New metal: Nissan Magnite

A new challenger arrives! Nissan’s not letting Toyota and Suzuki hog that entry-level crossover segment for long as just made abundantly clear with this groovy little urban-gravelist. Meet the Magnite, a chiseled tyke where LED lamps, chrome accents and roof rails abound.

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What is it?
Well, it’s smaller than a Qashqai so think of it as a B-Segment SUV – very much along the lines of the previously alluded to Vitara Brezza and Urban Cruiser. It comes with several ‘first-in-class’ and ‘best-in-segment’ features that such as Nissan Intelligent Mobility (NIM), and an 8-inch touchscreen with wireless Android Auto & Apple CarPlay. It also comes with diamond-cut 16-inch alloy hoops for added street cred.

Stefan Haasbroek, Marketing Director of Nissan South Africa says it is “in line with Nissan’s philosophy of continuous innovation and enriching experiences. They thought it fitting to have a launch that supports this narrative. “Our market is bold, self-driven with go-for-it attitudes aligning to what the Nissan Magnite embodies. We are excited to finally have the Nissan Magnite on our South African shores and we cannot wait for you to experience it for yourself.”

Power comes with a one-litre turbo petrol engine – interesting in a segment that favours larger capacity NA units, mated to manual or CVT ‘boxes. We’re glad to see that the Magnite has safety in check with Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD), Hydraulic Brake Assist (HBA), Vehicle Dynamic Control (VDC), Traction Control System (TCS), Hill Start Assist (HSA), speed-sensing door lock, central locking and SRS dual airbag system with pretension and load limiter seatbelt for driver and passenger.

The bottom line
Nissan knows how to make an attractive gravel grinder and the Magnite is just that with its 205mm ground clearance. But with an entry-level price of just R256,999 for the Acenta MT, it is incredibly budget-friendly. Does it have what it takes to rise to the top of this brimming segment?

PRICING
• Acenta MT = R256 999
• Acenta CVT = R280 100
• Acenta Plus MT = R282 600
• Acenta Plus CVT = R305 700

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