2014 Nissan Pulsar to rival VW Golf

* Nissan Pulsar marks return to family hatch market * VW Golf rival likely to share engines with Qashqai * All-new model on sale in the autumn...

2014 Nissan Pulsar to rival VW Golf

The all-new Nissan Pulsar hatchback will go on sale in 2014 as a direct rival to the VW Golf and Ford Focus, the company has confirmed.

The Pulsar marks Nissan's return to the small family car market, where it previously sold the Nissan Almera. Since then it has concentrated on building the reputation of the successful Nissan Qashqai, which has inspired numerous baby SUV competitors.

As well as confirming the Nissan Pulsar's name, the firm released a shrouded teaser image giving hints of how the car will look.

The company has not confirmed any technical information about the car, but it's likely that it will share engines and safety kit with the latest Qashqai model.

Nissan has previously said that it would only launch itself into the highly-competitive small hatchback market when it had developed a car that it felt could compete for sales with benchmarks such as the VW Golf.

Insiders have hinted that Nissan expects the Pulsar to be particularly competitive in terms of ride comfort, interior quality, efficiency and running costs.

Further details, including specifications and pricing, are expected to be released later in the summer. The new Nissan Pulsar will go on sale in the autumn.