In 1995, I bought a Nissan Micra. For $2500, I got a certified, accident-free, clean, rust-free and trouble-free car with 107,000 km on the odometer and an automatic transmission. The operating costs were minimal; the engine only required 3 liters of oil at every oil change, and other things, like replacing the radiator and fuel filter, were cheap and easy to do. The reliability of this car, combined with its very low operating costs, meant that I was able to save up a down-payment for a brand new house within a year, pay off my entire student loan within two years, and I got to explore different career options.
In the summer of 1999, I sold it for $650, simply because I wanted air conditioning, and I wanted to provide someone else with an opportunity to get what ever savings potential this car had left. I would have bought another, but Nissan decided to stop selling them in Canada. They continued to sell them in Europe. The salesperson at the Nissan dealership recommended the Sentra. I advised him that I would return when they decide to bring the Micra back to Canada.
At the time of writing this page, January 2014, Nissan just announced that they will be bringing the Micra to the Canadian market, 20 years after I bought my first Micra, and nearly 25 years since they stopped selling them here.
I’m going to buy one, and I’ll tell my story here.