Design and Engineering

Design and Engineering

Good After a brief hiatus Nissan decided to bring its much loved Pulsar nameplate back into action.

Hitting our shores in January 2013 the new Nissan Pulsar looks modern, elegant and mature.

Up front the Pulsar features Nissan's bold new signature trapezoid-shaped grille and large wraparound headlights with LED accents. Its low stance and belt line elongate the length of the vehicle.

At the rear of the vehicle the Pulsar features a squared design that's complemented by a set of slim tail lights and a subtle rear diffuser that's integrated into the rear bumper.
Not so good The Car Verdict team thinks the Nissan Pulsar looks ok, but it's a bit conservative when compared to some of its competitors.
Interior and Styling

Interior and Styling

Good Inside styling is quite simplistic in terms of design, however soft-touch materials add a touch of class.

The spacious interior offers up mid-size roominess in a compact-size exterior, all controls are logically layout, enhancing driver control.

Sitting behind the steering wheel is a set of Fine Vision electroluminescent gauges that are illuminated even in daylight, this makes the gauges super crisp and easy to read.

The seats feel comfortable and supportive, there is plenty of shoulder and legroom in the back giving occupants the impression of a larger, mid-size family car.

There's also a massive 510 litres of space in the boot, so there shouldn't be any problem karting the weekly shop home.
Not so good The interior styling comes across a little bland for our tastes, but it might appeal to some.
Performance

Performance

Good Powering the Pulsar sedan is a 1.8-litre, four-cylinder petrol engine that makes 96kW of power and 174Nm of torque when matched to a 6-speed manual transmission as standard. For those of you that don't wish to change your own gears, Nissan also offers a Xtronic CVT (constantly variable transmission) as an added option.

We are a big fan of Nissan's Xtronic CVT (constantly variable transmission) it's one smooth system. Compared to some of the CVT's on the market today the Xtronic CVT has to be one the quietest we've come across.

There isn't crazy amounts of power and torque on offer, but the 1.8-litre performs quite well.
Not so good Nissan's Xtronic CVT is pretty quiet, but, putting your right foot down you begin to hear the high-rev engine harmonics that begin to drone. The 1.8-litre doesn't have the same overtaking or pulling power as some of its turbocharged competitors.
Ride and Handling

Ride and Handling

Good The Pulsar features an independent strut suspension with stabiliser bar up front and a torsion beam rear axle with integrated stabilizer bar at the back.

This ensures that the Pulsar feels confident out on the open road or around the city, but that's about as far as the positives go.
Not so good Start to push the Pulsar through some twisty roads at pace and you begin to reveal the cars flaws, the body feels light and detached from the road before you get a sense of understeer.
Buying and Owning

Buying and Owning

Good Great value for money, small size sedan with medium size interior space. There's also a 3 year / 1000,000km warranty and capped price servicing for 6 years or 120,000km.

The Nissan Pulsar sedan range achieves a maximum five-star ANCAP safety rating, equipped with a number of active and passive safety features as standard, including Vehicle Dynamic Control (VDC), Electronic Brakeforce Distribution (EBD), Brake Assist (BA), Traction Control System (TCS) and six SRS airbags, including front-to-rear SRS curtain airbags fitted as standard.

If it's cruisy comfort you're after then the Nissan Pulsar definitely ticks all the right boxes.
Not so good However, if it's driving dynamics and driver engagement the Pulsar falls short of its competition.