Well, I’m someone who likes to buy new cars and use it until it clocks 150,000 to 200,000km before changing it to a new ride.
The reason for this is simply because my job entails me to travel interstate during the wee hours of the morning and late night and I’m worried about breakdowns. I personally believe a car bought new and maintained as per manufactures schedule at authorised service centres may not break down unexpectedly. I also assume an engine's life span is for 250,000km and that the maintenance of wear and tear items increases when the car reaches 150,000km resulting in unproductive time spent at service centres and the loss of use of car for a prolonged period of time.
Thus, I opine replacing the car as it approaches 200,000km is more cost-efficient.
My current ride is a Nissan Teana 2.5XL which was birthed in 2015 at Tan Chong Motors plant in Serendah.
It was priced at approximately RM 165,000 and my friendly sales personnel Alex Tan gave me a RM 10,000 discount for it.
I have owned it for 5 years now and it had clocked 165,000km to-date.
I had owned a Honda Accord Gen 8 (Year Manufacture 2009) and a Toyota Camry ACV 50 model (Year of Manufacture 2012). The former was owned for 2 years and 125,000km and the latter for 2 years and about 110,000km.
The Teana is the longest period I have owned a car in my motoring life. A good five years as of October 12, 2020.
Prior to buying the Teana I had test driven the 2015 Honda Accord, 2015 Toyota Camry, The BMW 318i & the Volvo V40 T4.
Accord & Camry did not impress me as the cars behaved very much like the previous generation Accord and Camry that I had owned.
The Volvo V40 & 3 series were good rides with V40 being an impressive ride. At that point of time, as much as I loved the V40 I did not buy it as the fear of maintenance cost and the low resale value of a high mileage car when its is aged below 3 years had me shying away from it.
The Choice of Teana & User Experience
The Teana had a mixture of Camry & Accords characteristic and to me, Nissan had perfected it better than the Japanese competitors.
Camry had provided great drive comfort but the ride and handling was not to my satisfaction. The Accord gave a great driving pleasure with good ride and handling, but the comfort was lacking.
The Teana 2.5XL gave a good comfort with its Zero gravity seat and ample leg room both in front and back. The thigh support was good in the driver’s seat. My wife and kids enjoyed the comforts of the rear seats. It was a car many in family loved for long distance journeys. The comfort was surely better than the2012 Camry.
The drive, well that was a mixed bag. In its stock form, it drove well, and it had decent road holding but it did not match up to the Accord. Even the Gen 8 Accord had a better road holding and handling.
I had installed Ultra Racing Stabiliser Bars at Nissan Service Centre and it made a world of difference in the Teana’s handling. It gave a decent ride and handling which met my requirement.
The car entertainment was good with Bose sound system. It gave you a discotheque feeling when the ride music was played thus it assisted the driver in being awake during long and tiring interstate journeys. Having said that, the Head Unit was not the best as the navigation system was not user friendly and the Bluetooth connectivity was not as easy nor seamless as other makes.
The Teana also came with powered rear-view mirror which gave a pleasant night driving experience. The powered rear blind allowed the rear passengers to have an additional heat blocker.
Purchase and Service Experience
The purchase experience was decent as the Salesman Mr. Alex Tan was the Assistant Manager of ETCM Klang and he made the purchase process simple and easy. He also assisted in the trade-in of my Toyota Camry at a reasonably good rate.
The bigger credit I would like to reserve for the Service Centre (ETCM PJ) especially the Service Advisor Mr. Ong Swan.
He goes out of the way to make the customer feel like a king, he explains in detail of the preventive maintenance that is to be conducted. In the event there is warranty claim, he assists until the problem is solved. When there is a need to leave the car for a prolonged period of time, he ensured that a courtesy car is provided.
Being someone who have owned a Honda, Toyota & Nissan, I would rate Nissan,
followed by Toyota and Honda in service quality. Honda Klang surely gave me the worst experiences comparison. I believe service centre experience is largely dependent on the Service Advisor. Nissan gave me the choice of choosing my service advisor thus I choose the same person throughout my ownership.
Nissan also had a customised package to extend the warranty up to 5 years or 200,000km upon the expiry of the initial warranty and ‘packaged service deal’ until 180,000km. I had availed both the options which gave me hassle-free owning experience. Nissan had changed a few items under warranty for me the high-value item being my seats leather cover and air-cond compressor. Comparing this to the hassle one of my previous rides service centres gave over the quality of leather seat and the ever-present brake judder makes Nissan service quality to be outstanding.
Pros & Cons
- Safety features
It was the only Japanese D segment that came with six airbags in 2015 with the other similar safety features such as traction control, ebd etc.
- Fuel efficient
The car returns a 13km/l in urban driving and 17km/l on highway cruise.
- Soft to touch leather at touchpoints such as the door panels.
The legroom was more than sufficient for a 6-footer like me both in the front and at the back.
- Powered anti-glare rearview mirror
- Rear powered blind
- Ambient light.
- Good visibility and less blind spots.
- Comfortable – the zero gravity seats lived up to the hype.
- Good sound system
The BOSE sound system gave a pleasant in-car entertainment, but the head unit had issues on Bluetooth connectivity.
- Reasonably priced parts.
The cost of servicing and maintaining the parts was lower than my previous D segment rides.
- Amazing service centre experience
- The ride and handling is average and does not compare with accord.
- The brand value is low, so you do not have bragging rights.
- The resale value is low in comparison with the Japanese segment competitors.
The servicing and repair of in-car entertainment are not available at service centres, you would be referred to the HQ in Jalan Ipoh, its cumbersome.
Total Score : 3.57/5
Performance : 3/5
Quality and features : 4/5
Space : 4/5
Ride Comfort : 4/5
Fuel Economy : 4/5
Purchase Cost : 3/5
Maintenance Cost : 3/5
Nissan Teana is an underrated D segment car. The car gives a good value proposition as it is was priced competitively lower than its Japanese D segment competitors and it had offered more safety and mechanical features during my purchase period in 2015. The owning cost over five years were also lower than its Japanese competitors with a very decent after sales service.
Having owned the top two D segment cars previously I would rate the Nissan Teana to be of the same class and refinement as the other two. In fact, in total ownership and usage experience, I would say Nissan Teana gave me more satisfaction and ownership pleasure compared to the other two.
Having owned it for five years and having clocked close to 170,000km, I have just sold the car and handed it over to the new buyer today (October 10, 2020).
This story is written to immortalise my happy motoring with Nissan Teana.