Nissan has odour engineers. And here's what they do
When one purchases a new car, one of its most coveted key characteristics is the so-called ‘new-car smell’, thus, getting this smell right is crucial for carmakers. That's where the odour engineers at Nissan come in, who ensure that this new vehicle odour is just about right. The auto maker knows that the smell is an important part of the vehicle's ambience and the pride of new car ownership.
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At Nissan, odour evaluation is a key part of the development process for every new vehicle and the teams work to pursue high quality standards for vehicle ambience. The odour engineers rigorously assess every part of the vehicle's cabin - from premium leather to polymers, in a symphony of science and art, in order to ensure that the on-board experience is not compromised.
Attaining a new-car smell that generates positive response and elevates the driver and passengers' mood isn't just a result of the manufacturing process. The odour engineers put in months of work throughout the vehicle development phase to carefully analyse the use of materials and chemicals such as seat fabric, adhesives and polymers, to ensure that they don't combine to generate an unpleasant odour. “We aim to provide the best sensory experience for the customer. (We) make sure that any material we use is always going to be perfect in terms of scent," said Peter Karl Eastland, Odour Evaluation Lead Engineer at Nissan Technical Centre Europe.
The odour team tests all the materials inside the car, such as the soft material used for the 3D diamond quilted seats, in a variety of conditions to replicate real-world environments. It has to be kept in mind that the chemical properties of these materials – such as odour – can change according to temperature. When the team identifies a potential new material or chemical that can negatively affect the overall cabin ambience, they find out alternatives to ensure harmonious odour inside the car.