The surprisingly smooth three-cylinder, 1.2-litre, petrol engine is enhanced further by Nissan's new supercharger on the DIG-S model and the result is a remarkably lively and responsive engine.
There did not seem to be any hesitation in getting away, keeping the momentum going or having some more power available if you needed it. The light and direct five-speed manual gearbox is also a good match with its ease and precision but more than once I wished for a sixth gear; particularly on a stretch of motorway.
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While the engine sounded no sign of stress you only had to look at the way the fuel consumption had risen on the motorway after more give-and-take conditions on semi-urban roads, to appreciate this is a car which is in its element at lower speed. Overall I attained 47.7mpg.
The adjustable steering column is useful and the system has a good turning circle in town without being too twitchy at speed - which can often be the downfall of urban-focussed cars. The brakes are very smooth, and powerful too, for a car of this size.
Ride quality is reasonably good and the seats supportive and despite the fact that the Micra DIG-S rolled a bit on tighter bends, visibility is very good and general noise levels are all very low.
With the 98ps engine under the bonnet it feels agile and with the high levels of equipment it is a sophisticated small car which must be considered for commuting.
My eyes were opened by the new Micra Tekna 1.2 DIG-S with the £1,000 optional CVT taking it to an on-road price of £14,650.
The additional power of the new direct fuel injection petrol engine and its supercharger are beautifully balanced by the easy and progressive transmission.
Apart from simply selecting Drive and getting going, you have a useful Low range for bad weather conditions or steep descents with a load aboard.
It is happy to trundle along trunk roads but there is very rapid response to kick-down if you need to overtake swiftly and safely and acceleration comes in smooth and strong, without the engine straining.
When I drove the new Nissan Micra DIG-S with the CVT transmission, the fuel economy actually worked out better at 55.4mpg which suggests a better matched and tuned powertrain than in the manual. However Nissan has stated that the CVT transmission will hit fuel consumption and CO2 emissions figures.
It is slightly heavier than the manual version, which makes the improved economy even more significant, and it did not have as comfortable and absorbent ride as the manual either, but the banging from the suspension did little to ruffle the ride too much.
This is arguably the version for the driver who puts ease before effort and wants economy without enduring cheapness.
Nissan Accenta 1.2 DIG-S manual
12-valve, 3cylinders, 1,198cc, 98PS, 142Nm at 4400rpm, five-speed manual
54.3mpg urban; 76.4mpg extra urban; 65.7mpg combined, actual on test 47.7mpg
0-62mph 11.3sec, maximum 112mph, CO2 99gkm
Low emissions, low taxes, high performance.
Cornering body roll, suspension noise intrusion.