Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Nissan NV 3500 Van aka: The Big Blue Beast .... how we picked it

We finally did it... we got a bigger vehicle. Its the one that people look at and then look for the line up of stick figures on the back of your car wondering how many kids you have. Its the one that you can't lose in the parking lot. Its the vehicle that you could live in if all else failed. We got a: Nissan NV 3500 Passenger van or Nissan NVP.

Why? We don't have 10 children its true, we don't own a transport business either. So why would a family with 3 kids want a 12 passenger van?
Well, we have plans to travel with our family in the next year and having the space for bags or other friends or family to come with us was something we wanted. We are also out a few times a week in our ministry and always have other people with us. We are always taking family or friends with us as well. The mini van (Honda Odyssey) was getting cramped quickly!! So the next size up was a full size van. Those options are small we had the choices  of a Ford Transit, Nissan NV 3500, Mercedes Sprinter or Chevy Express (GMC Savana).
2016 Mercedes-Benz Sprinter Passenger Vans
Mercedes Sprinter
2016 Ford Transit Wagon
Ford Transit

2016 Chevrolet Express Passenger
Chevy Express

Our requirements were few: Leather interior, V8 engine and not overly expensive. 
The leather was a MUST! I know from experience that cloth seats would be trashed in a short time and we didn't want that. The V8 was a bit of a back and forth, V6 for the MPG or V8 for the better towing capacity? The V8 won! The research we did was helpful in pointing us to the V8 for our future needs. (more on that later).
The price was HUGE deal, I am a bargain hunter. There was no way I was going to let us pay more per month then we were with the Honda Odyssey.  

That negotiation process is worthy of another post.

So the comparisons I am doing below were for our needs more then anything else, maybe you can relate to it when shopping for a passenger van.

Price:  When you look at the rundown on 'starts at price' the Mercedes was the winner/looser for that category. No surprise right? They were the most expensive for sure! So that brought us to 3. Chevy, Ford, Nissan. All in the $30k region for starting price. Most people think "bigger car, bigger price" but not this time. Considering the Honda Odyssey we drove was starting price of $37,000 before options. 

V8 Engine: So now you are looking at us thinking, "V8 really? Horrible MPG! Why would you do that to yourself?"
Valid point, we heard you... Our Odyssey did get 20+ MPG on a daily basis so even the thought of 12-18 MPG sounds like suffering and woe for anyone. But here is the thing, we had a GMC Yukon XL before the Odyssey and personally we liked the pep and go those engines had. If you needed to pull onto the highway into traffic there was no doubt it would get you there and not let you down. A V8 will allow you to pull pop up trailer, a luggage trailer or just about anything! The idea of a V6 in a large vehicle full of people and luggage or trailers just sounds like you are straining the little 6 cylinder engine unnecessarily. The power out weighted the MPG in our mind. 

I'm not going to throw a bunch or stats and engine sizes at you here, if you want to know specifics you can google it :) But it happened that we had driven a Ford Explorer with the same size engine as the Ford Transit could come with (they offer Diesel but we didn't want that) on our trip to PA. As it was a rental car my husband wanted to see what kind of guts it had an tried to punch it as one point. FAIL! A gutless little engine that took forever to get up to speed and no real pep at all! This was in a smaller SUV not in a full size van. Once we realized that, the Ford was off the table. No guts, no Ford.

Then there were 2...  Chevy Vs. Nissan

Leather interior: This was a no brainier for us! Chevy (GMC) did not offer leather in any trim level! Really Chevy? Really? Not even the GMC version! Ok no way am I getting the dealer to leather cover 12 seats nope, not happening. So the clear winner was....

Image result for Nissan NV 3500
Nissan NV 3500 passenger van (Nissan NVP)

This baby had it all! Decent price, V8 engine and leather interior with the SL trim.
So there you are, the new vehicle in the family and for many many years to come.

I will be doing a You Tube video review of it soon and also a post on how I got the best deal on a brand new one. 

If you have any questions on the Nissan NV 3500 just message me below!

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