I've had the Navara for 4 months and it has done its job. The fundamentals are good but there are some frustrating shortcomings without the car.
- the 2.3 litre is a bit noisy but likes to rev and has plenty of power
- fuel economy is reasonable
- highway driving is a pleasure
- headlights are as good as I've had on a ute
- low waist line means it's easy to work from the tray
- the paint seems very soft and marks easily
- the compass in the mirror is a pain in the butt, have to turn it off at every key turn
- night driving is made frustrating bi the brightness of the dash, even with the centre turned down the backlight is bright. This is even worse when the fuel light comes on and you get a hazard light and warning light
- fuel light comes on at 1/4 tank (200km plus range) and the fuel burn rate is well and truely out (15%) (average fuel is around 9.5/100km at pump, trip computer gives a reading of around 8.2/100km). The range till empty drops out with about 120-150km of range. In short I use the trip meter as the measure. This lack of an accurate fuel readout is ver frustrating.
- the steering is not very responsive but only an issue in a car park.
- the back seat does not fold forward like earlier Navaras making it near impossible to fit covers and store items behind the seat.
- rear tie downs in tray are rubbish they are to high up and bend easily.
- the quality of the centre console plastics is poor with the screen and gloss finishes easily marked.
- the demister for the vehicle is as bad as I have experienced in any car with air conditioning. Allow 10minutes on a frosty morning
- ok I'm getting to the nitty gritty but these are details that should be sorted.
- can't wind Windows after ignition is shutdown, not even straight after turning ignition off
- when the centre display is turned off it doesn't light up for a few seconds to show what function you have selected, ie volume changes and radio station selection.
- the barell for the ignition key is flush with the column and is not light so is abut of a pain to find in the dark.
- the stud pattern is unique to Nissan so can't interchange wheels with my trailer .... Wtf were they thinking
- the gearing in the manual I feel is too low for highway driving (2300 @110km)
I had a 2004 Petrol Rodeo prior to this and while the Navara is much more refined I find its shortcomings a frustration that has turned me off Nissan, it is an upgrade but a dissapointing one. My perception of this Nissan is the car is reasonably thought out but the frustration is in the detail. I shouldn't have to rely on the km driven to determine if I need fuel, I shouldn't have to turn the compass off at every turn of the key. I should be able to demist the windscreen in seconds not minutes (a result of all the testing in Thailand I assume). I shouldn't have to retrofit tie down points. 6 months of day/night testing in Australia would have identified most of these shortfalls.
It's not a bad ute but I think there are better choices on the market