Nissan Note (2013 – 2016) Review

Nissan Note (2013 – 2016) At A Glance


+Practical design and spacious cabin. Reasonably comfortable. Clear instrument binnacle. Some clever technology on upper grades

-Not very good to drive. Refinement isn't great. Material quality could be better.

Insurance Groups are between 6–11
On average it achieves 72% of the official MPG figure

The Nissan Note follows a very Japanese formula, maximising the use of space in a small package. It’s designed to seat four or even five adults in comfort, with a good level of leg and head room and a spacious luggage area, but in a car not much longer than a Ford Fiesta.

It’s full of clever ideas like a sizeable under floor storage area in the boot and a rear bench seat that can be moved forward and backward depending on how much legroom or load space is required. There’s a double floor in the boot, too, which gives more load space when it’s in the lower position or sits flush with the load lip to aid in loading bulky, heavy items.

Unfortunately it’s not all good news for the Note. The cabin is finished in a dull, hard touch plastic that while hardwearing is not as plush as the soft-touch material you get in European rivals. Furthermore some of the best gear, like the sliding rear bench, isn't offered on base models.

On top of that the driving experience isn’t enjoyable – the steering feels disconnected and the gearchange isn’t very accurate. Additionally the refinement isn’t great – gearboxes can be heard whining, engines are a little gruff and wind noise is noticeable at motorway speeds. 

There are two engines from launch – a 1.3-litre three-cylinder petrol with 80ps and a 1.6-litre dCi diesel with 90ps. Both offer decent if not scintillating performance, paired with reasonable fuel economy. From December 2013 the range is joined by a more powerful, supercharged version of the petrol engine with 98ps. Four trim levels are offered – Visia, Acenta, Acenta Premium and Tekna. The entry level model has a decent level of standard gear but those who want the best technology will need a higher trim level.

Road Test Nissan Note 2013 Range

Road Test Nissan Note 1.2 DIG-S Acenta Premium

Real MPG average for a Nissan Note (2013 – 2016)


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

28–75 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.

Satisfaction Index

Satisfaction Index What is your car like to live with?

We need your help with our latest Satisfaction Index, so that we can help others make a smarter car buying decision. What's it like to live with your car? Love it? Loath it? We want to know. Let us know about your car - it will only take a few minutes and you could be helping thousands of others.

Help us with the Honest John Satisfaction Index now

Ask Honest John

What causes rapid tyre wear?
"I have a 2016 Nissan Note that’s only done 14,400 miles and the two front tyres have almost reached their end. Surely this is not normal life span for a tyre? Can you suggest what may be the cause, and what should I do before I replace them? "
There are a number of factors that can accelerate tyre wear. Incorrectly inflated tyres is common. If the car is left standing for long periods outside then the tyres will lose air over time. If you drive the car with underinflated tyres it will increase rolling resistance and generate more heat, which will shorten the life cycle of the tread.
Answered by Dan Powell
Nissan Note Acenta Premium vs Note Tekna - what's the difference?
"Can you tell me the difference between the Nissan Note Tekna and Acenta Premium?"
Acenta Premium features a higher spec with front fog lights, automatic headlights, automatic wipers and climate control. It also includes Nissan Connect (which lets you access some car features with your phone).
Answered by Dan Powell
What's the best used, small, automatic car?
"I'm looking to buy a used, automatic, small car for my 22-year-old son. It will be his first car and our budget is £3000 - £4000. Ideally it will be a low insurance group, but I mostly want you to recommend the best alternatives in terms of smooth automatic transmissions."
As you've probably discovered, finding a good automatic gearbox in a small car for that budget is tricky. A Nissan Note would be a sensible choice and there's a number around to choose from, although might not be considered cool enough for a 22-year-old depending on whether he's bothered about such things. A Ford Fiesta would also be good and might be considered a little trendier. Hunt out a 2009 model for your budget.
Answered by Andrew Brady
An electrical part supplied by Nissan failed after five months - are Nissan liable?
"The heater resistor pack on my Nissan Note failed and was replaced by my local Nissan garage for £172. The part supplied consists of two parts, the resistor and heat sink, and the wires and plug that go into it. The wires are soldered onto the stubs of the old wires. However they couldn't fit it quickly as it was February and I needed the car, so I got a local auto electrician to fit it. The wires on the part that was supplied by Nissan have not been properly crimped and set up a point of high resistance. The resulting heat has caused the plug to fail after five months. My second auto electrician sees no problem with the workmanship. The damage is consistent with high contact resistance. The garage tell me that, as they didn't fit it and Nissan don't take electrical parts back, they are unable to refund the money. What are my options?"
You would need to prove that the part was fitted correctly. But you could then take the supplier of the resistor (whoever you bought it from, not Nissan) to Small Claims:
Answered by Honest John
More Questions

What does a Nissan Note (2013 – 2016) cost?