Nissan Micra (2002-2010)

Ever since the first examples appeared in 1983, the Nissan Micra has proved itself one of the best superminis around. With its sliding rear seat for extra cabin versatility, stand-out exterior design plus a huge choice of engines and trim levels, there are plenty of reasons to buy a Micra. Another is that typical Nissan reliability - but you can't always take this for granted.

Key Dates

11/02: The third-generation Micra debuts in three and five-door hatch forms, with 1.0, 1.2 or 1.4-litre petrol engines, plus a 1.5dCi turbodiesel.

3/05: A 1.6-litre petrol engine appears, in the 108bhp Micra SR.

6/05: A facelift brings a revised nose and tail, overhauled interior and extra standard equipment.

9/05: The Micra C+C (coupé-cabriolet) arrives with a 1.6 petrol engine.

9/06: The Micra C+C gets a 1.4-litre engine.

9/07: Another facelift brings further interior and exterior changes plus more standard kit and revised trim levels.

Nissan Micra (2002-2010) Checklist

  • The tailgate lock can fill up with water leading to the mechanism failing.
  • Clonks from the front suspension can be because the system was misaligned when the car was built. This can be fixed though.
  • The electrics aren't always reliable and batteries can go flat for no apparent reason, but a software update can cure this.
  • Poor starting or running is often due to a faulty crankshaft sensor because of deposits on the flywheel.
  • Timing chains fail on petrol engines, because of poor quality oil being used.
  • ABS modules fail; dealers charge less to fix cars with a Nissan FSH.

We Like

  • Reliability
  • Build quality
  • Good value

We Don't Like

  • Cramped rear seat
  • Unrefined
  • Dull handling