The South African introduction of the facelifted Nissan Navara is set for April/May 2021, but thanks to the Japanese bakkie's earlier unveiling elsewhere in the world, we can give you an early look at the revised double-cab.
Suffice to say this is the most advanced Navara ever produced. It features a more comfortable and refined interior, an array of Nissan Intelligent Mobility features and safety systems as well as a revised suspension that enhances the double cab’s on- and off-road driving performance.
Bear in mind the example shown here is the specific Pro-4X grade, replete with a plethora of blacked-out exterior elements and Magma red accents, which will be offered in Australia. The SA-spec Navara, which will be produced at Nissan’s Rosslyn plant, will not be identical...
As expected, the newcomer features the brand’s new thick-rimmed “interlock” grille, which debuted on the Titan pick-up in North America, and is embossed with the bakkie’s model name, Navara.
The design of the revised LED headlamps incorporates a quartet of main beam elements and C-shaped running lights, which is complemented by LED tail lamps with distinctive lighting signatures. On the flanks, the Navara features new side steps/running boards, while the rear features a new rear bumper with integrated step and Navara is emblazoned across the width of the rear tailgate.
As for the interior (again, this is specifically for the Australian-market bakkie, but many of the features should be carried over to at least the higher-spec versions of the South African-spec Navara), there are numerous improved occupant comfort and convenience features. What’s more, Nissan has improved in-cabin refinement by virtue of adding more sound-deadening insulation.
Apart from a redesigned multifunction steering wheel and updated instrument cluster (now with a 7-inch higher-resolution TFT driver info display), the Navara now comes equipped with an 8-inch Nissan Connect touchscreen infotainment system with integrated satellite navigation that supports Bluetooth streaming audio, voice recognition, smartphone screen-mirroring technology.
The Navara’s cabin has multiple USB ports, including a Type C port in the console, rain-sensing wipers, speed-sensing door locks and auto-folding mirrors, while the rear seats have upgraded seat cushions and back shapes, as well as a central fold-out armrest with built-in cup holders.
Meanwhile, although the 2.3-litre 4-cylinder twin-turbo diesel engines and their associated transmissions are carried over, the Australian-spec bakkies also feature a tweaked suspension tuning, a strengthened rear axle and a bigger load bed, replete with a flap-type, tie-down hook.
Nissan claims the Navara has an improved payload of up to 1.2 tonnes (dependent on grade) and a 3 500-kg braked towing capability, the latter aided by a new Trailer Sway Control system.
Notably, when in 4-wheel-drive mode, the Navara activates its Active Brake Limited Slip Differential system (ABLS), which manages power delivery and wheel braking between the front and rear axles and between the left and right of the vehicle, depending on traction and speed.
Working with the Vehicle Dynamic Control (VDC) and ABS, this system proves its worth when the Navara’s towing large payloads and driving through extremely low-grip terrain, Nissan says.
Lastly, Nissan has endowed its Australian-spec Navara with a host of advanced Nissan Intelligent Mobility technologies, although it remains to be seen how many will be offered in the South African market. These include Intelligent Forward Collision Warning, -Emergency Braking, -Driver Alertness, -Lane Intervention, -Around View Monitor (with Moving Object Detection), as well as Lane Departure Warning, Blind Spot Warning and Intelligent, and Rear Cross Traffic Alert.
Look out for the local specifications and pricing details for the revised Navara in the South African market early next year. Nissan South Africa has recently undertaken a huge revamp of the manufacturing plant in Rosslyn, Pretoria, where it will now be able to produce the full model lineup of Navaras. This will likely improve the local offering of the bakkie by including more derivatives and choice for buyers, these include single cabs, double cabs and possibly a king cab. There will be a selection of manual and auto versions locally as well as petrol and diesel engine choices.