The new Nissan Navara has officially landed on Philippine soil and boasts a bold new design. It now comes with a much more muscular appearance than before, and even highlights a new top-of-the-line model. With that said, the model lineup has also been refreshed and streamlined, while still maintaining its ability to cater to multiple segments of the market. The popular pickup truck now comes with four distinct trim levels, making it easier for a prospective customer to choose a model. With that said, here is a quick guide to help you choose which Nissan Navara model fits you best.
EL - Still gets the basics done right
As with most refreshes, even the entry-level gets some attention. The same can be said with the Nissan Navara EL, as it, too, has gotten a few upgrades over its predecessor. While it still retains the 2.5-liter turbo diesel engine that pushes out 160hp and 406 Nm of torque, its appearance has been updated along with the rest of the model lineup. It still shifts via a 6-speed manual transmission and is still only available as a rear-wheel-drive model. It retains the 17-inch steel wheels but does come with the revised bed and suspension found in the higher-end models. The utilitarian focus is also further retained, as the vehicle only comes with halogen multi-reflector headlights—they’re functional and get the job done.
On the inside, the EL gets audio controls along with a 2-DIN radio that comes with Bluetooth and USB connectivity. This covers the basics that one might need when it comes to entertainment in their vehicle. The interior has also been retained from the older model, still coming in with durable materials all around. As this is the workhorse variant in the model lineup, fabric is the only available seating material. The fabric material itself is durable and can withstand the daily rigors of being used in a work or fleet vehicle.
Safety-wise, Nissan has standardized a lot of features for the Navara, as all models including the EL come with driver, front passenger, side, and curtain airbags. The Anti-lock Brake System (ABS) along with Electronic Brakeforce Distribution (EBD) also has a standard feature across the lineup. Even the 4-wheel active brake limited slip (ABLS) and trailer stability assist system have been added as a feature found in all variants.
VE Calibre - The new middle child
In the previous iteration of the Navara, the EL Calibre was the middle variant of the lineup. For its refresh, however, the Nissan Navara VE Calibre now carries that designation. As a step above the EL variant, the VE carries with it a lot more features. It now comes with the option of the more powerful 2.5-liter turbo diesel engine that pushes out 187hp and 450 Nm of torque and can be had with either a 7-speed automatic transmission or a 6-speed manual in its VE MT 4x4 drivetrain form. It is important to note that the lower output 2.5-liter motor is also available for the variant, but only for its 4x2 manual transmission version.
On the outside, the VE Calibre gets a couple of upgrades, as it now comes with the quad-LED projector headlights of the higher models. It also comes with LED daytime running lights (DRLs) along with LED fog lamps and LED taillights. As a refreshed model, the wheels are also new to the vehicle with a set of 17-inch alloys. Besides this, it carries over much of the same body and design language as the EL model.
Moving into the cabin of the vehicle, you are greeted by a familiar sight. Fans of the Navara will find everything they need to be in the same place. While the durable fabric is still the material of choice for this variant, Nissan has given the VE an 8-inch infotainment system that now comes with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. This variant is also where the 6-speaker sound system becomes standard across all models, along with an automatic dual-zone climate control system. A reverse camera is also a standard feature for this trim-level. All in all, the VE Calibre trim offers a diverse range of choices for the prospective customer as it covers all bases and comes well equipped for its attractive and competitive price point.
VL - The lifestyle-oriented model
As the former top-of-the-line model, the Nissan Navara VL Calibre still has a lot to offer. As a lifestyle-oriented variant, it comes with all the bells and whistles available to the model. The full range of the Nissan Intelligent Mobility safety suite is also standard for this variant of the Navara, which gives it driver attention alert, blind-spot warning, rear cross-traffic alert, lane departure warning, high beam assist, and an around-view monitor.
On the outside, the VL looks much the same as its lower-variant stablemates with a couple of exceptions. The roof rails have been painted silver and the bed at the back now comes with a utili-track channel system to make it easier to tie down cargo. To help set it apart from the rest of the lineup, Nissan has also given the VL its own unique set of alloy wheels.
The cabin of the VL also retains the same look and feel as the other models, however, leather is now the choice of seating material for the vehicle. Power adjustability has also been added for the driver’s seat. Just like the VE, the VL is available as either a 4x2 or as a 4x4. It is important to note that for the four-wheel-drive models, the "Calibre" moniker has been dropped, as such the model is referred to as the Nissan Navara VL 4x4 AT or MT. The more powerful 2.5-liter engine has also been retained, as all models from the VE 4x4 MT upwards now push out 187hp and 450 Nm of torque. Transmission options have also been carried over, as the 4x4 models can be had with either a 7-speed automatic or 6-speed manual transmission. The 4x2 model, on the other hand, is only available with an automatic transmission. All in all, the lifestyle-oriented VL still offers a lot while maintaining the off-road capabilities that the Navara is known for.
PRO-4X - Off-road ready and more
Moving on to the new top-of-the-line model and you have the Nissan Navara PRO-4X. While it retains much of what the VL variant has to offer, it comes in a more rugged and off-road-ready package. The model has been equipped with a different set of wheels, all-terrain tires, along with blacked-out accents that help emphasize the rough and tough looks of the pickup truck. The front grille has been de-chromed and now comes in black with an orange Nissan logo. Over fenders have also been added to give the vehicle a more imposing stance along with black roof rails and gloss black side mirrors. Altogether, these additions emphasize the off-road-ready nature of the vehicle.
The interior has also been updated to come with more sporty black accents. The seat material now comes in leather with PRO-4X stitching, and the inside door handles have been changed to black instead of chrome. Aside from this, all other features from the VL have been carried over, including the Nissan Intelligent Mobility safety suite. If you want an off-road-ready and imposing Navara, then the PRO-4X is the ideal match for you as it continues the sportiness of the nameplate, all while adding a much tougher look and feel to it.
Among all the available trim-levels that the Nissan Navara has, the VL and PRO-4X still come out on top in terms of what the vehicle can fully offer you. These models come with all the latest available features that Nissan has, and with all the convenience and comfort features as well. The PRO-4X takes the off-road-ready approach and offers prospective buyers a tough-looking pickup truck that is ready to travel off the beaten path at any time. The VL, on the other hand, offers buyers a more subdued look for those who want a more lifestyle-oriented vehicle that can also haul cargo and have the option of four-wheel-drive.
For those who are looking for a more affordable variant, the VE is there as a great model to get, as it offers a balanced option for the vehicle. It comes with a couple of the features of the higher-end variants that make the pickup truck easier to use, and also comes with the option of getting the stronger 2.5-liter turbo diesel engine. For those who are working on a budget but still want the comfort and sporty feel that the Navara offers, then this is the go-to variant.
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