New Sasol GTC cars set for thrills

The iconic Grand Prix Circuit will present a new challenge to the GTC drivers as they tackle the country’s fastest racetrack on June 16.

Suzuki’s new Swift hatch and sedan in SA

Suzuki kicks off its new model assault with an all new Swift hatchback and standalone sedan called the Dzire.

Nissan bares its Tiida

2006-08-18 10:10

Wilmer Muller

Meet the Nissan TIIDA hatch

  • Tiida hatch gallery
  • Tiida sedan gallery
  • Some people probably won't even notice the demise of the Almera as it was perceived as dull and didn't have too much road presence. But as we all know it was a big hit with rental companies and fleet buyers due to its low ownership costs and trustworthiness.

    And now Nissan is baring its Tiida here, which the company says is more exciting and better built than the Almera but comes with the same reliability.

    Nissan is especially excited about the Tiida hatch as the company hopes it will be a big hit with private buyers.

    What's different?

    There is no doubt that the Tiida is a complete different car from the Almera, however, the sedan still oozes the same dull image as its predecessor. The hatchback looks a bit more exciting and distinctive. Or rather, the sedan will easily go unnoticed whereas the hatchback's design offers more character.

    It doesn't mean just because the Tiida doesn't score in the looks department that you have to scrap it off your shopping list. In fact the range has a lot going for it and its biggest attribute is its spacious cabin.

    And this isn't just another doubtful "best-in-class-claim" by a manufacturer as the Tiida (in sedan and hatch guise) is really BIG on the inside. Do yourself a favour and just go sit in one. You will be overwhelmed by loads of room for all passengers. Even tall occupants never had it this good in a so-called small car.

    Despite that the Tiida's exterior dimensions is on par with that of its segment rivals, which include the Toyota Corolla/Runx and VW Polo, its interior space is almost as good as much bigger sedans such as the Toyota Avensis or VW Passat. Honestly, we are not joking about this!

    The experience

    The perceivable build quality is too while Nissan also did a lot of work to keep noise levels down.

    Furthermore the Tiida has a solid feel to it while the ride is stable and composed. Power delivery of the 1.6-litre petrol unit is sufficient for a car in its class as it 80 kW of power at 6 000 r/min and 153 Nm of torque at 4 000 r/min.

    Depending on the model the 1.6-litre Tiidas is either available with a 5-speed manual or 4-speed automatic transmission.

    The 1.8 ads some excitement to the driving experience thanks to a six-speed gearbox and a power output of 95 kW at 5 200 r/min, while torque is a useful 175 Nm of torque at 4 800 r/min.


    The hatch line-up includes three five-door options: 1.6 Visia+, 1.6 Acenta with five-speed manual transmissions and the 1.8 Acenta, with a six-speed manual transmission.

    The five-door sedan derivatives include the 1.6 Visia five-speed manual, 1.6 Visia+ five-speed manual or four-speed automatic, Acenta 1.6 five-speed manual and 1.8 Acenta six-speed manual.

    There are all the usual array of comfort and convenience features such as power steering, power-operated side mirrors, air conditioner (automatic on the 1.8 Acenta) and a built-in AM/FM radio with CD player and six speakers. There are also model-specific features such as leather and all-round electric windows.

    Safety features on Visia+ and Acenta models include Anti-lock Brake System (ABS), Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD) and Brake Assist. Front fog lamps are also featured on Acenta models.


    Nissan put plenty of thought into the Tiida and the result is another sensible vehicle. Although it lacks the sparkle of some rivals it is a worthy choice which should be dependable.

    It is again vehicle that offers practicality, value for money and reliability.

    Pricing - sedan

  • Sedan 1.6 Visia 4-dr Manual: R128600 Sedan 1.6 Visia + 4-dr MANUAL: R145 700 Sedan 1.6 Visia + 4-dr AUTO: R157 700 Sedan 1.6 Acenta 4-dr MANUAL: R160 700 Sedan 1.8 Acenta 4-dr MANUAL: R177 700

    Pricing - Hatch

  • 1.6 Visia +5-dr MANUAL: R143 700
  • 1.6 Acenta 5-dr MANUAL: R158 700
  • 1.8 Acenta 5-dr MANUAL: R175 700

    Service intervals are every 15 000 km and a three-year/90 000 km service plan is included in the price.

  • Tiida hatch gallery
  • Tiida sedan gallery

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