Like most Japanese automakers, Nissan has come up with an array of technologies that aim to improve the automobiles in its lineup. The GT-R ’s advanced powertrain and chassis, the Leaf EV and its upcoming autonomous vehicle come to mind.
While the self-driving Nissan is still at least five years away and will probably arrive alongside similar vehicles from Toyota or Ford , the company has just announced a brand-new technology that might become available on production cars in the future.
This time we’re not talking about a revolutionary engine or a vehicle that runs on alternative fuels, but an innovative paint technology that repels the mud, rain and the dirt automobiles are subjected to each and every day. In short, Nissan claims it has created a self-cleaning car with help from a super-hydrophobic and oleophobic paint.
Dubbed Ultra-Every Dry, the innovation consists of a special coating that creates "a protective layer of air" between the paint and the environment that stops water and dirt from leaving marks on the car’s body. To demonstrate the technology, Nissan used an Euro-spec Note model that had one side coated with the said paint, while the other remained as it came from the factory.
The result is pretty impressive, but it won’t run car washes out of business just yet. The product is still in its testing phase and Nissan says there are currently no plan for the technology to be offered to the public. However, the feature could become available as a "future aftermarket option" at a date that has yet to be unveiled.
Video and more details after the jump.
Why it matters
Not having to worry about getting the car to the car wash every other week would obviously save drivers a great deal of time and money. On the other hand, the lack of details in regard to what might happen to the layer once the body is scratched or in the event of a light crash makes us a bit reluctact about the technology’s sustainability.
Washing a car can be a chore – and a costly one at that. In response, Nissan in Europe has begun tests on innovative paint technology that repels mud, rain and everyday dirt, meaning drivers may never have to clean their car again.
The specially engineered super-hydrophobic and oleophobic paint, which repels water and oils, has been applied to the all-new European market Nissan Note to create the world’s first self-cleaning car.
To assess the real-world effectiveness of the super-hydrophobic as a potential aftermarket application, engineers at Nissan Technical Centre Europe will be testing the self-cleaning Note over the coming months in a variety of conditions.
Nissan is the first carmaker to apply the technology, called Ultra-Ever Dry®, on automotive bodywork. By creating a protective layer of air between the paint and environment, it effectively stops standing water and road spray from creating dirty marks on the car’s surface.
So far, the coating, which is being marketed and sold by UltraTech International Inc®, has responded well to common use cases including rain, spray, frost, sleet and standing water. Whilst there are currently no plans for the technology to be applied to the model as standard, Nissan will continue to consider the coating technology as a future aftermarket option.
"The Nissan Note has been carefully engineered to take the stress out of customer driving, and Nissan’s engineers are constantly thinking of new ways to make families’ lives easier," said Geraldine Ingham, Chief Marketing Manager for Nissan Note. "We are committed to addressing everyday problems our customers face and will always consider testing exciting, cutting edge technology like this incredible coating application."