Almera_Silver_front

The Nissan Almera has started getting its mid-life update in regions where it is sold around the world, with the first ASEAN country to get it being Thailand in January this year.

The facelift is more of an evolution of the ‘kamishimo’ trapezoidal face that Nissan was employing on its cars when the Almera made its debut, with bigger headlamps and more chrome on the front grille. This face has since been superseded by the new V-motion grille. In fact, the Pulsar hatchback start off with the kamishimo face and got updated to the V-motion face for its European debut.

So we had this idea – what if Nissan had gone the V-motion route for the Almera facelift instead? Malaysian rendering whiz Theophilus Chin whipped up these renderings for us showing how a Nissan Almera could look like with if it was given a major facelift. Do you think it’s better than the real facelift?

Almera_Silver_side

What you can do in a facelift is quite limited, especially on a relatively low-margin B-segment car, so most of the body shape has been retained to keep the rendering’s prospects as a ‘facelift’ realistic.

The Almera was responsible for Nissan Malaysia distributor Edaran Tan Chong Motor’s sales to skyrocket from 28,318 units in 2012 to 45,780 units in 2013. The Almera revolutionised the B-segment market in Malaysia with a low automatic transmission entry price of under RM70k.

But the Almera’s competitors came fighting back with a vengeance – both the Toyota Vios and Honda City received new models and Almera sales dipped across the region in the first half of this year. Australia even decided to drop it from the country’s line-up.

Almera_Silver_rear

You can see that there seems to be stark differences in how the B-segment sedan market is carved up now – on one hand, you have cars like the Vios and the City who seem to have moved so well up the value chain that they are now bigger and more premium, with more equipment than ever before, rendering C-segment cars irrelevant to most buyers.

On the other hand, you have cars like the Nissan Almera and Mitsubishi Attrage which seem to have been planned around the Thai eco car program with 1.2 litre engines, thus end up being noticeably more low rent. Other car companies like Honda didn’t participate in the program with their sedans, instead choosing to field new models like the Honda Brio.

The Almera of course remains the most affordable 1.5 litre B-segment sedan at RM 69,827.00 – the Attrage undercuts it by offering a 1.2 litre sedan for RM 67,978.50. The most affordable automatic variants of the City and Vios are priced at RM 73,626.00 and RM 75,087.50 respectively. You can compare the mentioned entry-level B-segment sedans at CarBase.my.