Nissan Primera (2002 – 2006) Review

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Nissan Primera (2002 – 2006) At A Glance

Different looking, but a bit smaller than a Mondeo or Vectra.

1.8 petrol version dull to drive. Diesels have same problems as X-Trail.

On average it achieves 93% of the official MPG figure

I first clapped eyes on the Nissan Primera at the 2001 Barcelona Motor Show. Wow, that's different, I thought. Inside is no less of a shock to the senses. All the main instruments and controls are in the centre. And they require a little bit of learning.

For a start, the Primera doesn't have rear parking bleepers. Instead it has a TV camera that transmits what's behind to the TV screen in front of you. So you can actually see small children, pets, bicycles and low-lying stone buttresses. There are no excuses for a flat cat or bent back bumper with this car.

The screen doubles up as a display for the radio/CD player, for the climate control and for the trip and service computer. There's not much it doesn't tell you. And on the SVE model it trebles up as the display for Nissan's brilliant 'Birdview' satellite navigation system. 

Looking for a Nissan Primera (2002 - 2006)?
Register your interest for later or request to be contacted by a dealer to talk through your options now.

Real MPG average for a Nissan Primera (2002 – 2006)

Real MPG was created following thousands of readers telling us that their cars could not match the official figures.

Real MPG gives real world data from drivers like you to show how much fuel a vehicle really uses.

Average performance


Real MPG

29–44 mpg

MPGs submitted


Diesel or petrol? If you're unsure whether to go for a petrol or diesel (or even an electric model if it's available), then you need our Petrol or Diesel? calculator. It does the maths on petrols, diesels and electric cars to show which is best suited to you.


Heavy steering on Nissan Primera
I've just purchased a Nissan Primera with 39,500 miles on the clock. I’ve noticed the steering is very heavy, especially when turning. What can be done to rectify this?
This model had a pumped hydraulic power assisted steering system. Could be the pump. Could be the rack. First thing to do is check the level of PAS fluid.
Answered by Honest John
Can you suggest a BMW with good fuel economy?
I'm looking to replace my 2003 Nissan Primera diesel estate and want something with 50mpg+. I've test driven a BMW 116d SE and like eight speed automatic box, potential economy and drive, but find it a bit small inside. Can you recommend any other BMWs?
BMW has 60mpg plus from its new 320dED.
Answered by Honest John
Can't reach max RPM in a Primera?
My Primera has about 95,000 miles on the clock. It has two problems - the first is the idle sound, which oscilates a bit and sounds like it has sudden attacks of 'mosquito-like' changes in frequency. Vibrations are not an issue and idle speed is good and constant. The 2nd thing is that it is unable to achieve top speed on straight road and it is too early for the engine to loose much of the power and die. It revs in 6th until about 5000 and like it has some blockage in that spot, the needles are unable to move forward. Even in fourth gear you can feel a bit of laziness after 5000 revs. Spark plugs changed, ignition coils seem to be ok. What could it be? Local garage put a blame on injectors primarily and suggested a check and replacement if necessary, or cleaning.
Change the engine air filter, pour some injector cleaning additive into the tank, then run consistently on Shell V-Power Nitro Plus petrol.
Answered by Honest John
Should I keep my ageing Primera?
I own a Nissan Primera, 2004 registration, 2.0 manual petrol hatchback. It has done 140K since I bought it in 2005. So far it is doing fine with a few things needed to be replaced. What are your thoughts on keeping this car for another year may be two if possible? What other used cars with similar specs are worth looking at, budget is upto £14K. If Nissan were still making this car, it would have been my first choice, without any doubt. I have a very good local independent garage called Autokare who look after the car well.
The car is worth so little that if it is reliable the best thing you can do is continue to run it. Change the oil frequently: every 5,000 miles.
Answered by Honest John

What does a Nissan Primera (2002 – 2006) cost?