Navara now better to drive
Australia may not be Nissan’s biggest ute market but it is one of its most knowledgeable. That is hardly surprising given our love affair with utes and the remarkable fact it leads the pack when it comes to new vehicle purchases.
It’s no secret Australians expect a lot from their utes — work vehicle and leisure-mobile, family carrier, weekend warrior, 4WD-adventurer, dump hauler.
But we also want a vehicle with creature comforts and performance cred.
Nissan has updated the Navara to iron out suspension bugbears, largely based on Australian feedback, and we took the dual-cab ST home to see if they hit the mark.
The Navara keeps its chunky muscular style with a no-nonsense nose, bold wheel arches and carefully sculpted tweaks to add a touch of softness. Interestingly, the change to the rear suspension is visible in the flesh, with the tray of the dual-cab ute sitting noticeably higher, rather than dipping slightly like the model it replaces.
The interior tells a familiar tale of function and simplicity, with the Navara featuring an uncluttered dash, effective instrumentation and uncomplicated controls.
The 7.0-inch colour touchscreen feels a bit on the small side but there are enough storage options to keep most people happy.
There are reasonable comforts for those in the second row too.
It is a touch tighter back there than the accommodations in some competitors and the seat feels slightly shorter but the kids are hardly going to complain — they will be too busy playing with the sliding glass window that gives access to the tub.
Rear air-vents are a considerate inclusion, while new IsoFix clips in the outer rear seats reinforces the family-friendly brief.
The tray in the ST is long and deep, with the wheel arches not detracting from its usefulness.
It is as adept at carrying camping gear and the family’s bicycles as it is at hauling tools and, yes, those pesky palm fronds, so happy days.
Tonneau covers (soft and hard) are an optional extra but I would definitely spring for one so at least you can carry stuff without it all getting rained on.
This Navara has a towing capacity of 750kg (unbraked) and 3500kg (braked) with a gross vehicle weight of 2910kg. The towbar kit is an additional $1000.
The Navara received a five-star ANCAP rating in 2015, and in addition to seven airbags, traction control and EBD, the 4WD also gets a Redarc brake controller for towing and hillstart assist.
The updated Nissan Navara.