Nissan has revealed details of a new turbocharged 1,0-litre petrol engine that is set to debut in South Africa in the Micra towards the middle of 2019.

In South Africa, all four variants in the current Micra range are powered by a 66 kW/140 N.m turbocharged 0,9-litre three-cylinder petrol engine shared with the outgoing Renault Clio. But this newly revealed unit (dubbed the 1,0-litre IG-T) is set to join the local line-up later in the year.

Developed by the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance, the new powertrain makes its debut in the Micra (although we suspect it will also power the soon-to-be-revealed fifth-generation Clio). Driving the front wheels through a five-speed manual gearbox, the new forced induction mill generates 74 kW and 160 N.m and offers “improved fuel economy”.

Compared with the 0,9-litre unit, Nissan promises the new engine offers “improved engine response” with a “smoother” pull-away and better in-gear acceleration. The Japanese firm claims refinement, too, has been enhanced. The official zero to 100 km/h time is 10,9 seconds.

The automaker says various technical improvements – including split cooling, electric turbo actuators, bore spray coating on the cylinders, an elastic accessory belt and a forged steel crankshaft – set this engine apart.

In Europe, the new powerplant will also be offered with a continuously variable transmission, although in this configuration the turbo-triple's torque output has been cut to 144 N.m (power output remains unchanged at 74 kW).

In addition, Nissan has unveiled a new 1,0-litre DIG-T engine, delivering 86 kW and 180 N.m (plus an additional 20 N.m on overboost) to the front axle via a six-speed manual transmission. The automaker claims this is a “completely different engine” rather than simply a retuned version of unit detailed above. Peak twisting force is offered from as low as 1 750 r/min, while the obligatory dash to three figures takes a claimed 9,9 seconds.

Models equipped with this more powerful mill also gain a 10 mm drop in ride height, revised suspension tuning, quicker steering, a chrome tailpipe and 17-inch alloy wheels. Indeed, Nissan describes it as a "warm hatch" engine.

Furthermore, a new N-Sport trim level (pictured below) has been revealed for Europe, boasting a carbon-effect finish on the alloy wheels and side-mirror caps, a gloss-black finish on the front and rear bumpers (and on the side mouldings), N-Sport badging at the rear, Alcantara-trimmed seats, a reversing camera, black headliner and model-specific floor mats.

For the time being, only the new 1,0-litre IG-T engine has been confirmed for South Africa.
Nissan Micra