2013 nissan nv3500 hd sl 12 pass
Altair Club Cars 2013 Nissan NV3500 HD SL 12-Passenger Van Road Test & Review

2013 Nissan NV3500 HD SL 12-Passenger Van Road Test & Review

So you have a family of 12, run a shuttle service, lead a church youth group or you just want the biggest Nissan passenger vehicle sold in America, the Nissan NV is your van. Check out our video as Alex L. Dykes takes the NV 3500 HD SL for a spin, talk engines, check out all twelve of those seats, hop in the trunk and look at the infotainment options.

Well this looks like an enormous black bread van this is the largest passenger vehicle that nissan has ever made for north america this is their latest 12 passenger nissan nv 3500 hd it’s a really long name but it is kind of an interesting alternative to the american full-size van market the first thing you’ll notice about the env are the proportions because this

Isn’t really shaped the same way that a gm or a ford van is shaped and that’s because of this hood up here basically what nissan has done is they’ve taken the titan their full-size pickup truck and they’ve made a van out of it and well that sounds like the same formula that general motors and ford have used in the past what’s important is that nissan left essentially

The hood of the nissan titan in place which means that the engine and the transmission are kind of under the hood if you’re familiar with gm or ford vans you’ll know that the engine doesn’t actually start until right under the windshield meaning that the engine is actually under the floorboards in between the two front seats this does take a toll at inside space

But it also means that things are a lot easier to work on underneath the hood under the hood you’ll find the same two engine options as the nissan nv cargo van starts out with a base four liter v6 engine good for 261 horsepower and we have this five point six liter v8 as ours is equipped here produces 317 horsepower it’s the same engine that’s found in the nissan

Titan and it’s closely related to the infiniti m 56 engines now both engines are mated to a nissan five-speed automatic transmission and it’s rear-wheel drive only in these vans at the moment as you can see this engine is definitely under the hood not under the passenger compartment in the nv van that makes this quite a bit easier to work on so if this was going to

Be your van rather than your company’s van that’s probably something of a consideration although if you’re a large fleet customer it probably doesn’t matter because you’re mechanics are used to working on a vehicle with the engine between the front seats again this is going to be your vehicle or you’re a small company and you do some of the work on your vehicle

Yourself this is an important consideration the first thing you’ll notice when you hop inside an env van is how much more comfortable this is than a ford or gm van and it starts with this driver’s seat which is borrowed essentially from the titan we have a multi-way power driver seat with a manual lumbar support and of course our sl model has a leather interior

And that’s leather rear seats as well as leather front seats which is also something very interesting staying for this market we have a steering wheel borrowed directly from the nissan titan pickup truck which is quite attractive and we have the usual nissan control so everything should be very familiar for you if you have any nissan vehicle headroom is also very

Good at front especially if you’re taller drivers i’m six feet tall and the seat is just about as upright as it gets and i still have about four inches of headroom left cargo and passenger vans have never really been known for interior quality or style and the env doesn’t really depart from that too too much although this is a much nicer interior than the ford or

Gm vans we still have hard plastics on the dash hard plastics here as well we have an interesting novelty however in the env van and that is optional tools own climate control as well as an optional nav system adding to the somewhat premium feel our sl tester is going for we have two-way heated front seats as well as a will 400 watt and 150 watt ac inverter that

Outlet is in the back nissan has put a number of nice touches into the env and their most obvious back here in the passenger area and it starts with these seats these seats are easily removable this is compared to the gm and ford competition because as you can see they’re in modules so this is one seat here and that’s that works for this second row as well as the

Third row they’re set up like this so this seat over here on the left this is a two seat unit right here and then there’s this one seat unit that fills this third seat for this row so if i take this out of the vehicle you can see that it’s fairly light light enough that i can do that by myself you can see that you can actually rearrange these seats to a number of

Different configurations in the vehicle these modules are also identical so this is the same module used in the second row as in the third row as in the fourth row behind me i’m in the third row of the env now as you can see i have about three or four inches of legroom left now again that third seat is still removed from the second row so you can see i also have

About two or three inches of headroom left here in the middle i do have a bit more headroom if i move to the outboard seat here in the env as you can see i have about three or four inches of headroom here and again i’m 6 feet tall let’s move to the fourth row now if you’re back in the fourth row your view is somewhat limited because of course the envy has headrests

For all passengers this is also something that’s a little bit different about the envy versus the ford and gm vans and that is this car has an awful lot of headrests it means that rearward visibility from the driver’s seat is pretty awful honestly i don’t know why there’s a rearview mirror in this car because you can’t actually see anything out the rear windows

Because of these headrests however if you’re going to get rear-ended in a car you want headrests trust me your neck definitely does so this is actually a good thing although it does hamper rearward visibility fortunately nissan counters that with a backup camera available in this particular vehicle and that’s built into that low-cost navigation system up front

One nice touch in the back of the nissan nv van are these seat belts that are actually built into the seat themselves and this is as opposed to the ford and gm vans where they’re attached to the side of the interior of the vehicle and when they’re attached that way rather than to the seat as the nv is then it means getting into the seat behind me you have to trip

Through my seatbelt in order to get to that seat behind me and that is a bit of a pain it also means that when you take these seats out of the vehicle all the seat belts come with them rather than having them dangling from the side of the van since this is a van and not a minivan we have a bit of a cup holder shortage most of the rows only have two cupholders for

There three or four passengers per row overall i give this cargo area a solid 5 out of 10 points in our exclusive trunk comfort index and it loses points primarily because of its size now the rear cargo area just isn’t that large in the env because that large hood occupies a decent amount of what could be used for interior space so you can see this rear seat is

In place this is the largest roller bag you can carry in a domestic flight and well you could stack a number of them up here in the rear it would be pretty tricky to carry 12 people and 12 people’s luggage in the nv unless they packed pretty light now the nv makes up for some of this by having these rear seats that can be removed half at a time this is much easier

Than removing the rear seats in a ford or gm van and because you only have to remove two seats at a time this means that you could turn this into a 10 passenger van with a decent amount of cargo space just by removing one of these two sides of the rear seat making cargo loading easier with the nvr rear doors that open almost completely flat with the side of the env

And don’t interfere with the sliding side door they also have a nice magnetic catch which allows them to stay in this position even if you’re parked on a hill the env comes standard with a base cd playing audio system but this particular unit right here is the optional low cost navigation system this is 950 dollars in the sv model and 850 dollars in the sl model

Because the sl model already comes with bluetooth standard so the sv model buying this gets you bluetooth it gets you the navigation system with traffic interface as well you also get xm satellite radio get the usual am/fm radio cd player and of course an ipod interface with an auxilary input lower in the dash zooming in and out on the screen is very similar to

A handheld navigation system like a tom tom or garmin unit the system does display traffic information on the map as well as you can see the ipod interface on this unit is very snappy it’s also fully featured giving you full access to playlists artists genres etc on your ipod it’s very easy to select songs and start playing on this system now the system doesn’t

Offer voice commands for any of the i device functions the only voice commands that the system provides are the telephone voice command function so if you want to enter an address into the navigation system you have to be parked so you can use the destination entry screen otherwise you’re limited just of your previous destinations and going home if you’re moving

Driving the env is very much like driving a 3500 series pickup truck you know we don’t just have that long hood out in front of us we also have an on-road feel very much like a stiffly sprung pickup truck this also is quite high off the road so if you’re driving down the road you’ll notice this is just a little bit higher than some of the more recent 3500 series

Pickup trucks from ford and general motors as you would expect with something designed to carry 12 americans the springs in the back are pretty stiff and that leads to a somewhat compromising ride if the vehicle is empty in the enve with the v8 engine we have a great engine snarl and zero-to-sixty happens in just over nine and a half seconds although the vehicle

Feels a little bit faster than that number would indicate something that’s also kind of entertaining and and i’ve never seen in a van before is this transmission blips the throttle on down shifts nissan of course implied that they would like their envy returns sign ii side up and therefore we haven’t really put the envy to its absolute handling limits test on these

Winding california mountain roads but the env does feel fairly confident surprisingly so even on california highway 17 which is fairly winding and of course as a 50 mile an hour speed limit because of the envious curb weight nissan is not required to publish an official epa miles per gallon rating for this vehicle but in our testing we’ve been averaging about

Twelve miles per gallon in the city and up to about eighteen or nineteen miles per gallon on the highway going 65 miles per hour with the cruise control set this has been a good for an average of about thirteen point eight miles per gallon overall during our 500 mile week with this vehicle well that may sound bad it is more efficient than driving two six passenger

Vehicles somewhere because of course we can carry 12 passengers in this vehicle the nv s fuel economy is better than ford’s eseries van with their old four-speed automatic but it’s not quite as good as general motors fans when they’re equipped with the 4.8 liter v8 and their new six-speed automatic transmission so who is the nissan nv for well it’s definitely for

That family of eight or nine or ten or twelve that wouldn’t fit in a regular crossover utility vehicle very comfortably because you could fit 12 adults in this vehicle with relative comfort for a decent amount of time and you just couldn’t do that with any kind of crossover you can fit eight people in relative comfort in this vehicle as well and not even the honda

Pilot will really fit eight adults comfortably for any length of time it’s also a good pick if you run a library service and you want to give your customers a little bit more comfort and a little bit more luxury than would be available in a gm or ford van because of course we do have headrests in the nissan nv and we do have leather seats in the rear as well the

Nv is not for you if you value packaging efficiency because of course the nv is longer than the twelve passenger vans from ford and from general motors this nissan van is also not a good fit for you if you need the extra luggage capacity that you can find in the 15 passenger vans from ford and general motors as well the s trim line envy passenger van starts at 30

1990 dollars that’s really not the model you want unless you’re doing library or shuttle service because it really doesn’t have any power accessories no power door locks you don’t get a nav system you don’t get backup sensors etc and a vehicle this big you really need backup sensors which means that the thirty four thousand nine $190 sv model is the first model

That gets you those it also gets power seats and it also gets these six speakers added to that audio system now armed all tested here is the 39,000 $690 starting sl model that gets you the dual zone climate control gets you the leather seats inside and again that’s leather seats in the front and the rear and our particular model tested here is thirty-nine thousand

One hundred fifty dollars after destination and that optional navigation system

Transcribed from video
2013 Nissan NV3500 HD SL 12-Passenger Van Road Test & Review By Alex on Autos

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