NV Cargo

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2018 Nissan NV Cargo Overview

The Nissan NV Cargo is a traditional, body-on-frame van that drives on its rear wheels. The standard cargo area measures 120 inches long, 70.2 inches wide, and 55.8 inches high for 234.1 cubic feet of cargo volume. For those who need additional space or the ability to stand inside the van, there’s a high-roof bodystyle with a 76.9-in. cargo height, bumping volume up to 323.1 cubic feet while still fitting beneath most car washes and drive-thrus.

Nissan offers two engines on the NV Cargo. The first is a 4.0-liter V6 with 261 horsepower and 281 pound-feet of torque. Optionally, buyers can upgrade to the 5.6-liter V8 seen in Nissan’s consumer cars with 375 hp and 387 lb-ft of torque. The V6 makes use of a 5-speed automatic transmission while the V8 uses a 7-speed automatic transmission, and both have axle gearing designed to maintain pulling power on flat or steep slopes.

The NV offers buyer three grades. The NV1500 comes only with the V6 engine and standard roof, offering as much as 2,740 lbs of payload capacity and the ability to tow 6,900 lbs. The NV2500 HD gets either the V6 or V8 and both standard and high-roof models. It can carry up to 3,290 lbs in the rear. Finally, the NV3500 HD has just the V8, but it also comes in standard and high-roof versions. This grade increases payload capacity to as much as 3,700 lbs and will pull 9,400 lbs.

The van’s interior is fairly basic and offers room for two. That said, it’s a bit more ergonomic than competitors. The NV’s longer front end allows engineers to place the engine further away from the cabin, increasing occupant comfort, and the center stack is gently canted toward the driver for easy reach. Both cloth and vinyl upholstery is available.

The NV Cargo’s options are spread across three trims, S, SV and SL. S comes with 17-inch wheels, power window and door locks, keyless entry, six-floor mounted D-rings, a 5-inch infotainment system with AM, FM and CD, and Bluetooth Connectivity. SV tacks on cruise control, two additional speakers, and a center console for 2500 HD and 3500 HD models. Finally, SL, which is not available on the 1500, offers an 8-way power driver’s seat, chrome bumpers, grille and mirrors, heated outside mirrors, a 5.8-inch infotainment system, and an alarm. Navigation with XM radio and a rear-door glass package are standalone options, but owing to its old-school nature, the NV offers only the most basic in safety features with stability control, traction control, front and side airbags, and a reversing camera.

Nissan’s NV Cargo series isn’t as flashy as offerings from Ram, Ford, or Mercedes-Benz, but it’s smartly designed and workhouse-tough. With three different grades and two engine options, it fits most commercial needs, and it makes an especially good case against the similarly constructed Chevrolet Express and GMC Savana cargo vans, which have nearly-ancient origins.

Updated

Kyree is new to the automotive journalism scene, but has voiced snarky public opinions about cars for quite some time. When he's not drooling over the latest European luxury sled, he's designing web experiences or writing backend code.

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