New Datsun wagon is based on the Go hatchback, but offers seating for seven.
New Datsun wagon is based on the Go hatchback, but offers seating for seven.
Third row of seats can fold to create a family five-seater with a spacious cargo bay.
Third row of seats can fold to create a family five-seater with a spacious cargo bay.

It may be a far cry from the 1600 SSS of beloved memory, but this (for now at least) is the flagship of the all-new 2014 Datsun range. The five-plus-two seater Go+ MPV made its world debut on 17 September in Jakarta, Indonesia, where Nissan is hoping to create a new market niche with it, as the only three-row people-carrier in its price bracket.

It's based on the same platform as the more conventional five-seater Go hatchback, which will be coming to South Africa in the second half of 2014 at a target price of less than R100 000. If Nissan can hold that sort of pricing on the seven-seater it will indeed create its own market niche - but don't hold your breath.

The lightweight Go+ is quite small for a seven-seater at 3995mm long overall on a 2450mm wheelbase, 1635mm wide and 1485mm high, but big on versatility as its third row of seats can fold to create a family five-seater with a spacious cargo bay.

DON’T EXPECT A GREYHOUND

It's also surprisingly well-equipped; Nissan makes the point that it is the only vehicle in its price bracket with a built-in docking station for a smartphone.

It has a 1.2-litre four-cylinder petrol engine driving the front wheels through a five-speed manual gearbox that's “tuned for fuel efficiency and good acceleration while delivering agility on congested roads”, according to Nissan, which means it will probably be a bit buzzy on the open road - but then, for less than six figures you can't expect a Greyhound bus.

Nissan SA's 'Datsun guy' Des Skinner is in Jakarta for the Go+ launch as you read this, but no decisions have yet been made in respect of a South African release; all Nissan SA would say was that the local Datsun range would be expanded beyond the already-confirmed Go hatch at a later stage.

As soon as we hear anything more definite, so will you.