The Nissan NV400 is a spacious and modern commercial van that has an offside loading door and ABS brakes included. This Nissan business van leasing comes in a range of colours including solid blaze, metallic pearl black and a solid citrus yellow. You can also add a dark grey trim cloth to your Nissan NV400 van lease with Leasing Options.
It’s a very competitive platform indeed, up with the class leaders when it comes to practicality and running costs. To this, the NV400 adds sharp pricing, distinctive looks, a huge range of model options and some clever hi-tech gadgetry.
I always look forward to driving a particularly large van. You perch higher up than you would in any SUV, bearing down on other road users with purpose. The NV400 sets you in an even loftier position than you would have been seated in its predecessor, the Interstar, and this, along with revisions to the windscreen and side windows, provides a commanding view ahead. Under the bonnet, the engine’s the same whichever model you choose, a direct injection four cylinder 2. 3-litre dCi diesel unit, though you can choose between three engine outputs – 100, 125 or 150bhp – and select between either front or rear wheel drive.
On the move, the gearbox could be slicker and the engine a little quieter, you’re immediately impressed with the van’s composure, both around corners and over poor surfaces. Rear wheel drive makes this vehicle especially manoeuvrable. It’s true that the steering is a little on the light side for motorway work, but you appreciate that when trying to thread this large vehicle through tight city streets. Or indeed, exercising the tight turning circle, which can be as tight as 12m on entry-level versions.
This NV400 does have a distinctive look. The styling was completed at Nissan Design Europe in Paddington and engineered by Nissan’s Technical Centre in Bedfordshire, so there is a distinctly UK-based approach to the whole thing. A thick bumper adds aggression to the front end, curling up at the edges to protect the corners from knocks. There are also useful steps cut into the front bumper so that owners can get a leg-up when cleaning the windscreen. Side rubbing strips are a boon along the flanks too.
And inside? Well, the cabin isn't anything too exciting, but the stubby gear lever that sprouts from the fascia falls nicely to hand amidst the usual sea of tough and durable elephant grey plastics. There isn’t quite the same kind of soft touch, granite build quality you’d find in more expensive rivals but fit and finish has certainly improved over what was provided in the old Interstar and what this model lacks in tactile feel, it more than makes up for in practical touches. Both seat and wheel can be height-adjustable and there’s now a minefield of storage options inside the cab (150 litres in total), from the usual door bins, overhead shelf, cup holders, chilled glove boxes and cubby holes to compartments for laptops and sunglasses, plus an optional clipboard that folds out of the dash for holding invoices, maps or delivery notes.
This is a bigger cab than anything Nissan has previously provided in this segment, which means that there’s now more comfortable room for three, though the centre seat passenger’s space is still rather narrow with kneeroom slightly compromised by the cupholders and storage provided by the two centre-mounted bins. There’s thinner padding for the middle seat too. Of course, most of the time, this central berth won’t be occupied, in which case you can fold it down and use it as a table, complete with cup holders.
Not quite so neat is the positioning of the grab handle you grasp on entering the cab, stuck above the door opening rather than being more naturally placed on the A-pillar. Which shouldn’t detract from the fact that overall, this is a beautifully thought out cabin. Highlights include optional touches like the huge, split storage area under the passenger seats, accessible simply by flipping up the cushions. Then there’s the way the centre seat backrest folds down to create a table that uniquely swivels towards the driver. And the sat nav screen that folds out of the roof, incorporates real time traffic information to guide you round jams and includes MP3 and Bluetooth compatibility.
Whatever NV400 model you choose, you can expect to find features like a CD stereo, electric windows, heated electric mirrors, remote central locking, Bluetooth connectivity, ABS brakes, a driver’s airbag and a full steel bulkhead. If you’re city-based, you might also want to consider the option of a robotised manual ‘box which does away with all that left foot clutch work.
It makes sense to buy a really large LCV. After all, specify one of these correctly and it could carry most of what you’d normally need a smoky full-sized lorry to shift. And even if you don’t have really huge loads to carry, running cost advances in this market segment mean that it won’t really cost much more to run something like this than would be required to operate a van from the next class down.
However you specify it, the NV400 will give you a lot more carriage capacity than something like that. But then, you could say that of any large van. This one though, gives itself a fighting chance in this tight market segment thanks to sharp pricing, clever design and thoughtful equipment provision. The Nissan Connect by Tom Tom sat nav set-up for example, might easily sell you this vehicle all on its own. This then, is the substance behind this Japanese maker’s claim to a much bigger slice of the LCV market. And on this showing, it’s a claim other rivals will have to take very seriously indeed.