Nissan Note n-tec

Nissan Note, front
Nissan Note, front, action
Nissan Note, rear
Nissan Note, interior
Nissan Note, rear seats
Nissan Note, boot

THE Nissan Note has notched up a notable new fan in our household - but it was far from love at first sight.

Asked to transport my daughter and the contents of her student digs back home for the Christmas break, I turned up in the supermini to a less than warm welcome.

Her complete lack of faith in the vehicle tasked with the mission was obvious - but also unfounded as the Note is no ordinary supermini.

Offering a lot of space in a perfectly proportioned package, in many ways this Nissan is suffering from an identity crisis as it is more mini-people carrier than supermini.

The star of the show is a sliding rear bench that provides either saloon-style legroom for rear passengers, or more space for the heap of luggage the car was asked to accommodate.

Move the bench forward to its limit and there is a healthy 411-litres of boot space while opting for the passenger-friendly mode reduces this figure to 325 litres. Fold the rear seats forward and the 1,495 litres of carrying capacity coupled with the boxy shape are just about enough to cope with a student's return to civilisation.

My daughter and luggage safely stowed, an apology was then secured for both myself and the Note from the doubting Thomas who then proceeded to wax lyrical about how she would like to own one.

She was no doubt impressed by the plastic-lined cubby hiding under the boot floor as well as the shopping bag hooks and a 12V power supply.

Other nifty storage ideas include a roomy double-decker glovebox and an array of cup-holders - with two nestling in the rear seat's centre armrest.

The British-built motor is also fitted with easy access doors that open wide while the large windows let in plenty of light helping the interior's airy atmosphere.

The driving position is elevated giving a good view of what is happening in the motoring world around you while the modern interior is well set out using good quality materials featuring a decent fit and finish.

Nissan include plenty of toys on the high spec n-tec model which comes with satellite navigation, DAB and app-based internet radio, cruise and climate control as well as a reversing camera.

Safety kit includes a tyre pressure monitor, a multitude of airbags, stability control, blind spot monitoring, moving object detection and lane departure warning systems.

Power units are limited to three choices - the three-cylinder 1.2-litre under the bonnet of the car I drove, a supercharged 1.2-litre DIG-S - which delivers more power while achieving the tax-busting sub-100g/km carbon dioxide emission figure - and a 1.5-litre diesel.

All offer impressive fuel economy with the test car's 1.2-litre petrol unit boasting fuel consumption in a motorway/urban jungle mix of motoring of around 50 miles per gallon.

It is neat and tidy to drive without ever threatening to excite as well-weighted steering and decent cornering characteristics rule out any shocks to the system.

The exterior features 16-inch alloy wheels, satin silver door handles, a nifty n-tec rear badge and a rear roof spoiler. Black bezel headlamps, aerodynamic front bumper and glossy black grille give the Note a stylish face.

FAST FACTS

Nissan Note n-tec

Price:£15,515

Mechanical:80ps, 1,198cc, 3cyl petrol engine driving front wheels via 5-speed manual gearbox

Max Speed:105mph

0-62mph:13.7 seconds

Combined MPG:60.1

Insurance Group:10

C02 emissions:109g/km

Bik rating:16%

Warranty:3yrs/60,000 miles

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