I've owned three Nissan Cabstars.
Just one word of caution...I am convinced that the Cabstar's upright driving position contributed/caused by back to go into spasms.
My first and second Cabstar's did not have powered steering and consequently, when laden, the steering wheel was very hard to turn. I think the combined effect of the upright sitting position (thighs parellel with the floor and lower leg pointing straight down forming a 90 degree angle at the knees) and the twisting of the body at the thighs to pull the wheel round, caused a tear in my shoulder which led to inflamation and eventual back problem.
Interestingly, even when I got a Cabstar with power steering the problem didn't go away (although I am not sure if it would have occurred if I'd driven one with power steering from the outset).
You might ask, if I suffered so badly in the first place, why did I buy a third? The simple answer was because I thought that power steering would be the answer.
In terms of engine grunt, pulling power, durability and weight carrying, I don't think there was anything to match the cabstar. Having said that I do think the engine and gearbox were not as strong on the vehicle I owned in the late nineties/early 000's compared to the Cabstar I bought in 1990.
To be fair to Nissan, I have never owned or driven a Nissan Cabstar since 2003.
I had an 05 cabstar.
And i echoe phils point about the driving position. I bought mine from devon and drove it back to London and boy did my body feel achy when i got home! The upright position was ok for short journeys but if your stuck in traffic its horrible!
Believe me its a very uncomfortable van to drive.
Other problems with cabstars is they seem to suffer with tracking problems. A mechanic told me this after i took mine to be looked at.
Good points are; Its HUGE turning circle, powerful engine, and the whole van is built like a brick s**t house! It is a very strong van. And also is a relitevely simple van to work on, as its quite a simple van. Also the tipper is built with good materials. (thick alluminium) The new transit tipper beds let it down. Its a very thin steel bed and mine has shown signs of mild rust already.
Why didnt i buy another? Because i prefered the drive of a transit. A transit is a much smoother, comfortable van.
"Why didnt i buy another? Because i prefered the drive of a transit. A transit is a much smoother, comfortable van."
Agreed Steve. Arm rests and extended leg room (more like an armchair).
I'm not sure of the status now but one of the reasons the Cabstar became so popular was because of its single rear axle and no need for plating.
Perhaps someone can confirm if the Cabstar needs a plate now?
the transit do many differant chassis lengths and you can also get chassis extensions that would make it longer then the cabstar, i have got a standard lwb transit and its got the same length chassis as my mates cabstar
Martyn Howe said:
Was it the old shape cabstar you had?
Must admit I do prefer the transit for drive comfort.
Up until recently I was all set on ordering a new transit but the body I am having built won't fit on the transit as its not long enough. The cabstar is a little longer and is one of the only vehicles that the body will fit on.
the chassis on my transit from behind the cab to the end of the chassis is 3450mm with a 3250mm 3 way tipper body on which over hangs the chassis by 250mm and that alows me 450mm for my locker box between the body and the cab
Martyn Howe said:
I've been told by the body builders that you can't use chassis extensions for a tipping body.
Even on the standard lwb transit form the body wouldn't fit. The new cabstars lwb are about 300mm longer than the standard transit lwb.
I think chassis extensions are used for non tipping bodys like dropside or box vans.
Shame because the transit would have been cheaper and have a better re sale value
We've got two Cabstar Tippers 2009/10 with the tipper by Northern Truck Bodies and they are great on the road vehicles.
Small turning circle, plenty of power and a good workspace in the cab. Tows our chipper with no problem and the payload is good for the size.
Reasonable MPG etc.
However, Offroad they bog down in the slightest bit of mud or wet grass with the front wheels burying and the back pair spinning if there's no load.
Without the Hilux to pull them out, we'd be b**gered at times.
I have a 1999 Cabstar and would not change it for any new truck on the road. It's more than caperble of carrying all I need, including a 1.2 tone mini digger and all the skids and buckets. It will go anywhere in the wet because of single rear wheels. It is very good on fuel, passes every MOT without any problem. A truly great workhorse that they don't make any more. But, it is not the most comfortable truck in the world and I don't care. I use it for work, not for cruising. See it on my website: www.ericbarkerlandscapes.co.uk Hope this is of some use to you ? Kind regards, Eric.