Nissan Pulsar news, price and specs

The new Nissan Pulsar hatchback takes aim at the Ford Focus and VW Golf, and there could be a Nismo hot hatch version too

Nissan is to revive the Pulsar name with a new family hatchback. Targeting the Ford Focus, VW Golf and Vauxhall Astra, the new Pulsar shares its underpinnings with Nissan’s Qashqai and X-Trail crossovers, sharing the wheelbase of the latter but sitting below the former in the Japanese carmaker’s range.

Sharing much of its design language with its larger SUV siblings, the Pulsar sports a four-sided V-shaped grille ahead of a tall, swooping windscreen and lengthy five door layout. Nissan claims that the Pulsar will provide passengers with more leg and shoulder room than rivals, something backed up by its 4385mm length – some 115mm longer than the Golf and 27mm longer than the Focus.

The bulk of sales will be shared between a 113bhp turbocharged 1.2-litre petrol engine and a tax-exempt 108bhp 1.5-litre dCi diesel, while there’ll also be a more potent 187bhp turbocharged 1.6-litre petrol.

Memories of the old Pulsar GTi-R (the Sunny GTi-R on UK shores) will be evoked by the predicted Pulsar Nismo, too. Nissan will likely target the Kia Ceed GT, VW Golf GTI and Ford Focus ST with a hot hatch iteration. This could use the 197bhp 1.6-litre turbo as seen in the Juke Nismo, while like the Juke there could be a more powerful Nismo RS, with 217bhp and utilising a mechanical limited-slip-differential.

Penned in Nissan’s Paddington design studio, production of the 2014 Pulsar is set to commence at the Japanese manufacturer’s Barcelona plant. Sales look set to commence in autumn of this year, with prices starting around the £16,000 mark.

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