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Nothing screams “commitment” or “responsibility” louder than a minivan, well, maybe a saggy pair of elastic-waist mom jeans but who’s counting?
Love ‘em or loathe ‘em these versatile vehicles are designed to excel at hauling, whether it’s taking a passel of kiddies to soccer practice after school or hauling a load of building material home from the lumber yard.
Stylish and sporty they are NOT, but modern minivans are as practical and honest as the week is long. They’re also pretty thrifty, maximizing cargo capacity while minimizing fuel consumption. And that’s a subject on the top of every consumer’s mind these days: efficiency.
But what kind of economy do these versatile vehicles deliver? Here’s a breakdown of some popular models and how far they can stretch a gallon of gasoline.
The Quest 3.5 S model will start at $25,990, while the SV model will begin at $31,050. The SL trim will be priced at $34,500 while the top-of-the-line LE variant starts at $42,350 – significantly more than the standard S model.
The starting MSRP of $25,990 is $1,760 lower than the previous year’s model. The SL model will now come with a DVD Entertainment System and an 11-inch DVD monitor as standard. The readjustment of the packages is Nissan’s way to help better meet customer demand for popular features and equipment. An optional leather package is also now available for the SV model for the first time.
All four models are powered by a 3.5L DOHC V6 engine with 260-hp and 240 lb-ft of torque and Nissan’s advanced Xtronic CVT transmission. Available features on the 2012 Quest include one-touch power sliding doors, fold-flat second and third row seats, Advanced Climate Control System, and standard permanent hidden storage.
The 2012 Nissan Quest has an estimated fuel economy of 19-mpg city and 24-mpg highway. The Japanese automaker is also offering a variety of lease and cash incentives on select Quest models.
GALLERY: 2012 Nissan Quest
10. One Touch Convenience
Thinking of putting down a minivan owner? You may want to think twice. Minivans are among the most useful vehicles on the road. Take a look at some of these reasons why owning a minivan can be a life-enriching experience.
Everyone’s been in front of their car door or trunk, with the same dilemma. With your hands full, how are you going to open the door without dropping everything to get your key? Well, vans like the Nissan Quest require one touch to open the side doors or the back hatch. Thanks to innovations like Nissan’s smart-key technology, you won’t even have to take the key out of your pocket! It’s the next best thing to having your own doorman! (Check out our review of the Nissan Quest here)
Who says driving around a van has to be boring? The all new third-generation Nissan Quest, known as Elgrand in Japan, just got a whole lot wilder thanks to the tuners over at Impul. Though these styling packages are made for the Japanese Elgrand front-end, those ambitious enough to outfit it to their USDM Quest should be able to proceed with a little effort. The result will be a one-of-a-kind looking van, and we’d love to see one driving around in North America.
Impul is featuring two different kits for the van, with a spoiler add-on for the factory front bumper, or an entire front bumper replacement. Those looking at the skirt kit will be able to get it in carbon fiber or fiberglass. In addition, Impul offers several performance packages including an ECU upgrade and new throttle valve. This isn’t surprising though, as the new Quest in Japan features either the VQ35DE or QR25DE, which the aftermarket has already embraced from other Nissan platforms.
Additional accessories include 20×8.5-inch wheels, suspension modifications, an upgraded brake system, a muffler replacement exhaust system, sport filter, window visors, and Impul emblems. So those out there forced to drive a minivan packed full with kids, we dare you to order up Impul’s kits for your Quest. We’d love to see it done!
GALLERY: Impul Nissan Quest
Nissan has completely revamped its Quest minivan for 2011, getting away from its quirky ugly past and moving towards Toyota’s “Swagger Wagon” Sienna when it comes to road presence and interior luxury.
Powered by Nissan’s 3.5L V6 (what else?) the van makes 253-hp and will start at a rather competitive $27,750.
Features of the new 2011 Quest include standard Quick Release fold-flat 2nd and 3rd row seating with an available 3rd row power-return seatback, heated front seats, a removable 2nd row console, Blind Sport Warning (BSW) and a RearView Monitor and an optional 11-inch monitor.
The 2011 Quest will be available in four models: S, SV, SL and LE. Base S models get 16-inch steel wheels, 6-way adjustable front bucket seats, wood-tone trim, Nissan’s Intelligent Key with push-button ignition and an AM/FM/CD audio system with four speakers. Quest SV models get one-touch power sliding doors, 16-inch aluminum wheels, Tri-Zone climate control, a power driver’s seat with lumbar, fog lights, a 4.3-inch display screen, USB port with iPod connectivity, Bluetooth, a RearView Monitor and leather-wrapped steering wheel. Quest SL models get leather, 18-inch wheels, a power liftgate, 8-way driver’s seat, heated front seats, roof rails, auto headlights plus heated mirrors. Top-level LE models then add on a Navigation system with 12-speakers, memory seating, 2nd and 3rd row manual blinds, 4-way adjustable front passenger seat, HID lights, an 8-inch display screen, DVD entertainment system with wireless headphones and an 11-inch rear DVD entertainment system.
Nissan says the van is designed to be a reward to parents or doing their job.
Oh, and in person it’s simply enormous.
GALLERY: 2011 Nissan Quest Debut in LA
GALLERY: 2011 Nissan Quest
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Official release after the jump: