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2015 Nissan NV200

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2015 Nissan NV200 Review

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KBB Expert Rating: 8.2

Nissan's NV200 for 2015 is a city-friendly cargo van that hauls an impressive amount of goods yet has the easy driving manners and efficiency of a sedan. Slotting below the Nissan NV, the NV200 is part of a wave of new compact vans that includes the Ram ProMaster City, the revamped Ford Transit Connect and the Chevy City Express, which itself is based on the Nissan. While the NV200's payload capacity can't match that of a full-size hauler and its 4-cylinder engine won't tow heavy loads, this little van's easy-access cargo bay has room for a surprising amount of wares or acts as a blank canvas for shelves, racks and other business and delivery needs. Starting under $22,000, the NV200 is also friendly to company budgets.

You'll Like This Car If...

If you're using a small pickup or converted minivan to transport goods, the NV200 offers a more versatile, secure and drier way to get the job done. Its small size makes it easy to maneuver, multiple mounting points keep things in place, and the passenger seat even folds to become a desk.

You May Not Like This Car If...

The Ford Transit Connect and Ram ProMaster City offer more power and payload capacity than the NV200. Those rival vans are also available in wagon form, with the Ford offering 7-passenger seating and the Ram having room for five. Need to tow? The Ford and Ram pull up to 2,000 pounds.

What's New for 2015

The 2015 NV200 Compact Cargo receives a new version of Nissan's Xtronic continuously variable transmission (CVT), an updated navigation and telematics system and revised alternator. New options include a sonar backup-assist system and Sliding Door Glass Package.

Driving the NV200
Driving Impressions

One of the biggest appeals of the Nissan NV200 is just how easy it is to drive and maneuver. Because this compact cargo van employs the same...

... unibody construction as Nissan's small cars, the NV200 rides and drives like a small SUV rather than a cumbersome, top-heavy van. Aided by its electric-assisted power steering, the NV200's tight 36.7-foot turning radius allows it to execute U-turns in the narrowest of confines. The Nissan's tall, narrow body enables it to fit into parking spots overlooked by larger vans, and the huge windshield provides excellent forward visibility. We found the ride taut and the handling nimble. Nissan's 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine is no powerhouse, but the CVT automatic transmission makes the most of the little engine's 131 horsepower, allowing it to scoot through intersections and merge with traffic without drama. Load the NV200 with cargo, however, and acceleration becomes noticeably sluggish.

INTEGRATED CARGO MOUNTING POINTS
Nissan makes it easy to install shelving, racks or partitions thanks to the numerous (20 in all) reinforced mounting points strategically placed throughout the NV200's cargo area. No need to drill or weld parts into place, just get some sheet metal screws and a Phillips screwdriver and you're in business.

60/40-SPLIT REAR CARGO DOORS
The 60/40-split rear doors are more useful than a 50/50 setup. When open, the design provides a larger opening curbside while creating a smaller driver's-side door less likely to get dinged by passing traffic.

2015 Nissan NV200 Details
2015 Nissan NV200 photo Interior

The NV200's interior is more about function than fashion. Nissan's tidy hauler hides 122.7 cubic feet of volume in its cargo bay and boasts a low, flat floor that makes loading items – whether crafts, culinary items or even sports gear – a breeze. Payload maxes out at 1,480 pounds, below that of the Ford and Ram. As mentioned above, mounting points are many. Up front are two bucket seats, with the driver's seat offering a right armrest for added comfort. The passenger seat folds flat to create a desk or workbench. Audio and climate controls are simple but easy to use.

Exterior
2015 Nissan NV200 photo

Given its purpose as a box on wheels, the NV200's styling – or lack thereof – isn't its biggest priority. Again, function trumps form. Accessibility is easy thanks to dual sliding side doors and 60/40-split rear French doors that open 180 degrees. At just over 21 inches, the cargo load floor is about two inches lower than that of the Transit Connect and slightly lower than that of the ProMaster City. At 186.3 inches, the NV200 is just a few inches longer than a Nissan Sentra. Unlike the Transit Connect, however, the NV200 does not offer a choice of lengths.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

The 2015 Nissan NV200 is available in two trims: S and SV. The base S model comes with air conditioning, cargo-bay floor protector, cargo-area work light, manually adjustable front seats with vinyl wear patches, power windows, and a 2-speaker AM/FM/CD audio system with an auxiliary input for portable music players. The higher-trim SV model adds cruise control, an additional 12-volt power outlet in the rear, six D-rings mounted to the cargo floor, power door locks and remote keyless entry, and power heated exterior mirrors.

Optional Equipment

Both trims of the 2015 NV200 can be had with rear-door windows, something we recommend for better visibility and overall safety. A window is also available on the passenger-side sliding door. New for 2015, rear sonar sensors are optional to make backing up easier, and a rearview camera is available on the NV200 SV. Cruise control can be had on base models, and both trims offer Bluetooth hands-free phone connectivity. SV trims can be further upgraded with the NissanConnect navigation and mobile app system that includes a 5.8-inch touch screen, voice recognition and USB input.

Under the Hood

The 2015 Nissan NV200 makes do with a 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine that produces 131 horsepower and 139 lb-ft of torque. A gearless continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) sends that power to the front wheels. With the latest CVT, the Nissan NV200 now returns up to 26 mpg on the highway and 25 mpg combined, both one mpg better than last year's model. The Nissan's powertrain is thrifty and runs on regular unleaded gasoline, but it's also weaker than the engines found in the Ford Transit Connect and Ram ProMaster City. If you require even more power in a cargo van, the larger Ram C/V Tradesman may be a better fit since it offers a 283-horsepower V6 that still returns up to 26 mpg.

2.0-liter inline-4
131 horsepower @ 5,200 rpm
139 lb-ft of torque @ 4,800 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 24/26 mpg

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