A car or any vehicle we drive is often an extension of the driver’s personality. Many car owners like to customise their vehicles in one of two ways: through external features such as the body colour, or with accessories. Both ways are, to an extent, limited by what the car maker can offer, and a model allows.
Accessorising a car beyond what is considered its essential features is most dependent upon how the vehicle owner or driver plans to use the vehicle, such as whether you intend to do any off-roading or are just commuting within the city. Affordability also plays a big part. Many car owners love to accessorise their vehicles in the form of gadgets inside the car or a bull bar or nudge bar to the exterior of a 4WD, as is popular for Nissan Navara.
Nissan Navaras & Bull Bars
If you plan to use your Nissan Navara for off-roading, then you need to consider getting a bull bar. This is an essential safety measure for reasons we’ll explore shortly. However, if you only plan to use the car for commuting within the city on smooth roads then a nudge bar is right for you. This is because on inner city roads, you’re less likely to encounter an animal collision. A common misconception regarding bull bars is that they are illegal. But that’s not the case if they comply with the national Australian driving regulations, as well as the regulations of your state; then they’re perfectly legal.
You Benefit From a Bull Bar On Your 4WD
There are a ton of benefits owners of a 4×4 drive with the addition of a bull bar can expect. Some of the most common benefits are listed below:
Provide Protection During Off-Roading
Bull bars are an essential safety element of 4WD, especially those that are used during off-roading, like driving across beaches or through bush. Kangaroos are a common occurrence in the outback and are extremely unpredictable animals. They tend to crossroads at dawn and dusk when visibility is low. If you have any off-roading experience with a kangaroo collision, then you’ll know that it can completely disable your vehicle in the absence of a bull bar.
Provide Protection During Accidents
Whether it is a collision with an animal or another vehicle, bull bars can minimise impact to your vehicle as they easily absorb shock from the collision. A collision with an animal the size of a kangaroo may result in a complete write-off of your vehicle, leaving you stranded in the bush for hours.
Improve Approach Angle
If you are an experienced off-road driver, you will know how tricky it is to navigate through certain terrain. Often one slight miscalculation by a driver can badly damage the vehicle. Adding a bull bar improves your approach angle rapidly. If your Nissan Navara does end up hitting any rocks, there is likely to be minimal damage to the vehicle in the presence of a bull bar. Furthermore, car owners will vouch that scratched paint is a lot worse than a scuffed bull bar.
Provide Essential Recovery Points
Accidents can happen with vehicles, or they simply get stuck in the mud or bogged. Thankfully, bull bars provide brilliant recovery points. Previously, these were present on the chassis of cars but with bull bars you have a safe recovery point from which your car can be attached to the rescue vehicle.
Offer Perfect Winch Mount Point
If you frequent rugged terrains with your friends in multiple vehicles, you will know that it can get incredibly stressful when a vehicle gets stuck. If you have a bull bar on your vehicle, then you can help out because bull bars offer the perfect winch mount points, and the best part is you do not need to be an expert to be able to manoeuvre these.
Besides all the functionality benefits, bull bars offer a ton of certain aesthetic benefits as well. You can add an additional set of headlights which will not only increase your visibility at night but also add grandeur to your four-wheel drive. In addition, the bull bars add a rugged and muscular look to your vehicle.
How to Choose a Bull Bar?
When choosing a Nissan Navara bull bar or any other 4WD for that matter, you should primarily take into consideration the following factors:
Bull bars are typically available in three materials: steel, alloys, and plastic. Steel bull bars are the most robust and best for the outback. They offer more protection in case of an animal collision as compared to the alloy and plastic varieties. But the downside of steel bull bars is that they add a bit more stress on the actual vehicle as they are heavy.
If you’re looking for a slightly more optimal solution, then you should try the alloy variety. These are rust and corrosion resistant and a bit lighter in weight when compared to steel. Alloy bull bars are glossier and shinier too, hence adding to their aesthetic appeal. The steel and alloy bull bars are more durable when compared to the plastic ones.
However, plastic bull bars are great when you need protection in a minor collision. In addition, they are manufactured using UV stable and chemical resistant materials. Another important feature of plastic bull bars is that they are rust resistant, adding to their durability.
The bull bar must be the perfect size for your 4WD. The rule of thumb is that it must be equal to the size of the chassis to be a perfect fit. But, with some careful selecting and installation, the addition of a bull bar gives your 4WD a rugged and robust appeal.
When choosing a bull bar, you need to be sure of how you will be using the vehicle. For instance, you will need a bull bar if you frequently go dune driving or travelling through rugged terrain. However, if you will only be using the car for travelling to work or going on shopping trips, then you don’t need a bull bar, even if you have a 4WD. For commuting within the city, you could easily opt for a nudge bar though.
Another important reason why functionality is an important consideration before investing in a bull bar is that these are heavy accessories. This means that the additional weight increases the wear and tear on the front tyres, so if you don’t need it, then there is no need to put that extra pressure on the tyres for an accessory you will not really use.
In addition, when choosing a bull bar or nudge bar, you should take into consideration that different designs offer varying degrees of protection. If you buy a bull bar with scrub bars, then you provide your vehicle protection during head-on and side collisions. If you opt for a bull bar only for the purpose of mounting accessories, then you can opt for a design with just a centre bar and no top bar. Such a bar will mimic the design of the bumper of your vehicle. It will provide protection in a head-on collision, but less so in side collisions.
How Long Does It Take to Install a Bull Bar?
The first step in installing a bull bar is checking if it is compatible with your vehicle or not. Many manufacturers will provide the bull bars themselves; they may authorise dealers or you can also buy non-branded ones, but just make sure they comply with safety features, such as airbag systems, emergency braking systems, parking sensors and radar cruise control, as well as lane departure warnings. Be sure to check the product description to determine if it is compatible with your car’s particular make and model.
If you’re unsure about which one would work best, here’s a tip: ask the professionals. If you’re ordering online, then contact the vendor. You should communicate the exact make and model of the vehicle you are looking to install it on. This is the most important information you can provide and should help the seller find a suitable product for you.
Once you have selected the bull bar you want for your Nissan Navara or other 4×4, the next step is installation. Usually installation takes around 2–4 hours. While there are a ton of guides available online that will tell you exactly how to execute the installation, we would strictly advise against doing it yourself. The reason is that it requires the expertise of a qualified professional, as well as specialist equipment that most people are unlikely to have lying around their garage. In addition, some 4×4 models may need cutting and welding, which you should not perform based on what you’ve learnt after watching an online tutorial.
Find the Perfect Bull Bar for Your Nissan Navara & More
Lookout for a reliable vendor with years of experience in supplying adventure gears and automobile accessories, such as bull bars.
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