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Recently I got a fair amount of stick for calling out Toyota on introducing a “new” version of their legendary Land Cruiser – even though the number of updates barely deserved the term “upgrade”. Now it’s Nissan’s turn and luckily they have actually changed a few things in this, the new Patrol station wagon.
The changes are mainly on the inside, but they’re most definitely apparent. Full leather interior and a revamped entertainment system (touch screen full colour navigation with USB and Bluetooth integration) are nice touches that I’m sure Nissan is hoping will tempt a few customers away from the runaway success that their Japanese rival (ie Toyota) has had for years. Lower models now get dual zone climate control as well.
In fact I’m quite baffled why the Patrol has never done as well here. Off-road they’re virtually unbeatable and as for reliability, well there’s a very good reason why the Nissan Patrol comes with a 6 year, 150,000km warranty. Nissan know they don’t break.
In fact Nissan is so confident that they specifically said they didn’t want to touch the “go anywhere” mechanicals that have made the Patrol a favourite for the discerning enthusiast.
Under the skin Nissan has wisely retained the popular and reliable 3 litre four cylinder common rail, direct injection turbo-diesel engine that delivers 118 kW at 3 600 rpm and a solid 371 Nm of torque, which peaks at a low 2 000 rpm. The low-end grunt is ideal for technical off-road work and it gives the Patrol a maximum tow rating of 2.7 ton. This engine has a proven track record and a class-leading fuel consumption figure of 8.1 litres per 100 km on the open road.
The engine delivers power to the rear wheels in 2WD mode and to all four in both low and high range 4WD mode. True to its off-road status, the Nissan Patrol is equipped with heavy-duty springs, telescopic front and rear shocks for 240 mm suspension travel and solid front and rear axles. The Patrol has a massive 135 litre fuel tank and vented brake discs in the front and rear.
Both versions of the Patrol Station Wagon have a rear lockable diff and automatic locking hubs with the option of a manual override. The 3.0 TD Patrol has a five-speed manual gearbox with a high and low range transfer case.
“There are many other unseen benefits to owning a Patrol,” says Birch. “No other vehicle in this segment has a 6-year 150 000 km warranty and a 5-year 90 000 km service plan. What should also be mentioned is that the Patrol is compatible with 500 ppm diesel, which means that overland adventurers can comfortably venture across the border without lugging their fuel with them.”
The Nissan Patrol 3.0 TD GL 4×4 Station Wagon is available at a suggested retail price of R605 000 and service intervals are every 15 000 km.
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