Shake your booty

Es­pe­cially if your boot is all you have go­ing for you

Herald Sun - Motoring - - Car News -

away with the same thing in the more ex­pen­sive and marginally less roomy Yaris, so could be proven wrong.

VALUE

The Almera ST starts at $16,990 with a five-speed man­ual gear­box and fea­tures such as key­less en­try, Blue­tooth con­nec­tiv­ity and an aux­il­iary jack for the iPod. That price puts it up against the Hyundai Ac­cent sedan. The Ac­cent has the edge in spec­i­fi­ca­tion, looks, per­for­mance and fuel use. It loses out in steer­ing re­sponse, rear legroom and boot space.

Spend an­other $2000 and the Almera can be had with a four-speed auto rather than the five-speed man­ual. At that point it runs into the bet­ter­look­ing Ford Fi­esta, which comes with a six-speed dual-clutch auto and is our pick in this class for driv­ing dy­nam­ics.

In­vest $20,990 in an Almera Ti and there’s cli­mate-con­trol air­con, re­verse park­ing sen­sors, al­loy wheels in place of steel, fog lights and a rear lip spoiler.

TECH­NOL­OGY

A monochrome dis­play shows fuel use, driv­ing range and a ser­vice re­minder. The sound sys­tem is ba­sic but no worse than many ri­vals. A USB in­put would have been ap­pre­ci­ated, though. The Almera isn’t the only light car with a four-speed auto but it cer­tainly doesn’t flat­ter the 1.5-litre four-cylin­der engine.

DE­SIGN

The Almera is far from the best­look­ing Nis­san in the

The boot is cav­ernous but lim­ited by the fact the rear seats don’t fold down, rul­ing out the op­tion of load­ing long ob­jects, or a bike. The in­te­rior is well put to­gether but looks and feels cheap with hard, tex­ture­less plas­tics and a silly stor­age slot above the glove­box that’s great for

City slicker: The plain vanilla Almera is built to a price

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