Nissan BladeGlider Electric Delta Wing Concept

We're often told by motorsport engineering types that technology developed on racing cars will eventually filter through to road-going vehicles.

These days though it's hard to see where. If anything, race cars seem to be adopting road car technology - like hybrid systems - in an effort to make the sport greener in a world increasingly worried about climate change.

Every other recent road car development seems to have come from within the road car industry. Automatic parking systems certainly weren't developed to make F1 cars quicker, and we doubt cylinder deactivation came from NASCAR. Then there's blind spot detection, adaptive headlights, stop-start systems... none of which you'll find on the average British Touring Car.

Nissan BladeGlider side

Nissan though is thinking outside of the box. And inside a triangle.

What you see here is the BladeGlider concept, and if you're familiar with your motorsports you'll recognise the shape immediately from a brace of rather unusual race cars.

Unsurprisingly, the BladeGlider is the brainchild of the same man who conceptualised those two racers - Nissan Motorsport Innovation director Ben Bowlby. And aside from the conversation-starting looks, the delta-wing design has some surprising benefits for both race cars and road cars.

Nissan BladeGlider cockpit

The narrow one-metre front track and wide rear have several effects on the way the car corners. It's very manoeuvrable, but also highly stable with 70 percent of the car's weight on the rear wheels. It's not a pendulous Porsche 911-style weight either, because despite appearances those small front wheels do an equal amount of the work.

Nobody can really explain that better than Ben Bowlby himself, so here he is explaining just how the Deltawing race car deals with the same unusual setup - skip to around 8:00 for the full story.