite as far as fitting ice runners on a Rogue and send it down a bobsleigh ice track (which would have been really awesome to see), it did convert a 4-men bob to seat seven and send it down the track at Innsbruck, Austria.
The custom-built sled was inspired by the design of the new Nissan Rogue (or X-Trail, as it is known in Europe) and built to the exacting specifications of bobsleigh manufacturer Diego Menardi (who had to lengthen and reinforce the sled to accommodate three extra bodies) and sport expert Ian Richardson, with Nissan design-cue input (including the bright V-motion grille with Nissan logo inset, and LED daytime running lights) provided by Nissan’s European design manager Darryl Scriven. Menardi and Richardson have 50 years of combined sled-crafting experienced and have delivered sleds to countless Olympic and world champions.
“We wanted to give the opportunity to experience first-hand the adventurous nature of our crossover segment through the thrill and excitement of Olympic bobsleighing,” explained Scriven of the venture. “Nissan Design Europe took inspiration from the shape and character of our X-Trail to create the X-Trail Bobsleigh, which was handcrafted by Diego Menardi at his workshop in Cortina. The outcome mimics the fresh ideas and technologies from the brand's ground-breaking crossover models.”
Nissan also says the sled “gives passengers a 360-degree, bird’s-eye view to capture all of the action — identical to the Nissan X-Trail’s Around View Monitor system,” which is not really correct because bobsleighers’ heads are usually buried within the bodywork of the sled for aerodynamic efficiency.
The company adds that “like the bobsleigh, the X-Trail’s sophisticated ALL MODE 4x4-i system helps the driver keep control even in ice and snow,” which will be refuted by anybody who’s ever seen an ice runner scraping sideways across the icy track. In fact, the Rogue/X-Trail driver probably has considerably better control than does a bobsleigh pilot.
Nissan’s preliminary data has the sled accelerating to 100 km/h in about 30 seconds and reaching a top speed of just 105 km/h but we’re gonna dispute that too, seeing as the team didn’t follow the usual bobsleigh acceleration routine of pushing the sled for 50 meters down the hill before jumping in.