Driven: Impul tuned Nissan Grand Livina

Published on September 3rd, 2010

If you are a family man, or soccer mom, and you used to own a sporty car or vehicle… but due to family obligations you’ve swapped your sporty ride for a seven-seater MPV(Multi-Purpose Vehicle) and you miss driving a sporty car, or a car which has somewhat a little bit more kick, then do not fret as the Nissan Grand Livina tuned by Impul is a sporty, seven seater MPV of sorts which has a little bit more kick and deserves some serious consideration if you’re fed up of driving and being seen in an unimaginative, plain and simple, boring seven seater MPV.

The Nissan Grand Livina Tuned by Impul is no ordinary seven seater MPV, looks alone confirms this. Apart from an aggressive and sporty exterior, further inspection and familiarization with this compact seven seater will reveal that there’s more than meets the eye with the Grand Livina Tuned by Impul when compared to other stock, plain looking, uninspiring seven seater MPVs available out there on the market.

Edaran Tan Chong Motor(ETCM), the distributor and franchise holder of Nissan cars in Malaysia, together with Nissan’s tuning arm Impul, has somehow managed to transform a family car in the form of the Grand Livina, into a good-looking, thrill-giver of a seven seater now known as the Grand Livina Tuned by Impul, without taking away its essence of primarily being a family mover.

With Nissan’s exclusive after-market specialist Impul in the equation, just a sporty exterior makeover was not the case. In the Grand Livina Tuned by Impul’s case, its quite a sporty makeover in terms of aesthetics, performance and driving experience.

The four-point Impul upgrade over the stock standard Grand Livina starts offcourse with the exterior which has been spruced up for a sportier image and stance thanks to an Impul designed Aerokit (worth RM4,200) which consists of a front grille, a pair of front and rear bumper spoilers, a pair of side skirts, and a rear wing spoiler. The grille, with the Impul logo emblazoned on it, it is classier and less garish than the standard one. The Impul Aerokit makes the Grand Livina Tuned by Impul look better than the stock standard Grand Livina, although there are many non Impul Grand Livinas on Malaysian roads which have aftermarket bodykits installed, the Impul version is still the Grand Livina variant that stands out from a crowd of Grand Livinas.

For a sportier ride and handling experience for the driver, though sadly not for the car’s occupants, who more than likely will find the ride experience in the Grand Livina Tuned by Impul somewhat harsh and hard, instead of comfortable, The Grand Livina Tuned by Impul comes with a sports suspension system (RM2,800) which is made up of a set of upgraded shock absorbers, a set of fine-tuned springs, and a ride height that’s been reduced by 25mm, or rather 2.5cm.

The automotive engineers over at Impul designed the sports suspension system for improved and enhanced stability, flexibility, and handling. Hence why The Grand Livina Tuned by Impul’s sports suspension system is able to give most drivers’ helming its plain looking steering wheel the confidence to manoeuvre through bends and corners at higher speeds than usual, thanks to the suspension’s much stiffer bump and rebound characteristics, which allows for such fast performance driving.

It is highly recommended though that when there are occupants in the car, abstinence from such fast and risky driving manoeuvres is highly and strongly recommended for the sake of the occupants safety and well-being. The most significant improvement, thanks to the upgraded suspension, is the firmer ride.

From a driver’s perspective with performance in mind, controlling the Grand Livina Tuned by Impul around tight, sharp and swerving bends and corners was trully confidence-inspiring to say the least, and bear in mind this is no two door or four door sedan, it is a compact seven seater MPV at the end of the day. To drive a seven seater MPV fast and rush into bends and corners can be considered dangerous, reckless even, but when attempted with the Grand Livina, the stiffness and solidity of the Impul sports suspension was both assuring and comforting.

Those driving a fully-loaded Grand Livina will realise just how much more stable this Impul tuned version is over the rest of the competition out there. This compact seven seater MPV already has a car-like centre of gravity and even the lowered ride height eliminates any inclination of the standard version to roll over bumps and dips.

For better performance and presence, or rather to announce one’s arrival, The Grand Livina Tuned by Impul sports a shiny Impul Blast II exhaust muffler (RM1,800) just under the rear bumper. The Impul Blast II exhaust muffler holds true to its name ‘Blast’ as it is anything but quiet. Even when cruising, the bass sound generated by the muffler is clearly audible from within the cabin with all the windows up and the air-conditioning and stereo switched on.

But then again, this is no ordinary seven seater MPV, so a raspier exhaust note is somewhat expected to say the least when it comes to a sporty seven seater MPV. The Impul Blast II exhaust muffler does look good though, as it comes in a polished stainless steel finish with the Impul logo etched on the tail pipe.

To round off the exterior makeover and overall sporty look, The Grand Livina Tuned by Impul would not really pull off looking the part of a sporty, head turning seven seater MPV if not for the 17-inch Impul Aura SX-10 sports rims (RM4,500) that come wrapped with approving and gripping Dunlop Formula D 01 205/45/R17 tyres (RM350 per piece). The wheels are made using Impul’s new super cast process, which makes this set of sporty 17-inch wheels 20-30% lighter, and if a family man or soccer mom likes a speedster of a seven seater MPV that has little bit more kick where performance is concerned, then they will most definitely need all the weight saving/cutting measures that can be done, but then again, once this seven seater MPV is packed with a family of half a dozen together with luggage, then what exactly is the weight saving/cutting measures for with all the hefty additional weight in the cabin?

Now the engine nestled under the Grand Livina Tuned by Impul’s front bonnet is a spritely 1.8L 16Valve DOHC powerplant that is mated to a four-speed automatic transmission (AT).

The 1.8L engine’s note is somewhat audible from within the cabin especially when the engine is pushed to high rpm’s. At normal cruising speeds though, the engine is virtually silent as all that is heard, all the noise, comes from the Impul Blast II exhaust muffler. Although the Grand Livina Tuned by Impul’s engine is left untouched and in stock standard form by the Impul engineers, it is a reasonably responsive engine and rather quick for a compact seven seater MPV off the imaginary starting block at the traffic lights when it turns green.

Step on the accelerator and there will be an almost immediate roar coming from the rear. Nissan claims that there is improved engine response for the Grand Livina Tuned by Impul’s 1.8L engine with the Blast II exhaust muffler and there’s no contest here with Nissan’s claims. In fact, that roar that is blasted out from the Impul Blast II exhaust muffler can be quite addictive, and it can lead to the driver wanting to constantly try to test the rev counter’s redline limit, distracting the driver from the obvious fact that the driver is not driving a sports car, but just an Impul-tuned, compact seven seater MPV!

Inside the Grand Livina Tuned by Impul’s cabin, being a current generation Nissan car, it’s more about function than style – Sadly and rather disappointingly, Nissan has not done anything to enhance or spruce up the boring and dull cabin of the Impul-tuned models, so the interior of the Grand Livina Tuned by Impul is similar to that of the standard Grand Livina, so in this case, if you’ve been in or seen a Grand Livina’s cabin, then you’ve seen it all.

There is a lack of convenient storage space at arm’s reach from the driver’s seat which can be a minor annoyance to the driver. On the plus side, the dashboard does house a seemingly cavernous glove box on the front passenger’s side, and the door side-pockets and rather sizable centre console do have the provisions of cup holders to store drinks and beverages for the convenience of quenching ones thirst while driving or riding in such a sporty MPV.

Although the Grand Livina Tuned by Impul’s interior is rather boring, uninspiring and staid, for such a sporty, compact, seven seater MPV with such driving and ride characteristics, for the young at heart, the thrills and excitement of owning an Impul tuned Grand Livina will come when swinging it around corners, bends and over bumps, while flooring the accelerator pedal.

With the Grand Livina Tuned by Impul, ETCM has proved that just because you have a family and are in need of a seven-seater vehicle, or rather MPV, it does not mean it has to be stock and simple, plain looking and uninspiring MPV. Driving a family-oriented, seven seater MPV does not have to be boring and mundane, as Nissan has clearly proven with the cheerful, practical and competitively-priced Nissan Grand Livina Tuned by Impul.

So if you dare to be different and give in to your needs and cravings for a sportier ride to lug you and your family around here and there, then get ‘Nissan Crazy’ and get yourself a Nissan Grand Livina Tuned by Impul. Who said one can’t pretend or imagine to be a wannabe racing driver in of all cars, a sporty, Impul tuned, seven seater Grand Livina, compact MPV.

The Impul package for the Grand Livina adds RM10,500 to the standard Grand Livina prices, there is a warranty of 3 years or 100,000 kms, whichever comes first, for all of the Impul items, and the Impul package which makes up the Grand Livina Tuned by Impul is being offered with the 1.6 MT Comfort (RM95,586), 1.6 AT Comfort (RM99,386) and 1.8 AT Comfort (RM108,086) variants of the MPV. All prices given are on-the-road, with metallic paint finish.

Other optional accessories include leather seats (RM2,400), V-Kool (RM2,200-2,600), cargo net (RM120), luggage tray (RM200) and mattress? (RM500).

For more information and enquiries, log on to ETCM’s official website.

words: Azdee Simon Amir  pix: Dinesh Appavu

Nissan Grand Livina 1.8L Tuned by Impul Technical Specifications:

Engine:

Engine type: Inline-4, DOHC, 16V, CVTC

Displacement (cc):  1798

Max. Power: (kW/rpm) 93/5200

Max. Torque: (Nm/rpm) 174/4800

Bore/Stroke: (mm) 84.0 x 81.1

Compression Ratio:  9.9

Transmission: 4-A/T

Fuel: Petrol

Fuel Tank: (litre) 52

Fuel Delivery System:  ECCS

Dimensions:

WheelBase: (mm) 2600

Overall Length: (mm) 4420

Overall Width: (mm) 1690

Overall Height: (mm) 1590

Front Track: (mm) 1470

Rear Track: (mm) 1475

Min. Turning Radius: (m) 5.2

Kerb Weight: (kg) 1280

Ground Clearance: (mm) 180

Mechanical:

Steering: Electric Power Steering

Front Suspension:  MacPherson Strut

Rear Suspension:  Torsion Beam

Front Brakes: Vent Disc

Rear Brakes: Drum

Std. Tyre Size: 205/45 R17

Std. Wheel Size:  17″ x 5.5J alloy

Driving Wheels: Front

Standard/Optional Accessories:

Air Conditioning: Yes Electronic Mirror: Yes

Central Locking : Yes Cruise Control: No

Power Windows: Yes Leather Seats: Yes

Cassette Player: No ABS: Yes

CD Player: Yes Air Bag(s): Yes

CD Changer: No Traction Control: No

Radio AM/FM: Yes Elec. Brake Force Distribution(EBD): Yes

Alarm System: Yes Stability Control: No

Reverse Sensor : Yes

Comments

  1. Posted by apeksi on September 4th, 2010, 15:25

    would like to know the PCD of grand livina..(nak cari rim senang ke tak nanti hehe..)

  2. Posted by Traffic Mag on September 4th, 2010, 15:53

    PCD for the Grand Livina is 114.3 4-lugs. Make sure you get advice from the tyre guy for the right size to avoid scraping the fender.

    Buying one?

  3. Posted by midship on September 6th, 2010, 15:16

    Brilliant!!!

  4. Posted by akinaqi on September 22nd, 2010, 09:57

    how’s the muffler’s sound..is it too loud? could disturb sleeping kids?

  5. Posted by Traffic Mag on September 22nd, 2010, 16:16

    it’s not that loud but it does have a bit of growl when you accelerate. not much to disrupt your kids’ sleep.

  6. Posted by GLIT on January 4th, 2011, 15:52

    what about the offset? think of changing it(keeping the stock rim as well). do wider tyres will hit the fender during bumps & full load?

  7. Posted by Traffic Mag on January 4th, 2011, 16:42

    to run with wider tyres or rims, you need to know the exact offset and tyre size that would fit just nicely under the fenders. most wheels and tyres shop will be more than glad to advise you on this matter.

  8. Posted by GLIT on January 5th, 2011, 09:58

    traffic mag – thanks…
    any shop suggestions?
    looking for P1 Buddy Club rims & Bridgestone tyres.

  9. Posted by Traffic Mag on January 5th, 2011, 12:51

    if you search for P1 buddy club wheels there’s quite a number of ’em online for quite a steal. but then if you prefer to head straight to the shops, i suggest you take some time and shop-hopping to get the best price for it!

  10. Posted by GLIT on January 6th, 2011, 01:07

    Traffic Mag – thanks again!
    Nissan – keep up the good work!
    to all Traffic mag. readers, Nissan Grand Livina tuned by Impul highly recommended.
    :)

  11. Posted by Traffic Mag on January 6th, 2011, 04:00

    you’re welcome. it’s a pleasure to be able to help a fellow modder.

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