2006 Nissan Quest 3.5 SE Mini Van (592)


This week we’re looking at the 2006 Nissan Quest 3.5 SE Mini Van. Targeted toward women buyers it is progressive in design and has that SUV look about it. That’s important because the competition is the very popular Sport Utility. Nissan expects 80% of buyers will be a woman.

The space age look they sought has been achieved in my opinion. But it’s all functional and controls are comfortably arranged.  

Driving Observations: Here are a few driving habits many of us display that we hate in others.

1.      Pull in front of traffic and then slow down.

2.      Vary speed like a Yo Yo for no apparent reason.

3.      Treat highway as a private slalom coarse for amusement.

4.      Driving slower than other traffic in your lane of travel forcing others to pass on the   right.

5.      Being inattentive – reading, putting on make up speaking on the cell phone.

General Info:

Parts – n/a

Assembly – Canton , Ohio USA

Class:  – Compact Van

Cars: – 350Z, Altima, Armada, Frontier, Maxima, Murano, Pathfinder, Quest, Sentra, Titan     and Xterra.

Handling & Performance:

0-60 speed is a big surprise at about 8 seconds. That’s really fast for a Mini Van.


Perhaps the bravest design of the interior – primarily in the control panel – Nissan stands alone.

Fit and Finish:

I’ve heard some negative comments about the quality issues of how well it is fitted together but I don’t buy it. I found it to be well assembled.


If you go for all the options you will come dangerously close to $40,000. At that price it is hard to conceive there is anything else you could add to this well appointed vehicle. The best bang for the buck has to come from Kia Sedona. That’s a MUST test drive for serious buyers.


There is a rearview camera with a video display on the dash. Although it is interesting it surely would take time to get accustomed to using it. If it prevented you from backing over the kids and their toys it would surely be worth the expense. The stow-and-go seats are the hot ticket and just what the doctor ordered for the active family. The power sliding doors continue to be a favorite for me.

Consumer Recommendation:

If you can’t really think of a good reason to have an SUV, go for the Mini Van. It will be more economical to operate and that translates into a sound family buying decision. You’ll likely never need the 4-wheel drive feature so characteristic of the SUV. The competition is made up of such great vans that I would suggest you test drive them all. If cost is of particular importance I really like the KIA Sedona. It is really busting into the market and continues to be the most cost competitive of the segment.

Top Recognized Competition:

Nissan Quest $24-34,000, Ford Freestar $20-30,000, Honda Odyssey $25-39,000, Mazda MPV $22-29,000, Toyota Sienna $24-38,000, Chrysler Town & Country $21-36,000, KIA Sedona $23-26,000.

Good News:

Innovative design, powerful, roomy with great high tech control devices.

Bad News:

Questionable use of color.

Standard Equipment:

3.5 liter 240 hp V6 engine, 5-speed auto trans, 4-wheel power assist disc brakes with ABS and EBD Electronic Brake force Distribution, VDC Vehicle Dynamic Control system, TCS Traction Control System, power rack and pinion steering, dual power sliding doors and power rear liftgate, auto halogen headlights, fog lights rear sonar (sensing) system, roof rack and side rails, power heated mirrors, sound system with 6 in dash CD player, rear audio controls with wireless headphone capability, cruise control, rearview camera with 7” color monitor, power sliding sunroof dual zone climate control, rear heating and air conditioning system with rear controls, power front windows and rear vent windows, power door locks, 8-way drover and 4-way passenger heated seats, power adjustable foot pedals, leather front and second row seats, tilt steering column with leather wrapped wheel, remote keyless entry, front and side air bags, tire pressure monitor system, child safety rear door locks, immobilizer system and security system. If that isn’t enough here’s a few options: XM Satellite radio $350, DVD entertainment system with two 7 inch color display screens, remote control, two wireless headphones $1,900, Michelin PAX system package for run flat tires on 19” alloy wheels $850 and Navigation system for $1,800.

Gas Stats:

18 City and 25 Highway MPG


MSRP $33,500.

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