Two or three years ago the headline above might not only be ignored but also do damage to the Nissan brand. Not anymore! The Tiger is dead, and reality has come home to roost.
With an entry level price of just €9,895, the Nissan Pixo is Ireland's lowest price car. It is this carmaker’s first city or A segment car to be sold in Europe.
The Nissan line is that it has been conceived to answer the need for an uncomplicated, environmentally conscious car that offers high fuel efficiency with low emissions, at a position in the market which makes it very accessible. Fair enough.
It is the right car at the right price in a growing segment where the credentials outlined by Nissan are green, lean, mean, keen, and position the Pixo as the queen of the economy car kingdom.
Enough of the bad rhymes and here are the facts. The Pixo is a five door, four seater with a 1.0 litre, 3-cylinder, 68 bhp petrol engine that Nissan say delivers a combined 64.2 mpg and 103 g/km. CO2. The Pixo is built in India by Suzuki, side-by-side with the Alto.
Nissan has long been acknowledged as a major player in the supermini market, and the arrival of the Pixo complements urban friendly cars like the Micra and Note.
The Ford Ka is the outright leader in this segment with close to 300 sales so far this year. The Hyundai i10, Fiat Picanto, and Fiat 500 are next in line, while the sister model to the Pixo, the Suzuki Alto has about 100 sales so far this year. Nissan Ireland hopes to sell 150 Pixo models in the first quarter of next year.
With the Pixo starting at just €9,895 (SE version with the SVE at €10,900 ), it is interesting to look at the entry level prices of some of the other players. The segment leading Ka starts at €11,535, the Alto at €11,500. It is fair to say that there is a premium end to this segment so buyers should look at the specifications on offer before buying.
The Pixo offers ABS with EBD, driver and passenger airbags, side airbags are an option for about €350. Other specification includes power steering, tilt adjustable steering column, CD player with MP3 playback, front cup holders and rear wash/wipe. And there is also an automatic gearbox option.
The Pixo is easy to drive. It is compact but with surprisingly spacious interior. It has a great price-tag and offers very affordable driving with the comfort of a three-year warranty.
The Nissan Motorshow promotion is getting underway about now and buyers of the Pixo for January can secure three years free servicing, which is estimated to be worth about €500.