The gloves are off in a war of words over electric vehicle styling, with Nissan blasting Fiat for its recent dig at the Nissan Leaf's looks.
"Let's face it, Fiat has not shied away from controversial styling themselves," said Nissan global PR boss Simon Sproule. "Many would describe many of their products as visual pollution. Take a long, hard look at the Fiat Doblo," a commercial van sold in Europe that will arrive in the United States next year.
Sproule's barb was in response to comments made last month by Matt Davis, head of Fiat product marketing, before the debut of the all-electric Fiat 500e at the Los Angeles Auto Show.
"Let's be honest, ugliness is probably one of the worst forms of pollution," Davis told Bloomberg. "The Fiat 500e proves that you do not have to give up on good looks to deliver an electric car." When asked by reporters which vehicle competes against the 500, Davis cited the Nissan Leaf.
A Fiat spokesman in Turin declined to comment on Sproule's rejoinder.