When you drive up the N7 to Malmesbury past Edgemead, you can smell where the cows go when the cows have to go. It is very rural. There are lots of bakkies as well. That got me thinking about who drives what and why. There is a perception that one or two brands dominate the bakkie market in South Africa and that farmers who have to transport the result after the cows have gone will choose one of these bakkies. But in this particular corner of hayseed heaven, I noticed a sizable percentage of Nissan Navara bakkie – a name I always associated more with city folk, with comfort and a bit of luxury rather than transporting cow-doings.
I did a bit of detecting and found a few interesting points which may explain why the Navara bucks the perceived wisdom of who drives what and why.
A Better Ride
Local is lekker, and the Nissan Navara is built right here at the Nissan Rosslyn plant in Pretoria (Snor City). The Navara was introduced here in 2017, which is not that long ago, and it has been continuously upgraded since then.
The Navara also gives you better handling and a more comfortable ride with coil spring rear suspension, a step up from the traditional leaf springs used by other popular brands.
Of course, the 2.5 twin-turbo diesel gives you all the grunt you will ever need, no matter what you have to transport.
A Brand New Navara
Then Inspector Clouseau here found out that Nissan is releasing a brand new Navara. Now. End of June.
The first interesting fact about the new Nissan Navara is that it will come in 17 variants – petrol vs diesel, 2×4 vs 4×4, twin vs single cab, auto vs manual. You can decide whether you have to go to the mall or haul the muck and choose which one is for you.
All but the basic workhorse models get chassis and suspension tweaks for a more refined ride, less vibration and better shock absorber damping. The new dual-rate five-link coil suspension takes the bump and grinds out of uneven and ‘sinkplaat’ roads.
The old 2.3-litre twin-turbo diesel – the main powerplant of the current Navara – has been replaced by a 2.5-litre single turbo diesel, still giving 140kW and 450Nm. The payload has been upped by 100kg and the sides of the load box are also higher.
All models come with ABS, brake assist and dual front airbags, with the higher-spec adding features like side airbags, stability control and reversing cameras.
The most surprising part of the new Navara is that the price of all models has dropped between 4.4% and 11.5%, except for the two top-of-the-range models.
So, with so many new variants and such improvements, a plethora of price points and all the rest, why not have a look at all the options you can choose from in the new Nissan Navara range?