There’s been too much talk about turbo engines and torque lately with the imminent launch of the Proton X50 and the Honda City RS i-MMD. While we’ve briefly touched on that topic last week, followed by a closer look at what makes the Almera’s 1.0-litre turbocharged engine tick, we believe there are other aspects in a car that should be prioritised just as much as its engine’s output – drivability.
Throughout the first generation Almera’s life span, it’s always been seen as the pathway to an affordable Japanese vehicle and more unfortunately as the car used by Grab drivers. Unfortunate as it may sound to be carrying that, the Nissan Almera was nonetheless great for what it was intended to be – a no-frills, A to B means of transportation.
But as we’ve experienced during our brief test drive in the all-new 2nd generation Almera last month, the Almera’s reputation as a car that people would need rather than a car most would desire, is about to change.
Based on the information we got, Nissan has made significant improvements to the body and structure of the Almera. It’s not only that; the steering shaft’s rigidity has also been increased along with adjustments made to the caster trail. All this, as you’d discover and learn from Google, not only gives you more control of the car with higher predictability but also improves the stability of the car – reducing its tendency to wander and sway about.
The Electric Power Steering system has also been enhanced with an Active Return Control feature that allows the steering to return to its centre position faster and more naturally upon exiting a corner; adding a little more precision to your steering input and driving experience.
That’s not all. The rubber bump stops in the previous generation Almera has been replaced with more durable, polyurethane bump stops with steel stiffeners. They not only improve on impact absorption but reduces body roll as the car would feel firmer than before.
The result of which could be felt during our brief test drive around the Glenmarie area. On one particular stretch, the car felt a lot more composed and firmer through a series of swooping bends but not necessary in a way that’s uncomfortable. What it did also offered was a better connection to the road and a lot more assurance than the old model could ever dream of providing.
That should make the prospects of owning a car with a turbocharged engine even more exciting, wouldn’t it? We certainly can’t wait to spend more time in it and share the experience with you; till next time!