New Nissan cargo vehicle a true mobile workshop
by Mike Ouellette
Vast work area and engine-forward design make the sector's newest entrant a workhorse
TORONTO—The Nissan NV, Nissan’s first production commercial vehicle (CV), will hit the North American market in Spring, 2011. It features a rugged ladder frame and roof rack mounting brackets on a uniquely styled body.
The first production models in Nissan’s new North American CV lineup are the 2012 Nissan NV1500, NV2500 and NV3500. Operators can choose between a 4.0-litre V6 and 5.6-litre V8 engines and two body styles, Standard Roof (all models) and High Roof (NV2500 and NV3500 only).
The high Roof models offer a stand-up walkthrough/work cargo area.
“It’s been too many years since any manufacturer in this segment has taken a ’clean sheet’ look at the needs of owners and operators in the CV segment,” said Joe Castelli, vice-president, Commercial Vehicles and Fleet, Nissan North America, Inc. (NNA). “We’ve invested more than five years researching the comfort, style and smart functionality demands that will enable business owners to accomplish more throughout their day. We plan on coming out of the box with segment-busting vehicles, so customer input was essential.”
Seating and Standing
Nissan claims commercial van owners are the least satisfied of any vehicle segment, with many van owners disposing of their vehicles in favor of light duty trucks despite the compromise of convenience and utility. In developing the new Nissan NV, one of the overarching goals was to combine pickup truck-like comfort, interior amenities and drivability with a cargo van’s capacity and security.
The interior offers wide front doors, adjustable bucket seats with large armrests and a truck-like driving position. The available removable centre console contains integrated storage features. Fold-down passenger seats add worktable functionality.
All of this is possible because of the van’s conventional truck engine layout with the engine and transmission set ahead of the firewall/A-pillar.
This frees up space under the instrument panel and between the seats, and provides under-hood access to the entire engine for service and maintenance.
“From the seats forward the NV looks, acts and feels like a pickup. You don’t have to take apart the interior to access the engine and you don’t have to worry about tucking your work boots into a cramped footwell,” said Castelli. “But, make no mistake, behind the seats the NV is pure, practical van.”
The NV’s cargo area measures 3.8 cargo floor length (without the centre console) and 1.7m of maximum cargo floor width. Standard Roof models have 1.417m of cargo area height, while the High Roof model provides a maximum 1.9m of cargo room height.
The standard roof models fit in most garages, car washes and fast food drive-through lanes.
The new Nissan NV was also designed to accommodate aftermarket outfitting and modifications. The roof rack mounting brackets are designed for various rack systems without piercing holes in the roof, which can lead to corrosion and water leaks. The available “upfitter pre-wiring” allows easy access into the electrical system.
The 2012 Nissan NV will be offered in three well-equipped models, the NV1500, NV2500 and NV3500. All three models will be available with the Standard Roof, while the High Roof body will be offered in the NV2500 and NV3500 models only.
The new Nissan NV will be manufactured in Canton, Miss.