The Nissan IDx concepts were far and away my favorite car from the 2014 Detroit Auto Show, because it represents the best hope for a return to minimalist performance cars like the ones Nissan used to make. All I need is rear-wheel drive, a gutsy four-cylinder engine that balances performance and fuel economy, and a look that says sports car, not commuter. The IDx has all of that, which is why Nissan must make it.
As a former Nissan 240sx owner, and a huge fan of the old-school Nissan 510, the IDx concepts instantly appeal to my love of fun and nimble little cars that feel faster than they actually are. The IDx looks sharp enough to actually cut you. Built to battle the Toyota GT86/Scion FR-S/Subaru BRZ trio of two-seater sports coupes, but infinitely more appealing to me at least, the Nissan IDx Freeflow and NISMO concepts were a huge hit with the Detroit crowd.
Nissan is apparently considering the IDx for production, perhaps debuting as soon as 2016, and I made sure to loudly voice both my approval, and my self-importance as a Millennial. Where so many cars are trying to cram every possible tech feature into their vehicles, the IDx keeps things simple, with a small LCD screen, a few HVAC switches, and just enough gauges so you know what’s good and what’s now.While the daring styling of the IDx concepts aren’t likely to fully transfer to a production car, a small four-cylinder turbo coupe with rear-wheel drive is just what the doctor ordered. The hotter IDx NISMO is even racier, with pure corner-carving performance in mind, though the four-cylinder engine should still return impressive fuel economy.
Nissan was once known for cars like the IDx, and with the Toybaru twins proving quite popular with the young enthusiast crowd, there’s definitely a market for affordable sports cars aimed at us Millennials. It’d be a risky move not to build a production version.