First impressions of a completely redesigned hatchback with a three-cylinder turbo engine
The Micra is undoubtedly one of the big names in its class and one of the favorites of the European public with cumulative sales of seven million in its career. So solution step aside for Nissan in the previous generation, changing the general strategy and the place of production of the model seemed strange from the very beginning and will undoubtedly go down in history as a not very successful experiment in the field of Asian emerging markets.
The fifth generation is going back to the original idea stronger than ever and will try to fight Fiesta, Polo, Clio and the company for distribution in the Old Continent.
Unrecognizable inside and out
The hatchback design, with strong futuristic features, is closely tied to the radiance of the concept Sway and fits perfectly into Nissan's current European lineup. The model has grown by more than 17 centimeters in length, reaching four meters, and the extension of the case by an impressive eight centimeters has led to dynamic proportions that will definitely please not only the traditional clientele of the fairer sex.
At the same time, the acceleration has led to a much more impressive interior space in terms of volume, where the play of shapes and colors continues in the same modern style. The new model boasts 125 different color combinations thanks to the many possibilities for customizing the exterior and interior.
One segment of the audience will appreciate this, while another will appreciate the low seating position, which promotes dynamic driving and provides ample room for adults in both the first and second rows, despite the elegantly sloping roofline. The luggage compartment is flexible and can quickly increase its nominal volume from 300 liters to over 1000 liters by folding the asymmetrical rear row backrests.
The dashboard ergonomics are geared towards the smartphone generation and offer convenient control of audio, navigation and mobile phone functions from a 7-inch color screen in the middle. Apple CarPlay compatibility, in turn, gives access to smartphone apps and Siri voice control.
Impressive sound comes from Bose's state-of-the-art headrest speaker system, and in terms of electronic driver assistance, the new Micra offers a standard that the competition has never met - emergency stop with pedestrian recognition, lane-keeping, 360-degree panoramic camera, recognition road signs and automatic high beam control.
Flexible road behavior
The light weight of just over a ton makes the three-cylinder turbocharger cousins out of Renault with a working volume of 0,9 liters and a power of 90 hp. an extremely suitable option for Mikra. With 140 Nm, this state-of-the-art machine does a great job without making too much noise, providing ample traction in urban environments and not requiring too much pressure on the five-speed manual gearbox.
Successful suspension adjustments and a longer wheelbase help the French-made Micra absorb the rougher bumps in the road reasonably well, and the soundproofing of the body also contributes to comfort.
Road dynamics are at the level expected for this class, with neutral, pleasantly active cornering and very good maneuverability at low speeds. The three-cylinder unit shows pleasantly low fuel consumption, which in urban conditions can approach the ambitious 4,4 liters promised by the manufacturer, but in any case, for a car with such dimensions and capabilities, the actual values of about five liters are great.
Nissan is taking a major step in the right direction - the fifth generation Micra will undoubtedly reignite European consumers with its bold design, great modern equipment and agility on the road.
However, in order to fulfill their task and become one of the best-selling models in this class, Japanese-made models will probably need a wider range of engines.