Safety, Value and Features
TThe Nissan Navara stands out from the crowded field of dual-cab utes by offering a coil-spring rear suspension setup that promises to give Navara owners a better on-road driving experience.
But is that enough to make the Navara a compelling option for those wanting a daily-driveable ute and can the Pro-4X variant do enough to stand out against its premcar-tweaked Warrior flagship sibling?
How much is it, and what do you get?
Nissan launched this generation of Navara back in 2015 but by the end of 2021, it has been refreshed with a bold new look and some useful active safety equipment.
The update also sees the Pro-4X replace the N-Trek at the top of the regular model range and is the variant we have on test here, priced at $58,730 before on-road costs. (or $65,680 driveway).
Its 2.3-litre turbo diesel matches the Isuzu D-Max and Mazda BT-50 for both power and torque. 140kW/450Nm
How do competitors compare on value?
Sitting atop the non-premium car Navara totem pole, the Pro-4X is a natural rival to many of the more expensive dual-cab ute variants currently available. However, it undercuts base models like the Ford Ranger Sport and XLT Bi-Turbo ($66,690 and $61,190 before on-road costs).
Its closest price rival is the Isuzu D-Max LS-U which wears a sticker price of $59,000 before on-road costs for the manual and offers similar utilitarian (if well-equipped) styling to the ute.
Interior comfort, space and storage
Nissan’s offering has one of the most visually impressive exteriors on the market and the same can be said for the interior. The leather-trimmed sports seats look both rugged and attractive, especially with their neat Pro-4X embroidered branding.
The small sporty steering wheel continues the theme with a pleasant leather-like cover and a single USB-C socket indicates that its interior is state-of-the-art, along with two USB-A ports and a 12-volt socket. We also particularly like the single central electric rear window that will allow dog owners to interact with their four-legged friend in the tray.
The 8.0-inch display looks a little dated, it takes nine seconds to boot and the graphics aren’t the freshest, but once it’s up and running it’s one of the most responsive systems around.
While this Novara initially appears highly specced, many switch voids around the cabin suggest some options are missing, the seats are manually adjusted and there’s no proper place for a smartphone (front There is a nice side pocket for the passenger).
Speaking of seating, we were unable to find a comfortable position in the Novara, with the seat too high and the wheel both too low and lacking in reach adjustment. We also found that it has a lot more interior space than the existing dual cab field in terms of road and wind noise, boosted by Yokohama Geolander A/T 255/65 R17 110H tires.
It’s also worth noting that the Navara is one of only three models not to offer an off-road-focused grab handle on the driver’s side. Redeeming functional features include 100mm of headroom in the front row and generous door pocket storage.
Rear seat accommodation is right in the middle of the road. With 30mm of knee room and just 10mm of headroom, it’s a bit on the tight side, with no under-thigh support and no pockets in the front seatback. However, there is a pair of 82mm cupholders in the fold-down armrest, a slight intrusion from the transmission tunnel and tinted rear windows.
What is payload and what tray is practical?
The Navara uses a five-channel Utili-Track system in the tray, a clever addition that enables you to manually change the tie-down points inside the tub to lower items of all shapes and sizes. could It is an intuitive system that is simple in its operation.
Another tick for the Navara is that it will carry more than a tonne (1004kg) of payload. Also, Nissan can fit 1134mm between the rear wheels.
How is it to drive?
While the Navara’s coil-spring rear suspension means it offers one of the best ride characteristics in the dual-cab segment, we found that its steering wasn’t quite right. It’s heavy and sluggish at low speeds, while simultaneously vague and light at freeway speeds.
However, the Navara is redeemed by a stronger engine that will spin the power up to 5500rpm without any noticeable loss at the top end. It imbues the dual cab with a muscular feel and nature that matches the Nissan’s roadholding abilities on loose surfaces.
We drove on unsealed dirt roads and found the Navara to be the most confidence-inspiring in difficult conditions.
How about the fuel?
During testing, the Navara Pro-4X consumed 9.83L/100km.
That puts it near the more efficient end of the consumption spectrum, within the same ballpark as the likes of the Mazda BT-50 (9.3L/100km), Toyota HiLux SR5 (9.5L/100km), and Isuzu D-Max LS. Is. U (9.65L/100km).
It’s more efficient than both the four-cylinder Ranger XLT (11.28L/100km) and the V6 Sport variant (11.75L/100km).
What are the costs of ownership?
Nissan offers six years of capped-price servicing for its Navara, with intervals listed at 12 months or 20,000 km.
Prices for automatic transmissions start at a little over $500 for the first service and go up to a maximum of $782 at the end. Service costs are marginally higher for manual models.
Nissan’s Navara Pro-4X offers good value for money in the dual-cab segment with a cleverly designed tray and a tough-feeling engine.
However, the non-premium flagship is mainly let down by boomy interior refinement and a poor steering calibration that feels too heavy and slow at slow speeds and too vague and light at highway speeds.
We’d recommend the Novara to buyers who want a high payload, practical tray and frequently drive on unsealed roads.
Nissan Navara Pro-4X Specifications
|engine||2.3L Twin Turbo Diesel|
|power||140kW @ 3750rpm|
|Torque||450Nm @ 1500-2500rpm|
|Drive||Part time 4X4|
|Fuel consumption (ADR combined)||8.1L/100km|
|Fuel consumption (as tested)||9.83L/100km|
|Fuel Consumption (Tow Test)||N/A|
|Price||$61,230 + on-road costs|
|Drive-away price (primary color, automatic)||$65,680|
|Brake||Disc (F) / Drum (R)|
|Suspension||Double wishbone (f) / Multi-link (rear)|
|Warranty||5 years, unlimited km|
|ANCAP Safety||5 stars|
Safety, Value and Features
Things we like.
- A truly practical tray
- Guarantee engine
- Coil spring rear suspension
Not so much
- Weird steering weight
- Noisy cabin
- Awkward sitting position