Since my last road test, I have completed a couple of long journeys up to the north of England. While it showed that the satellite nagivation, once mastered, is a wonderful piece of equipment, the fuel gauge seemed to move too quickly from brimming to empty.
I was sure I was just being picky and expecting it to be super-frugal as I had just been testing a supermini, so I decided to get out my abacus and do some checking.
According to my real-life test figures, the Primera is averaging 33.7mpg, some way short of the combined official test figure of 46.3mpg.
The previous tester, Sandie Hurford, was achieving about 31mpg and my highest economy on a long run is 38mpg. It doesn’t make a lot of sense as the Nissan X-trail we had on test recently, which has exactly the same engine, was returning a combined figure of 38mpg.
So this is where the calculator comes in. My digital fumblings reveal that the difference between the actual cost of fuel used and the predicted cost, according to the economy figures, is about £2,000 over 60,000 miles.
Compare this with other real-world figures from previous test cars, such as the Honda Accord 2.2 CDTi Sport, which delivered 48.1mpg, and the Vauxhall Vectra estate SRi 1.9 CDTi 150, which returned 42.6mpg.
For a fleet manager trying to control costs, this level of discrepancy can be a nasty surprise. Something tells me all is not well in the engine bay and I will be booking the car for a thorough going-over at the local dealership.
We will keep you posted but if you are a driver of a Nissan Primera and have a better or worse mpg than us, please email the details to email@example.com so we can compare results.
Model: Nissan Primera 2.2 dCi SVE
Price (OTR): £18,575
CO2 emissions (g/km): 164
Company car tax bill (2005/6) 22% tax-payer: £62 per month
Insurance group: 9
Combined mpg: 46.3
Test mpg: 33.7
CAP Monitor residual value: £4,600 (25%)
HSBC contract hire rate: £292
Expenditure to date: Nil
Figures based on three years/60,000 miles