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TEST DRIVE REVIEW: Nissan Teana 2.0


If you have been catching my articles as well as the type of news I tend to favour towards, you might think that why is this nut going to be test driving the Nissan Teana. Especially the 2.0 version. When I received a call saying that there is a chance for me to test drive the car, I jumped at the opportunity. Why? Because I have been complaining about how crashy my car’s suspension was for the past 3 years and finally, I thought I would give a car which has a reputation of being dubbed an “uncle’s car” a whirl.

Trust me, when I say a whirl, I literally mean it.


So I took the keys, got into the car and the first thing I noticed that apparently shopping malls have small parking bays. The car felt huge and getting out the bay was rather difficult. Firstly I didn’t want to put a scratch on the car and secondly, some idiot didn’t really park properly so I had to make several attempts of moving forward and reverse just to get out. So why did I bore the hell out of you by telling you my parking woes? Well for one thing, the steering on the Teana was nice and light. Seriously light!

I can’t say that I make a good benchmark because my daily drive has a hydraulic steering wheel and its bloody heavy. The light feel of the steering was a welcoming comfort and by the time I got out of the bay, I knew I had spent less amount of effort turning left and right on the wheel compared to my own car. Point to the Teana indeed especially since it also uses a hydraulic steering in the form of the EHPS (Electro-Hydraulic Power Steering).


Heading home, traffic was horrendous, it was peak hour and everyone was stuck in a perpetually long queue. It was ok for me, I decided to play a bit with the buttons on the steering only for it to tell me that because I was slowly inching forward, I can’t really investigate what was in the menu. Point to the Teana for safety. But I will deduct points because the car’s menu system wasn’t at all friendly. Pairing a Bluetooth device and then selecting several other menus on the MFD meant I had to have a hand on the radio whilst fumbling on the buttons while the other hand is busy trying to press more buttons on the steering. That would be fine if the buttons on the steering was on the right side but thanks the brilliant placement, I have my left hand on the buttons on the radio and my right hand on the left side of the steering. It felt awkward.

There were also additional buttons on the steering wheel which have been awkwardly placed. I admit, I have large hands and even with large hands, I had trouble reaching the two bottom buttons on the steering wheel. One of them on the right side was the call function where you either make a call or answer a call especially if you phone is paired via Bluetooth with the car. Most of the time I ended up pressing the wrong button!


There is a reason why the Teana has been aptly nicknamed, but I can see the appeal. The ride was comfortable, the leather was soft and the interior was good. It felt like I was almost riding on the cloud. Almost. The one thing which made it different was the suspension. Yes, it has been tuned to be nice and soft but it still had a little bit of stiffness to it which makes the handling surprisingly interesting. Sharp turns and slightly faster speeds still doesn’t cause it to understeer. How did I test that out? Well read on.


It was Friday night and my usual routine would be to join some car clubs for their weekly ritual “teh tarik” sessions. One such club is the Volkswagen Owners Club which happened to meet near where I live. It was the usual but one of the after-after activities would be a somewhat spirited drive up to Genting. We met up at our usual spot at BHP along the Karak highway. The roads were dry and traffic was quite minimal. So on a convoy we headed up towards Goh Tong for a cup of coffee.

Whilst we were still on Karak, it started pouring down heavily. Now I knew the car’s limitation as well as the other “competition” I had whilst heading up the hill. The rain helped me indeed except for certain stretches of the highway where I definitely aqua-planned a couple of times. Still the car didn’t drift off too much and I manage to keep it in control with the traction control helping me. The moment we hit the hills, I slammed hard on the accelerator whilst testing the limit of the CVT gearbox all the way up.


The car handles quite well through the bends, it doesn’t understeer as much as a FWD car does and even though it was wet and raining, I still manage to overtake lots of cars up. Well, let’s just say that no one overtook me on the way up and that really says a lot about the car. Earlier I mentioned that the steering was light but at higher speeds I definitely felt more feedback from it. All of this is definitely thanks to the Teana’s rear multi-link suspension and it’s AUC (Active Understeer Control).

Braking was easy on the Teana, it bites well and I tested several scenarios where I had to perform an emergency brake as well as a quick steer. The results? The car is surprisingly nimble for a car that size.


As nimble as the car may be, it still takes a while getting used to the CVT gearbox and overtaking over short distances is never easy with the car. That meant I had to constantly plan my overtaking manoeuvres as well as give myself enough space coming out of lanes and then ducking back in because the MR20DE 2.0 engine (136hp and 190Nm) feels overwhelmed by the size of the car.

In conclusion, I feel that the Teana did leave a mark in my head. It was a comfortable car where I had no issues travelling to and from work, making life a little easier but when it comes to my heart, I am still a little torn between the looks of the car (I am the type that sort of liked the previous model where it was a little more angular at the rear) and the overall driving feel. If you asked me about a car where it can bring you from point A to point B comfortably, the Teana does all of that and does it well. If it was something I would be passionate about, the looks didn’t leave enough of an impression on me.


Engine: Four cylinder, 16-valve, 1997cc MR20DE engine

Transmission: Next-generation XTRONIC CVT

Max power: 136hp and 190Nm

Steering: Electro-Hydraulic Power Steering

Dimensions: 4885 x 1830 x 1485 (LWH in mm)

Tyres: 215/60R16

Wheels: Alloy 16″ rims

Price: RM140,658.41 (XE) and RM150,674.01 (XL) – These prices are on-the-road price with insurance

Here are some of the official Nissan Teana photos.