"Dad ... we’re so not giving this back”… backseat approval had been decreed.
I was quite stoked when Matt threw me the keys to the top-spec Ti-L Patrol for a long weekend away with the boys and kids on the Murray River. It wasn’t the most arduous off-roading trip, but a weekend up bush under the stars is always enjoyable.
Packing for the trip was easy, as there’s plenty of room in the rear for a fridge, food boxes and clothing; plus, I strapped the kids’ bikes to the Ironman 4x4 roof rack. The kids loved the extra room in the back seats compared to our regular GU Patrol, while the Bluetooth headphones that come with DVD players in the headrests meant there was a complete lack of cords around their feet to get tangled in.
My little Tambo Camper Trailer weighs in at about 800kg loaded, and hooking it up to the Patrol was simple. Towing was a breeze and overtaking was just as easy; there was no dropping a gear on long run-ups, like I need to do with my 3.0L Patrol. Simply wait for a break in traffic, point, squirt the 298kW, and it’s all over and done before you have a chance to glance at the speedo.
We spent the weekend in the Murray River Reserve, about 20 minutes outside Echuca, and there are plenty of riverside options to pull-up for a stay. Christies Beach is popular for good reason, but on this trip we stayed at Betts Beach, as it had a rope swing (OH&S parents disapprove, but kids love it) and is close to the beach.
The roof rack came in handy when it came time to collect wood, as we didn’t want to dirty the plush cabin.
The Ironman Instant Awning was also a bonus, as a couple of the older kids had the old open-to-the-elements swags and the awning kept the dew off them; all they had to worry about was the threat of mozzies and an early morning lick from Max the Blue Heeler. The Ironman awning comes with an inbuilt LED strip light, which is a well-thought-out addition that comes in handy after dark.
If this Patrol was mine, I’d need a fridge slide and a second battery for the fridge – I’m so used to these in my own car that now I’m spoilt. For the long weekend I had take the fridge out of the rear and run it off the trailer’s battery/solar set-up.
Stepping out of my old, faithful 3.0L GU and into the Ti-L made me realise how far cars have developed since 2001: lane departure and forward collision warnings, blind spot monitors, and Intelligent Distance Control are constant reminders of how far things have come. However, it was that V8, with a complete lack of turbo lag, which was the biggest winner for me.
How much did it drink? Around town I achieved 17.47L/100km; a tour up the Hume one weekend when unladen gave me 13.14L/100km; and on the Echuca camping weekend with the trailer we achieved 18.45L/100km. It’s not the end of the world, but there is a price to pay for effortless power.
This is the last instalment of our six months with the Y62 Patrol. Just like Stu, we’ve loved it for its power and performance, the massive amount of interior space and its generous list of standard features.
What’s more impressive is the price of the Patrol against any of its large 4x4 wagon competitors. And before anyone wants to complain about the fuel use of a petrol V8 engine, the money you save on purchase price over a similar diesel-fuelled wagon buys you a hell of a lot of premium gasoline. We’re missing the big bus already!
4x4 Shed Log: 2017 Nissan Patrol Ti-L
Current mileage: 14,330km
Date acquired: Dec 2017
Price: $88,990 + ORC
Mileage this month: 3656km
Average fuel consumption: 16.22L/100km