By Rick Popely on October 27, 2013
"Will Nissan launch a Versa Note hybrid?"
Nissan says only that it has not announced a hybrid version of the Versa Note "at this time," leaving the possibility open, but we wouldn't hold our breath waiting.
The 2014 Versa Note went on sale recently as the new hatchback version of the Versa. It has an EPA highway estimate of 40 mpg with a continuously variable automatic transmission, so it already is among the most fuel-efficient cars. In addition, the Note starts at $14,800, including destination charge, and competes in the price-sensitive subcompact market. Adding hybrid technology could significantly boost the price without a commensurate increase in gas mileage.
Nissan is adding a hybrid version of its seven-passenger Pathfinder SUV for 2014. The automaker also said at the New York International Auto Show last spring that the next-generation Murano, a five-passenger SUV due as a 2015 model, also would have a hybrid version. The Pathfinder Hybrid uses a supercharged four-cylinder engine paired with an electric motor, and the same setup will likely be used in the Murano.
Small cars like the Note can get good mileage with gas engines, so hybrid technology would seem a long shot for the near future.Related
Contributor Rick Popely has covered the auto industry for decades and hosts a weekly online radio show on TalkZone.com . Email Rick