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Nissan Team Creates a One-Off Leaf Pickup Truck

Earlier this year, Nissan kicked off an interesting social media campaign challenging users to create a mashup of an everyday Nissan with one of the automaker’s sportier NISMO-tuned vehicles. Well it looks like some of its engineers at the Nissan Technical Center took this idea a step further by actually creating a real world mashup combining an all-electric Nissan Leaf hatchback and a Nissan Frontier pickup truck.
Nissan Leaf pickup truck 10 photos
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The resulting vehicle is affectionately named Sparky, and it is used as a shop truck around the sprawling 3,050-acre proving grounds campus located in Stanfield, AZ. Sure, they could have just used a Frontier, but where’s the fun in that? Essentially the mother of all team-building exercises, Sparky is the creation of Roland Schellenberg and Arnold Moulinet from the Nissan Durability & Reliability team.

While you can find some spotty pickup truck mashups almost every day on Craigslist, this Nissan team is obviously more well-versed in the hand fabrication of such vehicles. The team started by removing the hatchback portion of the Leaf without disrupting any of the drivetrain components. The interior was closed in by using a rear portion of the Nissan Titan’s cab including the power sliding rear window. From there, the bed of a Nissan Frontier was fitted into place, and it even received custom wood accents and adjustable tie downs. The Leaf’s liftgate was modified and transformed into a tailgate, which incorporates a small spoiler with a center-mounted brake light.

There’s no word if “Sparky” is ever taken off Nissan’s grounds, but the team worked hard to ensure this electric pickup would still be legal if taken out on public roads. This includes reworked and fully functional LED taillights that now use brake lights incorporated into the lower portion of the fascia. A unique element of the rear lighting is that extra LEDs were installed so that the lights would also illuminate onto the ground during braking, which could actually be an interesting idea looking ahead to future production cars.

We imagine that there is very little chance that Nissan would ever create a production version of such a vehicle, but you never know where creative vehicle ideas like this could lead down the road.

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