The Nissan Magnite is the new-found sensation in the car-buyer’s precinct. Here’s everything you would want to know about this B-SUV before getting yourself a test drive of the same…
Before you dive in, let us have you informed hereby that we, like many of you, are yet to drive the car in real. However, we had had a detailed look at the close-to-production ready guise of the Magnite sometime back. Thus, this story would not be a thoroughbred review as such, but an in-depth listicle of almost all the details regarding it.
What Is It?
That of the sub compact SUVs is among the most competitive segments in the country these days. There are quite a number of strong players here like the Tata Nexon, Hyundai Venue, Kia Sonet, Maruti Suzuki Brezza etc. The Magnite is Nissan’s answer to the growing demand for B-SUVs. Moreover, it is also a ‘do or die’ model for the brand, as the carmaker’s present Indian portfolio is highly polarising. On one end is the age-old, slow-selling Micra catering to the masses, and on the other is the mighty, super pricey sportscar- the GTR, that sells a unit or two every blue moon.
Thus, Nissan hopes to drive in more business in the country through the Magnite, by pricing it the right way and making it their newfound volume-seller. Unsurprisingly though, they have done just the same ! The Magnite has been so priced as to undercut even cars belonging to a segment below in price! You could have the base car for as low as INR 4.99 lakh!
The Magnite also holds significance for being the first model in the ‘Nissan Next lineup’, which is where the marque’s future is heading to. It is a ‘made in India’ SUV for the domestic and global markets alike. As per the officials, the car has been designed and developed through a healthy collab between Nissan’s Indian and Japanese wings.
The Magnite also shines for having been tested at Nissan’s Tochigi Proving ground in Japan for its dynamics. This is the same test track where legendary cars like the Nissan GTR were tested in the past.
The Magnite has the conventional sub compact SUV proportions. The stance is tall and as a whole looks enticing. You would see a large prominent grille at the front, which Nissan claims to have been drawn from scratch. However, to our eyes, it looks more like the ones from the modern-day Datsuns. (Just in case if you don’t know it yet, the Magnite was initially intended to be introduced as a Datsun product, a plan that was later given up for various obvious reasons) There has been a judicious use of chrome in the overall design. Also adding to the flair are the LED bi projector headlamps and the ‘L’ shaped LED DRLs.
There are quite a number of ridges and claddings in the overall design, which add to its SUV character. The 16 inch alloy wheels shod with 195/60 rubber have a distinctive design, and there is a handsome 205mm of ground clearance as well. The tail lamps too are stylish and there is a pair of functional roof rail that can carry upto 50 kilos (unlike many of the rivals which have them as mere style statements!) The overall build quality is decent, but there sure are a few panel gaps to prick your eyes!
Underpinning the Magnite is the all new CMF-A+ platform from the Renault-Nissan alliance. Yes, this is indeed the same architecture we had previously seen on the Renault Triber. The CMF-A+ had back then amassed huge attention for being ‘too roomy for its size’. The same sense of space reflects in the Magnite’s cabin as well. You would have a tough time believing that you are seated inside a shell built on an elongated Kwid/Redigo platform! The CMF-A+ is much wider and with the 2500mm of wheelbase, is significantly longer the Kwid’s CMF-A bed.
The Magnite gets added tech for minimizing body roll and providing for a planted, reassuring ride, like a new anti-roll bar and reworked front suspension. Expect the same platform to underpin the upcoming Renault Kiger SUV as well and with similar configurations.
When compared to the competition, the Magnite is as potent as most of its rivals in dimensions. All it lags behind a bit, is in the overall width, which at 1758mm, is a tad lesser than its key competitors.
The Nissan Magnite gets a cabin that is good looking and feature-packed. There is what Nissan calls the ’15 digital display’, which comprises of a 7 inch digital screen for the instrumentation ( which looked way too fancy to our eyes though) that gets cool stuff like Tyre Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) in addition to the regular indications and gauges, and an 8 inch touchscreen infotainment unit that has modern day connectivity tech like Android Auto and wireless Apple CarPlay.
Let me remind you here that the sub 10-lakh Magnite has these on offer at a time when many full-size SUVs worth at least four times this car, still run wired CarPlays! Also integrated into the touchscreen is the Nissan Around View Monitor, essentially a 360 Degree camera, which we had seen previously on the larger Kicks. The SUV also has other modern-day necessities like a wireless charging bay, air purifier, puddle lamps etc offered, but misses out on a sunroof.
Space And Practicality
There is a good amount of space on the inside. Despite the platform being slightly narrower than those of the competition, Nissan has managed to offer competent space inside the car. Even the rear bench offers good amounts of leg, knee and shoulder rooms. There are also plenty of cubbyholes and storage spaces inside the cabin. Even the glovebox gets a good 10 liters of storage and there is good 336 liters boot as well.
The Magnite offers two engine and two transmission options. A 1.0, naturally aspirated, three cylinder petrol and 1.0L, three cylinder, turbocharged petrol are the engines on offer. The NA petrol engine is tuned to produce 72hp and comes mated to a 5 speed manual box alone.
The beefier pick would obviuously be the turbo petrol unit, which belongs to the HRA0 series. The HRA0 DET, co developed by Nissan and Renault, is quite popular in the global markets, and is seen in popular sedans like Almera there. Interestingly enough, Nissan has brought in this mill with absolute zero detuning. Thus, it produces the same 100 PS and 160Nm on the Magnite as it does on the global models. This engine could be had either with the 5 speed manual or with an X-Tronic CVT transmission. Though we are yet to drive it in real, the turbo petrol-powered Magnite should be quite fun-to-drive, considering its 1039 kilos of kerb weight.
Despite most of its rivals having healthy diesels on offer in India, Nissan has chose to not give the Magnite one, in keeping with Renault- Nissan Group’s policy of ditching the diesels for the future.
Like every other Nissan car on offer, the Magnite too comes in five different variants, viz- XE, XL, XV, XV Premium and XV Premium (O). The base spec XE comes just with the NA petrol engine, while the others get turbo petrol iterations as well. The top-spec XV Premium (O) comes just with the turbo petrol mill. In addition to all these, Nissan is offering a ‘Technology pack’ as well for the tech-savvy. The package consists of fancy stuff like LED scuff plates, ambient mood lighting, puddle lamps, wireless charger, air purifier, JBL audio system etc and would set you back by an extra INR 39,000. You can add the technology pack to any of the top three trim levels of the car.
- XE (1.0 NA 5MT) : 4.99 lakh
- XL (1.0 NA 5MT): 5.99 lakh
- XL (1.0 T 5MT): 6.99 lakh
- XL (1.0T CVT): 7.89 lakh
- XV (1.0 NA 5 MT) : 6.68 lakh
- XV (1.0 T 5MT): 7.68 lakh
- XV (1.0T CVT):8.58 lakh
- XV Premium ( 1.0 NA 5MT) : 7.55 lakh
- XV Premium (1.0T 5 MT) : 8.45 lakh
- XV Premium (1.0T CVT): 9.35 lakh
- XV Premium (O) (1.0T 5MT): 8.55 lakh
- XV Premium (O) (1.0T CVT):9.45 lakh
Like you, we too are waiting to get the car for a detailed road test, only after which could we be able to tell you more about the roadworthiness of Nissan’s youngest SUV!