Nissan Motor India has launched the diesel variant of its small car Micra. The new variant is priced between Rs 5.59 lakh and Rs 6.05 lakh (ex-showroom Delhi). The diesel Micra is equipped with a 1.5 litre diesel engine and will be available in two variants with five speed manual transmission. Diesel Micra would return a fuel economy of 23.08 km per litre.
“The success of the petrol powered Micra in the Indian market has given us confidence to introduce the diesel variant within six months of its launch in response to popular demand,” Tokuyama said at a pre-launch briefing.
Nissan, in a 50:50 joint venture with French automaker Renault, has set up a manufacturing plant at Oragadam near Chennai with an upfront investment of Rs 2,300 crore (about $500 million).
“We signed an agreement with the Tamil Nadu government in February 2008 to invest a total of Rs 4,500 crore (about $980 million) over the next seven years for ramping up the annual production capacity to 400,000 units from the present 100,000 units and introduce a range of models for domestic and export markets,” Tokuyama said.
Nissan has maintained 85 per cent of localization for the Micra and engine and the five-speed gearbox are imported from its plants across Asia, including Japan and China.
“The wide gear coverage enables the engine to achieve quick acceleration in city driving conditions. The eight-valve four-cylinder engine generates 47kw power at 4,000 revolutions per minute (rpm),” said Nissan R&D centre assistant chief vehicle engineer Gary Kirby.
Nissan offers range of products in the Indian market, including the sports utility vehicle (SUV) X-Trail, luxury sedan Teana and sports car 370Z, which are imported from Japan as completely built units.