Car reviews - Nissan - Pulsar - Q 5-dr hatch
25 Nov 1991
Sadly, one of the best cars ever made here also helped bury Nissan as a local manufacturer. The fourth-generation Pulsar, known as the ES, was truly all-new – from the Saab 9000-inspired four-door hatch and sedan body styles, classy cabin design and Japanese twin-cam multi-valve drivetrains, to the world-class manufacturing process that achieved new local quality levels. But its huge investment in recessional times and the necessary price premium on a product tarnished by discounting scuppered the big sales Nissan sorely needed. But the ES did win wide acclaim for its high performance, refinement, handling and comfort and qualities. The base 81kW 1.6 powered the GLi and Q hatch, while the Q 2.O, sports SSS hatch and luxury Ti offered a rorty 105kW 2.0. Also still novel for the segment were the optional anti-lock brakes on the SSS and a four-speed automatic. These were the last Aussie-made Pulsars, produced here until the Victorian plant closed in October ’92. Barely visible were the myriad of small differences between the old local ES Pulsar and the subseqeunt Japanese-made N14 II. They included new wheels, updated cabin trim, revised suspension settings and different seats. Equipment levels also rose on the base LX, which replaced the GLi, while the Ti 1.6 models arrived just as the Ti 2.0 sedan was discontinued. In May ’94 a round of alterations saw the Q, which had disappeared in early ’93, return permanently after a small amount arrived as a limited run a few months earlier, but now it was strictly a 1.6. The LX gave way to the LX Limited, while the limited edition Solaire of early ’95 packed in extra features. Quality wise, the N14 Pulsar was probably better than its 1995-2000 N15 replacement, which suffered from a huge cost-cutting program instigated by a struggling Nissan Motor Company in Japan...
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Model release date: 1 October 1991 to 1 September 1995
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