Canadian Manufacturing

Nissan details Canadian-exclusive Micra, announces April release

Promises low cost of ownership due largely to "excellent fuel economy," low maintenance costs



MONTREAL—Nissan’s all-new 2015 Micra subcompact is set to go on sale at dealers across Canada in April, with the Japanese automaker touting its “unbeatable value” in the entry-level segment.

While no pricing has been announced, Nissan Canada declared the Micra—last sold in the country in the early 1990s—as its “value flagship,” and will offer customers a low cost of ownership due largely to “excellent fuel economy” and low maintenance costs.

Available in three trim levels ranging from the base S model to top-of-the-line SR, the Micra will be available with either five-speed manual or four-speed automatic transmissions mated to its 1.6-litre four-cylinder engine that produces 109-horsepower and 107 lb.-ft. of torque.

Fuel economy numbers have yet to be released, but the Versa Note powered by the same engine has an estimated fuel consumption of 7.4 L/100 km city and 5.4 L/100 km highway.

According to Nissan, the tiny powerplant features a host of cutting-edge technologies, including a dual fuel injector system that allows a wider injection of fuel compared to traditional single injector systems.

The smaller nozzles deliver a spray approximately 57 per cent finer than the previous generation single injector design’s particle size to help achieve more complete combustion.

The result, Nissan said, is an increase in power and improved fuel economy.

The engine also utilizes a Twin Continuously Variable Timing Control (CVTC) system mounted on intake and exhaust ports—conventional CVTC systems are mounted only on the intake port—similar to the system used on Nissan’s Maxima sedan.

The automaker said using a CVTC on the outlet port increases thermal efficiency, decreases inhalation resistance and offers an estimated four per cent improvement in fuel efficiency over the previous generation engine design.

“Micra makes innovation accessible to everyone offering an attractive, affordable design that’s fun to drive, easy to park with outstanding functionality thanks to its surprising interior space,” Meunier said in the car’s media kit.

Being a Canadian-exclusive has been a big selling feature for the Micra since its announced release earlier this month, a feature Meunier continued to play up ahead of the subcompact going on display at the Montreal Auto Show.

“It’s very rare to offer a car in Canada that is not also offered in the United States and with Micra, Nissan will be the only mainstream automotive brand to bring a high volume car specifically for the Canadian market,” said Meunier.

“There has been extensive support from the global leadership team to make this happen, recognizing the potential of the Nissan brand within Canada, and the importance of bringing cars that will resonate with Canadian consumers.”

Nissan’s executive team is putting a lot of hope into the tiny hatch, calling the Micra “a key pillar” in its goals of achieving an eight per cent market share and selling 150,000 vehicles here by fiscal year 2016.

“We expect Micra will shock the market,” Meunier said. “We’re offering Canadians the quality, reliability and modern safety standards of a new Japanese vehicle, with an unexpectedly attractive starting price.

“We are going to expand the entry-level segment with Micra.”

The Micra is manufactured at Nissan’s Aguascalientes 1 plant in Mexico.

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