Motoring News

Nissan Magnite: SUV surprise to kick-off 2021

All-new SUV brings powerful 1.0-litre turbo engine
Manual or continuously variable transmission
Seamless experience with Nissan high-tech

IS THIS possibly the best-looking small sport utility vehicle yet from Nissan? It’s the Magnite whose highway and byway progress depends on computerisation and a petite, one-litre, turbo engine that packs a 74kW/150Nm punch.

Not only South Africa will be getting the cars after Father Time has waved his wand to welcome in 2021: island nations Mauritius and Seychelles and mainland Malawi, Kenya, Mozambique, Uganda and Tanzania will be taking the Magnite.

So, what’s in the package? A choice of five-speed manual or X-Tronic constantly variable gearbox governed at the driver’s request by cruise control, five seats and a modestly high ride.

COMING SOON. Nissan’s turbocharged Magnite small SUV. Image: Supplied

D-STEP logic control computer software for the autobox will determine what is required from dynamic inputs such as vehicle speed, accelerator position, and speed-determined ideal gear ratio needed to deliver, Nissan says, ”an exhilarating drive and smooth highway cruising”.


Kabelo Rabotho, country director for Nissan SA, told The Corner: “Nissan will welcome the new Nissan Magnite to SA and to sub-Saharan Africa in 2021 with its powerful HRA0 1.0, turbo engine.

‘HEY GOOD-LOOKIN’, What’s cooking?’ Image: Supplied

”We’re taking a bold step to establish our presence as the leader in relentless innovation, advanced technology, and true customer experiences.”

The HRA0 one-litre turbo engine uses a “mirror-bore” cylinder coating from world-class sport cars such as the Nissan GT-R to reduce engine friction and reduce weight to manage heat and combustion and delivering smooth acceleration and fuel economy.”

READ MORE Nissan features on Carman’s Corner

The engine. we’re told, has six technical improvements that result in better fuel-economy yet provide quick acceleration. Great care has been taken to reduce vehicle-defining noise, vibration, and harshness through improved powertrain and road noise isolation to deliver a quieter cabin.


Rabotho added: ”The engine also provides as much as 50% better acceleration over non-turbo engines, especially at launch and during overtaking, and the Magnite embodies our philosophy of Nissan-ness – empowering people through breakthrough products and technology.

”The B-Cross/SUV is another milestone in our ‘Nissan Next’ phase for a highly enjoyable driving experience while reducing emissions and fuel-consumption – a compelling combination every car owner can appreciate.”


An innovation is the turbocharger’s elastic drive belt: it’s made of a special material that disposes of the usual tensioner, sheds weight and friction, and further benefits fuel economy while cutting CO2 emissions.

Rabotho has the last few words: ”The compact cylinder-head has an exhaust manifold and plastic cover for better engine packaging and to reduce the number of ducts for better and faster catalyst warming – and cleaner emissions.”


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