Is the New 2021 Nissan Kicks Worth Buying?

The Nissan Kicks was introduced in the U.S. in 2018. Nissan wanted to offer an entry in the subcompact SUV category that was affordable enough to appeal to first-time buyers or any buyer looking for a budget-friendly option. 

The rollout was successful. Since the car continues to sell well, the maker decided 2021 was the time for a bit of an update. While not a full redo, the 2021 Nissan Kicks did get some interesting upgrades that make it worth a second look—and with a starting price of under $20,000, it’s sure to be an option that the budget-minded car buyer will love!

How Much Does The Nissan Kicks Cost?

The 2021 starting price of the lowest trim level, the S, is $19,500, and that’s a less than $500 increase from the 2020 price—not bad considering all the updates. The two other trim levels, the SV and SR, are $21,300 and $21,940, respectively. 

What Are The Nissan Kicks Trim Levels?

There are three available trim levels: S, SV, and SR. While many of the features are the same on all three, there are a few features that make it worth bumping up to the SV or SR—especially when considering the difference in price is only around $2,500 between the lowest trim level and the top trim level. 

The engine is the same on all trim levels, as are the safety features. See engine and safety sections below for more information. 

Certain of the driver assistance technology features are not available on the S, such as Intelligent Cruise Control, Automatic Brake Hold, and Intelligent Driver Alert. Intelligent Around View Monitor is only on the SR, on which it comes standard.

Other features only found on the SR include LED headlights, LED daytime running lights, LED fog lights, and Follow Me Home headlights. 

Also, auto temperature control and rear passenger under-seat heating ducts are not available on the S yet come standard on the SV and SR. 

What Is New About The 2021 Nissan Kicks? 

The Nissan Kicks has some sweet upgrades for 2021, including changes in tech, the exterior, and interior. Here are  just a few things that are new on the 2021 Kicks.


This is a very affordable vehicle, but Nissan didn’t skimp when it comes to tech. Every Kicks now comes standard with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Take control of your vehicle’s tech with a 7” display or upgrade to an 8” display on the SV or SR trims. 

Keep your devices charged with one USB port in the front and two in the back. If you choose the SR or SV, you can add a USB-C port. 

The exterior didn’t get a major overhaul for 2021, but it did get an updated front bumper that gives the SUV an updated look that is more in line with the maker’s other offerings. 

Some new exterior colors are also available for 2021. One market segment Nissan is after with the Kicks is younger drivers, and that explains the bright, two-tone color options—but even older drivers may want to indulge in a vibrantly colored vehicle! 

There are certainly plenty of options, including:

  • Deep Blue Pearl Fresh Powder 
  • Gun Metallic Monarch Orange Metallic 
  • Electric Blue Metallic
  • Cayenne Red Metallic 
  • Cayenne Red Metallic 
  • Aspen White Tricoat 
  • Monarch Orange Metallic 
  • Fresh Powder 
  • Deep Blue Pearl 
  • Brilliant Silver Metallic 
  • Super Black 
  • Scarlet Ember
  • Gun Metallic

The only changes you’ll find on the interior of the 2021 Nissan Kicks are updated door trim and the addition of a convenient center armrest on the SR and SV trim levels. The same comfortable seats that drivers loved in the 2020 Kicks make a return, ensuring a pleasant daily commute!

The Engine in the 2021 Nissan Kicks

In the spirit of not fixing what’s not broken, no changes were made to the engine. All trim levels will continue to be equipped with a 1.6-liter inline engine that delivers 122 HP and 114 pound-feet of torque. You’ll enjoy just enough power along with impressive gas mileage of 31 in the city and 36 on the highway. 

Is The Nissan Kicks Safe?

Nissan has always been serious about safety, and that’s made evident with their decision to include a host of safety features standard on every version of the Kicks. There are no different safety options on the SR than on the S, and that’s because Nissan wants every driver to enjoy maximum safety on the road. 

Safety features include:

  • Nissan Advanced Airbag System
  • 3-Point Passenger Seat Belt System
  • Hood Buckling Creases and Safety Stops
  • Side-Door Guard Beams
  • Tire Pressure Monitor 

For 2021, Nissan’s Safety Shield 360 now comes standard on 10 Nissan models, including the Kicks. Features include:

  • Automatic Emergency Braking with Pedestrian Detection
  • Lane Departure Warning
  • High Beam Assist
  • Blind Spot Warning
  • Rear Traffic Alert
  • Rear Automatic Braking

Is The Nissan Kicks Worth Buying? 

Even if you opt for the top trim level, the Nissan Kicks is a very affordable car. In fact, when you look at the safety features, gas mileage, and the eye-catching style, it would be hard to make an argument against its value. 

The 2021 Nissan Kicks would be worth buying even if it were priced a little higher. As it stands with a starting price under $20k, it’s an exceptional value—and one for which you don’t have to sacrifice style, safety, or comfort. Nissan of Victoria maintains a large inventory of Nissan Kicks that you can test drive today, and we can help you build your 2021 Nissan Kicks so you can choose every detail of your new ride. Not sure the Kicks is the right Nissan for you? Take a look at the other available Nissan SUVs or the lineup of 2021 Nissan sedans.