Nissan India has taken the covers off the new facelift version of its Sunny sedan at starting price of Rs 6.99 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi). The face lifted version of Sunny was first displayed at 2014 Indian Auto Expo and in line with its earlier announced schedule; Sunny has today walked into company’s showrooms across country. Launched in both petrol and diesel version, Nissan has priced Sunny in bracket of Rs 6.99- 7.99 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi).
In addition to wide choice of 8 variants to choose from, Nissan has equipped 2014 version of Sunny with a host of cosmetic changes on outside as well as inside. Now flushed with new vigor and vitality, new Sunny looks all set to reclaim the lost glory of its early days though path lying ahead for chariot is nothing but thronged with difficulties and uphill challenges. We drive this new facelift version of Nissan Sunny and here’s our verdict.
In new Sunny 2014 designers have made a thorough attempt to zing up the overall styling excitement and they have succeeded indeed. New Sunny now looks far more dynamic, upmarket and bit sophisticated too. Thanks to new sculpted bonnet, boomerang headlamps and new chrome accented fog lamp housings, Sunny comes across as quite a looker. Side profile has not been changed much though kink in window line towards the rear is noticeable deviation that this new model features.
There are addition in terms of new alloy wheels, indicators integrated ORVMs’ and rear tail lamps. Further the rear bumper has also been redesigned and now come with added dose of excitement. Complementing this spruced up excitement is thick chrome at the boot lid and faux spoiler.
Still dead on rear view is sure to get the split verdict as many may feel it a bit more stout even after redesigning the rear bumper. Nonetheless there is unanimity to view point that new Sunny 2014 looks far more contemporary, dynamic and sophisticated vehicle that is sure to grab the eyeballs.
POSH LIVING ROOM
Although outer changes has make Sunny look better than before, it is inside amendments that walks away with honour. Cabin of new Sunny comes with sea level of change in contrast to older interiors that had drawn flak from customers’ and critics’ alike. New Sunny comes with flawless design layout and despite of being quite equipped on equipment front, Sunny’s controls never feel cluttered. On the contrary the central rotary theme makes Sunny far better in ergonomics as everything falls in hand easily. Flushed with piano black finish, centre console exudes plenty of premium feel though the controls lacks the tactile feel; especially controlling HVAC. However steering mounted controls are amazingly solid and joy to use. Steering unit too has been new and now can even match its class above competitor in aesthetics.
On space front, Sunny continuous to dominate the competitors as it features loads of all around space. Name any sort of room: be it legroom, knee room and shoulder room and Sunny makes your wish true with blink of an eye. Even head room is great and three fully grown adults sitting abreast won’t feel the pinch that they would have in City or Verna.
And then there is humongous 490-litre of boot space that easily win hands down over competitors. Further intrusions from suspension towers have been kept to minimum in order to make this trunk space more usable and practical.
HEART OF MATTER
On engine front there has not been any change that new Sunny comes with. This new facelift version gets its power from 1.5-litre petrol and diesel mill. We took 1.5-litre diesel for a spin because of obvious reasons of its practicality and appeal among masses. This mill churns out 85 Ps of max power and 200 Nm of torque. Nissan claims to have reworked on ECU of engine though in reality we don’t find much of difference in driving behaviour of this model from older one.
City driving is quite a breeze as new Sunny fares quite well in stop-start traffic of city. There is good low-end torque which is usually matter of concern in diesel cars. Sunny starts pulling well right from beginning and power continuous to excite to the mid-range. However top end of this Japanese motor is not as exciting with engine giving clear indication about its stretching limits.
Sunny comes with both manual and automatic transmission option in petrol though in diesel only manual one is available. This 5-speed transmission is certainly not best one as there is plenty of notchy feel it comes with. Gear shifts are not precise and clogging is far from being called inspiring. Clutch on other hand feel quiet progressive though not very light as we have felt on new Honda City. Brakes are well sorted and electronic power steering though feather touch light lacks heavily on feedback criterion.
Equipped with MacPherson strut up front and torsion beam, new Sunny displays a decent ride quality. Low speed absorption is good and the suspension works in silent manner. Road undulations never intrude into cabin and only potholes filter through with a harsh thud. That said, back seat occupants are sure to love ride comfort of this Japanese 4-wheel.
Now shift from ride quality to handling aspect and Sunny starts ceding its ground. Owing to its lengthy dimensions and soft suspension settings, new Sunny feels quite jittery at sharp turns. Even a mild cornering manoeuvre is strong enough to take the steam out of this saloon and it becomes immediately evident right from the first sharp turn we tried on new Sunny. This saloon is just an average handler and it makes no bones about this fact. Drive it in a sedate manner and it won’t disappoint you. So all folks looking for some adventure behind the wheels, steer clear of buying Sunny.
New Nissan Sunny is priced between 6.99- 9.80 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi). From a practical consideration new Sunny ticks all the right boxes. It looks dynamic and elegant, interiors’ feels plush and premium and cabin room can be easily considered as best-in-class. Engines are frugal and diesel one we drove comes with handsome fuel efficiency too. In sum, new Sunny has a lot going for it and undoubtedly it comes with optimum mixture of all the ingredients that a premium sedan buyer usually looks for. Further Nissan’s efforts to revamp its dealership network will also come handy to Sunny to win more customers across the new places in addition to metropolitan cities. The only thing that new Sunny lacks is that piece of driving excitement that makes any saloon a special one. Oil-burner featured under hood of Sunny is quite fuel efficient though it lacks the power punch that is sure to miss by owners while driving on highways. Handling of car is just about average and Sunny often threatens to go out of line when cornered hard. Al although new Sunny makes a good case for itself the only missing point is excitement; the feel that will put a big smile on your face. So if you can live without this kindling emotion, new Sunny won’t disappoint you.
Style & Substance 3.5/5 Ride & Handling 3/5
Interiors & Ergonomics: 3.5/5 Safety & Equipment 3.5/5
Power-Plant & Transmission 3/5 Fuel Efficiency 4/5
Value for Money 3.5/5