8 months with a Renault Clio

Top Car's Wayne Batty says goodbye to his Renault Clio. It’s not a soppy farewell but the little 'automatique' did its maker proud.

Kia's trendy family pick

Wheels24's Janine Van der Post experiences the upcoming Cerato.

Tested: Nissan Micra

2007-10-15 10:37

Nissan Micra

Vehicle Specs
Manufacturer Nissan
Model Micra
Engine CR14DE
Power 65kW @ 5200 r/min
Torque 128 @ 3200 r/min
Fuel Consumption 6.3 l/100 km (combined)
Price R130 900

Sergio Davids

What's it about?

The Nissan Micra has come along way from its launch in 2004 under the enigmatic 'Do you speak Micra?' campaign and the repositioned five-door 1.4 Acenta is a welcome addition to the city car fleet.

In the real world, Micra can be likened to the cute girl at your local bar. She's always friendly to everyone, but nobody leaves with her at the end of the night. Instead, patrons prefer the racier blonde in the corner (Ford Fiesta) or the feisty brunette behind the bar counter (Hyundai Getz).


However, living with the Micra is not that difficult. The control panel is easy on the eyes with big hard-to-miss dials and buttons adorning the centre console. It comes with a six-CD shuttle, but this great feature is marred by the fact that it does not play MP3s. The students and young adults at whom this car is aimed may be concerned by this oversight.

But remaining in the cabin, the dials are flesh coloured with white tips and may have looked a little better if they were flesh coloured with black tips, but that could just be me.

Another concern is that the Micra sports hideous seat upholstery - a bizarre chequered pattern that, to put it quite simply is hideous. And if you'll be spending long periods in the car, you'd better become really well acquainted with your chiropractor as the headrests are position at a neck sprain-inducting 45° angle.

One positive is that the Micra comes equipped with plenty of handy storage compartments for all those city-living essentials. It had a drawer under the passenger seat, large glovebox and cup holders and a deceivingly spacious boot.

Safety features abound with central locking, driver and passenger air bags as well as a Microdot anti theft system being part of the deal.

Under the bonnet

The five-door Acenta model displaces 1.4 litres of fuel to produce 65 kW at 5 200 r/min and has a peak torque figure of 128 Nm available at 3 200 r/min.

This engine is mated with Nissan's five-speed manual gearbox.

Driving it

The Micra delivers a pleasant ride and snappy acceleration proved beneficial in the city centre when called in to help swat off the bigger barges. The Micra produces a claimed 0-100km/h time of 11.9 seconds.

It may not be the most classy of vehicles, but the car handles pretty well. Handling does become a bit dodgy once you hit the twisties at speed, though.

Fuel-wise the Micra excels and you'll be saving a quite a bit on petrol as the car consumes a claimed 6.3l per 100km. Driving for a week at average city speeds, could see you developing an irrational fear, wondering if your fuel gauge has malfunctioned since the needle just won't budge.


While the Nissan Micra isn't exactly good on looks it has plenty of redeeming features to make it a great city car.

It's a cutesy city car that says a lot about its driver's personality. One is inclined to image a ditzy blonde behind the wheel making her way home from varsity... Cute, very cute, if you can get head around the styling, of course.


  • Smooth ride
  • Fuel consumption
  • Boot space


  • Interior design
  • Cramped rear seats

    Inside Wheels24

    Take a virtual tour of the McLaren 570S in SA

    Want to experience what it's like to be behind the wheel of a 419kW sports car? Take a virtual tour of the McLaren 570S in our interactive Snapchat video filmed in SA.

    There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.