Our Nissan Patrol LE went in for its first “free” service recently, after the 1000 km break-in period. While we were booking the dealer appointment in Dubai, the lady on the phone started upselling certain accessories to us. Normally we avoid upsells, but she just happened to be offering exactly what we were after.
The offer was basically for custom-fitted leatherette seat covers at a discounted price of Dhs 2500, with free floor-mat lamination (which is a popular thing around here). We were looking for this because our beige cloth interior is a dirt magnet, and we have kids.
When we dropped off the ‘Troll, the accessories rep was waiting for us there, and gave us a tour of the upholstery options (which included three different colours and two-tone choices) as well as other accessories, some of which we were also on the lookout for. In the end, we went for the Dhs 2500 beige seat covers that look like stock leather seats, Dhs 100 more for the perforated look, and another Dhs 600 to cover the cloth door skins with factory-look stitched leatherette (the armrests are already leatherette). They even included a leatherette cover on top of the already-leatherette centre armrest. We opted to laminate only the rear and boot floor-mats.
We also chose to install the chrome door-protection stripes, chrome mirror covers and the rear-bumper metal protector plate, all for functional reasons that also gave the car a higher-spec “Platinum” look. These cost Dhs 1050 more. Interestingly, these were aftermarket items, but the shop also offers factory items at a four-times higher price.
They had several other options as well, including a Dhs 8000 full leather reupholstery, a Dhs 4500 four-camera/navigation system upgrade and Dhs 1000 roof rails, as well as a whole host of cheesy body kits. We skipped all these, but appreciate the aftermarket support.
We got the car back the same evening. If we didn’t tell you they were seat covers, you’d never guess otherwise. The zippers and velcro for the removable covers are artfully hidden behind seatbelts and such. Ignore the front headrest pillows, as those are from Carrefour (and pretty darn good neck support).
But if you look closely, the seats look thicker, some of the stitching around the headrests is poorly done, the third-row seatback is now full-leatherette instead of carpeted, and the second-row centre armrest doesn’t fit any more when folded up because it’s too thick now. Also, a plastic seat panel wasn’t put back together properly, which we will get addressed at the next service.
Still, even with these flaws, we’re satisfied with the overall job, as it came out better than expected.
Having spent almost Dhs 4300 on accessories, we got the car back from its first service with a free oil change (oddly enough with the cheap “5000 km” oil even though we specified that we want 10,000 km service intervals).
Admittedly, after thinking about customising our car with black-out trim, we instead went all-out in blinging it up even more. We realised it looks too much like a base model with black-out trim, and overbearing chrome is basically part of its whole personality anyway.
On another note, while the break-in period is technically over with the 1000 km service, the instruction manual states that the break-in period is actually 2000 km. So we aren’t pushing the ‘Troll as hard as we’d like yet.
Accessories will not be added to the running costs tally below.
Original Mileage When Bought: 100 km
Latest Mileage To Date: 1200 km
Latest Average Fuel Economy: 24.4 litres/100 km
Cost of Latest Problems: Dhs 0
Cost of Latest Maintenance: Dhs 0
Total Non-Fuel Running Cost Since Bought: Dhs 0