Ask an expert


I am looking at buying a Nissan Wingroad and the owner said that the vehicle does not have a cam belt but has a chain instead.

I know very little about cars, is it better to have a chain in the vehicle than a cam belt and are there more or less problems with this particular design.

I know that you have to change a cam belt at 100,00km, do you have to do anything with a chain?


From the "Ask Jack" archives - 6 December 2009


Nissans in general are a very good buy second hand because of their proven reliability, the Wingroad is no exception. The early Nissans with a CVT transmission (used imports) are best avoided but otherwise they are, in general terms, a pretty safe brand to consider.

Part of that reliability record is because the engine has a timing chain instead of a rubber belt and there is no maintenance required or recommended replacement period.

Most other manufactures are making the change to this engine design in an effort to help reduce ownership costs.

Not all chain driven engines are problem free but Nissan has for many years run this system with very few issues.

Provided the car has a proven past service history and you continue with regular oil changes etc the Wingroad will provide you very low running costs in comparison to some other makes / models.

The only one slight downside with the NZ new Wingroad is the lack of a lap and diagonal seat belt in the centre rear seating position.

To be fair it only becomes an issue if all seating positions are filled on a regular basis which for most motorists is highly unlikely.

Otherwise a good choice of vehicle if reliability, no frills and value for money are high on the priority list