When Nissan launched the all new Navara a few years ago, they didn’t get it quite right, especially the suspension for towing, but the recent upgrade in 2018 has seen them rectify that and return the Navara to its rightful place amongst the segment leaders.
We are testing here the top of the range Navara ST-X 4WD Dual Cab Ute. We have recently tested the ST version and the review can be found here. Also have a look at our comparison article between an Isuzu D-Max LST and the Navara ST-X
There seems to be two strong design influences in the Ute market. Firstly the big bold American Pick-Up style that the Colorado and Ranger follow. The second is the more subtle flowing style that the Isuzu and Mazda fall into.
The Navara maintains a look that is somewhere between the two style above. The front grill has a sweeping design that incorporates the headlights and flows through the side bonnet bulges. These define the bonnet and also, surprisingly assist with wheel placement off road.
Exterior features include DRL’s and LED headlights. The ST-X also has side steps, front fog lamps with chrome accents, located in the front bumper. ST-X has heated door mirrors with power adjustment/folding & integrated LED indicator lights, polished silver roof rails and intelligent keys system. The 18″ alloy wheels with 255/60R18 tyres also add to the overall styling.
The Nissan Navara ST-X is pretty comfortable inside. The optional leather faced heated seats are comfortable, especially with the additional lumbar support.
The steering wheel is a little thin for my liking and has no reach adjustment, but houses the obligatory controls for audio and Bluetooth system and cruise control etc.
The dash is large and easy to read with two large dials and a central MFD. The centre stack houses the 7 inch display for sat-nav and other features.
The overall ergonomics are well designed, with soft touch pints for elbows on the door trims and central console bin.
There is plenty of handy storage with a large central bin, two large cup holders in the centre console, again in the door, clever slide out cup holders in front of the air vents and large glove box.
The rear seats are comfortable, but like all Utes, leg room is restricted. However there are large air vents and USB ports in the rear for convenience.
- The Navara ST-X is the top of the range so you would expect it to have a full range of features. That is and isn’t true though. Standard features include:-
- Satellite Navigation with 3D Mapping and
- 7″ integrated colour display with touch screen
- Air-conditioning with dual zone climate control
- Rear air vents in centre console
- Intelligent Key with remote keyless entry
- Day/night rear view mirror with electric anti-dazzle & compass
- LED projector headlights and Front fog lights
- Rear power sliding mirror
- Rear Diff lock
- 2 channel Utili-Track system, but unfortunately and inconveniently, no tie down points in the tub.
Optional features ($1,500) we had on the test vehicle and really should be there include:-
- 8-way driver seat with power slide/recline/height adjustment & power lumbar support
- Heated front seats with Leather accented seat trim
Engine and Drive
Navara ST-X is powered by a 2.3L, four-cylinder twin turbo diesel engine that produces power of 140kW/450Nm. This is matched to a 7 speed sport automatic transmission.
The Navara has a true dual range 4×4 transfer case with an electronic 4WD selection and electronic rear diff lock.
We had the opportunity to test the ST-X around town, on the freeway, on forest trails and on the sand. We also loaded it up with some props for my daughter’s event hire business. The tray was well and truly loaded and yet the Navara didn’t miss a beat.
On road ride and handling for the ST-X is amongst the best in class. On dirt roads, again the suspension soaks up the bumps and jarring more than most Utes. This is without a load on as well.
Like most Utes these days the Nissan Navara ST-X comes with a 5 Star ANCAP safety rating.
Key safety features include:-
- Reversing camera
- Around View Monitor and Reversing sensors
- Anti-lock Braking System and Electronic Brakeforce Distribution
- Traction Control System
- Vehicle Dynamic Control with Brake Limited Slip Differential
- Active Brake Limited Slip
- Brake Assist
- Hill Start Assist
- Hill Descent Control
- Electronic rear differential lock
- Second row child anchorage points (3), ISOFIX (second row RH/LH)
- LED high mounted stop light.
- Ride and Handling
- Towing capacity
Not So Good Bits
- Leather seats optional
- No Apple CarPlay or Android Auto
- No steering reach adjustment
After a bit of a stutter start, the latest version of the Nissan Navara is back amongst the top tier of Utes.
As a Family vehicle that can go off road, tow family toys, transport gear in the back and keep the family safe and provide a smooth ride, the Navara ST-X does some things better than other Utes and many the same.
If you are looking for a family 4WD Ute, then the Navara should absolutely be on your list.
Facts And Figures: Nissan Navara ST-X Dual Cab
- Engine: 2.3L four-cylinder twin turbo diesel producing 140Kw/450Nm
- Transmission: Seven-speed automatic
- Warranty: 3 years/100,000km
- Safety: Five stars
- Origin: Thailand
- Price: from $52,490