There are a few cars in the world that barely get changed for decades. From the top of our heads, there's the Mitsubishi L300, Toyota Land Cruiser 70 Series, and the Nissan Patrol Y61. Among the three mentioned, the Nissan is the “youngest” at 22 years old.
However, it seems that Nissan will still keep this particular generation alive. While it was (sadly) discontinued here in 2017, the Patrol Super Safari is still alive and kicking in the Middle East. Nissan UAE even added more variants to the venerable 4x4, showing that there's still a lot of life left in the Super Safari.
Hold on, isn't this old news? We reported about it back in 2018 but what makes it newsworthy is that Nissan never stopped tweaking this 22-year old SUV. The 2020 and 2021 models are no exception as it gets some updates for the new decade. That said, the upgrades are mostly cosmetic. The Super Safari, Falcon, Gazelle, and Gazelle X now come with a (slightly) more subtle graphics package. In addition, the Super Safari gets new wheels this year.
Sure, there isn't much to report but the Patrol Safari over there will make any off-road enthusiast here excited. There are locking differentials, locking front hubs, a lever to engage the different four-wheel-drive settings, front and rear live axle suspension, and a sub fuel tank that gives it an extra 40 liters. The Super Safari variant comes with a winch as standard, while the Falcon gains an LED lightbar, an on-board air compressor, and an extra jerry can for fuel.
Nissan even offers two trail-ready versions of the Patrol Safari. The Gazelle packs goodies such as Remote Reservoir Shocks, a snorkel, a 2-inch lift kit, an analog dual compressor, and a winch. The Gazelle X, on the other hand, has all those plus a steel bumper for the front and rear, a massive 4-inch lift kit, a 30-inch LED light bar, 3x3 cube LED lights. tow rope, sand ramp, rear drawer set with cage front skid plate, and a digital dual compressor. With that much equipment, it could be said that the Gazelle X is an overland vehicle you can buy straight from the showroom.
Powering all variants of the Patrol Safari is not a diesel engine. Instead, it uses a gas-fed, 4.8-liter inline-six that's good for 280 PS and 480 Nm of torque. Perhaps the best part about it is the transmission. This large 4x4 can still be fitted with a manual transmission, which should be to the delight of hardcore off-road enthusiasts. A five-speed automatic is also available. There's even a cool-looking three-door version of the Patrol Safari, and it also has the same engine.
Seeing the Middle Eastern-spec Patrol Safari is making us somewhat jealous that we don't get them here. It's a (relatively) simple, rugged, and ready to rock off-roader that has a cult following in parts of the world. As SUVs become more luxury-oriented, seeing this 22-year old 4x4 still being put on sale makes us happy. Now, if only there was a way for Nissan Philippines to bring back this icon, we'd be even happier.