The Nissan Micra is gone – which also means the end of the Nissan Micra Cup after six seasons. But the manufacturer is not giving up motor racing, even in the midst of a pandemic and with a difficult economic context.
The most affordable one-design series in the country is simply changing its name and model for 2021. Make way for the Nissan Sentra Cup!
“For us, the question has never been: do we continue or not? We just asked ourselves: which car are we continuing with? »Explained to Car guide Nissan Canada’s communications director, Didier Marsaud.
The Nissan Sentra was the natural next step. The new generation arriving on the market is a much more dynamic car than before and will attract a new audience and new drivers who, by Nissan’s own admission, might not have been excited by the subcompact hatchback. .
Nissan is once again teaming up with promoter Jacques Deshaies and his company JD Promotion & Compétition under a three-year contract. The latter confirms that he has enough agreements with the Quebec and Ontario circuits to hold six race weekends in 2021, as was the case with the Micra Cup before the pandemic.
The inaugural event is scheduled for the weekend of May 22-23, at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park (commonly known as Mosport) in Bowmanville, Ontario. The rest of the calendar as well as the race rules will be announced in early 2021.
Since the first rounds will most likely take place without spectators, a pact about to be formalized with the RDS network (similar to that of 2020) will ensure some coverage. Nissan is also very active on social networks to promote the Cup.
By the way, a special class for the Micra will be on the program, giving former participants the chance to continue racing with the same car if they so choose. Jacques Deshaies mentions that the objective is to have about fifteen Sentra on the starting grid with as many Micra behind.
Available at a cost of $ 39,990, all vehicles taking part in the Nissan Sentra Cup will be built from the base Sentra with a 149-horsepower 2.0-liter engine and six-speed manual transmission. They will be modified by the Motorsports in Action (MIA) team from Saint-Eustache, the same who took care of the Micra Cup cars.
On the menu: racing suspension with custom adjustable coil springs, adjustable front stabilizer bar, high performance front brakes derived from the Nissan 370Z, rear brakes from the Sentra SV and SR, MoTeC M1 Series engine control module, bespoke stainless steel exhaust system and 18-inch light alloy racing rims shod with Pirelli racing tires.
Inside, there is a racing steering wheel with quick-release hub as well as all the safety elements imposed and homologated by the FIA: safety cage with six anchoring points, racing seat with six-point harness, net safety devices for windows, electric fire extinguishing systems, etc.
And as he did with the Micra Cup cars in 2015, professional NASCAR driver Jean-François Dumoulin was instrumental in developing and testing the racing Sentra to optimize performance on the track.
To find out more, just visit the Nissan Sentra Cup website.
In video: Antoine Joubert tests the 2020 Nissan Sentra