Brian Joss –
Times have changed since Nissan launched its first Patrol – the 4W60 – 64 years ago, but one thing has not: the durability of the Nissan Patrol off-roader.
It is in response to the feedback from Patrol owners that Nissan has introduced a range of extra creature comforts to their Patrol Station Wagon 3.0 TD 4×4 GL, all without touching the go-anywhere mechanicals that have made it an overland favourite.
The most visible change is the revamped interior, which now features full grain leather upholstery on all five seats. These specifications bring the GL-model closer to the range-topping 4.8 litre GRX version of the Patrol Station Wagon.
The new in-car entertainment system on the Nissan Patrol 3.0TD GL and 4.8 GRX features a touch screen full colour navigation with USB and Bluetooth integration, making the daily commute as exciting as the overland expedition, while the GL now also has a two-zone climate control system as standard.
“Competitor offerings in this very technical segment of the off-road market have always created the impression that toughness is synonymous with a sparse and Spartan interior. We have changed that with the Patrol 3.0 GL ,” says Graeme Birch, General Manager, Marketing at Nissan South Africa.
On the outside, the Patrol retains the hardy look that its customers love, complete with sloped front bumper with its impressive 37 degree approach angle and the front and rear solid axles, which make storming dunes and fording rivers so easy.
Also retained is the bonnet-mounted air scoop that feeds a standard intercooler, the electrically operated chrome side mirrors and the dual side-opening rear doors. The full-sized spare wheel is mounted on the rear doors, which is a boon for anyone who has experienced a flat tyre in deep mud or soft sand.
The range of additional creature comforts makes the Patrol one of the best equipped technical off roaders on the market. The Patrol already features standard equipment such as power points in the front and back of the vehicle and a cavernous 2 226 litre loading area.
Under the skin Nissan has retained the reliable 3 litre four cylinder common rail, direct injection turbo-diesel engine that delivers 118 kW at 3 600 rpm and a solid 371 Nm of torque, which peaks at a low 2 000 rpm.
Both versions of the Patrol Station Wagon have a rear lockable diff and automatic locking hubs with the option of a manual override. The 3.0 TD Patrol has a five-speed manual gearbox with a high and low range transfer case and despite its long 2 970 wheelbase, the Patrol still manages a break-over angle of 27 degrees and it matches the rugged Patrol Pick-up’s fording depth of 700 mm without a snorkel.
“There are many other unseen benefits to owning a Patrol,” says Birch. “No other vehicle in this segment has a 6-year 150 000 km warranty and a 5-year 90 000 km service plan. What should also be mentioned is that the Patrol is compatible with 500 ppm diesel, which means that overland adventurers can comfortably venture across the border without lugging their fuel with them.”
The Nissan Patrol 3.0 TD GL 4×4 Station Wagon is available at a suggested retail price of R605 000 and service intervals are every 15 000 km.