The new Micra is a year old ("Happy birthday Micra!") and to celebrate Nissan has introduced a special version called the XS priced from £8795 including free insurance . This new model has been created to appeal to younger buyers who want a sporty look without breaking the bank.
Based on the S grade, the XS features 15" alloy wheels, a rear roof spoiler, body coloured electric door mirrors, a race-style aluminium gear knob and unique dashboard trim. This is in addition to standard features that include power assisted steering, front electric windows, ABS with Nissan Brake Assist, driver and passenger airbags and keyless entry with Superlocking. The XS also features Nissan’s clever sliding rear seat which moves forward or backwards by up to 200 mm providing extra legroom or boot space depending on requirements.
The XS is available with a choice of the 1.2-litre petrol or 1.5-litre dCi 65 engines, both with the option of three or five doors. Prices start from £8795 for the 1.2 three-door, rising to £10,095 for the 1.5 dCi five-door. Each Micra XS is £800 more than the S on which it’s based – top value given it comes with £1000 of extra kit and, if the customer buys on Preferences (Nissan’s personal contract purchase plan), a £700 deposit contribution plus a year’s free insurance, too. The Clever Pack - rain sensing wipers and Nissan’s Intelligent Key system - is an XS option for just £250.
Micra - The story so far
Since the Micra went on sale in January 2003, Nissan has sold over 46,700 in the UK and 177,000 across Europe. Such was the interest in the new Micra that three months after its launch, the production capacity was increased by 25% at the Sunderland plant to accommodate the demand. Soon after launch, the range line-up was boosted by the addition of a 1.5-litre dCi engine with a power output of 65PS and later, 82PS adding to the existing petrol line-up of 1.0, 1.2 and 1.4-litre engines.
The Micra represents the product-led revival that Nissan is enjoying at the moment. It has strong, distinctive design and reinforces Nissan’s reputation for high quality. It is available with features normally found on upper-segment models, such as "Intelligent Key", which allows the car to be unlocked and started when the key is in close proximity to the car, and "Friendly Lighting" which leaves the headlights on until the driver has safely reached their front door.
Simon Thomas, Sales Director for Nissan Motor (GB) Limited said: "The Micra has been a huge hit in the 12 months since it went on sale. Its combination of stylish looks, broad engine range, thoughtful features and all-round driving excellence is a winning combination. It’s also interesting to note that the best selling version in the range is the highly equipped SE, a marked change compared with the outgoing car. And by the end of 2004, 15% of Micra sales in the UK will be diesel – higher than initial targets."
He added: "Micra drivers are now younger than ever before and we know that good design is an important factor in their purchasing decisions. And, very importantly for us, it is the first time many of them have bought a Nissan. In this respect, conquest sales demonstrate that Nissan’s product-led revival is gaining pace."
Further glamour will be added to the Micra range next year, when the Micra Coupé Cabriolet goes on sale. Based on the C+C concept car which was shown at the Paris Motor Show in 2002, the hardtop convertible Micra will provide seating for four passengers. It will go on sale in the second half of 2005.
* Free insurance available only when purchase made using Preferences PCP.Published 18 February 2004