At the Canadian International Auto Show, Nissan debuted their Canadian-only Micra, an A-Segment car that takes up the Kia Rio’s one-time mantle of being the sole new car available for less than $10,000. At the show, we learned a few things about the Micra.
While the Micra uses the Versa’s 1.6L 109-horsepower 4-cylinder engine, it won’t get a CVT, but will offer a choice of a 5-speed manual or a 4-speed automatic. With the Micra weighing about 2100 lbs, it should feel nimble, but acceleration will be leisurely, given that its power to weight ratio is similar to an original Miata.
According to Nissan, the Micra has been localized for Canada with features like a rear heating duct in the floor, large, heated mirrors and a 60/40 split-folding rear seat. The crash structures have also been re-designed to meet Canadian vehicle standards, which are more nearly identical to American regulations. For a vehicle market of roughly 1 million units, this seems like an expensive undertaking. But evidently, Nissan feels that there’s some value in doing this for a product that competes in a traditionally unprofitable segment.