2021 Nissan Kicks Changes Add Style, Substance, but not Speed

Christian Wardlaw | Dec 08, 2020

When you don’t have much to spend on a new SUV, the 2021 Nissan Kicks stands ready to give you the rugged look, higher driving position, and useful cargo space you seek. But, in spite of numerous improvements for the 2021 model year, the Kicks still doesn’t offer an optional all-wheel-drive system. Or much in the way of engine power.

2021 Nissan Kicks SR Electric Blue Front Quarter View

For 2021, the Nissan Kicks continues in S, SV, and SR trim levels. They all lose the Kicks’ wide-eyed and surprised face in favor of a more modern, tailored, and grown-up look. Get SR trim, and you’ll benefit from LED headlights and fog lights for even greater nighttime visibility. 

Nissan tidies up the rear with a new bumper, liftgate trim, and LED taillights. Redesigned wheels are also on the menu of changes, and new paint colors include Electric Blue Metallic, Boulder Gray Pearl, and extra-cost Scarlet Ember Tintcoat. Several new 2-tone paint combinations debut, too.

Inside, the instrument cluster adds a new 7-inch driver information display. A 7-inch touchscreen infotainment system is also standard, equipping the 2021 Kicks with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone projection. Three USB ports help to ensure everyone aboard is charged up.

The Kicks SV and SR add a more sophisticated 8-inch touchscreen infotainment system, which provides access to NissanConnect Services including a Wi-Fi hotspot, automatic collision notification, and over-the-air firmware update capability. These versions of the Kicks also have USB-C ports.

With all but the base trim level, the Kicks comes with a new center console, updated upholstery, and new trim. These versions of the car also gain rear disc brakes for 2021, as well as adaptive cruise control and an electronic parking brake with an Auto Hold function.

Otherwise, the Kicks is the same jaunty little runabout that first arrived for the 2018 model year, light enough in terms of weight that its meager 122-horsepower 1.6-liter 4-cylinder engine isn’t a major liability.

Nissan is the source of information in this article. It was accurate as of December 8, 2020, but it may have changed since that date.

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