DIFFLOCK.com – Nissan Terrano II

10 Jul 2014 | Author: | Comments Off on DIFFLOCK.com – Nissan Terrano II
Nissan Terrano

All Pictures: NISSAN

JAMES TAYLOR

Background

Nissan’s track record in building four-wheel drive vehicles was already good before the company linked up with Ford to build what became the Terrano II when badged as a Nissan or the Maverick when badged as a Ford. The original Nissan Terrano was a quite different vehicle, being essentially a LWB estate-bodied derivative of a Nissan pick-up (not unlike the Toyota 4-Runner in concept), which was also known as a Pathfinder in some markets.

The Terrano II was designed to complement the old Terrano and to give Nissan a contender in the smart, weekend fun three-door 4×4 market where its SWB Patrol was proving too basic to attract some customers. It was also designed to be much more car-like than other Nissan four-wheel drives. In Nissan’s marketing phrase, the new Terrano was an all-roader.

In all important respects, the Nissan Terrano II is identical to the Ford Maverick. A different grille, bumper and spoiler assembly at the front is complemented by appropriate badges; wheels differ and the interior trim materials are different. In the UK, direct clashes were prevented by a careful choice of models, and none of the three versions of the Terrano clashes directly with the Ford models sold in the same market.

In other countries, other versions of the Terrano (and of the Ford) were available.

As far as the UK market is concerned, the Terrano came in both SWB and LWB forms, both with estate-type bodies. Engines are either petrol or turbodiesel and are exactly the same as those in the Maverick, both being of Nissan origin. The Terrano models do not include a petrol-engined SWB, and fit neatly between the base-level and hig h-line Mavericks.

Character summary

The SWB Terrano is a curious hybrid of hot hatch and four-wheel drive machine; despite credible off-road performance, it was very clearly designed to make former car drivers feel at home in their new surroundings. Although interior stowage space for oddments is good, the SWB has the familiar problem of inadequate luggage room behind the rear seats.

The LWB Terrano has the same car-like feel to it and makes a good family estate. However, the occasional seats in the rear are not very comfortable, and the vehicle is best considered as a five-seater with only occasional seven-seat capacity.

Both SWB and LWB Terranos have a rather insubstantial feel to them, and this again makes them feel more like cars than like traditionally rugged four-wheel drives.

Performance summary

Nissan Terrano

The SWB Terrano came only with the turbodiesel engine in the UK, which gives it adequate but not particularly inspiring road performance. However, both this and the turbodiesel LWB make good motorway cruisers. The petrol-engined LWB offers better acceleration and a higher top speed in return for considerably heavier fuel consumption.

All models are very easy to drive, with car-like handlinq and responses. However, the SWB can feel twitchy in corners, and it pitches and bounces more than the smooth-riding LWB.

Off-road, the Terrano is surprisingly able. The greater length of the LWB models obviously makes them rather less agile than the SWB types and the turbodiesel engine is surprisingly lacking in off-boost bottom-end torque. However, all varieties of Terrano are perfectly capable of the tasks likely to be thrown at them in occasional recreational off-roading.

Reliability, weaknesses, spares

The good reliability record of previous Nissan four-wheel drives suggests that serious problems are unlikely to develop. Spares are available through the large Nissan dealership network; there is, however, no aftermarket.

Resale values

Relatively few Terrano Is have filtered down through the secondhand market yet, so it is therefore difficult to say whether resale values are holding up. However, there is no reason to suppose that values will be anything other than firm for the next few years.

Nissan Terrano
Nissan Terrano
Nissan Terrano
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