Minivans aren't generally praised for their forward-looking design qualities. Nissan’s Quest is an exception, striving to make a contemporary styling statement with its pillarless greenhouse and nose-toward-the-ground profile. Underneath that rather distinctive exterior, the Quest is quite a capable family hauler with a relaxing interior. Even more surprising, you get uncommonly good handling for the minivan class.
USED 2016 Nissan Quest FOR SALE NEAR METhere are no vehicles within 100 miles of Please modify your search criteria.
2016 Nissan Quest Overview
What's New for 2016
Essentially a carryover for the 2016 model year, the Quest does get an equipment revision. Roof rails now are standard on SV trim level. Estimated fuel economy has improved by 1 mpg.
Choosing Your Nissan Quest
Bodywork is just the beginning. The Quest's unique design carries over to its interior, which features standard second-row captain's chairs and a removable console between the two. Both the second-row chairs and the third-row bench flip forward to provide a flat load space. While this easy versatility cuts into cargo capacity to a degree, you get 108 cubic feet of space, without ever removing and stowing any seats. A rear storage well is always available.
Every Quest holds a 260-horsepower 3.5-liter V6 mated with a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT). When properly equipped, a Quest can tow up to 3,500 pounds -- quite a respectable figure for any front-drive vehicle. Fuel economy is estimated at 20 mpg in city driving and 27 mpg on the highway (23 mpg combined).
With its four trim levels, the Quest covers a broad span of market territory:
Although the Quest S is attractively priced at $27,430 (including destination charge), it isn't eligible for any options. The midlevel SV and SL offer everything most families need in a minivan. Luxurious Platinum trim strives to ensure that all passengers will have an enjoyable ride, but we don't think that's enough to justify its $44,080 price.
2016 Nissan Quest Review
Despite its laudable virtues, Nissan’s minivan has never quite managed to approach the appeal of the top contenders, led by the Dodge Grand Caravan and Honda Odyssey. Seating only seven passengers, Quest vies with the Odyssey for the title of sportiest minivan.
Pricing and Equipment
Starting above $27,000 (including destination charge) in entry-level S trim, the Quest holds a 260-horsepower 3.5-liter V6 and continuously variable transmission (CVT). It also comes in SV, SL, and top-spec Platinum trim.
Standard equipment for the Quest SV includes:
- Continuously variable transmission (CVT)
- Rearview camera
- Power sliding side doors
- Automatic climate control
- 4.3-inch LCD display
- 16-inch alloy wheels
- Road manners. Can a minivan be fun to drive? How about stimulating? We consider Quest the top-handling minivan on the market, or at least close to the best. Electro-hydraulic steering yields a direct, natural feel that’s seldom found in minivans. Nissan’s minivan even excels in taming body roll through curves and corners.
- Ride comfort. A carefully-damped independent suspension gives the Quest a smoothly satisfying ride. Unlike Chrysler’s minivans, for instance, you’re not likely to feel abrupt, annoying reactions over long, bumpy stretches of pavement.
- Gas mileage. Quest is among the most fuel-efficient minivans, with a fuel-economy estimate from the EPA of 20 mpg in city driving and 27 mpg on the highway, or 22 mpg in combined city/highway use.
Finding flaws in Quest performance isn’t easy, so we have to resort to trouble spots that fall far short of earthshaking.
- Reliance on virtual “gears.” Quest’s continuously variable transmission has a series of programmed shift points that make it feel like a traditional automatic. That’s good, isn’t it? Purists might say no, charging that “pretend” gears defeat the purpose of a belt-operated CVT.
- Periodic CVT sluggishness. Critics of CVTs are bound to insist that even the Quest’s version suffers somewhat from the “rubber-band” effect, which keeps engine speed higher (thus noisier) than it would be with a conventional automatic transmission. Naturally, a Quest won’t always accelerate with supreme swiftness.
- Front-seat comfort. Despite short bottoms, front seats deliver plenty of comfort. Few will ever complain about a shortage of headroom. Back support is very good; thigh support, not quite so much.
- Second-row space. Occupants of those two captain's chairs can savor a huge amount of headroom. Leg and toe space are bountiful, too, though seat cushions are quite short.
- Visibility. All-around views are top-notch, with the exception of a little impairment when looking over your left shoulder.
- Seating configuration. In addition to providing seating for seven, rather than the customary eight-passenger setup, Quest’s seating arrangement isn’t nearly as versatile as the Grand Caravan’s, with its full-folding second-row seats. Quest also trails rivals in interior volume.
- Sliding-door operation. Larger passengers might have trouble getting into the second row, simply because those doors don’t open wide enough.
- Second-row entry. Seats aren't close to the door, so riders must take two steps to get there. That could be an issue for passengers with mobility problems.
The Most Pleasant Surprise
Who’d have thought that energetic performance is a strong point in a minivan -- especially one with a CVT? Or that it’s closely followed by excellent handling talents. Even though a Quest is no lightweight, the 260-horsepower V6 never feels short on power, mates well with the CVT, and seems to be rarin’ to go
The Least Pleasant Surprise
Sadly, Nissan’s minivan hasn’t hit the contemporary mark in safety. The federal government hasn’t crash-tested the Quest in recent years, but the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety gives it a Good rating for front/side impact; Acceptable for roof crush; and Poor in the more stringent, small-overlap test, resulting in considerable intrusion into the driver’s space. Advanced-safety features are largely absent, too.
The Bottom Line
Quest is one of the best-handling minivans, though not necessarily top dog. (Honda’s Odyssey is the one to beat, and we won’t try to declare one or the other as the victor.). The Quest just feels like it almost belongs in a separate category: more sporty, more distinctive, more stimulating. Shortfalls in safety and interior space are hard to ignore, though.