2012 Nissan Patrol Preview Drive

Tony O'Kane | 36 Comments

2012 NISSAN PATROL REVIEW

It may be just over a year from arriving at a showroom near you, but to whet our appetites Nissan has given Australia's motoring media a special preview drive of the all-new 2012 Y62 Nissan Patrol.

Also known by Nissan's internal code, P61G, the Y62 Patrol is world's apart from the Y61 Patrol workhorse that's currently on sale.

It's bigger, heavier, and packed with an astonishing array of technology. It's also propelled by an immensely grunty 5.6 litre petrol V8, and takes drive to all four wheels via a seven-speed automatic (a first for its class) and dual-range transfer case.

When it arrives on Australia's shores in 2012, the Y62 will take the Patrol nameplate significantly upmarket.

To demonstrate the Patrol's new-found refinement, Nissan Australia shipped a highly-specced model here from the Middle East, where it has been on sale in left-hand-drive form since early 2010.

With sat-nav, radar-assisted cruise control, lane departure warning, around-view cameras, three DVD video screens (two in each headrest) and a bevy of other mod-cons, the Y62 Patrol boasts enough gadgets to rival not only the Toyota Landcruiser LC200, but fancier machinery like the Range Rover Sport and Lexus LX 570.

Interior quality is superb. Soft leather adorns the seats, steering wheel and doorcards, and high-grade plastics are used throughout. There's also an unshakeable feeling of solidity, with not a single piece of rattling trim to be heard.

2012 nissan patrol y62 australian launch preview first drive road test 04

Suspension technology has undergone some radical changes as well.

Live axles have been ditched in favour of double-wishbone suspension, and although there's a mechanically locking rear differential, the bulk of the Y62's off-road traction comes from a brake-based pseudo LSD setup.

The system works by braking individual wheels that have little to no traction, directing drive to the wheels that still have grip.

Another feature that aids off-road progress is the Hydraulic Body Motion Control (HBMC) system, which deletes the traditional stabiliser bars and instead uses a hydrualic coupling to reduce body roll, or, in off road situations, dramatically improve wheel articulation.

It works a treat. On an off-road test track of moderate difficulty, the Patrol barely broke a sweat ascending a steep, rocky uphill section, with deep ruts and cocked wheels failing to slow the big wagon's progress.

The 5.6 litre direct-injected V8 has ample power to lug the 2785kg Patrol up the steepest slopes. With 298kW and 550Nm of torque, it had no issue climbing steep grades in high-range.

The seven-speed gearbox shifts smoothly and decisively, and always selected the right ratio without driver intervention.

Most impressive though, is the incredible sense of isolation from the outside environment. Even when driving off-road, the loudest noise is the sound of air rushing through the vents.

At work, the engine is a distant muted hum, and even over gravel road noise is barely inaudible.

Overall refinement is excellent, the power and drivetrain faultless and its off-road abilities without question, but the greatest handicap is the Y62 Patrol's gargantuan size.

2012 nissan patrol y62 australian launch preview first drive road test interior 06

It's bigger in every dimension than the Landcruiser LC200, and there were some extremely tight moments during our brief off-road sojourn in the Patrol.

For towing boats or horsefloats, the Patrol would be ideal (what better way to make use of its 3.5 tonne tow capacity). For serious off-roaders, it's probably a size too big – despite its eye-wideningly impressive capabilities.

On the road, however, it seems to shrink. The performance offered by that big V8 means it gathers speed with tremendous ease, and the HBMC system allows it to corner very flatly.

The 20-inch wheels fitted to the Patrol we drove certainly looked miniscule in comparison to the rest of the car, but the slightly lower-profile rubber fitted to them made the Patrol more car-like on the tarmac.

The Y62 Nissan Patrol is without doubt an incredible vehicle, but for now perhaps the greatest issue facing it is what price it will launch with.

Nissan Australia says there's an opportunity to offer a lower-cost vehicle by deleting a few in-cabin luxuries and swapping the HBMC system for a conventional suspension setup, but don't expect the pricetag to give you much change from $85,000.

As for the car we drove, which is representative of a range-topping Patrol Ti model, it would not be unreasonable to assume that it could retail from the $120,000-$130,000 mark - a touch above the top-shelf Toyota LandCruiser Sahara.

Nissan says the new Patrol will launch without a diesel option, with the sole engine choice to be the 5.6 litre petrol V8.

A diesel powerplant is under development, however it has yet to be determined whether Nissan will make use of its recently-signed powertrain sharing agreement with Daimler and use a Mercedes-sourced diesel, or use the 3.0 litre V6 turbodiesel that it co-developed with Renault.

A diesel Y62 Patrol is expected to surface sometime in 2013.

Until then, Nissan CEO Dan Thompson says the current Y61 Patrol will sell alongside the new model and could remain a fixture in Nissan Australia's line-up until 2014-2015.

Nissan may also choose to emulate Toyota's strategy of offering the utilitarian LC70 Landcruiser alongside the more passenger-focused LC200, to cater to industry fleets and off-road enthusiasts, as well as customers seeking greater comfort and refinement.

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Filed under: Featured, review, Nissan, reviews, petrol, 4wd, nissan patrol, patrol, y62 patrol, y62 nissan patrol, 2012 nissan patrol, family, Advice, 5door, 8cyl, 2013my

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  • Adrian
    Adrian says,
    4 years ago
    2 likes
    It looks huge! if they price the Ti above the LC200 it won't be too popular... People have really only flocked to the Patrol as a cheaper LC alternative...

    Oh and no diesel option will be the biggest mistake Nissan could ever make. Granted, it's under development, but should be in from the start. And good luck to them if they try the $10k+ price premium for the diesel like Toyota does with the LC!
    • 288gto
      288gto says,
      4 years ago
      2 likes
      Agreed - WAY too big and looks like a boxers head after 20 rounds!
    • Lachlan says,
      2 years ago
      That is the biggest g up of words haha they come no where near close to landcruiser.... And it's not an offroad car being ifs and IRS. But about time Nissan make a v8. Landcruiser are meant to be going back to 6 cylinder and will still be more popular car and more successful than a patrol.
  • 288gto
    288gto says,
    4 years ago
    3 likes
    it bothers me, no pisses me off to see all that effort in creating a great 4x4 only to be wasted becasue it has a luxury body slapped ontop. No one spending 120K plus is gonna take it with 50km of a dirt road. Might aswell buy a Rolls with a lift kit.
    Whats the use for all the 4x4 tech if its never gonna get used!!!
    • super matthew
      Super Mattthew says,
      4 years ago
      1 like
      It's built for the middle east, where they'll sell a lot more there than they'd ever sell here, regardless of what body it'd have on it.
  • Chris Polglase says,
    4 years ago
    1 like
    The only good thing about this for Nissan is that they will continue to sell the old Patrol alongside it. Its become what the 200 series is and thats a jacked up Limo. At least Toyota has the 70 series there for those that actually need a 4x4.
  • 288gto
    288gto says,
    4 years ago
    2 likes
    Looks like a Hippo playing on the mud!
  • Harry says,
    3 years ago
    3 likes
    I've been waiting 11 years for Nissan to produce a bigger "Man-Sized" Nissan Patrol 4x4 with a V8 diesel engine and a bigger space inside as I'm 6'-3" tall and 130kg. I currently have 2x GU's and they are underpowered and too small, technically they are mechanical dinosaurs. They drag their *** on the deck pulling my 8m van around the Tassie mountains and Bulli Pass in NSW. So, it now seems that I have no option but to go to a Toyota and resign from the NSW Nissan Car Club where we've made heaps of friends on our various trips.
    • super matthew
      Super Mattthew says,
      3 years ago
      Land Cruiser or Patrol, they're both too damn big in my opinion. Ridiculously big.
      • Samual says,
        3 years ago
        7 likes
        Yeah..too big for your weekend latte sipping trips on the promenade..not too big for people on the land who use it.
  • Rob Lockwood says,
    3 years ago
    5 likes
    mad
    Nissan. Now listen here!
    Australia needs a V8 turbo diesel, 6 speed manual, 3500kg towing, 17" wheels and LIVE axles. No wonder Landcruiser sells 3 to 1 compared to Patrol. As a compromise for the time being, install the V6 t/d from the Pathfinder into the Y61. In 6 speed manual of course.
  • LUIS ALLAN BABOUN says,
    3 years ago
    the price of the nissan patrol
  • Mary says,
    3 years ago
    1 like
    waiting, waiting,waiting for the V8 diesel!
    Are you going to give the Austarlian public a choice or do we just go to a toyota dealer.I would like to know because time and KMS waits for no woman or man.
    P.S. you don't have a new 4.2ltr turbo diesel in a yard. Now thats a car I buy time and time again!
    • OutbackOZ
      OutbackOZ says,
      3 years ago
      From what I have heard, this will only be a V8 petrol! And it will run along side the current Patrol. Plus there is no plans as to a new ute and. O plans of putting the Navara's 550 V6 diesel in it either. Also from what I have heard this will be marketed at the $120,000 price range. If it wher me I would wait for the Ford Ranger SUV to come out. Try not to through your money away on a V8 land cruiser, I know a few people who have traded there's in on the Ranger and love it. Oh and there not city drivers, these are work cars ie farms, off road and pulling big loads.
      • peter says,
        2 years ago
        Nissan Australia please take note on what is written.Produce a Y61 Patrol with a V8 6/7 speed gearbox.Keep it live and retain the bullet proof diffs.Add a few more modcons, but keep it simple.
        Shift the way you think!
  • David says,
    3 years ago
    3 likes
    This is the most disgusting 4wd I've seen. Nissan have lost the plot
  • Joe says,
    3 years ago
    1 like
    Nissan have lost me as a customer, next car will be be a v8 cruiser ute at least your get 2 live axels, ***heads
  • nicholas says,
    3 years ago
    1 like
    I've seen this thing in the flesh in the middle east.... sorry but toyota is about to loose some seious sales. 7 seats that fold flat for storge.... toyota cant even figure that out. If you want a deisel - go buy a 20 year old diesel train ! 140 Litre fuel tank is great, and can't beat the petrol power !
    • Roger says,
      3 years ago
      But you can argue with 20-30 litres/100km consumption. Even with 140 litres you wont get far. I was enquiring after a second hand diesel cruiser a couple of years ago, the dealers said you would be lucky to get one. If I wanted petrol there are heaps. People buy them without realising what a gas guzzler they are. The Cruiser TDI is a great perfromer too. 650Nm is fabulous.
  • kym bones says,
    3 years ago
    Anyone who can afford to drive a new model of these mentioned vehicles has disposable income galore. Economy isn't a factor for these buyers most likely. Nissan know this.
    They just like to show Toyota up with any stat they can.

    Turbo big block v8 petrol says hammer time in any language.
  • Bill says,
    3 years ago
    1 like
    Any chance the clutch problems of the earlier Patrols might have been fixed. Last new Patrol I bought was in 07. The tyres lasted longer than the clutch. Quite amazing how many people told me after I bought it to expect problems. My opinion of Nissan Patrol from my experience is they are a dud and don't expect much in backup from the dealer.
  • nath says,
    2 years ago
    V8 petrol is the biggest waste of time ever... Considering alot of manufacturers are not even bothering reliesing a petrol model in there range(collarado,amarok ect) .. Nissans sales will suffer greatley... There better off putting the nav v6 td in it... I can garantee people who want it for a work horse wont even give it a second glance... The nav/pathy would be a better option!
  • TARH8R says,
    2 years ago
    1 like
    EGR has caused car companies to re-think their engine makes. I'm proud that Nissan are taking their time to get it right and produce an engine for longevity. Take a look at Toyota, sold their soul to Thailand and havn't made a decent car since then. Not one review on any of their recent vehicles has been positive. Nissan will only hang themselves with their high prices but, it will be a better product then any Toyota...Nowdays....
  • TARH8R says,
    2 years ago
    For the record, someone tell me 1 thing so special about a diesel engine???? Longevity? How many people keep a car for 250-300,000kms? It's laggy, sluggish cost the same to run nowdays and costs more to fix/ replace parts. If you ask me diesels are a thing of the past unless diesel price drops. I don't keep a car more then 5-7 years. Nor do most 4wd fanatic. This new patrol petrol is 900-1000kms per 140ltrs, that's 14-15ltrs per 100kms...that's better then a ZD30 (3.0ltr) engine.
    • Keanie says,
      2 years ago
      1 like
      So you've never been out west. Try the Simpson or Canning on petrol, good uck
      50 years roaming the outback has taught me diesel rules
    • Mark says,
      2 years ago
      I get 10.7 litres/100 km with a ZD 3.0 litre motor and 12.8 if towing a 1200 kg boat and trailer. Diesel is the go with ample power and torque and cleaner emissions than petrol engines. My 2004 ST-L GU-IV Patrol has auto transmission full leather and dual air and was bought with 50,000 km from a one owner for $38K. I would not have anything else. Bugger buying anything new.
  • Dieselfuture says,
    2 years ago
    1 like
    To all those saying diesels are a thing of the past, you all need to crawl out of your shells and look at where the automotive industry is going!
    Why do you this alot of manufacturers are not web making petrol 4wd's, petrol, is becoming a thing of the past, why do you think they are going into small cars now days, such as the diesel Astras, Volvos, merc's, Mazda make a Mazda 3 diesel option, equivalent power, HALF the fuel economy of a petrol engine in the same car, 4-7 L per 100kms in REAL KMS not manufacture figures which are always bull*** compared to real time KMS...
    I own a 2006 HDJ79 turbo cruiser ute and a 2005 5.7 V8 commodore, so I'm not a biast agenced petrol, but for economy, longitivity/reliability and TORQUE, no petrol will ever meet up to a common rail direct injection diesel equivelent...
    Unless you are a gutter 4wder that wouldn't know a dirt road or track if it punched you in the nose..
    Besides, petrol engines are only just BEGINNING to catch up to technology that diesel engines have been doing for 15-20 years! Does DIRECT INJECTION ring a bell?
    Sorry Nissan, but you are digging your new wagon a pre-mature grave taking this step.
    (25 years as a diesel mechanic)
  • denis oswin says,
    2 years ago
    Will the y62 be offered as a cab chassis
  • neil berry says,
    2 years ago
    Nissan gone soft like Toyota!
  • 1994kw says,
    2 years ago
    Wow, had been looking forward to the Y62's Australian debut. Have always preferred the patrol over the landcruiser. But with no diesel to start with I will head over to the landcruiser 200.
    mad
  • Joan Debijl says,
    2 years ago
    Dear Sir/Madam

    I have been waiting patiently for the release of the new Nissan Patrol only to find that Nissan are bringing out a V8/Petrol.
    The shape must have been influenced by Honda which is like a butter box (too square).
    Most women that I know would have appreciated a smaller version V6 petrol as we too like to be able to take the kids off road but not to the extent of our male counter parts and would not need the extra tork etc. but still with the creature comforts and the capacity of the 7 seats and economy. While most women drivers would use the car not for off road but as in my case over the years appreciate the security offered in city traffic (not that they are safer) but for the visibility in traffic seeing what is happening quite a distance and can then anticipate the best course of action and the reliability of the patrol.
    I did drive my son's Dualis and was dissappointed with the visibility in the rear window and this appears to be the case in the New Y62 as it appears to slop down.
    Once again single women seem to be overlooked in the market place also price wise and it seems that a middle of the range with the features and a little more economy would be appreciated also automatic and petrol would be an advantage.
    I have been driving Patrols for nearly 30years and presently have a 1994 4.2 Automatic which I have had since new and have found the reliability and the work horse nature of the vehicle a plus. My children are now grown up and the grandchildren are coming along so there is deinite need for every age group.

    Kindly yours
    Joan
  • nissanti says,
    2 years ago
    1 like
    Now I have had 3 Nissan petrol TI`s and been VERY happy with each one...Just sold an 07 awaiting new machine BUT yes be nice if Diesel..The question for me is just how much fuek will it burn , MORE or less than 4.8TI??
    Any way seen the thing two VERY annoying things:
    1) the rear area when back seat put down doesnot sit flush with rear floor.
    2) Have a look where gear selector is...When they have made RHD version the Gear select its in front of passenger meaning little fella`s or women will need arm extensions to get to it..
    We tow Horses etc and have BIG chev duelly 6.6 L twin turbo , she burns 14 l on highway and around 18-20 towing 3 horse float so IF we get patrol I get it will use more fuel but how much ??
    dry
  • cathyee says,
    2 years ago
    2 likes
    Your review about Nissan patrol is informative. It is really great work. Thanks for sharing your experience with us. We like Nissan patrol . It has high quality driving, good mileage, interior and exterior looks good. We really enjoyed driving this car .
  • Chalie says,
    2 years ago
    Me and my wife went for the v6 navara we want diesel not petrol I drive a 89 gq I would love a gu but 4 banger no thanks like a lot of people say I tell nissian dealers you need to put the v6 into the gu that new patrol is a soccer mums car it could never keep up with my gq
  • Sickgu says,
    2 years ago
    Nissan sort your *** out and build a V6 TD 6 speed manual full size dual cab ute with live axle front and rear & optional factory lockers, based on a Y61 with 300mm chassis extension to allow for a reasonable size tray and I will be trading the wife's Prado 150 to buy the first one released
  • bushwaker says,
    1 year ago
    Mate just told me his seen 3 diesel Patrols doing trials around the Karratha region in W.A.
    They were all towing caravans, big diesels and from feedback they were performing very well.
    I asked what size engines and feedback was V-8 diesels.
    Come on Nissan. Get them out here with a live axles and factory diff locks and I ll be selling my cruiser straight off.

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