8 November 2018
More than an old car #88: Nissan Presea
As mentioned previously, Nissan is the modern branding for the antiquated Datsun. It was decided that the name change would help the pursuit of a global strategy, which would increase people's awareness to the brand. As a result, "Nissan" wordings were gradually applied to Datsun cars in the 1980s and by 1986, the replacement was complete.
The Nissan Presea appeared in June 1990 in the form of a 4-door 'hardtop' sedan, ie a regular car without the middle pillar/bar. Its name is derived from the Spanish word for "jewel" or an "irreplaceable important thing". The rear windscreen was slightly curved, providing the driver with a more than 300-degree view just like a fighter pilot. Its aesthetic styling included the rounded edges and the grill-less front end, lending it a futuristic look that was popular with women at that time. It was powered by a 1597 cc GA16DE i4 engine, allowing it to reach a top speed of 187 km/h. It was 4395 mm long and weighed 1020 kg, which is quite light for a car this size!
Production of the R10 Presea ended in 1995, and was succeeded by the R11 model which featured external changes. There are at least 10 out and about in Singapore, though there seems to be more R11s compared to R10s. Based on local reviews, it apparently drives quite well and also low-maintenance to boot!
This red unit is quite unique as it was owned by Chee Soon Juan, a prominent opposition politician--he has been seen driving this around a few times. However, the number plate was recently de-registered and I do not know whether it is still around. It's not every day that you get to see a renowned person's car up close and I was glad that I had captured a snapshot. The grey unit, on the other hand, has been modified with a bodykit, making it more sporty than it actually is. It is still around but with an expired road tax. Do keep your eyes peeled for the other ones that are still here!