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The updated Go range finally offers a level of standard safety the buying public deserves. Is it enough to trouble the competition?

The global relaunch of the Datsun brand by Nissan in 2013 brought with it the promise of a focus on affordable motoring aimed at those to whom new-car ownership was an agonisingly unaffordable stretch. Local sentiment for the previously popular blue badge aside, the 2014 introduction of the first Go hatchback, priced at under R100 000 and with the full backing of Nissan South Africa, seemed to fulfil this promise and rightfully had many eager customers flocking to freshly painted showrooms.

A closer look at the standard specifications list for the Go offerings – and highlighted in our first test of the top-of-the-range derivative – showed a notable omission that, in a modern age of congested motoring, had us concerned. While at the time Nissan SA quoted research suggesting customers were more focused on efficiency and asking price over passive safety, as a trusted consumer magazine, we simply couldn’t ignore that neither an ABS-assisted braking system nor a single airbag was fitted to this package.

Despite these concerns – and proving just how price sensitive this segment is – Datsun has sold 25 000 units (including the seven-seater Go+) in South Africa to date. The good news is that, with the introduction of a revised local line-up comes some significant updates to not only the look and feel of the Go range, but also the safety package.

Fitted with upgraded 14-inch alloy wheels (previously 13s) and boasting a somewhat optimistic optional rear spoiler and strictly cosmetic roof rails, the updated 1,2 Lux tested here gains new bumper designs that include LED daytime-running lights and parking sensors aft. Those with a keen eye will note a 10 mm gain in ground clearance (to 180 mm) compared with the previous model. We do, however, have reservations about how easy it might be to find replacement India-sourced MRF-branded tyres in our market.

There’s more good news inside, where the first-generation Go’s bench front seat has been replaced with two single pews separated by a conventional handbrake (the first Go featured a bakkie-style pull lever) and added storage space. While neither the driver’s seat nor the steering column offers height adjustment (or reach on the wheel), all testers commented favourably on a raised driving position complemented by the well-considered (tall) placement of the transmission lever remaining within easy reach.

A highlight of the revised Go is a full-colour seven-inch touchscreen infotainment system that’s able to pair with both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, while also offering Bluetooth, USB and aux-in functionality. This modern-looking unit was at first listed as standard fitment only “during the launch period”, but Nissan has confirmed it will remain part of the package for the foreseeable future.

Tipping our scales some 74 kg heavier than the 1,2 Lux model tested in our December 2014 issue, based on our time spent with this revised unit, we’d suggest at least a portion of this additional mass is as a result of a more generous application of sound-deadening materials throughout. While the 1,2-litre, three-cylinder engine remains relatively lumpy at idle, its eager workings are no longer as intrusive as before. Thanks to its free-revving and feisty nature – and despite the weight gain – we managed to better the 0-100 km/h sprint time of the previous test unit by some 0,71 seconds. On the day we also managed to improve the average fuel-consumption figure measured on our standardised fuel route, from 6,54 L/100 km measured in 2014 to 5,60 L/100 km in the current car.

A more pertinent test figure that needed improving over our first experience with the Go was the braking times. Here, despite some initial lock-up, the newly installed ABS system proved its worth by lowering this vehicle’s average stopping time from an alarming (by modern standards) 3,71 seconds to a fraction over 3,0 seconds. That’s now in line with the average for this segment. That dual front airbags have been added throughout the Go range adds increased peace of mind to this package.
R2 647 P/M SAVE R32 400

Manufacturer Specifications

Standard - standard Optional - optional
  • Cloth upholstery: Standard
  • Seats quantity: 5
  • Air conditioning: Standard
  • Cup bottle holders: front
  • Antilock braking system (ABS): Standard
  • Driver airbag: Standard
  • Front passenger airbag: Standard
  • Airbag quantity: 2
  • Approach home safe lighting time delay park headlights: Standard
  • Alloy wheelsrims: Standard
  • Power steering: Standard
  • On board computer multi information display: Standard
  • Bluetooth connectivity: Standard
  • Aux in auxiliary input: Standard
  • USB port: Standard
  • Powersocket 12V: front
  • Central locking: manual
  • Electric windows: front + rear
  • Electric adjust mirrors: Standard
  • Daytime driving running lights: LED
  • Highlevel 3rd brakelight: Standard
  • Metallic pearl escent paint: Optional
  • Fuel Type: petrol
  • Fuel range average: 673 km
  • Driven wheels: front
  • Driven wheels quantity: 2
  • Gearratios quantity: 5
  • Gearshift: manual
  • Transmission type: manual
  • Front tyres: 165/70 R14
  • Reartyres: 165/70 R14
  • Length: 3788 mm
  • Width excl mirrors incl mirrors: 1636 mm
  • Height: 1507 mm
  • Wheel base: 2450 mm
  • Ground clearance minimum maximum: 180 mm
  • Turning circle wheels body: 9.2 m
  • Load volume / capacity: 265 L
  • Load volume / capacity: 265 L
  • Unladen/tare/kerb weight: 788 kg
  • Gross weight (GVM): 1161 kg
  • Fuel tank capacity (incl reserve): 35l
  • Fuel consumption average: 5.2 l/100km
  • CO2 emissions average: 123g/km
  • Power maximum: 50 kW
  • Power maximum total: 50 kW
  • Power peak revs: 5000 r/min
  • Power to weight ratio: 64 kW/ton
  • Torque maximum: 104 Nm
  • Torque peak revs: 4000 r/min
  • Torque maximum total: 104 Nm
  • Torque to weight ratio: 132 Nm/ton
  • Acceleration 0-100 kmh: 13.3s
  • Maximum top speed: 161 km/h
  • Engine position/ location: front
  • Engine capacity: 1198 cc
  • Engine size: 1.2l
  • enginedetailshort: 1.2
  • Engine + detail: 1.2
  • Cylinder layout: inline
  • Cylinders: 3
  • Cylinder layout + quantity: i3
  • Cam: dohc
  • Valves per cylinder: 4
  • Valves quantity: 12
  • Warranty time (years): 6
  • Warranty distance (km): 150000 km
  • Service plan: Optional
  • Service plan time (years): opt 1 - 5
  • Service plan time (distance): opt 30000 - 150000 km
  • Maintenance plan: Optional
  • Maintenance plan time (years): opt 3 - 5
  • Maintenance plan distance (km): opt 90000 - 150000 km
  • Roadside assistance time: 6
  • Service interval (distance): 15000 km
  • Brand: Datsun
  • Status: c
  • Segment: passenger car
  • MMcode: 136032211
  • MMVariant: GO 1.2 LUX
  • Introdate: 2019-03-01
  • DuoportarecordID: DatsGo_1Fh4

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