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Old 06-05-2015, 03:35 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Location: 1000 Islands, Ontario, Canada
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Blackfly - '98 Geo Metro
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Last 3: 70.09 mpg (US)

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Review: driving a $9998 2015 Nissan Micra (Nissan's most efficient manual in Can/US.)

Nissan is loaning me a base level Micra subcompact for a couple of weeks. What do you want to know about it?

It's probably best known north of the 49th as "Canada's cheapest car", with a starting price of $9998 Canadian petro dollars (as indicated above, that's $8024 American freedom bucks at today's exchange rate).

Sub-$10k is quite the marketing party trick (even if it doesn't include mandatory fees like $1400 shipping, taxes, licence, etc). Canadians have been snapping them up, even the base models. One owner happily calls his "my ten grand tin can"!

Versa Note / sedan guts

If you're in the States, you have seen lots of Micras whether you realize it or not.

The car is built on the same platform and uses the same 1.6L drivetrain and many interior bits as the Versa Note and Versa sedan. (In Canada, the sedan was dropped and replaced by the Micra because apparently Canadians prefer hatchbacks over sedans.)

MPG must be big in such a small car, right?

  • City: 8.6 L/100 km city / 27.4 MPG (US)
  • Highway: 6.6 / 36
  • Combined: 7.8 / 30.6
It's not stellar, but it does happen to be the Nissan model with the best manual transmission fuel economy rating in Canada/U.S. ... which is essentially the same as the manual Versa.

Nissan was up front when they introduced this car: its mission wasn't "best MPG"; it was "lowest purchase price." Sharing the 1.6L drivetrain with the Versa was a big part of that recipe. (In countries on the other side of the pond, a more efficient 1.2L triple -- naturally aspirated or supercharged -- is the standard Micra engine.)

Fortunately, we know that manuals are handicapped by EPA testing, and it's not hard to beat the ratings with even the most basic eco-driving techniques. ( EG, see: )

OK, so just how stripped down is it?

Have a gander at the "options list".

Whoever wrote this must have had a good chuckle while deciding what was worthy of mention "at No Extra Charge"...

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Latest mods: 3-cylinder Mitsubishi Mirage. EcoMods now in progress...
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has launched a forum for the efficient new Mitsubishi Mirage - fuel efficiency info for Geo Metro owners - electric car conversion on a beer budget
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