New Nissan Pulsar marks brand's return to the European C-segment [w/videos]Tue, 20 May 2014 13:30:00 EST
Following a small teaser, Nissan has unveiled its newest entry into the hotly contested European C-segment. Making new use of the Pulsar nameplate, it will attempt to take the fight to market stalwarts, like the Ford Focus, Volkswagen Golf and Vauxhall Astra.
The new five-door will be built on Nissan's modular CMF2 architecture, which also underpins the Euro-spec Qashqai and X-Trail (known in the US as the Rogue). It's a larger vehicle than one of its main challengers, the Golf, riding on a 106.3-inch wheelbase, which is 2.4 inches longer than the VW. It's also longer overall, at 172.6 inches.
The new Pulsar is a moderately powered little five-door, boasting an engine lineup familiar to anyone that knows the Qashqai. A 1.2-liter, turbocharged gas engine offers up 113 horsepower, while those that need a bit more oomph can wait for the late-availability, 187-hp, 1.6-liter turbo that American drivers will know from the Juke crossover. Diesel fans will be able to opt for a 1.5-liter mill that delivers 192 pound-feet of torque and 108 hp. No surprise here, but continuously variable transmissions are the order of the day.
Nissan hasn't skimped on tech and safety items for its newest offering. Thanks to the brand's Safety Shield suite, the Pulsar will come to market with forward emergency braking, lane departure warning and blind-spot monitoring. There aren't specifics, but the latter two technologies will be standard on at least one of the Pulsar's trim levels, which Nissan claims is a segment first. LED headlamps and the NissanConnect infotainment system round out the Pulsar's goodies.
Pricing hasn't been announced for the quite yet, although we'd expect it to slot into the meat of the C-segment range. That means between 13,000 and 18,000 pounds ($21,882 to $30,299 in a straight conversion at today's rates).
Production will take place at Nissan's Barcelona, Spain factory with sales slated to begin in the fall. Take a look below for the official press release from Nissan.
NISSAN BRINGS TECHNOLOGY, STYLE AND SECTOR-LEADING SPACE TO THE C-SEGMENT - INTRODUCING THE NEW NISSAN PULSAR
All-new Pulsar five-door hatchback distils Nissan's innovation and dynamism into an exciting new package
Acclaimed technologies including Around View Monitor and sector-first safety and comfort systems
Powerful yet frugal all-turbocharged engine range
Bold extension of Nissan's acclaimed design direction
Designed and engineered for Europe, built at Nissan's Barcelona plant
On sale from Autumn 2014
PARIS, France, 20th May 2014 - Nissan's passion for innovation and technology has seen it transform the family car landscape over the course of the last seven years. Now, using the same design approach and original thinking that produced the Qashqai, X-Trail and Note, Nissan is expanding its product portfolio once more with an exciting all-new family hatchback challenger - the Pulsar.
Combining bold design, technical innovations and interior space, the new Pulsar brings a new dimension to the C-segment, offering all the familiar Nissan qualities in a stylish new package.
The Pulsar's introduction highlights Nissan's ambition and to deliver intelligent design and technical innovations to a wider audience.
As Nissan drivers have come to expect, the new Pulsar is packed with a range of accessible and useful technologies designed to make drivers feel more confident and comfortable. Nissan's reputation for introducing new-to-sector technologies has been strengthened with a wide number of features usually reserved for premium or luxury models.
Nissan's advanced Safety Shield - a suite of systems and technologies that combine to offer a fully comprehensive 'safety net' for drivers - is also fully integrated into the Pulsar's design.
This advanced network of usable yet highly advanced technologies help drivers to fully enjoy the potential of the new Pulsar with complete confidence. Among the systems offered in the new Pulsar are Forward Emergency Braking, Moving Object Detection, Lane Departure Warning and Blind Spot Warning.
Nissan's ongoing drive to deliver sector-first technologies mean that the Pulsar is the only car in its sector to offer Moving Object Detection, Lane Departure Warning and Blind Spot Warning as standard on at least one model in the range.
The Pulsar also features Nissan's second-generation NissanConnect system - that comes with a range of innovative features including full smartphone integration, Google® Send-to-Car and access to a wide variety of useful and informative apps.
Another advanced technology integrated into the Pulsar's design are LED headlamps. First introduced to the Nissan range on the Qashqai and X-Trail, the Pulsar's distinctive LED front lights produce a crisp, white light and have the added advantage of using 50 per cent less power than conventional bulbs.
Efficient and powerful drivetrains
In keeping with Nissan's approach to innovation and reduced costs for owners, the Pulsar's engine all-turbocharged engine range delivers the perfect combination of performance and efficiency. The 1.2-litre DIG-T petrol unit punches above its weight with an output of 115PS, while the 1.5-litre dCi generates 110PS and 260Nm of torque. An even more powerful 190PS 1.6-litre turbocharged petrol engine will join the range early in 2015.
Continuing Nissan's successful downsizing philosophy, the new Pulsar's engines are high on performance and low on emissions, with CO2 outputs below 95g/km*. The Pulsar is also offered with Nissan's advanced XTronic automatic transmission. Engineered to deliver the best of both worlds for drivers it features ultra-smooth power delivery at low engine speeds and positive, direct shifts under heavier loads.
Setting new standards for cabin space
Thanks to the longest wheelbase in the class (2,700mm) and clever packaging, the Pulsar offers considerably more rear legroom and shoulder room than its sector rivals. Indeed, with 692mm of rear kneeroom, the Pulsar is more spacious than many D-segment offerings.
Yet despite this it retains a compact footprint (length 4,385mm), making it easy to park in tight urban environments.
Energetic, athletic styling
Instantly recognisable thanks to its trademark Nissan V-motion grille and boomerang-shaped lighting signature with bold and energetic curves on the body side, the Pulsar was designed and engineered for Europe and will be built at Nissan's Barcelona production facility.
Embedded with the same design DNA that gives the Qashqai and X-Trail such powerful road presence, the Pulsar combines strong lines with immaculate detailing to create an elegant, athletic form. Like its crossover stablemates, the Pulsar is characterised by bold wheel volumes, a tapered waistline and a flowing profile.
The confident, premium approach continues inside, where high quality materials and clear design are perfectly integrated with Pulsar's unusually high equipment levels.
By Brandon Turkus
See also: Nissan Micra overtaken by bees in England, 2015 Nissan Micra, Nissan reviving Pulsar name for Euro market.