New Car Review

1994 Nissan 4X4 SE-V6 Pickup

by: BILL RUSS

In the past couple of decades the pickup truck has become an important part of the American lifestyle. From rather humble beginnings as a basic full-size construction work truck it has branched out into a true multi-purpose vehicle. Now these utilitarian workhorses come in small, medium and large sizes. They are powered by a variety of gasoline engines ranging from four cylinders, through V6's and V8's as well as a range of diesels. Now they are a major factor in automotive sales. Many are the vehicle of choice for first time buyers, as well as the utility vehicle for families with two or more cars.

Nissan has kept pace with the expanding pickup truck market by producing two-and four-wheel drive, regular and king-cab, long and short bed, stick and automatic transmissions, and four cylinder and V6 powered models. For over ten years now all Nissan pickups sold here are built here - just outside of Nashville, in Smyrna, Tennessee. The 1994 SV-V6 4X4 King Cab is just about as far away as one can get from the basic bare-bones Datsun pickup of the sixties. It is the king of the Nissan pickups and exhibits just about every known option and accessory available today.

APPEARANCE: The SE-V6 4X4 has the rugged no-nonsense look that identifies todays' pickup trucks. In the SE trim it is outfitted with many features that add up to a very sporty image. Front and rear bright trim, styled wheels, Firestone off-road tires, large side mirrors, a special paint finish that loudly proclaims that it's a SE-V6, and a pop-up sunroof. Every window but the windshield opens to assure great ventilation and vision. The 75" x 60" double-wall cargo box with its removable tailgate is protected by a bedliner. With its high four-wheel drive stance it looks ready to go anywhere anytime.

COMFORT: When equipped with the Value Truck and Sport/Power Packages the SE-V6's roomy interior is as comfortably furnished as many sports coupes. It has multi-adjustable cloth faced front bucket seats that offer good lateral and lumbar support, a quietly effective heater/air conditioner and a compact and nice sounding AM/FM/cassette system it belies its truck heritage. Other items that add class to this large-size pickup include power mirrors, windows and locks, tilt steering, cruise control and a center console. The King Cab not only has the advantage of offering secure inside storage for valuables, but with the two rear pull-down jump seats it can carry two passengers. Although, in the interests of comfort those in the rear seats should be small, and the trip short.

SAFETY: For pickup trucks the Federal safety standards are different and currently not as comprehensive as those for passenger cars. The SE-V6 however is equipped with a rear wheel anti- lock braking system, three-point seat belts in front, as well as an energy absorbing steering column and steel side-door guard beams.

ROADABILITY: With it's sturdy steel ladder type frame and solid rear axle suspended by leaf springs the ride of any current Nissan pickup will never equal that of a passenger or sports car. That's because its basic mission is to carry cargo. Originally passenger comfort was secondary, so that's why we often see the statement, "a pickup truck rides like a truck". In the case of the fully optioned SE- V6 when equipped with a limited slip differential, power steering, front wheel independent suspension plus a stabilizer bar and power brakes is capable of very good maneuvering on all types of roads. Off-roading, however, is better suited to front seat occupancy only. Normal city and highway driving is not super quiet due to tire and wind noise, but when off the road there is so much other noise that who cares!

PERFORMANCE: Nissan's sturdy 3.0 liter single overhead cam, 12-valve, sequential multiport fuel injected V-6 engine develops 153 horsepower and 180 foot pounds of torque. This power combination enables the King Cab pickup to carry a passenger/cargo payload of up to 1400 pounds, as well as tow a 3500 pound trailer. The four-speed automatic transmission smoothly and evenly delivers power to the rear wheels, or when shifted into four-wheel drive, all of the wheels. Its broad torque curve allows proper application of power to pull up and down steep and bumpy off-road grades.

CONCLUSIONS: Nothing automotive is quite as American as a pickup truck. Nissan realized this early on, and was the first overseas automotive manufacturer to establish a pickup truck plant in the U.S. The window sticker says it best. "Quality with Pride from Smyrna, Tennessee."

SPECIFICATIONS:
1994 NISSAN 4X4 SE-V6 KING CAB

		      
	   Base Price               $  17,379
	   Price As Tested          $  21,129
	   Engine Type              V-6, sohc, smpfi*
	   Engine Size              3.0 liter/181 cid
	   Horsepower               153 @ 4800
	   Torque (ft/lbs)          180 @ 4000
	   Wheelbase/Length         116"/196"
	   Cargo Bed                75" long/60" wide   
	   Transmission             four speed auto w/od
	   Curb Weight              3270
	   Pounds per Horsepower    21
	   Fuel Capacity            21
	   Fuel Requirement         Unleaded regular (87 oct)
	   Tires                    Firestone Radial ATX P31x10.50R15
	   Brakes                   rear wheel ABS standard     disc/drum
	   Drive Train              front engine/rear drive - on demand 4 WD
	   
	   * smpfi - sequential multiport fuel injection
	   
				     PERFORMANCE   
	   
	   EPA Economy - miles per gallon,         
	     city/highway/observed  16/19/16.8
	   0 to 60 mp               11.7 sec
	   1/4 mi (E.T.)            18.4 sec 
	   Towing Capacity          3500 lbs
	   Payload                  1400 lbs

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