2012 Nissan Versa
Starting MSRP $10,990–$18,590
Nissan redesigned its Versa sedan for 2012. While the car's styling isn't particularly memorable, buyers will appreciate the roomy interior, low starting price and estimated gas mileage of up to 30/37 mpg city/highway. The Versa is one of the most affordable cars in the U.S. Competitors include the Hyundai Accent, Toyota Yaris and Ford Fiesta. It's scheduled to hit dealerships in summer 2011.
We've seen striking designs trickle down to economy cars lately with the introduction of the Ford Fiesta and redesigned Hyundai Accent, but Nissan seems to have de-emphasized design with the new Versa sedan, which has a largely forgettable exterior. The design does, however, let the Versa slip smoothly through the air, as the sedan has a 0.31 drag coefficient.
The Versa has standard 15-inch steel wheels with covers, and 15-inch aluminum rims are optional.
The Versa's cabin quality is a little disappointing because it takes a step backward from the current Versa's interior with its basic materials and controls. However, the Versa remains a space-efficient car and is able to comfortably accommodate adult passengers in the front and rear seats at the same time.
The Versa sedan is offered in three trim levels: base 1.6 S, 1.6 SV and top-level 1.6 SL. Standard features include air conditioning and a CD stereo. Moving to the 1.6 SV adds cruise control, power side mirrors, power windows and premium cloth seats. If you choose the 1.6 SL, you also get variable-intermittent wipers, a 60/40-split folding backseat, Bluetooth connectivity and an upgraded stereo with audio controls on the steering wheel and USB connectivity. The optional navigation system includes a 5-inch touch-screen.
Under the Hood
The Versa sedan has a 109-horsepower, 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine. Buyers have a choice of a five-speed manual or a continuously variable automatic transmission.
Standard features include antilock brakes, side-impact airbags for the front seats, side curtain airbags and an electronic stability system.
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