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Nissan Pulsar. It’s back baby! Car Guru Ben Chia investigates

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If you’re someone of a certain age (read: not the youngest little sputnik), you may remember the Nissan Pulsar. It’s a name as familiar as Madonna’s for anyone who lived through the 1980s and 90s. Well, the Nissan Pulsar is back baby! Firmly in the 21st century and ready to woo a new generation of car buyers. Talk about TBT.

Car Guru Ben Chia has all the facts.

What is it? 

Back in the day, the Pulsar was a fairly ordinary, humdrum family hatchback. Today’s Pulsar is, well, a fairly ordinary, humdrum family hatchback. Not much has changed in 20 years. At least it looks different. All curves and swoopy lines, so unlike the square box that your father or grand uncle drove.

What’s it like?

Pretty decent. Throwback name aside, this new Pulsar comes packed with modern and futuristic 21st century features. There’s a very clever Forward Emergency Braking system, which can detect obstacles in front of you and slam on the brakes if you’re not paying attention. Lovingly designed so that you don’t end up knocking someone down and going to jail as a result. How thoughtful.

For a family hatchback the Pulsar is also pretty comfortable, though fairly ordinary to drive. The 1.2-litre turbocharged petrol engine is smooth and perky, and the car rides and handles pretty well. The brakes however feel a bit odd and require a fair amount of effort on the pedal before the car comes to a stop… I guess that’s where the emergency braking system comes in? 

Should I buy one?

As a hatchback, the Pulsar is mostly all right. It runs the spectrum of good, OK and not quite so great. It has one thing going for it though: nostalgia. If you have some fond recollections of the Pulsar back in the good old days, then you might want to take it for a drive down memory lane. You know, Get Into The Groove and all that.

For more car reviews and tips, look out for regular posts in this series.

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