In the world of high fashion, looks change with the season. The same goes for the world of stylishly elegant city cars and the Micra is no exception - just two years after it went on sale, the chic Nissan Micra has gone under the surgeon’s knife. And there are more changes beneath its skin.
The resulting nip ‘n’ tuck plus colour make-over keeps the Micra looking as young and as sophisticated as ever. New Sport and 160SR versions on sale now as well as the clever Micra C+C coupé-convertible that comes later to SHIFT_ the Micra’s undoubted appeal further. All were designed and engineered in the UK and they’ll be built here at Nissan’s highly productive plant in Sunderland.
Aside from the new 160SR, changes made to the Micra might look minor… but they go deeper than a quick glance suggests. The most obvious external changes are a new-look nose and tail, while inside there are revised seats and trim. Outside and in there are new colours, too.
But the arguably more significant changes can be found in the detail. Major programmes have been undertaken to improve still further the car’s refinement levels with better sound proofing and extra measures taken to isolate noise from the engine compartment. The enhancements even extend to thicker door glass to reduce wind and traffic noise.
There’s greater comfort on offer with more supportive seats while the revised dashboard includes a new trip computer housed within the instrument panel rather than the centre console: this not only makes the information easier to access but also permits the option of an in-dash six disc CD-changer in the centre console.
New user-friendly features, such as automatic lighting control, add to the already impressive roster of helpful on-board technology while the new Micra is also better prepared to deal with street fighters – the bumpers are sturdier to offer greater protection from those who park by ear.
The 1.2-litre and 1.4-litre versions of the familiar 16-valve twin cam unit from the CR family of engines and the two 1.5-litre common-rail diesel models continue unchanged. But the 1.0-litre engine previously fitted to the entry-level Micra E has now been replaced with a 65PS version of the 1.2.
At the top of the range, there’s a brand new engine. The unit, which has been developed specifically for the Micra, is based on the new 1.5-litre HR engine that powers the Japanese-market Note and Tiida models. For Micra, it has been increased in capacity to 1598cc to develop 110PS and 153Nm of torque. The new engine can be found not only in the 160SR but also later in the C+C.
UK customers can now choose from two Micra collections: Classic and Sport.
To read our in depth road test of the Nissan Micra [ click here ]Published 23 June 2005