Nissan's new Titan to be the first crowd-sourced pickup
The stock 2014 Nissan Titan
DARPA and the US Army have done it with military vehicles, and Volkswagen has done it with a hovering car concept – they've turned to laypeople for design ideas. Now, Nissan is doing the same thing with the next generation of its off-road capable Titan truck. The automaker claims that it will be the world's first crowd-sourced pickup.
For the first phase of what it's calling Project Titan, Nissan has invited "shooting, hunting and outdoor journalists" to submit a tweet or video, describing an ultimate outdoor adventure in which they would like to see the truck used. Those adventures could include things like "four wheeling across the Baja, hunting big game in Alaska or fishing for steelhead in Idaho" ... you get the idea.
Nissan will select a winner, and proceed to build a Project Titan truck incorporating the modifications that would be required in order to pull off that adventure. Although it will be a one-off, the truck will reportedly serve as a design guide for the production version of the next-gen Titan.
The project will culminate with an injured armed forces veteran getting a chance to take the truck on an adventure of their own, accompanied by an outdoor journalist who will be documenting the experience.
Nissan did something similar with its 2012 Project 370Z, in which it created a special version of its 370Z sports car based on input from the public.
About the Author
An experienced freelance writer, videographer and television producer, Ben's interest in all forms of innovation is particularly fanatical when it comes to human-powered transportation, film-making gear, environmentally-friendly technologies and anything that's designed to go underwater. He lives in Edmonton, Alberta, where he spends a lot of time going over the handlebars of his mountain bike, hanging out in off-leash parks, and wishing the Pacific Ocean wasn't so far away.
All articles by Ben Coxworth
My first pickup was a 1984 Nissan King Cab MPG that got 40 mpg highway and 25mpg in town. How about they make a pickup that good again?
In many design projects, you define the functions first.
A truck hauls stuff. Really need an in-bed ramp system, an in-bed winch attachment point, a bed rack architecture, a tool box architecture, easy ways to get up into the bed, a winch mounting system front and rear, and a modular tail gate configuration sort of like a work bench/miter saw cart.
Remember what happened when they let Homer Simpson design a car? :)
Good start, but this is not real crowd-sourcing. The "crowd" is hand-picked, and the choices are limited. The engineers will still be running the show and making all of the decisions from their own pallet of technologies. Any real change will result from the in-house engineers giving up some of their control and listening to truly novel ideas.
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