1st Sep 2013, 06:45

I bought a Nissan Micra 1.0l in 2003 (new shape) after driving my dad's older car for years with no engine problems whatsoever.

I drove it for 5 years before I noticed problems, and the diagnostics showed it was the cam shaft sensor. Changed this, but symptoms still remain as the timing chains stretch. This is extremely expensive to repair, & how long will the new one last???

Such a shame as I have had no other mechanical problems with this car, but I would never buy any Nissan ever again.

We have a Ford and Toyota in the household as well, and I would stick to these.

8th Oct 2013, 19:17

Yes, my daughter just bought 03 Micra. Drove it the 120 miles back home and it drove like a dream. Good car, but 5 days later the engine light came on. Got a loan of a computer to tell me what's wrong, and it's telling me faulty timing chain. Turned the light off on the dash. 4 days later it's back on, but the car is running grand. I think the tensioner in the timing chain sensor is reading wrong, because the car is driving OK. Has anybody out there got the same problem?

27th Nov 2013, 09:14

To the "8th Oct 2013, 19:17" writer and his sister:

How is your Micra after 2 months? Let us know please.

I have a Micra 2003 VISIA 05DRSA automatic with 45000 miles. I have the usual yellow light. Hard to start on a morning, but after 5 minutes, it purrs like a charm. Nissan mechanics told me I have to change the timing chain and the cam sensor. Total €1100!!!

Repair guarantee is 12 months. What if I have to change it after 12 months like another writer explained here?

Why do they have to change the cam sensor? Does it give wrong information? If yes, maybe the chain is not faulty. But if no, there is no need to change it as it is good!!

Why does a metal chain stretch so often? Old engines had lifetime chain endurance, 300000 km to 500000 km in a diesel engine.

Did they improve the replacement chain?


13th Jan 2014, 14:52

Same problem as most on here; Nissan Micra 1.0e 2003, hard to start on a morning, engine light on, once started runs and starts no bother all day. I mean you would think if the cam chain was stretched, the timing would be out and it would be running like a bag of dog poo all the time.

1st Mar 2014, 15:31

I am the writer of the 27th Nov 2013, 09:14 post

At the end I went to my usual mechanic (small company, ~3 employees). He proposed me to change the chain (genuine brand new, new generation: stronger) for €600 (I am in Ireland).

He did the fix early January, and now engine hums from the first rotation.

Everything is fixed. Hope this will last for a long time.

11th Mar 2014, 09:05

To reset your airbag light.

Turn the key on till the dash indicators come on (airbag being one of them).

Watch the air bag light. As soon as it goes out (this is the beginning of the flashing), turn the ignition off.

Repeat this two more times.

Then turn the ignition on again and the computer will be in diagnostic mode (the airbag light has a longer flashing now).

Start the car and the light will stop flashing, if there is nothing wrong with the system.

3rd May 2014, 08:46

My daughter has a 2003 Micra, and has been having trouble with cutting out and failing to restart until the engine had cooled. She took it to a garage in London, where they charged her over £200 to clean the throttle body - this did not clear the fault, and so she was advised that the timing chain had stretched and that she ought to get rid of the car as it was not worth the repair cost. RUBBISH - I took the car out for a drive and felt that the fault was actually fuel starvation - I removed the fuel pump and cleaned out the filter (in the bottom of the plastic housing) and the car has behaved well since. I would recommend that before spending fortunes in garages, that this should be tried. Fuel pump removal is described nicely in the Haynes manual, but the locking ring is a bit of a bugger!

Regards all, L. Frost.

25th Aug 2014, 11:58

2003 Nissan Micra SE.

Ignition column fault. Ignition plastic knob will not turn (key won't turn it either).

The problem started 3 years ago, only during hot weather. Took advice from a Micra forum to put graphite powder in the lock; this worked for a few years. A Nissan garage only suggested a new lock, but could not guarantee a cure! This year I had the same problem, but even when it isn't hot, more graphite is not working. The car may start first time, or could take 5, 10, 15, or 20 minutes, but will suddenly start for no apparent reason.

Any suggestions gratefully received. Otherwise it's been a great car!

Thanks, K. Hardy.

1st Nov 2014, 23:03

I have a 53 Micra.

Many thanks for the note, I have tried this. The car drives well, but then suddenly loses power when in wet weather. Broken down a dozen times. Anyway, I have tried the drain hole, cleaned and unblocked it.

The local garage have told me to just drive it until it breaks down again. It is not registering the fault.


12th Nov 2014, 11:25

We have a 2004 Micra 1.2SE. We purchased it new (well, pre-registered with 4 miles on the clock - looked like it was lying in the corner of the main dealer forecourt, unloved and with a flat battery, so keyless entry would not work, neither would it start). The original customer had cancelled their order - never found out why!

Anyway, took a gamble as it was a ridiculously good deal on a new car. The dealer contracted to sort out the problems. I think it must have had a new battery in the end because I only replaced it last year (9 years old) as the cranking was beginning to slow down. Still on the original exhaust.

We have 94K miles on it now. It has passed between me, my son and my daughter, and we've all had a go at writing it off, but it still goes. We have a problematic air bag light, which up to now, has been fixed with the ignition key routine, but this time is not playing ball - so, it looks like electrical connections under the seats need to come apart and be cleaned. It also has a very rusty fuel filler neck, so I might get that replaced and clean out the fuel pump/filter as another contributor has mentioned he has done. Occasionally, after a lot of wind and rain, the car takes 15 seconds to pick up and run smoothly. It has done that only occasionally throughout its life. I put that down to damp.

Overall, it's been a good car, but I shudder to think what might be around the corner reading other posts - maybe there is the odd good 'un out there? Note that Haynes recommend oil changes every 4500 miles (not 9000) on these early cars due to smaller sump capacity, particularly if used for short journeys. Ours tends to be used for mainly 15-20 mile commutes. It has had one main dealer service per year.