Help with Nissan Micra K12 steering column failures

The Nissan Micra K12 was introduced in 2002 and ran until 2007, it uses a TRW electric steering column.

The column whilst generally reliable can suffer from several common faults that can lead to intermittent or complete failure.

Common Fault Codes will be;

5606: Electric Motor Failure

5604: Steering Column Torque Sensor Failure

5608: Steering ECU Failure 

These failures can present themselves in the following ways:

1. Motor failure, sometimes intermittent to begin with but always leads to terminal failure, due to components within the internal control board inside the motor burning out.

2. E.C.U. Failure, the ECU contains several chips which control both the function of the steering column and also the self-test and failure system. One or more of these chips can fail and cause the system to shut down, sometimes the ECU can give an erroneous fault code that appears to be a motor failure if scanned, but is actually a fault of the ECU itself. Importantly the ECU also controls the left/right balance of the column and is used to calibrate the output from the torque/position sensor contained in the column, for this reason, the ECU should be matched and calibrated to the torque sensor.

3. Torque and position sensor. This is inbuilt into the centre of the column and gives the ECU information on the position of the steering wheel and also how much assistance is required from the motor. The sensor can go out of balance and steering becomes lighter in one direction, also can fail to give signal ,which will cause ECU to shut system down. When a torque sensor is replaced the column needs to be re-calibrated to ensure it is in balance. We believe the only way to do this is for us to supply a complete column with all components tested and calibrated.


The Nissan Micra steering column is different to many other EPS column units in that it contains a chip that is part of the N.A.T.S - Nissan Anti Theft System. Every time the vehicle is started the system checks that the steering column is pre set and correct. The vehicle chassis or VIN is stored within the chip in the steering column, if the information doesn't match then it will not allow the car to be started. Replacing any existing column with a second hand column will mean that the vehicle will not start. However when WPS remanufacture the Nissan Micra Steering column we replace the GEPROM chip with a virgin chip. This allows the vehicle to code its VIN into the replacement column the first time it is used. From this point on the column ow holds the correct VIN information and will allow the vehicle to start and the remanufactured steering column to work properly.