Smooth ride, responsive on the road and eye-catching are just the start of what the Nissan Kicks brings to the St. Maarten roadways. The newest addition to Saint Martin Cars inventory, Nissan Kicks sports a striking design that starts with the dramatic styling of the V-motion front grill and distinctive boomerang-shaped LED signature lamps and continues with the sleek floating roof design and forward pitch elevated stance. In this vehicle, you will not go unnoticed.

The new vehicle attracted the attention of admirer Gabriella Evertsz, who was curious about its colour. Stopping for lunch while giving it a test drive, she said, “It is eye catching, I love the blue, the style and the shape.” Gabriella, however, added that her friend doesn’t like the shape of the vehicle’s rear. “But after we walked around to the back of the vehicle and opened the trunk, she then realized that the shape of the Nissan Kicks allowed for a roomier carrying capacity. After taking a look at the inside, she declared that she really likes it. She plans to attend Nissan Summer’s On Us Auto Show, which is slated for today from 10:30am until 5:00pm.”

Saint Martin Cars Marketing Manager Stephanie Vialenc said that today’s customers will be able to access the best sale options at their Nissan Cole Bay location. RBC will be on location to offer 100 percent financing to qualified buyers who will get to enjoy one of three saving options.

Nissan has the crossover vehicle market covered like no one else, with the Juke, Qashqai, and X-trail taking care of the compact crossover class and the Murano and Pathfinder catering to those who are looking for a bit more space. While that’s a portfolio that should ideally keep any manufacturer content, the carmaker seems to think otherwise. Nissan surprised many when it announced the decision to go ahead with production of its newest vehicle – Kicks. So this is evidently a model in which Nissan sees huge potential, despite the fact that there could be overlap with others in the line-up.

The Kicks shares the V platform with Juke, but at 4,295mm is 160mm longer. However, it falls slightly short of the Qashqai’s 4,377mm overall length. So essentially, in size, it sits in between its two siblings, with the pricing that starts at US $21,500 for the Advance model and US $23,000 for the Exclusive model.

Standard features are rear spoiler, roof rails, Bluetooth hands-free, Steering mounted controls, Front driver and passenger airbags, Vehicle Dynamic Control with Hill Start Assist, Tire Pressure Monitor System, Front Disc / Rear Drum brakes and Active Chassis Control.

While the top trims of the Exclusive model includes Leather seats, 17-inch alloy wheels, Navigation with seven-inch touch screen, Audio system with six speakers and USB port, Side and Curtain airbags, Around-view monitor with Moving Object Detection and six airbags.

There are a few deviations on the dashboard between the two models. The backup camera on the Exclusive model adds tremendous comfort. With all the newest motor vehicle software, a new owner is well advised to read up on the specifics. With the push button start, especially keen attention should be placed on knowing the difference between the off and standby modes. This could mean the difference between leaving your car radio on and off.

The console is left clean as the seven-inch touch screen takes over the task of multimedia controls. The cabin could do with more storage and a rear air-conditioning vent, though cooling is as expected in a Nissan…very chill.

Designers have managed to squeeze the maximum out of the crossover’s relatively modest dimensions, leaving generous amounts of head, shoulder and legroom in the front and back. The steering is light and easy while driving around town, and weighs up moderately as the vehicle gathers speed with power that comes from the sole 1.6-litre four-cylinder engine. Once you’re cruising, it is very quiet and the claimed “0-62mph time is 12 seconds” feels about right.   

The Kicks hill-climbing ability was proven St. Maarten worthy with an easy ascent of Old Cake House Road. There was no resistance and the vehicle offered great control as we descended. This ride would allow the most conservative of drivers a glimpse in the thrill of climbing as many hills as a driver can find.

A couple of subtle creases and shark fin wheel arches add character to its profile, while the rear is livened up by the boomerang-ish taillights. Overall, it looks even more upmarket than the larger Qashqai and better than most of its rivals.

Dynamically, it is mostly eye-catching. Wheel sizes are 16 or 17 inches, so they fill the arches nicely without being over-large, and the ride is generally composed. There is a moderate amount of body lean ,and body control is fine. Ours was a fairly short test drive, but I’ll admit I didn’t detect any flaws in the design and control of Nissan Kicks.

On the upside, Nissan Kicks offers agile handling, practical space, rare camera view, advanced driving assistance as standard and reasonable pricing. While on the flipside, some of the material used on the inside gives the feel of plastic trims.

Nissan’s new cabin is appealing for the most part with a gliding wing dash design and flat bottomed steering wheel. The somewhat plastic-like finishing on the dash and door sides is noticeable.

Nissan has put a lot of energy, thought and time into giving the Kicks a chiselled finish and a faux carbon fibre appearance maybe to keep the weight on the low side and give great gas mileage. Stephanie said buyers, who put a lot of emphasis on picking the perfect colour, can choose from orange, blue, red, grey or white.

For more information about the Nissan Kicks or any of the brands Saint Martin Cars carry, as well as real time quotes on all their car models, visit https://www.saintmartincars.sx.

By Rajesh Chintaman

 

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