Nissan builds innovative concept truck for Search & Rescue crews

Hurricanes, flash floods, earthquakes, land slides, tornados – all natural disasters that interrupt normal life and put people in hard situations. First responders and search and rescue team members have the job of finding and saving people caught in Mother Nature’s way. Nissan, at the 2016 Hannover Motor Show, debuted a concept truck build specifically for the rigors of search and rescue. It’s based on the Navara pickup, and it’s called the EnGuard Concept.

Nissan started with a conventional Navara Double Cab Tekna and added features to nearly every square inch. It’s all done in an effort to make search and rescue operations safer and more efficient, saving time and lives.

Included is a DJI Phantom 4 drone that remotely sends a video feed to foldout monitors in the cargo bed. Nissan also developed a portable battery supply designed to power rescue equipment with zero emissions and no flammable fuels. The battery pack is charged by the truck’s turbodiesel engine and can be easily carried into harms way.

Aside from the headline-leading tech, Nissan also gave the EnGuard Concept some old-fashioned upgrades. A two-inch suspension lift and meaty tires allow the truck to traverse rough terrain. A winch provides an insurance policy should the truck get stuck. It can also be used to lower rescuers into ravine or to pull debris off roadways.

There are plenty of other goodies packed onto this truck, so keep reading for more.

Continue reading to learn more about the Nissan Navara EnGuard Concept.

  • 2016 Nissan Navara EnGuard Concept
  • Year:
    2016
  • Make:
  • Model:
  • Engine:
    inline-4
  • Horsepower @ RPM:
    188
  • Torque @ RPM:
    332
  • Displacement:
    2.3 L
  • car segment:
  • body style:

Exterior

2016 Nissan Navara EnGuard Concept High Resolution Exterior
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2016 Nissan Navara EnGuard Concept High Resolution Exterior
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2016 Nissan Navara EnGuard Concept High Resolution Exterior
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Starting with a standard Navara, Nissan added several exterior improvements that make the EnGuard Concept worthwhile. First a two-inch suspension lift gives the truck a higher ground clearance for off-road terrain and for fitting larger off-road tires sized in 285/75-R16. Thick fender flares protect the paint and keep the truck’s wider track legal. Up front, an integrated winch hides behind the stock-looking bumper. Frame-mounted recovery points flank the winch on either side, offering a secure tie-down point. Up top, a streamlined engine breather feeds clean, dry air into the engine’s intake.

The roof features an innovated gadget that includes LED warning lights on all four sides for 360-degrees of coverage. Trailing down from the roof are sail panel compartments for storing rescue gear. The plastic panels seamlessly integrate into the tonneau cover, which itself is a huge topic in itself.

The hard-shell cover comes with Nissan’s bedrail tie-down cleats for securing cargo above the bed. Open the tailgate, and a two-shelf storage rack is custom-fit to hold a variety of rescue gear from carabineers and fire extinguishers to oxygen tanks and those battery packs. Other gear includes two-way radios, flashlights, helmets, ropes, trail recovery gear, and that Phantom 4 drone.

In conjunction with the drone, Nissan incorporated two large TV monitors for viewing the drone’s live video feed.
2016 Nissan Navara EnGuard Concept High Resolution Exterior
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In conjunction with the drone, Nissan incorporated two large TV monitors for viewing the drone’s live video feed. The screens electronically rise from the bed walls, facing outward just behind the rear wheels. This gives rescuers a large, unobstructed view of the disaster area. The three-pound Phantom 4 is capable of flying to nearly 20,000 feet in altitude, has a maximum airspeed of nearly 45 mph, and can fly for 30 minutes on a single charge.

Just ahead of the TV monitors are two electrical ports that operate with the two removable battery pack systems. The batteries use the same type of battery technology found in Nissan’s electric vehicles like the Leaf and e-NV200. Each weather-proof battery pack offers 2.0 kW of power. Nissan says rescuers could use the battery packs inside an enclosed space such as a building or cave without the worry of exhaust fumes like a portable generator. When not in use, the batteries are charged by the Navara’s engine.

Lastly, the body features florescent green accents, which Nissan says, has been proven to be the most visible color in daylight and easily recognizable by those with color blindness. It’s all in an effort to make the EnGuard Concept highly visible.

Interior

2016 Nissan Navara EnGuard Concept High Resolution Interior
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Like real-world rescue vehicles, specific colors were chosen to make usability much simpler.

Nissan reworked the color scheme inside the EnGuard concept, but mostly for function. Like real-world rescue vehicles, specific colors were chosen to make usability much simpler. The metallic accents in the cabin were swapped out for black accents, except for the chrome door handles. That’s so exiting personnel can quickly spot the handle on the door panel. The door pockets and storage compartments also have florescent green liners, making it super easy to see what’s stored inside.

Like the standard Navara, the EnGuard comes with Nissan’s 360-degree camera system with its in-dash display. This helps increase the maneuverability of the truck without the need for a spotter, thus potentially cutting down on drive time. Of course, the system also comes with satellite navigation, satellite radio, and other useful apps.

Drivetrain

2016 Nissan Navara EnGuard Concept High Resolution Exterior
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Powering the Navara EnGuard is Nissan’s 2.3-liter four-cylinder turbodiesel. The engine makes 188 horsepower and 332 pound-feet of torque – plenty enough for moving the mid-sized pickup around. The truck is even rated to tow 7,716 pounds on its frame-mounted hitch. The engine uses a twin-turbo setup for generating boost. The engine is mated to a seven-speed automatic that sends power through a two-speed transfer case to either the rear wheels or all four wheels when 4WD is engaged.

The engine makes 188 horsepower and 332 pound-feet of torque – plenty enough for moving the mid-sized pickup around.

Nissan also outfitted the suspension system with upgraded nylon bushing for improved ride and handling off the beaten path. That’s in addition to the two-inch suspension lift given for better ground clearance. Helping the engine breath easier, a high-rise air intake is used to pull fresh air from further off the ground. It also helps the Navara ford water at depths that would otherwise induce hydrolock.

Like its civilian counterpart, the Navara EnGuard rides on a ladder frame with a solid axle out back suspended by leaf springs, while the front gets independent wishbones with MacPherson struts. The combination gives the truck smooth handling on the road, strong load-carrying capabilities, and good suspension travel in off-road situations.

Conclusion

2016 Nissan Navara EnGuard Concept High Resolution Exterior
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Nissan’s Navara EnGuard Concept is an awesome exercise in functionality and aftermarket integration. Nissan designers and engineers have paired the most commonly used rescue tools and the latest in drone technology to a up-rated pickup with a suspension lift and upgraded parts, a recovery winch, and bigger tires for a competent vehicle ready for search and rescue duty.

While this truck isn’t going into production, it does showcase what Nissan is capable of and all the ancillary ideas its design team can cook up. The twin battery packs, for example, have the potential to be real-word applicable, with search and rescue missions being a legitimate use. Other gadgets, however, like the pop-up TV screens, won’t likely find use on a commercially available search and rescue truck.

Nevertheless, the Navara EnGuard is a cool concept truck that warrants a close look. Be sure to check out the full bank of photos in the gallery above.

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Press Release

Nissan has unveiled an all-new vehicle at the 2016 Hannover Motor Show. The Nissan Navara EnGuard Concept is a durable and tough all-terrain pick-up, designed to operate as a life-saving rescue platform in some of the world’s most harsh and extreme environments.

2016 Nissan Navara EnGuard Concept High Resolution Exterior
- image 688943

Based on a Double Cab Tekna version of the Nissan Navara – the current holder of the International Pick-up Award – the Navara EnGuard Concept features many bespoke design elements and performance upgrades. It is also packed with vital equipment suitable for emergency and disaster recovery work, including an advanced drone to provide vital intelligence about what dangers rescue crews might face.

It also marks the world debut of a prototype portable battery pack, designed and developed by Nissan. It utilises the brand’s tried and tested EV battery technology, already available on the road in the 100 per cent electric Nissan LEAF and e-NV200. With more than 250,000 Nissan EVs sold worldwide, the company is at forefront of this fast-developing sector and ideally placed to apply its expertise to explore new vehicle sectors and consumer opportunities in the future.

When docked in place the battery packs are constantly in ‘charge’ mode, using power generated by the vehicle’s 2.3-litre 190PS twin-turbo diesel engine to ensure they’re ready for emergency use when required. Each is a 2kW unit and utilises seven Nissan EV battery modules inside a weather-proof machined aluminium housing.

Two input (charge) sockets and five output (discharge) sockets are integrated into each battery pack, which features recessed ends to allow it to be carried easily. In a rescue environment they could be used to operate specialist cutting or heavy-lifting equipment, and have been specifically designed to provide an efficient alternative to a petrol generator.

With zero emissions and no flammable fuel, portable battery packs can also be used in enclosed spaces such as a building or a cave. Additional power sockets are integrated into each side of the pick-up’s load bed.

As part of its Intelligent Mobility vision, Nissan is working to explore how its pioneering EV battery technology can be integrated further into society. These prototype battery packs provide a real-world example of how it could be applied to new sectors, to provide cleaner, more sustainable power solutions.

Occupying the rest of the space in the load bed are two pull-out fibreglass trays. The shallow upper tray contains lightweight items such as two-way radios, ropes and an axe. The lower tray is deeper and narrower, storing larger items such as an oxygen tank and resuscitation kit, life jackets and buoyancy aids.

Key to the car’s rescue role is a drone, a DJI Phantom 4 with an operating ceiling of 6,000 metres. Weighing just 1,380 grammes, it can fly at speeds of up to 20 metres per second for close to 30 minutes and can relay images back to the concept car. These are viewed on a pop-up HD screen hidden in the load bed wall.

Compared to the standard Nissan Navara, the overall ride height of the Navara EnGuard Concept has been raised by 50mm, creating extra ground clearance and further enhancing the vehicle’s ‘go anywhere’ attitude. The wheel arches feature bespoke overfenders, with new moulded side steps between them.

The passenger compartment features a completely redesigned roof line, which is 136mm higher than on the standard Navara. It incorporates a powerful 360 degree LED lighting rig, with emergency blue strobe lights fitted to the four corners and visible from any angle. Matching strobes are integrated into the top of all four overfenders, plus in the redesigned front fog lamps and redesigned rear light clusters

Choice of colours and their location was given very careful consideration during the vehicle’s development, with special focus on its role as a rescue vehicle. For example, Nissan research revealed fluorescent green is the most visible colour in daylight, and also most easily identifiable by people affected by colour-blindness. Having it on the wheels and side steps means it’s quickly spotted by the headlights of approaching vehicles.

2016 Nissan Navara EnGuard Concept High Resolution Exterior
- image 688944

Being based on the top-spec Tekna trim grade means the Navara EnGuard Concept comes with many standard features which would be useful in a rescue situation. These include the NissanConnect sat-nav system for finding the fastest route, plus dual-zone climate control and heated seats for occupant comfort. Most useful would be Nissan’s pioneering Around View Monitor, a 360-degree camera system which displays an unobstructed bird’s eye image of the vehicle and its environment on the dashboard screen. It’s an ideal tool for rescue workers, allowing them to navigate difficult off-road terrain without causing delays by having to get out of the vehicle.

Mechanically, the vehicle has also been enhanced. Like all Navaras, it’s built around a rugged ladderframe chassis, but features a new fully adjustable performance suspension system with uprated nylon bushes to further improve off-road capability.

Philippe Guerin-Boutaud, Corporate Vice President, Light Commercial Vehicles, Nissan, commented: “The Nissan Navara is a tough and smart pick-up which our customers rely on to go anywhere and do anything in their daily lives. The Nissan Navara EnGuard Concept is an extension of that principle, showcasing how our award-winning pick-up is perfectly suited to tackle the toughest terrain and save lives.”

He continued: “The Navara EnGuard Concept opens a new chapter in the Nissan Intelligent Mobility vision, featuring our commitment to zero fatalities and zero emissions. Our prototype EV portable battery pack reveals how Nissan will integrate its world-renowned EV battery technology and expertise into new sectors in the future.”

Nissan Navara EnGuard Concept: in detail

The Nissan Navara EnGuard Concept is a durable and tough all-terrain pick-up, designed to operate as a life-saving rescue platform in some of the world’s most harsh and extreme environments.

Based on a Double Cab Tekna version of the Nissan Navara – the current holder of the International Pick-up Award – the Navara EnGuard Concept features many bespoke design elements and performance upgrades. It is also packed with vital equipment suitable for emergency and disaster recovery work, including new prototype portable battery packs.

Like every Nissan Navara, the Navara EnGuard Concept has been engineered to be tough and smart, with outstanding dynamic capability and a range of in-control technologies fitted as standard. These include Nissan’s pioneering Around View Monitor 360 degree camera system.

Nissan: a global leader in LCVs

Nissan is a global leader in LCVs with a broad product range that includes pick-ups, trucks and a versatile line-up of vans to suit every type of business. It includes the all-new NV300 – also unveiled at the Hannover Motor Show – and the pioneering e-NV200 all-electric compact van. It’s a portfolio which is backed up by top level service, including Nissan’s Customer Promise and unique five-year / 100,000 mile LCV manufacturer’s warranty*.

Nissan’s LCV expertise comes from a rich heritage stretching back more than 80 years, and is demonstrated by the brand’s continued success in international awards. The Navara is the current holder of the International Pick-up Award.

The LCV business is playing a key role supporting Nissan’s Intelligent Mobility vision, targeting zero emissions and zero fatalities with advanced in-control safety technologies fitted to its current models. These are the building blocks of Nissan’s Autonomous Driving program. The Navara EnGuard Concept further supports Intelligent Mobility with its portable battery packs.

Nissan Navara EnGuard Concept

Violent storms, flash flooding, earthquakes and tsunami – stories of natural disasters are regularly on global news media and seem to be more prevalent than ever. For rescue organisations around the world, having the correct tools for their vital work is key to reaching those in need and saving lives. Getting to the heart of the disaster zone quickly and safely is critical.

The Nissan Navara EnGuard Concept is the perfect tool for the job. It features numerous modifications which have transformed the standard Navara pick-up into a life-saving mobile rescue platform. The overall ride height has been raised by 50mm, creating extra ground clearance and further enhancing the vehicle’s ‘go anywhere’ attitude. The front and rear track have been increased by 80mm and 94mm respectively – making them both 1,620mm – to provide extra stability over rough terrain. The standard 18-inch alloy wheels have been replaced with new 16-inch rims, with striking 285/75/R16 off-road tyres added for exceptional traction.

2016 Nissan Navara EnGuard Concept High Resolution Exterior
- image 688945

The most obvious change from the standard Navara is to the flanks of the vehicle, where bespoke overfenders have been fitted to the front and rear wheel arches. Between them are new moulded side steps, with a rubber strip on the upper surface for improved grip. On the driver’s side A-pillar is a snorkel, raising the engine’s air intake should the vehicle need to wade through rivers.

Key to any Nissan Navara’s daily life is its load bed, and the same is true on the Navara EnGuard Concept. It has been reimagined as a mobile base for rescue workers, and fully equipped to provide life-saving support in remote locations and challenging circumstances.

The tailgate now features a new moulded liner and high-level stop light, which has been relocated from the passenger compartment. The tailgate lowers to reveal a load bed packed with rescue equipment, stored in two pull-out trays for ease-of-use by emergency workers. Each tray is made from durable twin-skin fibreglass and extends 800mm.

The shallow upper tray is the full width of the load bed and contains lightweight items such as two-way radios, powerful torches, fire extinguisher, ropes and climbing gear, a shovel and an axe. The lower tray is deeper and narrower, occupying only the central third of the Navara EnGuard Concept’s load bed. It is used to store larger items such as the oxygen tank and resuscitation kit, life jackets and buoyancy aids.

Portable battery packs: remote power expands Nissan Intelligent Mobility vision

Flanking the tray, occupying the left and right sections of the load bed, are the two prototype portable battery packs. The Hannover Motor Show marks the debut of this experimental technology, which showcases an alternative use for Nissan’s EV battery technology. With more than 250,000 Nissan EVs sold worldwide, the brand is at the forefront of this fast-developing sector and ideally placed to apply its expertise to explore new vehicle sectors and consumer opportunities in the future.

When docked in place the battery packs are constantly in ‘charge’ mode, using power generated by the vehicle’s diesel engine to ensure they’re ready for emergency use when required. Each is a 2kW unit and utilises seven Nissan EV battery modules inside a weather-proof machined aluminium housing.

In a rescue environment they could be used to operate specialist cutting or heavy-lifting equipment, and have been specifically designed to provide an efficient alternative to a petrol generator. There are numerous benefits; whereas a generator is noisy, the silent and vibration-free portable battery packs can aid communication between rescue workers and improve the ability to hear calls from survivors. With zero emissions and no flammable fuel, portable battery packs can also be used in enclosed spaces such as a building or a cave.

Two input (charge) sockets are included – a 220v AC socket and a connector for solar panels. The five output (discharge) sockets are two 220v AC sockets and three USB ports. Each portable battery pack has recessed ends to allow it to be carried easily.

As part of its Intelligent Mobility vision, Nissan is working to explore how its pioneering EV battery technology can be integrated further into society. These prototype battery packs provide a real-world example of how it could be applied to new sectors, to provide cleaner, more sustainable power solutions.

Announced earlier in 2016, Nissan’s Intelligent Mobility strategy was created to guide the Nissan product evolution and will anchor critical company decisions around how cars are powered, driven and integrated into society, all while remaining focused on creating more enjoyable driving experiences.

High-flying camera drone sends images to the vehicle

2016 Nissan Navara EnGuard Concept High Resolution Exterior
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The left and right upper edges of the Navara EnGuard Concept’s rear deck include motorised pop-up storage solutions. On the driver’s side, there is a portable first aid kit to treat simple injuries, plus a portable defibrillator. On the passenger side is a 20.5-inch HD screen, which is designed to display live-streaming video from the drone.

The drone is a DJI Phantom 4, a state-of-the-art unit with an operating ceiling of 6,000 metres. Weighing just 1,380 grammes, it can fly at speeds of up to 20 metres per second for close to 30 minutes. The 12.4 megapixel camera which is located on the underside of the drone has video and stills image capability, and is mounted on a gimbal for three-axis stability. When on board the Navara EnGuard Concept it is stored in the lower rear tray.

Adjacent to the pop-ups are integrated power sockets – four in total, two on each side of the load bed – which are hidden behind individual machined aluminium covers. Each side of the vehicle has an input and output socket, and all are connected to the portable battery packs for their power.

The rear deck is finished with a recessed anodized metal rail at each side, allowing adjustable cleats to be attached so additional cargo can be carried. The rails are identical to the ones used in the load bed of the standard Nissan Navara. Two further storage lockers have been integrated into the Navara EnGuard Concept’s new roll-over hoop, behind the C-pillar.

Bespoke exterior lighting and winch support rescue mission

The passenger compartment of the Navara EnGuard Concept features a completely redesigned roof line, which is 136mm higher than on the standard Navara. It incorporates a powerful 360 degree LED lighting rig, with emergency blue strobe lights fitted to the four corners and visible from any angle. The four sides of the rig have white LEDs; the front and rear sides have the option to be switched to high-power mode, providing powerful wide-area illumination for rescue workers.

Matching blue strobes are integrated into the top of all four overfenders, plus in the redesigned front fog lamps and redesigned rear light clusters. All feature a ‘secret until lit’ design for a discrete appearance.

Other modifications include a powerful winch integrated into the redesigned front bumper, plus a full-sized spare wheel attached underneath the load bed. A towball is also included, providing towing capacity of 3,500kg – the same as the standard Navara.

A light grey gloss exterior finish has been applied to the bodywork, with fluorescent green detailing picking our key features such as the side steps, wheels, power sockets and the winch hook. Decals include reflective emergency chevrons at the base of the four doors, and the identification number 23 in multiple locations, including on the roof. The B-pillar is matt black, while the door handles, door mirror housing and side window mouldings have all been given a premium gloss black finish.

Colour choices defined by emergency role

Choice of colours was given very careful consideration during the vehicle’s development, with special focus on its role as a rescue vehicle and how different shades are used in that industry. For example, Nissan research revealed fluorescent green is the most visible colour in daylight, and it’s also most easily identifiable by people affected by colour-blindness. Location of colour was also important. For example, the chevrons are at the base of the doors so they are picked out by the headlights of approaching vehicles at the earliest opportunity.

For the interior of the Nissan Navara EnGuard Concept, all the standard vehicle’s metallic cabin details have been changed to a premium black colour. Removing this decorative finish creates a more functional appearance, and also allows the occupants’ eyes to focus on the controls they will need to carry out their rescue work. The only exception is the interior door handles, which keep their chrome finish so they can be picked out against the darker trim.

Again, how colour is used on real-world rescue vehicles was considered; for example, interior door pockets have been given fluorescent bases so they can be easily located, and vehicle occupants can see if there is something in them.

The redesigned seats are covered in hard-wearing SuperFabric, with a distinctive green ‘body armour’ design and reflective white piping on the corners so they can be easily seen in the dark.

In-control technologies include Around View Monitor

Being based on the top-spec Tekna trim grade means the Navara EnGuard Concept comes with many standard features which would be useful in a rescue situation. These include the NissanConnect sat-nav system for finding the fastest route, plus dual-zone climate control and heated seats for occupant comfort. Most useful would be Nissan’s pioneering Around View Monitor, a 360-degree camera system which displays an unobstructed bird’s eye image of the vehicle and its environment on the dashboard screen. It’s an ideal tool for rescue workers, allowing them to navigate difficult off-road terrain without causing delays by having to get out of the vehicle.

2016 Nissan Navara EnGuard Concept High Resolution Exterior
- image 688947

Mechanically, the vehicle has also been enhanced. Like all Navaras, it’s built around a rugged ladderframe chassis, though the Navara EnGuard Concept features a new fully adjustable performance suspension system with uprated nylon bushes to further improve off-road capability.

The brakes are also new, with four-cylinder drilled and vented 300mm disc brakes all round. The engine remains unchanged, using the Navara’s flagship 2.3-litre 190PS twin-turbo diesel, mated to a seven-speed automatic transmission with on-demand 4WD. This engine meets the latest Euro 6 standard and includes a Selective Catalytic Reduction system to lower NOx emissions. CO2 emissions on the Navara EnGuard Concept are 183g/km, but start as low as 159g/km on the 2WD 160hp manual version of the production Nissan Navara.

The Nissan Navara EnGuard Concept and the Nissan portable battery pack have been developed by Nissan Design Europe (NDE), based in London, UK.

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