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The Nissan Interstar is a van based on the same underpinnings as the Renault Master, with a few minor aesthetic tweaks marking it out from its European counterpart. With a trio of body lengths on offer, along with different roof configurations to tackle any awkward loads, the Interstar is no slouch when it comes to versatility. It is also equipped with a selection of good diesel engines and the option for an automatic transmission as well.
Originally introduced in 2003, the Interstar is the result of the combined efforts of several manufacturers. And as a result, it shares many of its attributes not only with the aforementioned Master from Renault but also Vauxhall’s Movano. Taking on Ford’s Transit range, the Interstar is another versatile panel van with a Japanese manufacturer’s badge on the bonnet and the promise of reliable operation that goes with this.
The entry-level 1.9 litre dCi engine is found on the short-wheel-base model. It produces a modest 82bhp, which is enough to carry many different types of loads around. Larger 2.5 litre dCi engines with up to 115bhp are available for the more expensive variants, while at the top of the range is a 3.0 litre power plant which increases the output up to 136bhp.
Nissan has improved the amount of load space that is available on the Interstar range over the years, with the latest models offering almost two-thirds of the total vehicle length over to the cargo area. The result is that it is a very efficient van to use, with easy access provided by hinged panel doors on the rear and a sliding door on one side. Both sides can feature sliding doors on certain second-hand models, as this was an optional extra from new.
8 to 14 Cu Metres of Loadspace
At the lower end of the load scale, the Interstar can accommodate eight cubic metres of cargo in the rear, but if you go for the LWB model with the extended roof, this is increased to an impressive 13.9 cubic metres. Nissan deliberately made the basic version of the Interstar a little plainer on the inside than its equivalents from Renault and Vauxhall, which helps to keep the upfront cost a little lower. But models with extras such as parking sensors as well as an alarm and immobiliser as standard are available.
Conversions of the Interstar can be found, with models fitted out with refrigeration units offered on both the MWB and LWB iterations. This may be convenient for UK buyers with a specific business use in mind. Meanwhile combi van editions that feature an extra row of seating, boosting the total number of seats to six, are useful for deploying with a whole crew on board. The versatility of the Interstar chassis is demonstrated thanks to the presence of a minivan variant: a 16-seat model that may also be specified with conveniences such as air conditioning. Specialised models will cost more, but they can offer very good value for money. The Interstar could well be a good option as a reliable second-hand vehicle.
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