Nissan Pulsar

Nissan ‘like a Golf’ Pulsar to cost from £15,995

Nissan PulsarNissan has revealed its new Pulsar five-door family hatch will cost from £15,995 and is set to reach UK dealers this autumn.

The firm’s mainstream C-segment alternative to the smash-hit Qashqai, Nissan reckons the pricing structure is “highly competitive and flexible” throughout the four-model range of Visia, Acenta, n-tec and Tekna trims.

Well, it would say that. But there might be something in it: each will get features that rivals generally offer on the next grade up. The entry-level Visia, for example, has 5-inch colour screen, Bluetooth and air con, while Acenta adds Forward Emergency Braking, auto lights and wipers plus keyless go.

The n-tec variant sounds like the choice trim; costing from £18,995, it has 17-inch alloys, NissanConnect 2 infotainment (with Google Send-to-Car tech and myriad apps), colour reversing camera and the standout combination of LED lights and privacy glass.

The top-line Tekna costs from £20,345 but has the Nissan Safety Shield assistance pack, leather seats and electric folding mirrors.

Nissan Pulsar

Engines? A 115hp 1.2-litre DIG-T turbo petrol or a 110hp 1.5-litre dCi: faster car fans will have to wait until early 2015 for the zippier 190hp 1.6-litre turbo petrol.

Nissan is confident its return to the C-segment will be a success (don’t mention the Almera, now) and reckons customers will be particularly impressed with the sector-leading levels of cabin space it offers. But we’re sitting on the fence. It doesn’t have a great record in this sector and the Qashqai is a hit because it’s genuinely innovative and appealing. Will the much more conventional Pulsar be a similar draw when sat alongside it? More crucially, will it be able to challenge the all-conquering VW Golf it’s so keen to ape?

An invite we’ve received this week suggests that, come early September and the first global press launch drives, we’ll be finding out. We look forward to it.

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