How apt for this to have happened in the month of March – this Nissan March in the hero orange colour was spotted by reader Kai Lit in Kota Damansara this afternoon.

A peek into the interior reveals that this particular car has a 5-speed manual transmission, which if Tan Chong decides to bring into Malaysia will be the most affordable offering. The question is, how affordable will affordable be? In Thailand, the price range is from 375,000 baht (RM38k) to 537,000 baht (RM54k).

As the March is built in Thailand, it will probably already be acclimatized to this region’s weather. We also think the March will more likely be a CBU import from Thailand instead of assembled in Tan Chong’s plants.

This PURE DRIVE badge on the rear made its debut on this model, which for Nissan signifies cars that focus on eco-friendliness and efficiency. The March is also classified as a Thai Eco Car, which means it achieves at least 20 km/l and emit less than 120g/km of CO2. Engine capacity must not exceed 1.3 litres if petrol-powered and 1.4 litres for diesels.

If a car is a Thai Eco Car, the manufacturer is rewarded by the Thai government with a 50% cut in excise duty, no income tax for eight years and no import duty for factory machinery imports.

UPDATE: Sharp-eyed reader Kent pointed out that the number plate on this car has been previously spotted on a Japanese Domestic Market Toyota Passo Sette. Follow the link to see which car we’re talking about – we know that’s a Passo Sette and not an Alza because it’s a JDM car with black tinted rear windows. In addition, the CKD Nissan Teana which had been undergoing testing prior to launch featured trade plates that began with the letter W (Wilayah), instead of B (Selangor).

Just like how some of us suspected that that Toyota Passo Sette was not being tested by Perodua but instead could be a benchmark exercise by Proton, we suspect this Nissan March might just be owned by Proton. This Nissan March and the JDM Toyota Passo Sette’s number plate is B2368A, and we’ve seen B2367A in the past on a Proton Waja CPS being tested.

This makes sense – after all, Proton is officially in talks with Nissan on a technical collaboration, as revealed by a signed MoU recently. There was word in the past that Proton was interested in using Nissan’s V platform, which so happens to underpin this Nissan March, to engineer the Proton EMAS.

Look after the jump for the rest of the spyshots as well as image galleries of the Nissan March, or Micra as it is called in some markets.

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