Tuesday, March 21Welcome

Auto Review: Looking for an Econobox? The 2023 Nissan Kicks is the One Answer

Larry Prinz

The 2023 Nissan Kicks (Nissan/TNS)

(Tribune News Service/TNS) — There was a time when entry-level buyers could choose fuel-efficient hatchbacks with humble four-cylinder engines and boasting names like Colt, Rabbit, Omni, Horizon, Chevette and Sentra. did. Most people might think of the understated Econobox as a relic from his 1980s and a long-forgotten relic of his OPEC oil embargo, but the reality is that most drivers is currently driving a hatchback. They’re hiked just inches above and styled with outdoor zest veneers.

This leads to Nissan Kicks in 2023. It’s a friendly, affordable, and economical device that has replaced the humble Econobox and has proven worthy of that adjective.

At just under 170 inches long, the Kicks is built for city life, despite its compact SUV styling. This is a taller hatchback than a boulder basher as it only has front-wheel drive. Offered in ascending S, SV and SR trims, all Kicks are powered by a 122-horsepower 1.6-liter double overhead cam four-cylinder engine mated to a continuously variable automatic transmission. According to the EPA, regular unleaded gasoline at 31 mpg in the city and 36 mpg on the highway will make up for the lack of power in terms of fuel economy.

All Kicks come standard with an impressive array of driver assist safety systems, including Automatic Emergency Braking with Pedestrian Detection, Blind Spot Warning, Rear Cross Traffic Alert, Lane Departure Warning, Rear Auto Braking and High Beam Assist. .

Kicks therefore guarantees safety and good fuel economy. But once you drive it, there isn’t much in the way of kicks. Again, it’s not trading inventory.

As you’d expect from a modest transportation widget, Kicks is pretty slow when entering highways and such. But it’s not so lethargic when driving in an urban environment. This is where Kicks really shines, and it feels more alive than you might expect. That said, most Kicks drivers won’t mind, but the steering is light and lacks road feel.The ride is very comfortable for this segment, though body lean when cornering is noticeable. There is a fair amount of road noise and tire he noise, but not uncommon in this class.

But even with few driving frills, Kicks buyers will appreciate Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, as well as a 7-inch touchscreen on the S model and an 8-inch touchscreen on the other models. Get a tech package. Three USB-A ports are standard, and a USB-C port is optional. Please note that an integrated navigation system is not available. However, most drivers use smartphone apps instead.

The firm front seats and tall seating positions with plenty of headroom make the cabin feel larger than it actually is. The center console is a small but important amenity, with padded sides for the knees of the front driver and passenger. Legroom in the front is ample, which is surprisingly good for the length of this car. Rear-seat passengers have plenty of legroom, and the seat height is higher than most of its competitors. Luggage space is spacious at 25.3 cubic feet in the back row.

Overall, don’t be surprised by the plethora of hard plastics in the cabin, but Nissan tries to mitigate this with fabric-covered armrests and pleasingly textured surfaces.

Of course, if you want to guild this lily, opt for the $22,850 Kix SR in the $1,390 premium package. Along with the eight-speaker Bose audio system, you’ll also enjoy heated front seats and steering wheel, imitation leather seats, Nissan Connected services, Wi-Fi hotspot and keyless entry.

Indeed, the 2023 Nissan Kicks delivers its thrills not from driving, but from high-level standard gear. But its short length makes it easy to parallel park, its perky character at low speeds makes it a great choice as a cheap city dweller, and its low fuel appetite makes it easy on the wallet.

And it comes at a price that won’t permanently mortgage your future. In fact, the $20,290 starting price is lower than what he would pay for a Nissan Sentra in 1982, which started at $6,899, and according to the Federal Reserve, the inflation-adjusted price is $20,958. And Kicks offers more features for less.

So it wouldn’t be wrong to call the 2023 Nissan Kicks an econobox.

2023 Nissan Kicks

Base price: $20,290-$22,850

Engine: 1.6 liter DOHC 4 cylinder

Horsepower/Torque: 122/114 lb-ft

EPA Fuel Economy (City/Highway): 31 mpg/36 mpg

Fuel Required: Unleaded Regular

Length/width/height: 169.1/69.3/63.4 inches.

Ground clearance: 7.0 inches

Payload: 909 lbs

Cargo capacity: 25.3-53.1 cubic feet

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