2001 Nissan Terrano II TD SE 2.7 turbo diesel from UK and Ireland
Tough as old boots
Suspension drop links.
Exhaust was rotten.
Fuel pipes rotted.
Needed welding for MOT, will need another patch for this year.
Interior gets tatty quickly.
Front wings are scabby, ditto tailgate.
Paint has faded beyond recovery.
Gearbox was rebuilt to replace possibly failing bearing.
Although I've only owned the Terrano since 2013, I have driven it since 2008 as it has been the workhorse for the firm I work for. In that time it has been unfailingly reliable, despite being treated rather more roughly than the average Terrano would be. Don't get me wrong, it has been serviced more frequently than the handbook advises, but it has done more than its fair share of towing trailers, boats, been literally up the side of a mountain, drifted round roundabouts, and it has (touch wood) shrugged it off with good grace. Certainly it's no Range Rover, but it's an honest workaholic vehicle.
How you feel about driving it depends on what you are used to. Like all 4x4's, it is bouncy, quite noisy and slow (it makes my wife's Fabia feel like a rocket), but it's incredibly easy to drive, and the wife can jump between the two easily. I like the low revving torque of the 2.7 engine, the high driving position and the light steering. What I don't like is the fact that the interior attracts dirt like a magnet and the leather on the seats appears to be wafer thin, the heater vents fall to bits, and you can't change the radio without buying 100 quid's worth of fascia and hazard switch, the heater isn't much cop in any case, and the driver's window has a habit of not working.
Mechanically you have the superb 2.7 engine beloved of taxi drivers, no timing belt and pretty much unburstable, just keep the engine near max torque and you'll trundle along fine. It's not even that hard on fuel; I get 22-23 MPG around town and over 30 on a run; not bad for something with the aerodynamics of a stadium and weighing in at 2 tons. Towing heavy loads murders the MPG, even if the jeep shrugs it off. The limited slip diff ensures traction in slippery conditions, although it doesn't take much to provoke a bit of sideways action on a wet bend, but you have to deliberately be clumsy with the wheel and throttle.
Anyway, if you're looking for a cheap practical 4x4 and don't mind a few rough edges, a Terrano is a very good choice, but take a good test drive first and see if you can put up with its little foibles.
Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes
Review Date: 15th January, 2014