The latest chapter in the Micra story is set to open with the arrival of the Micra C+C coupé/convertible which was designed and engineered in the UK and will be built here, too. Thanks to its clever folding roof, Micra C+C allows owners the best of both worlds: fresh air when the weather allows and hardtop protection when it doesn't. But the Micra C+C has another trick up its well-tailored sleeve - a C-VIEW glass roof that allows the elements to be enjoyed even in the depths of winter, a first in its class. Just as well because sales start in time for Christmas.
The eagerly awaited Nissan Micra C+C coupé/convertible is almost here. Unveiled at the NMUK manufacturing plant in Sunderland, England, sales of the stylish 2+2 are due to start towards the end of the year. First shown as a concept at the 2002 Paris motor show, the production version brings new ideas to its market segment: the folding hardtop is made largely of glass to create an open-air feeling whether the roof is up or stowed away.
Development and production of the hardtop has been undertaken for Nissan by Karmann, specialists in the design and production of convertible models. In common with all European Micras, Micra C+C will be built at Sunderland so Karmann has established a small production facility within NMUK where the hardtop modules will be fitted to the Micra platforms.
The hardtop itself is a work of art. It can be raised or lowered with one touch of a button while the vehicle is on the move and takes just 22 seconds to fold clamshell-style beneath the double-hinged trunk lid. It is hinged at the bottom and opens front to rear when the roof is raised or lowered and at the top when opened conventionally to stow luggage.
Thanks to the Auto-Open Roof, just one button needs to be pushed when hydraulically raising or lowering the roof - an automatic latching system does away with the need to manually lock or unlock the roof's leading edge to the windscreen header rail.
But as well as having stunning looks, Micra C+C remains resolutely practical, enjoying class leading luggage space. With the roof lowered the boot area provides 221 litres of stowage space, which rises to an impressive 426 litres when it is in place. In addition the cabin has many clever storage areas, most of which are lockable allowing the car to be left unattended even when the roof is down.