If you’re out there for a brand new crossover beneath $20,000 (or any new car, for that matter), your selections are fairly darn restricted. That’s to not say there aren’t just a few compelling choices in that value vary, and the Nissan Kicks would possibly simply match that finances for the bucks. The base Kicks ’S’ with an MSRP of $18,870 comes commonplace with Cruise Control, Automatic Emergency Braking, and a bunch of different security options that helped this mannequin garner a coveted ‘Top Safety Pick’ award from the IIHS. However, for those who’re prepared to step as much as the mid-level trim Kick SV that simply crests twenty grand, you additionally get bigger 17” alloy wheels, Apple CarPlay, and some additional security bells and whistles love blind-spot monitoring and rear cross-traffic alert.
Our take a look at automobile was the top-of-the-line SR mannequin that got here geared up commonplace with much more security options, sportier seats, and a leather-wrapped steering wheel. Interestingly, you can’t get a sunroof on the Kicks, however ours was heavily-optioned with an Exterior Package, snazzy 2-tone black and white paint, black wheels, additional lightning options, rear roof spoiler, an Interior Electronics Package and the Premium Package, which heats the seats and upgrades the stereo. Of these added options, I’d say the one most noteworthy is the Bose Personal Plus Audio system, which features a headrest speaker, and truthfully, the sound rivals rather more costly OEM choices. If you’re an audiophile, it is a must-tick field included within the Premium Package.
So how does it drive? The 1.6 liter DOHC engine has sufficient pep to maintain up with visitors simply tremendous, however with a mere 125 horsepower, you received’t be profitable any drag races. The excellent news is that the cabin is way quieter than you’d count on from a car at this value level, except you do select to burry that throttle pedal. I’m not an enormous fan of CVT transmissions, however the Kicks does an excellent job of easily shifting you from level A to level B, and helps the Kicks obtain it’s stellar gas financial system. We averaged 33 – 35 mpg, and if it wasn’t for the smallish 11-gallon tank, you may seemingly drive all month on a single refill. The suspension was compliant and tuned for consolation over sportiness, however the Kicks chassis appears to work in concord general. It’s mission is to get you there easily and effectively, and it does that properly.
And as soon as we get within the automobile? The inside is a mixture of arduous plastic and material surfaces, however with our leather-wrapped steering wheel, shift knob, and non-compulsory middle armrest, all of the touchpoints really feel proper whenever you’re behind the wheel. The charcoal-colored ‘sport’ seats are comfy and supportive, and regardless of the subcompact class designation, there’s loads of room for four adults to kick out their toes within the Kicks. Yes, it is a very roomy small car inside, and even boasts over 25 toes of cargo house within the again. The S, SV, and SR all function a 7” touchscreen, and although the infotainment system will not be probably the most intuitive on the market, the Bluetooth connection and telephone pairing have been very simple.
How to sum up the Nissan Kicks? Well, it’s loaded with security options, will get nice gas mileage, and has a ton of room for you and your stuff. All of this at a beginning value of properly beneath $20,000 makes for a reasonably compelling crossover.