Every country has that one regular little teen car. It’s usually somewhat forgettable and always cheap. However, the 2004 Nissan Micra—New Zealand’s version of the teen runabout—is adorable. Regular Car Reviews discovered youth in car form—and sadly not a version of youth the U.S. will ever accept.
We’re so stuck on “bigger is better” here that the Micra—even named such for being small—would never fly, even as a teen car. After all, you can get a frumpier but larger Versa, and it’s bigger.
Yet that’s infuriating, because even though it’s obviously a cheap car, Mr. Regular seems pleased with the delightful design of it. This generation Micra’s design was originally pitched to Fiat, who passed on it before Nissan called dibs. It’s a friendly little car. Later Micras have also been pretty good. The Micra Cup car I drove in Canada is still one of the most delightful things I’ve ever driven.
This Micra’s 1.4-liter engine wasn’t particularly exciting to Mr. Regular, nor was the rest of the driving experience. But look at it: it’s cute. A toy car for grown-ups.
What are you compensating for, America? Why can’t we enjoy such toy cars here?