Test Drive – Nissan Grand Livina 1.6L Tuned by Impul

[Review]

As many of you know, I’m a person who likes cars and this has intensified further after working for TOPGEAR and Malaysian EVO magazines in the past. I particularly like hot hatches and sedans although every now and then I do test drive SUVs and MPVs. The nice folks over at Nissan Malaysia came a-calling and asked me if I wanted to test drive the 7-seater Nissan Grand Livina for the weekend.

The Grand Livina? Isn’t that an MPV? Then they went on to mention that it was tuned by IMPUL and I duly accepted! An MPV tuned by IMPUL? This was going to be interesting…

The Impul team has given a makeover to the Grand Livina and the front grille shows just that with the Impul logo in place of the Nissan logo.

The Impul aerokit and lowered ride height gives the Grand Livina a really sporty and aggresive look

The swept back headlamps add to the dynamic design

Impul bodyart on the door panels!

Impul aerokit skirting all around which includes the rear wing spoiler

The Nissan logo is retained at the rear

But the Impul logo is very obvious too!

The stainless steel exhaust muffler is part of the Impul package too and adds a low rumbling note to the drive!

Signal lamps on the wing mirrors

The Impul package departs from the usual 15″ rims replacing them with the 17″ Impul Aura SX-10 rims and 205/45 R17 tyres instead which definitely offer more grip and better handling.

Powerplant & Transmission

This Grand Livina is powered by a 1.6L DOHC, 16-Valve, 4-Cylinder in-line engine with drive-by-wire technology which puts out 105 horses and has a maximum torque of 150Nm at 4,400 rpm.

The transmission is a 5-speed manual although it’s also available in a 4-speed electronically controlled 4-speed automatic with lock-up torque converter version.

Suspension & Handling

The front is independent MacPherson struts with stabilizer bar while the rear is torsion beam. (FYI the standard Grand Livina comes with 15” alloy rims utilizing 185/65 R15 tyres)

The suspension is relatively stiff which provides a great ride but not at a total expense of comfort. Body roll is barely noticeable and it’s the result of the Impul suspension system which consists of upgraded shock absorbers and springs that lower the ride-height by 25mm.

The Grand Livina uses a monocoque body which is lightweight and has high rigidity resulting in better handling of the vehicle.

Safety

The brakes are equipped with ABS, EBD and a brake assist system, while there are SRS airbags for the driver and front passenger.

Now to the interior.

The interior is roomy which is especially useful for bigger people such as myself

Ample leg room for the passengers

See the strap hanging down from the seats (which by the way can be adjusted into a reclining position for the comfort of the passengers)?

One simple tug and you can fold down the last row of seats to make room for luggage. You can even fold down the centre row of seats if you have large size items

The dash and centre console is pretty standard

The meters were pretty sporty though

The radio control are easily within reach of the driver

The test unit I was given to drive had the autograph of Impul President Mr. Kazuyoshi Hoshino, the former Formula One racer and now boss of Team Calsonic Impul. Coolness!!!

Well definitely an interesting vehicle and I would say it’s suitable for the family man/ young mommy who’s looking for a more spirited drive which is something you won’t get from the normal MPV. Who says you can’t be a parent and look cool at the same time?

The Impul package will set you back RM10,700.00 on top of the price of the Grand Livina which is:

1.6L (Manual) Comfort – RM97,500.00

1.6L (Auto) Comfort – RM100,500.00

1.8L (Auto) – RM109,500.00

*prices are on-the-road with insurance (Peninsular Malaysia) and comes with a 3-year or 100,000km warranty (whichever comes first)

More info at http://www.nissan.com.my

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