Don’t you just love it when there are old reruns of your favourite TV shows? They take you back - giving you flashbacks of times gone by.
The new Nissan Micra Active is just that - a flashback. It is the outgoing fourth-generation Micra, only tweaked and relabelled “Active”. Originally launched back in 2010, and run until this year, the Micra Active will continue as Nissan introduces the seriously upgraded fifth generation Micra.
So why is Nissan keeping the fourth-generation model? It’s a clever idea. First off, the Micra Active is a decent car that’s fun to drive. More importantly, it is affordable. At a starting price of R159 000 and payment plans, over 72 months, ranging from R2200 to R2500 per month, it’s a great value proposition. The Micra Active also comes with a best-in-class three year/90 000km service plan, and a six year/150 000km warranty.
The forthcoming fifth-generation Micra is a set up for the Active model. It is more in line with the next decade - its futuristic design, advanced engine and gearbox system, as well as its technical prowess, set it apart from the Active model. But this Micra isn’t going to retail for anything close to the Active’s meagre prices. So, there is space for two Micras then!
So, what’s new on the Active?
The grille has been redesigned to host the circular badge in the chromed V-shaped motif. The bonnet, front fenders, headlights and front and rear bumpers also have a refreshed design. Inside, it benefits from a new fabric design, new centre cluster and refreshed instrument panel.
The Micra Active has manual aircon, front power windows, Bluetooth with audio streaming, a 12V power socket, steering-wheel adjustment and foldable rear seats.
Regarding safety, the Micra Active is equipped with ABS, EBD and Brake Assist, driver and passenger airbags, Isofix child-seat anchorage in the second row, rear headrests, rear fog lights, remote central locking, speed-sensitive auto door lock and an immobiliser.
For the early birds, Nissan’s first batch of Active’s benefit from the addition of touch-screen navigation and an infotainment system, which has been fitted as an added accessory at no additional cost to the customer. The system comes with TomTom mapping with live traffic, Bluetooth hands-free music streaming, USB input, a built-in music hard drive and it’s compatible with all iPhone/iPod models.
Some extra bits can be had if you’re willing to part with your well-earned coin. These include a reverse camera, a tyre pressure monitoring system and reversing parking sensors. The Trendsetter Pack offers smoky black alloy wheels, a chrome exhaust finish, a rear spoiler and mudguards. I’d personally forgo these and save the cash.
A highlight of the fun Active is its 1.2-litre petrol engine capable of 56kW/104Nm mated to a manual transmission, both carryovers worth keeping. 0 to 100 km/h will be reached in 13 seconds and if driven modestly, on urban roads and highways, you can expect a fuel consumption figure of 7l/100km.
The Nissan team collaborated with Vega School of design branding and business. The school was briefed to create artwork that the student felt best depicted the Micra Actives playful character. Here are a few examples, from the students.
Value for money.
VW Polo, Ford Figo, Renault Sandero and Toyota Etios
Micra Active 1.2 Vista R159 000.
Service and warranty
The Nissan Micra Active comes standard with a three year/90 000km service plan and a six year/150 000km warranty.
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