In-depth reviews

Nissan Micra review - Engines, performance and drive

Latest Micra is better to drive than ever, although it’s not best in class

It was never known as a car that you'd want to drive for the hell of it, and the latest Nissan Micra still isn't the most fun supermini to drive, but it's certainly an improvement. It handles sweetly enough, and all cars get the Active Ride and Active Trace Control electronic systems from the larger Qashqai. The former applies the brakes over bumps to keep the body tied down, while the latter brakes an inside wheel in corners to help stick to your chosen line.

The ride is a little fidgety, with a firm edge even on smaller wheels, but it’s refined at speed. However, next to the precision of a VW Polo and the comfort of a Citroen C3, the Micra simply lacks sparkle.

The steering has just about enough weight to it, but doesn’t have much feel. While the five-speed manual has an imprecise nature when compared to rivals.

Nissan has addressed the Micra's relative lack of power by introducing a new 1.0-litre turbocharged three-cylinder unit, available with 99bhp or 115bhp. 

Engines, 0-60 acceleration and top speed 

The naturally aspirated 1.0-litre three-cylinder unit and the 1.5-litre diesel are no longer available. Instead, the Micra range now includes just the 1.0-litre turbocharged three-cylinder motor. The base 99bhp version addresses the lack of power of the naturally aspirated Micra and finally equips the car with a decent mid-range turbocharged three-cylinder alternative - naturally what you'd expect in this class. It's a decent all-rounder too, in regards to refinement and power.

The 115bhp variant  of this engine makes for the best driving Micra as it is allied to revisions that unlock a shade of extra poise from the supermini. The suspension is 10mm lower, and the steering has also been upgraded to offer some much needed dynamism. However, it's still not as smooth riding as the Volkswagen Polo and not as fun to drive as the Ford Fiesta. The sprint from 0-62mph takes 9.9 seconds, with Nissan claiming ‘warm hatch’ status. But, in reality there are much faster versions of rival superminis.

Next Steps

Which Is Best

Cheapest

  • Name
    1.0 IG-T 92 Visia 5dr
  • Gearbox type
    Manual
  • Price
    £13,765

Most Economical

  • Name
    1.0 IG-T 92 Visia 5dr
  • Gearbox type
    Manual
  • Price
    £13,765

Fastest

  • Name
    1.0 DIG-T 117 Acenta 5dr [Bose]
  • Gearbox type
    Manual
  • Price
    £17,900

Most Popular

UK’s most stolen cars revealed
Most stolen car
Ford Fiesta

UK’s most stolen cars revealed

DVLA data reveals which cars were most commonly stolen in 2020, with the Ford Fiesta topping the list
26 Jan 2021
Revised Mazda CX-5 crossover launched for 2021
Mazda CX-5 2021
Mazda CX-5

Revised Mazda CX-5 crossover launched for 2021

The updated Mazda CX-5 gets a larger displacement version of the brand’s SkyActiv-G petrol engine and a fresh infotainment system
26 Jan 2021
New MINI facelift revealed with updated look and added tech
MINI 3-door hatch facelift - front
MINI MINI

New MINI facelift revealed with updated look and added tech

The MINI range has been revised for 2021, with the hatch, Convertible and Electric models all getting a range of styling tweaks
26 Jan 2021