By Matt Degen
KBB Expert Rating: 8.4
The 2017 Nissan Quest is among the elder statesman of minivans, where it resides with the Honda Odyssey and Toyota Sienna. Like those rivals, the Quest lives to haul families with ease and comfort. Despite having a lower starting price than its Honda and Toyota rivals -- not to mention the all-new Chrysler Pacifica -- the Nissan has long been an also-ran. Interior layout is partly to blame. Where competitors hold up to eight people, the Quest seats only seven. Then there's the exterior -- a blocky design that's polarizing at best -- and an aging platform that lacks advanced safety systems like automatic emergency braking. Still, for families seeking a lot of vehicle at a lower cost, the 2017 Quest is worth a look.
If you're looking for a minivan that easily accommodates up to seven passengers and comes with a lower starting price than most rivals, the Quest still offers a lot of vehicle for the money.
The Quest falls short of other minivans in seating capacity, tech amenities and optional safety features such as lane-departure warning and automatic braking. If you need an all-wheel-drive minivan, look to the Sienna. The all-new Pacifica, meanwhile, has the freshest features and even comes in a hybrid version.
KBB Expert Ratings
The Nissan Quest minivan rolls into 2017 with no major changes.
The Nissan Quest minivan stands apart from others with its continuously variable transmission (CVT), an automatic with no traditional shift points. Such transmissions' linear feel can take getting used to,...
... but they pay off in enhanced fuel economy. The Quest remains competitive with up to 27 mpg, but rivals are gaining on or slightly surpassing the Nissan thanks to their own fresher powertrains. The Quest's 260-horsepower V6 enables no-fuss acceleration, and recent improvements to the transmission have made this family van more responsive when you put your foot down. Overall, the 2017 Nissan Quest offers a pleasant and quiet ride -- just the manners a harried parent will appreciate when their kids' manners are anything but pleasant and quiet.
Step into a higher-trim Nissan Quest and you may think you're in a vehicle from Infiniti, the brand's luxury division. The leather seats come with contrast piping and are incredibly soft thanks to a dual-layer cushion. The interior looks good too, with color-coordinated schemes and tasteful use of metallic trim.
CVT (CONTINUOUSLY VARIABLE TRANSMISSION)
The CVT in the Nissan Quest is unique to the class, and its seamless shifts and immediate power delivery are part of the reason why this van is so easy to live with.
As noted, unlike its competitors, all versions of the Nissan Quest have a 7-passenger layout. In its rivals, this setup where the second row consists of two individual chairs is usually reserved for higher trims. Front- and 2nd-row passengers have plenty of head- and legroom, and 3rd-row space is pretty good. Cargo utility is commendable, highlighted by a clever hidden rear cargo area and fold-flat 2nd- and 3rd-row seats. In the driver's seat, we found the shift lever got in the way of climate controls when in "D," and the power liftgate button is low on the dash and hard to find.
"Expressive." That's one way to describe the 2017 Nissan Quest's styling. "Awkward" could be another, depending on your view. We can probably all agree that the Quest's blocky, angular styling is unique among its more rounded peers. The high roof, squared-off rear, wraparound glass and huge chrome grille are all defining characteristics of Nissan's family van. However, they also hide the fact that the Quest is neither as long nor as wide as some rivals, although the added height helps make the cabin feel roomy. Quest S and SV models get 16-inch wheels, while SL and Platinum models get 18-inchers.
In its most basic form, the Quest S includes push-button ignition, 6-way manually adjustable driver's seat, cloth upholstery and AM/FM/CD player with an auxiliary jack. Though the Quest S has an enticing price, it lacks features that are both helpful and safe for families, such as Bluetooth connectivity, a USB port and a rearview camera. In the Toyota Sienna, Kia Sedona and Honda Odyssey, these features come standard. We recommend stepping up at least one trim to the Quest SV. That trim includes power-sliding side doors, tri-zone automatic climate control, roof rails, 5-inch color display/rearview camera, and Bluetooth and USB connectivity options.
Stepping up to the Quest SL adds leather upholstery, 18-inch wheels, power liftgate, 8-way-power-adjustable driver's seat, and heated front seats. Top-line Platinum models have Nissan's snazzy Around View bird's-eye rearview monitor, 13-speaker Bose audio system, 4-way-power passenger's seat, 8-inch color display and DVD rear-entertainment system. The Platinum model also includes blind-spot monitoring and xenon headlights. Packages vary by trim and include a moonroof, leather interior and rear DVD system. Unlike the Odyssey, Pacifica, Sienna and Sedona the Quest does not offer forward-collision warning or lane-departure warning systems. And unlike the Honda and now the Chrysler, you won't find a built-in vacuum.
All 2017 Nissan Quest models come with a 260-horsepower, 3.5-liter V6 mated to a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT). The transmission now has Nissan's D-Step shift logic, which simulates gear changes and provides for a more familiar driving experience. The transmission upgrades that came a couple years ago also contribute to a fuel economy of up to 27 mpg.
260 horsepower @ 6,000 rpm
240 lb-ft of torque @ 4,400 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 20/27 mpg
Note: Due to changes in EPA testing to more effectively reflect real-world conditions, some 2017 models show slightly lower fuel-economy scores than their 2016 versions.
The 2017 Nissan Quest minivan has a Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) starting around $27,500 when factoring in the destination charge. On the other end, a loaded Quest Platinum tops out over $45,000. At its base price, the Quest undercuts the Sienna, Odyssey and Pacifica, and is also just under the starting price of the Kia Sedona. But keep in mind that a base Quest lacks features such as Bluetooth and a rearview camera that are standard in those rivals. Among minivans, the aging Dodge Grand Caravan remains the value leader with its sub-$26,000 starting price. Before buying, check the KBB.com Fair Purchase Price to see what others in your area are paying for their Quest models. Down the road, the Nissan's residual value is expected to trail that of the Honda Odyssey and Toyota Sienna, and hover just above that of the Kia Sedona.