The Good, The Bad and The Ugly Nissan Micra K11 1992 – 2002
This second-generation Micra, for those in the UK at least, was a bit of a dullard. Thankfully the ’90s saw the rise of the grey import. Japanese spec’d cars with a host of goodies that were devoid from our options list. Thanks for nothing Nissan UK!
What came over was the camp as tits Figaro with an equally gay name. There was also the utilitarian styled Pao but these were based on Micra K10. So nothing really great was to come of the K11.
Or was it? Thankfully we have the Mitsuoka Viewt. A half-arsed attempt at making a Micra look like Morse’s Mk2 Jaguar. It was both awful and eye-catching at the same time. Sort of what BMC did to the Mini in making it the Riley Elf and Wolseley Hornet but less successfully.
The 1.3 engine gave the Micra K11 a bit of a useful shove. The same could not be said for the 1 litre. It was typical in its behaviour of Nissan’s other NA engines of the time. Drive it like it’s a Sunday, don’t rev it. It didn’t make a rats arse of a difference if you did and if you did, it sounded as exciting as sticking your head under the water in a bath and farting.
The K11 Micra with 338 points, won “Car of the Year 1993”, beating its competitor, the Cinquecento by 34 points. Renault’s flop, the Safrane came third.
1993 was a quiet year for the motor industry.
It was a car that was devoid of emotion and that appealed to the new motoring masses made up of learner drivers. Driving schools couldn’t get enough of them and chances are, if you were born in the ’70s, you came of age learning to drive one.
In 1992 a school friend got one and her mother took great delight in telling me that “Sarah has a new Micra-dot” I had an old 1986 Citroen, it cost me nothing so fuck off Jenny! To be honest, I couldn’t have thought of anything worse than having a Micra back then. Even now, I shudder at the thought.
Micra K11 isn’t good, bad or ugly. It’s a nothing car. Now, in 2019, if it goes wrong, you thrown it away. Trouble is, they NEVER went wrong. Buy one and use it as a chicken shed. At least it’ll have a purposeful use.