The Manhattan streetscape just won’t be the same without all those iconic yellow cabs, but Nissan’s new 7-seat NV200 Combi – earmarked as a replacement for 13 000 of the big yellow taxis currently plying the Big Apple’s streets for hire – certainly seems to have the edge on everything from carrying capacity to general practicality.
The Combi, which sits alongside the recently launched NV200 panel van in Nissan’s line-up, can convert without too much fuss from carrying people to carrying cargo thanks to multiple seating configurations.
It’s based on a platform that was voted International Van of the Year, and picked by General Motors as the basis for a Chevrolet-badged cargo van that will be sold in North America.
According to Nissan, the NV200 has been designed from the outset to be practical and cost-effective. Those criteria were applied to both parts replacement and running costs, with the 81 kW 1,6-litre petrol version quoted at 7,3 litres/100 km and the 66 kW/200 N.m 1,5 diesel at 5,1 litres/100 km on the combined cycle.
Its interior space is said to belie its compact exterior dimensions, with a range of seat configurations possible and a dash-mounted gearlever further aiding space utilisation, The last row of seats folds up against the sides and the middle row can fold forward, increasing load space to 3,1 cubic metres. According to Nissan, it’s capable of housing 3 bicycles with front wheels intact.
Tech features include an LCD multi-information display, satellite controls mounted on the steering wheel, and Bluetooth. Safety equipment includes ABS with EBD, VDC (Vehicle Dynamic Control) an, airbags for the driver, passenger and front side.
Price: from R235 800. Service intervals are 15 000 km for both petrol and diesel versions.