TrackWorthy - 2018 Nissan Micra SR (141)

2018 Nissan Micra SR and the Nissan Micra Cup

by TrackWorthy,

TrackWorthy - 2018 Nissan Micra SR (141)

The 2018 Nissan Micra is a surprisingly energetic and agile little car to drive on the road. The Nissan Micra also makes a good little race car on the track. Nissan is in a unique position within the Canadian marketplace in that they offer the least expensive new car in Canada with the base Micra MSRP coming in at just $9,988 plus tax, and Nissan offers the least expensive race car in Canada at $23,400, plus tax, for a Micra Cup car. We checked out both at a race weekend at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park, about an hour northeast of Toronto.


Nissan Micra Cup

The Nissan Micra Cup spec racing series was launched in 2015 as a marketing tool for the launch of the road-going Micra. The race series has proven to be very popular, both with spectators and participants. Nissan Canada originally made a three-year commitment to the series but has been so pleased with the results they have made an additional three-year commitment, meaning that the series will run through the 2020 racing season. The series is made up of twelve races over six race weekends. Each race weekend consists of a thirty-minute practice session, a thirty-minute qualifying session, and two forty-minute races, one on Saturday and one on Sunday of each race weekend.
TrackWorthy - Nissan Micra Cup Races
Participating in the Nissan Micra Cup series is exhilarating, according to 44-year-old driver Peter Dyck who races the No. 73 NRW Rennsport car. “It is really a lot of fun racing in this series. It’s the first time I’ve raced. I’ve always wanted to and this was a great way to do it. This is my third season in Nissan Micra but before that I’ve never raced anything else. I got in to racing because of the Micra Cup.”

TrackWorthy - 2018 Nissan Micra SR (172)

Peter is a car enthusiast who participated in track days and then decided to make the jump into racing.

TrackWorthy - 2018 Nissan Micra SR (127)

“It is so competitive, you really have to pay attention to every little bit to keep up with the guys. Everybody is really pushing hard. It’s tough.” said Dyck. “I have made improvements every year. I do feel more comfortable and I’ve gotten better overall finishes. I’m constantly improving so I’m happy with that. In 2017 they introduced the Masters Class for drivers 40 and older, so I was able to get a couple of podiums in the Masters Class which was a lot of fun.”

TrackWorthy - 2018 Nissan Micra SR (44)
  • TrackWorthy - 2018 Nissan Micra SR (23)
  • TrackWorthy - 2018 Nissan Micra SR (14)
  • TrackWorthy - 2018 Nissan Micra SR (18)
  • TrackWorthy - 2018 Nissan Micra SR (113)
  • TrackWorthy - 2018 Nissan Micra SR (9)

When asked for his overall impression of the Nissan Micra Cup series, Dyck said “I think it’s great. If someone wants to go racing this is a great entry level and it’s great to learn the car handling and because it’s so competitive your driver ability is really important and stands out.”


2018 Nissan Micra SR

Our road-going Micra SR test car might only have 109 horsepower but with a short 96.5” wheelbase (the Volkswagen Golf by comparison is more than 7 inches longer at 103.8 inches) makes it very maneuverable when negotiating congested city traffic. Its short wheelbase also results in a very tight turning radius of just 15 feet or 4.6 metres. The Micra is also quite light weighing in at just 2,302 pounds when equipped with the 5-speed manual transmission in S trim.

TrackWorthy - 2018 Nissan Micra SR (44)

The energetic 1.6-litre DOHC 16-valve 4-cylinder engine generates its 109 HP at 6,000 rpm with maximum torque of 107 lb-ft generated at 4,400 rpm. The road going Micra is equipped with vented front disc brakes up front and drum brakes. In the rear. As Nissan was developing the race car they experimented with disc brakes on the rear too but found that the race car handled best when equipped with rear brake drums. The Micra is equipped with 4-wheel Anti-lock Brakes (ABS).

Our Micra SR is the top of the line model and has a base price of $17,388 plus $1,600 which brought our as tested price to $18,988 plus license, fees and taxes. The SR is the only model that is not available with a 5-speed manual transmission, the S and SV models are available with both transmissions.

TrackWorthy - 2018 Nissan Micra SR (107)

The SR is fully loaded with features including upgraded 16” alloy wheels up from the S models 15” steel wheels, leather wrapped steering wheel, body colour rear spoiler with LED centre high-mounted brake light, side sill spoilers, rear view camera and cloth sport seats with contrast stitching.

TrackWorthy - 2018 Nissan Micra SR (71)

TrackWorthy - 2018 Nissan Micra SR (44)

It is interesting to note that the Micra is sold in Canada and numerous countries around the world, but it is not sold in the United States.

TrackWorthy - 2018 Nissan Micra SR (44)

OUR TAKE

We are always happy to see car companies supporting the Race on Sunday (or Win on Sunday), Sell on Monday adage. Nissan Canada is having so much success with the Nissan Micra Cup that it has extended from a three-year commitment to a six-year commitment in the spec race series. The 2018 Nissan Micra is fun (and affordable) to drive on the road and, judging by reactions from the drivers who race them on the track, the Micra has been transformed into a fun (and affordable) race car too.

ARTICLE, PHOTOGRAPHS AND VIDEO © COPYRIGHT 2018 TRACKWORTHY GROUP LTD.

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