The new design trend in the automotive world is boxes. The Scion xB and Honda Element will soon be joined by the Kia Soul and Nissan Cube, making every fourth car on the road look like a toaster on casters - but somehow, disturbingly cute. The cutest of the bunch, we now know, will also be one of the cheapest.
Motor Trend reports, "Nissan has set initial pricing for its all-new 2009 Nissan Cube in advance of the Chicago show, with the hip to be square-shaped machine starting at $13,990 -- not including destination." That price will fetch you a fairly Spartan Cube, known as the 1.8, which features a six-speed manual transmission and very little in the way of options.
Higher trim levels, Autoblog reports, will include a 1.8 S, 1.8 SL and a unique 1.8 Krom edition (that's chrome, an example of the other new automotive trend - hideous misspellings like Converj and Cruze). That limited edition model "features a three-bar chrome grille, two-bar chrome front bumper, unique fascias, side sills and spoiler, along with exclusive 16-inch aluminum wheels. Inside the factory customized model you'll find a leather-wrapped steering wheel, iPod interface, Bluetooth integration, titanium trim, illuminated lighting system, automatic temperature control, aluminum pedals and an upgraded audio system with six speakers and a Rockford Fosgate subwoofer." Pricing for the Krom edition has not been revealed.
All Cubes feature the same 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine. Spring for something beyond the base model, and you'll get the same Continuously Variable Transmission available on the Altima.
All Cubes, according to Kicking Tires, also offer "an electronic stability system, six airbags and remote keyless entry."