Sometime in 2011, after I drove the Nissan Sunny I thought to myself it's a good car. It's got a decent set of engines, the roomiest rear seat, the biggest boot but, there was one big problem - it was built to a budget.
Cost cutting was evident and that was a put off. Essentially you bought a fairly spacious sedan with conservative cabin, cheap plastics and minimal creature comforts.
Cut to, 2014 and I am very pleased to report the folks at Nissan have fixed the flaws. The front face looks a lot more contemporary. Thanks to the new boomerang headlamps and the chrome grille the Sunny doesn't look plain jane anymore. Clever use of chrome on the bumper and fog lamps adds to the cars countenance.
At the rear the new styling updates include a chrome strip on the boot and a brand new rear bumper. Outside mirror mounted indicators and the Y- spoke alloys look good too.
Step inside, and the interiors are no longer grey and gloomy, nor a cut copy, paste job from the smaller micra. The piano black centre console contrasts with the beige dashboard well. The Sunny XV variant gets an LCD audio system with USB, Bluetooth, Aux and Ipod compatibility.
Lending a bit of luxury to the cabin are the leather seats, and a smart leather wrapped steering wheel with audio controls. All in all, the interiors are upmarket and the fit and finish of the plastics is satisfactory too.
Room at the rear stays the same and backseat drivers, who shied away from buying the previous generation Sunny will find the new one worthy of a purchase. To sum up, the good folks at Nissan have made amends and kitted up the sunny with features that belong to a car this class.
What stays the same are the engines and the gearbox. You get the Sunny in both 1.5lt petrol and diesel options. For those who crave the comfort and convenience of an automatic there is a CVT gearbox on offer. We stuck to the tried and tested 1.5litre diesel. Since it's not tuned or tweaked the Sunny diesel does about 84 bhp and twists out 200 newton meters of torque.
The driving dynamics are much the same, push it hard and it will get jittery. Let's get one thing straight! The Sunny is no sports sedan, so if you crave spirited driving you should look elsewhere. What the Sunny does the best is, transport you from point A to B in a comfortable fashion.
On the move it offers a cushy ride and the light steering will take care of your city chores. What has changed though is, on the move the Sunny is a lot more silent. There is minimal road noise and even when you tread over rough stuff, all that transpires into the cabin is a mild thud.
Nissan will be pulling the satin slip cloth off the all new Sunny in the first week of July. We assume the new Sunny could be costlier by 30,000 to 40,000 rupees over the previous gen. And that is not too much they are asking for a spacious, reliable midsize sedan that has chipped away its rough edges and gotten better than before.