Nissan NP200 1.5dCi review

‘It’s a new cost-saving option for the light transport and delivery business’ according to Nissan.

When we reviewed the then new NP200 replacement for the venerable Nissan 1400 ‘Champ’ bakkie last year we said the range needs a diesel. Nissan added the 1.5dCi common rail turbodiesel model late last year and we tested it recently.

In a nutshell, I think it will become the new ‘champ’ of smaller bakkies for business owners. It is a real pleasure to drive with more than enough torque and power to haul the 800kg that it can carry. Nissan quotes power output of63kW at 3750rpm and 200Nm of torque at 1900rpm with a diesel consumption of 5.3l/100km in the EU combined test cycle.

Specs

The NP200 dCi is available the base specification level: steel rims, plain black bumpers and sills. It does get driver and passenger crash bags, a rubberised load box and an anti-intrusion bar. Radio is an optional extra.

The High spec version which we drove gets anti-lock brakes with electronic brake pressure distribution, body-colour bumpers and sills, 15″ alloys, a height-adjustable driver’s seat with lumbar support, air-conditioning and a radio/CD player. There is good space behind the seats which are comfortable and seem well put together. The gearbox is a bit mushy and not quite precise at first, but one soon gets used to it. Driving it then becomes a pleasure.

Prices

It’s not exactly cheap, but because its actually a ¾ ton bakkie able to carry 800 kg, has a larger loadbay than the true ½ ton bakkies and enjoys a much roomier cabin you should perhaps factor in the added versatity. As a comparison Nissan’s own one ton NP300 2,5 Tdi costs R177 000 but uses more fuel of course.  The cheapest ½ ton diesel is the Ford 1,4 TDCi at R141 250, but it must be said it carries less and has 40 Nm less torque. The cheapest NP200 is the 1,6 8 valve petrol model at R104 900.

It boils down to  choosing between petrol and diesel and the price difference of over R30 000.

Prices are R143 600 for the 1.5dCi Base model – and the fully equiped model,the 1.5dCi High is R174 000. Service plan is an extra R11 058.

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