The two Japanese automakers have entered into an arrangement whereby the latter supplies the former with lightly facelifted versions of its latest minivan, and presto! We’ve got the new Nissan Lafesta. Actually, it’s full name is the Lafesta Highway Star, and is not to be confused with the Lafesta Joy, a separate model that will continue production at Nissan’s own Kyushu plant.
The Lafesta Highway Star, then, is produced by Mazda for Nissan, and receives some slightly different styling touches to set it apart. Okay, it pretty much comes down to a new three-bar grille. Otherwise it’s essentially the same as the Mazda5. And like the Mazda5, the Lafesta Highway Star offers flexible three-row seating, dual sliding doors and stop-start ignition.
One notable departure, however, is the availability of all-wheel drive on the Nissan, which Mazda offered for a time in the Japanese Domestic Market but has since discontinued. Of course, the Nissan is being offered only for Japanese domestic market consumption, so if you live anywhere else, don’t go pestering your local Nissan dealer for an AWD Mazda5, because the closest you’re gonna get is the high-resolution images in our gallery and the JDM launch video with press release after the jump.
Nissan offers rebadged Mazda5 in Japan as Lafesta Highway Star [w/video] originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 16 Jun 2011 10:01:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.