Nissan hit the nail on the head with the Navara. The most recent update has the midsize pickup looking like it’s ready to take on any challenges in style. While we’re up in arms about how good the top-of-the-line PRO 4X looks, there is also something to be said about the midrange variants, especially the 4x2 VE Calibre AT priced at just P1,459,000.
As a mid-ranger, it’s impressively specced, and not to be biased, but it was good enough that one of us in the AutoDeal team actually bought one. Who that is, we won’t reveal, but there is no denying that there is value to be had in even the entry-level automatic trim of the Navara.
Looks like top-spec variants
If you park next to a PRO 4X, you’ll definitely be able to see the differences, however, if you park next to a VL variant of the Navara, then you might have your work cut out for you. The VE gets features that not a lot of mid-range rivals get. When you’re shopping for a middle-of-the-road model, you will typically see that the headlights are halogen, the paint is usually a blander hue, and you don’t get the biggest wheels.
The Navara is different, at least in this iteration. Instead of getting halogens, you get full-on multi-beam LED headlights that make the pickup look every bit as dapper as the VL or PRO-4X, and speaking of the PRO 4X, you even get the same 17-inch wheel design, but the paint is not black. You also miss out on the red accents that give the idea of sportiness, and the roof rails, but at least you inch closer to the look of the VL variant family, which is undeniably classy for a pickup truck.
Forward collision mitigation in a mid-ranger?
Yes, that’s a safety feature currently present in even the entry-level automatic of Nissan. We’re very pleased with the feature set in the Navara VE because of this. Typically, you will find that there are no electronic safeties found in mid-range variants save for traction control and perhaps stability control. However, the Navara has forward collision mitigation and even a driver attention alert that will ring you up in your cabin if the car senses that you’re dozing off behind the wheel—neat stuff.
Apart from that, you get the full suite of safety features that don’t only include 2 airbags. Instead, you get up to 6 in the Navara counting the dual front pair, the side pair, and the curtain pair. If you ask us, the airbags alone are a luxury that most midrangers cannot afford, and we’re more than happy to see it make an appearance in the middle-spec Navara.
2.5-liters of power
To save on costs and to make the more expensive models more appealing, you will find that most brands slap on a weaker engine at the entry level. However, that’s still not the case with the Navara, as the same 2.5-liter turbo diesel engine found on the top-tier variants makes an appearance on the VE.
With 187 hp and 430 Nm of torque, the pickup is no slouch in the performance department. It comes with a 4x2 system only, however, but if you’re buying a pickup to be a daily-driven hauler that doesn’t go through extreme terrain, then the VE is pretty much perfect for your needs.
Many pickups stand out based on their technology packs. In fact, the PRO 4X and VL variants of the Navara have a tech pack that we feel is one of the best in the business. However, you won’t find the latest and greatest in the mid-range, and you instead have to settle a bit and give up a few things to make your budget work for you.
That’s not as true for the VE, as you get a reverse camera along with a capable 8-inch touchscreen infotainment system that Nissan likes to call N-Connect. The features are part of their Intelligent Mobility suite, and while we don’t get the fabled Around View Monitor in the VE variant, we at least get the features that are standard on top-of-the-line models from competitors minus a few of the fancier additions like adaptive cruise control among other things.
Coil-springs? Coil springs.
We don’t usually make a big fuss about coil springs on most cars, but we do make note of it if it is found on a pickup truck. See, coils are not as strong as leaf springs, and the use of coils in a pickup truck will hamper its ability to haul. However, Nissan threw the engineering book at the problem and fitted the Navara with coil springs for all the variants in the lineup. You don’t have to go up a tier to get more comfort out of your ride.
The result is that you get what is arguably the most comfortable pickup truck in the market. Especially on PPVs, you will usually find coils in the more expensive SUVs, but to hit two birds with one stone, the Navara has the same coil setup as the Terra. Heck, you don’t even have to sacrifice your load-bearing capability as the Navara still can haul a ton without complaint.
If you feel that the Navara does it for you in the budget that you have to buy a pickup, fret not as you can get one for yourself immediately using our ‘Buy Online’ feature. Reserve a unit today in the color that you want in the comfort of your own home.
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