Even though Infiniti has been slinging cars in this country for almost 30 years, Nissan's premium brand doesn't actually exist back home in Japan, where the 2018 Infiniti Q50 is sold (badge and all) as the newest generation of the venerable Nissan Skyline. And while we have Steph Curry to sell us on the flagship sedan here in America, across the Pacific they're turning to a slightly less famous celebrity to help the Skyline nameplate celebrate its 60th anniversary—Pigcasso, the painting pig.
Just what does a porcine painter have to do with one of the world's most iconic sports cars? In 2012, Infiniti introduced a drive-by-wire electronic steering system known as Direct Adaptive Steering (DAS). It's not the most beloved piece of tech in the automotive world—The Drive's Ben Keeshin described it as "not great" during his Infiniti Q50 Red Sport test drive earlier this year—but Nissan claims it's put a lot of work into ironing out the kinks for the 2018 model.
Enter Pigcasso. The South African pig was rescued from a slaughterhouse at just four weeks old and quickly demonstrated an unusual talent for abstract art. She paints by holding the brush in her mouth, dipping it into paint, and dragging it across the canvas in big, broad strokes. And what way to better prove the mettle of the Skyline/Q50 (and its much-maligned DAS system) than tackling a spaghetti bowl of a road course designed by Pigcasso herself?
Once the layout was set, Nissan took Pigcasso's painting and made it a reality on a huge empty parking lot, roping in pro race driver Michael Krumm as the official test pilot. In a word, the course is nonsensical, but its random, criss-crossing layout does give both Krumm and the car's Direct Adaptive Steering a real workout. But the best part might be where the organizers reveal Pigcasso's involvement to the button-downed German, who can't help but crack a smile mid-corner as he's shown a video of the master at work near the end.