The Kicks is the newest addition to the Nissan SUV lineup and it’s a delight from the stylish exterior to the perfect size for city living parking. This addition to the subcompact-crossover class checks off all the things a lot of crossover buyers will be looking for when researching a new automobile. The price of gas has a lot of people looking for fuel economy and Nissan delivers with over 31MPG in city/highway. It’s able to fit four adults comfortably, has Apple CarPlay/Android Auto (optional) that automatically links with your phone, lots of legroom and forward collision warning and automated emergency braking (standard).
This is my first press loaner car and I wasn’t sure what to expect from the compact crossover. I’d been at the 2017 LA Auto Show when they revealed the new crossover and I was quite impressed. It has the Bose Personal Plus sound systemwith speakers placed to give you a rich sound in the compact rocket, comfortable well-designed seats, and an interior that was built for the driver in mind. I’ve only test driven Nissan’s at the LA Auto Show but that was usually for about 15 minutes so wasn’t really able to ‘get to know Nissan’. After having the Kicks for a little over a week I now understand Nissan Loyalty and love. I have a major Crossover Crush on the Nissan Kicks!
The car was delivered for a cross California drive from Los Angeles to Camp Navarro (Northern California) so I would be 8 hours behind the wheel of a car. When the Kicks was delivered I loved the bright blue and white hood contrast even more how easy it was to park in West Hollywood (parking is a premium on street cleaning day) but being a compact it slid in like butter. It’s such a eye catching crossover one of my neighbors stopped to congratulate me on the cute car. I had to brag a bit and show off that this small package has enough storage to fit a ‘cherry’! The Nissan Kicks can fit this big bodacious chick without feeling cramped and not many compact cars do that. Being on the larger side I often have problems with the steering column pressing against my long legs but with the telescoping I was able to adjust for my arm length and usually I have to push the seat all the way back because of my long legs.
I packed up and hit the road originally I was planning to take Highway 1 the scenic route with mountains, oceans, nature spots, great food and bridges but than I saw the bridges and took the flat 101. It all worked out because the 125 horsepower made the miles fly as I drove past farmland and it has such smooth acceleration I had to keep an eye on my speed since a few times I inched past 70 a few times trying to keep to my schedule. I was surprised over how many times I’d drive past gas station look down and realized I had plenty of gas. I loved how the Kicks performed on the highway. I was able to keep up with the flow of traffic with just a gentle touch and keep my eye on the road because of ApplePlay. The enterior is a little different than other cars I’ve been in to make more room they got rid of the ‘junk drawer’ and instead has a large compartment with a charger for your tech. It has one armrest but I didn’t use it since I always sit up straight when driving, the cup holders were in the center and an additional charger for backseat passengers. I greatly enjoyed the blindspot warning light, standard 3-month trial subscription to SirrrusXM for tunes as I drove down the lonely two lane highway and that it’s a bit tall so easy in/out (I wasn’t stiff at all on the 8 hour drives).
The Nissan Kicks come in 3 base models (S, SV, SR) and I was loaned the SV trim with all the bells and whistles you want for a little over 20K.
I’d recommend the SV trim that has standard features for city and country living from young singles to retired folk. This will include the dual body and roof contrast, additional color selections and standard features include:
- 17-inch wheels and proximity entry
- 7.0-inch digital gauge-cluster display
- Apple CarPlay and Android Auto
- Blind-spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert
I recommend the seatbelt extender if you’re a big person, Nissan Wifi, matts, bumper protector and cargo load floor to take advantage of the hatchback.
As I’d mentioned the 125-hp 1.6 liter inline four engine has enough power to get you where you want to go with a smile and thecontinuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) makes for a easy drive as you go about your daily commute. The 9.7 second zero to 60 mph was great for me when hitting the gas from a red light and wasn’t jerky at all (very smooth acceleration). It feels like a bigger engine to me that powers this compact crossover for lots of pep as I drove up hills, took turns on the way to the campground and sudden stops from construction (really impressed with the stops came around blind corners a couple of times that when I hit the brakes weren’t flung forward).
You will get a lot of bang for the buck with the Nissan Kicks subcompact crossover. It’s fun to drive and can fit four adults comfortably, it sips gas like a teetotaler, has the little engine that can be fun to drive and well dangit it’s cute as button! Everyone commented on the car and asked what it was when I stopped so I think I might have made a few sales across California!