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Overview

The Nissan Motor Company, more commonly referred to simply as "Nissan", is a Japanese automotive manufacturer. Since being founded in 1933, Nissan has grown to be one of the world's premier automotive manufacturers. Alongside their own production, Nissan also holds part-ownership of French automaker Renault, has partnered with the Ford Motor Company, and markets their own line of luxury cars in America under the "Infiniti" brand.

While Nissan is now known under one name, its production line was previously split through several names in different territories. "Datsun", Nissan's former name from 1931 to 1933, was used in North America until 1982. In Europe, Nissan started manufacturing cars under the "Austin" name. The luxury vehicle "Infiniti" brand was established in 1989, and has since exclusively sold to the North American market. Vehicles under the Infiniti name are sold in other territories under the Nissan brand. For instance, the Infiniti G-line of cars was previously sold in Asia and Europe as the Nissan Primera, though it is now sold under the Nissan Skyline sedan line.

In Video Games

Nissan 370Z, as seen in NFS: Hot Pursuit
Nissan Skyline R34 GT-R, as seen in Gran Turismo 5: Prologue

Nissan is featured in nearly every racing game--a side effect of being one of the three biggest Japanese automakers. Nissan is more commonly known recently for its presence in the tuner market, with vehicles such as the Nissan 370Z, Silvia and, of course, the ever-popular Skyline R34.

While most racing games (see: arcade racing) will only feature a more limited, sport-centric lineup for Nissan's vehicles, simulation games cover the wider gamut of Nissan's product lines, such as trucks, SUVs, sedans, etc.

Nissan 300ZX, as first seen in Top Speed

Nissan's first video game appearance was in the 1987 arcade game Top Speed. Unlike most other car manufacturers, Nissan's appearance in video games is consistent and varied. From Need for Speed to Gran Turismo, from Test Drive to Forza, the diversity and ingenuity of Nissan's history can easily be seen from its strong and prolific presence in racing games throughout gaming.

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