Not a scale model of the Nissan Rogue—it’s the Nissan Kicks. It’s Nissan’s entry-level SUV, it starts at $18,540, and it’s been selling like hotcakes. [credit:
Jonathan Gitlin ]
“Kicks” is an odd name for a car, isn’t it? As a verb, it means to hit something with a foot. As a noun, it’s slang for sneakers. But at Nissan, Kicks means the entry point into its SUV lineup, a replacement for the slightly less oddly named Juke. In this case, the unconventional name—I still don’t know if it’s meant to be a verb or a noun—comes with rather more conventional styling. The Juke was widely criticized by people who opine on how cars look, but the Kicks looks for all the world like a Nissan Rogue that shrunk in the wash.
Nissan would probably consider that a success, as it means the application of its corporate design signatures like the V-motion grille and wraparound headlights did what they were supposed to do. Our test Kicks came in a fetching two-tone paint scheme—this is an optional extra, but even if opting for one color all over, you still get a “floating roof” thanks to the black plastic panel on the C pillar. (Hiding a C pillar like this continues to be a popular styling detail throughout the industry, even though I personally think it’s horrid.) I’ve got no such qualms about the other bits of black plastic that adorn the Kicks; these run from stout wheel arch extensions along the bottoms of the doors to the rear bumper. It’s a car that has been designed for life in the city, and these should help protect it against the inevitable bumps and scrapes that entails.
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Source: Car news one