2023 Nissan Livina Launched In The Philippines: First Drive Impressions

2023 Nissan Livina Launched In The Philippines: First Drive Impressions

We finally got our hands on the 2023 Nissan Livina, a crossover just released for the Philippines. Some may say it feels familiar to an option we currently have in the market, but we’d say it differentiates enough to offer a unique, practical experience. We’ll go into what we think of the hot new MPV after a few days behind the wheel.

Effortless Driving Dynamics

You’re behind the wheel of a 7-seater MPV, but you don’t really notice it. This feels like a light compact car while driving and it certainly doesn’t feel its size. The Nissan Livina’s body is compliant with movement, allowing the vehicle to feel composed when turning or cornering.

There is no fear that the Livina will suddenly tip over when making an emergency maneuver or traversing mountain roads in a spirited manner. Moving through tight city streets is also no problem – making this the ideal city cruiser. The MacPherson Strut with Coil Spring/Torsion Beam setup is up to standard for this segment.

Getting up to speed on the highway isn’t a cause for worry either. It has a 1.5L DOHC engine outputting 105 HP at 6,000 RPM. You don’t need to step so hard on the gas to get moving, since there actually is torque to be found down low. It really does bring you to highway speeds at a respectable rate, enough to not be a safety hazard. Whether you get the 5-speed manual or 4-speed automatic, the gear ratios are nicely spaced for just the right amount of pep.

Imposing Exterior

The first thing you’ll notice up front are the multi-reflector halogen headlights. They’re quite intimidating and give the Livina a sleek yet understated presence on the road. The chrome accents (on our VL variant) around the body are placed in just the right spots to avoid being overly tacky. The rest of the body gradually flows, then tapers off at the edges to form a wonderful variety of shapes.

At the bottom is an ample amount of ground clearance to give you some confidence when tackling humps, bumps, and elevation changes. We’re sure you could also confidently wade through low floods when traversing through the thunderstorms we experience ever so often in this country.

Separating the body and the ground are 16-inch machine-finish alloy wheels, adding a touch of elegance and sportiness.

You won’t be mistaking this for a Pininfarina vehicle anytime soon, but the 2023 Nissan Livina might be one of the more exciting MPV options in the Philippines. At the very least, it doesn’t scream “I’ve sacrificed everything remotely exciting about my life” like other vehicles in its segment do.

Roadtrip-Ready Spacious Interior

On the inside, the 2023 Nissan Livina mixes soft-touch materials with easy-to-clean plastics that are just right for the Philippines. Everything is admittedly practical and ergonomic. It’s a no-frills space in the cabin since everything can be easily found and toggled. The speedometer features colored, clearly-legible text and a conventional rev counter, taking away any excuses for overspeeding.

This spirit of “less is more” carries over to the head unit, flashing all the necessary information for multimedia controls right away. The left side of the wheel also lays out some audio and hands-free buttons.

Thankfully, Nissan has opted for knobs to control all the essential items. That includes the A/C power and temperature – although we found ourselves not turning the temperature wheel to the coldest setting, an unusual occurrence in the Philippines. Perhaps Nissan still stays true to its renown for the most frigid automobile airconditioning systems worldwide. We’d also take these controls over touch-sensitive sensors or head unit menus any day of the week. For a feature you’d desperately reach out for on a hot summer day, it needs to be immediately accessible the moment you get in the car.

Storage options are also aplenty, with a sizeable cubby under the aforementioned knobs and spaces to store items all over the cabin. A USB port to charge your device/s can also be spotted here, a proper necessity in the 21st century. You can just relax in the well-appointed leather seats and enjoy the drive. The rear passengers aren’t just an afterthought in the Livina though.

The ideal passenger count for this type of vehicle would be 7. The rear passengers are treated to their own array of air conditioning vents, complete with their own knob for controls. The leather seats and compartments for various items continue on to the second and even the third row. The last row can seat two adults for shorter rides, although we advise leaving the children here for out-of-town escapades. These can also be folded down for additional cargo space if needed.

Safety Is A Priority

Whether you’re in the driver’s seat or all the way in the rear, you are protected. Our range-topping VL variant has all the bells and whistles. That includes basic safety features like front SRS airbags to cushion the impact during collisions. Driver assists such as Hill Start Assist, Vehicle Dynamic Control, and a Traction Control System also keep things in check when the car is in motion. These features ensure a safe ride for all occupants in the 2023 Nissan Livina, even when roads in the Philippines get pretty rough.

Should the situation call for a quick stop, the Anti-Lock Brakes (ABS) guide the MPV to a halt. This is the wonder of modern ABS Systems nowadays.

2023 Nissan Livina Philippines First Impressions Verdict

The 2023 Nissan Livina is a solid choice in the Philippines – particularly for those looking for utility first, and fun second. The modern touches on the outside along with qualty-of-life upgrades on the inside definitely give it a touch of premium vibes, but overall this is an unpretending city hauler with space for your family, kids, and groceries. Should anything go awry, then things can easily be cleaned with its straightforward design.



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