The Patrol GR is part of Nissan's continuing assault on the 4x4 sector, which doesn't appear to have shown much of a climbdown in sales despite several warning shots being fired from market watchers. In fact, residual value predictions in the sector show it still makes financial sense to choose a 4x4, with values for the many models nudging 50% of original cost new, according to CAP Future Residual Values.
The latest Patrol is an all-new separate chassis design powered by just one engine - a six-cylinder 2.8-litre indirect injection turbodiesel developing 130bhp and 186lb-ft of torque at 2,000rpm. The four-wheel-drive hardware is fairly straightforward: solid axles front and rear use multilink suspension, while high and low range on the five-speed manual gearbox comes with a differential lock as standard on the back axle. Two-wheel-drive is used in normal road conditions, with four-wheel-drive selectable on the the move.
Uniquely, a switchable stabiliser bar at the rear is designed to provide maximum on-road stability and minimum roll, while still retaining the capability for effective off-road traction and passenger comfort. Prices for the new Patrol start at a competitive ú21,150 for the entry-level three-door, rising to ú30,650 for the top of the range SE Touring. Tested here is the standard GR in SE spec, at ú28,150 on the road.