Nissan Note 1.6 16v Acenta R road test report

1.6 16v Acenta R

The Nissan Note is a compact, roomy, well-planned and designed MPV that will be popular with families. The drive is good, enjoyable and running costs will be inexpensive. The Note will compete with the Vauxhall Meriva and Renault Modus in the compact MPV market but may also convert small family car drivers.

Road Test Reports Says4 star rating
A front-facing image of the Nissan Note

Image number 2 of the Nissan NoteImage number 3 of the Nissan NoteImage number 4 of the Nissan Note

Performance Performance - 4 stars

The Nissan Note comes with a choice of three engines - the 1.4- and 1-6-litre petrol engines and the 1.5-litre turbodiesel. The 1.6-litre petrol is a new addition whilst the 1.5-litre comes courtesy of Renault and offers an appealing drive, not as frugal as one would wish but the best choice of the three for everyday driving. The 1.4- and 1.6-litre petrols are energetic around town and both cope admirably on motorways.

Ride & Handling Ride & Handling - 3 stars

The compact dimensions of the Note make it agile, good handling and impressive stability at high speeds further enhance its credentials. The minimal body roll is another plus-point but the ride is overly firm and the Note really feels potholes and bumps at slower speeds.

Build Quality & Reliability Build Quality & Reliability - 4 stars

The Note has a resilient interior but none of the hard plastics seem to match - Nissan may claim this is eclectic but the initial response upon seeing it is mild surprise. The cabin is smart and well ordered. Nissan have developed an excellent reputation for reliability and this will make the Note an attractive proposition. The mechanics of the Note have been tried and tested in other models and the reliability of the Note should be unquestioned.

Safety & Security Safety & Security - 4 stars

Twin front and side airbags come as standard and only the entry level Visia comes without curtain airbags. Those who go for the base Visia can have the curtain airbags added as an option. Stability control is available, but only on the top-of-the-range Tekna. ISOFIX seat mountings are standard throughout the range. Security is impressive, an engine immobiliser and deadlocks are standard on all models.

Space & Practicality Space & Practicality - 5 stars

The Nissan Note has generous headroom thanks to its added height. Leg and shoulder room are also good. In a similar way to the Vauxhall Meriva, the Note has a tardis like feel on the inside, appearing much larger in thanks mainly to the higher roofline. Four adults can be accommodated with ease. Clever design includes a multitude of storage options that would prove invaluable on a family holiday. The spacious boot (437 litres up to 1,332 litres) further adds to the car's appeal to families and the sliding rear bench that toggles rear leg space / boot size seals the deal.

Ownership & Value Ownership & Value - 3 stars

The base model Nissan Note 1.4 Visia is priced just below £10,000 and cheaper than the Ford Fusion and Renault Modus. As an MPV with large amounts of space it offers good value for money but the residual values may not be strong. The 1.5-litre dCi has the lowest CO2 emissions of 136g/km; the 1.6-litre petrol emits 156g/km. The fuel economy is on a level with the Fusion and Modus but the diesel performs poorly in comparison.

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