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There's plenty of space in Canada. In fact, with the second largest land mass of any country in the world, Canada has a population density of just nine people per square mile. But apparently there isn't enough room for more than one cheap Nissan in the True North, Strong and Free.
As you may recall, Nissan Canada recently announced it would begin offering the Micra hatchback with a starting price of less than ten thousand Canadian dollars - significantly less than the nearly $12k it charges for the Versa sedan. As a result, Nissan will reportedly cease offering the Versa sedan in new home of the olympic gold medal for hockey.
Apparently the Versa was a slow seller in Canada, a country in which European tastes tend to prevail - particularly in the Eastern provinces - more than they do in the United States to the south. Nissan evidently hopes that the Micra (a model created principally for the European market) will do better than the American-centric Versa ever did there. According to sales numbers cited by Automotive News, Nissan sold barely more than 12,000 Versa sedans and hatchbacks in Canada last year, but over 117,000 in the United States.
Don't go expecting that the Micra will take over from the Versa in America, though. For one thing, the Versa is a hot seller here, and introducing the Micra to US dealerships would only end up cannibalizing Versa sales.Permalink | Email this | Comments
The funny, little Nissan Versa Note is getting a new trim level - two, actually - for the 2015 model year. And the one you see above is the sporty-ish Note SR, making its debut at the Chicago Auto Show this week.
Underneath, it's the same Versa Note we've already driven, complete with Nissan's 109-horsepower, 1.6-liter inline four-cylinder engine and up to 40 miles per gallon highway. The SR's changes are purely cosmetic, with a revised front fascia featuring smoked headlamps, standard foglamps and black chrome accents. Those are matched with new dark-finished 16-inch alloy wheels, revised mirrors and side sills, along with a new rear roof spoiler.
A few interior enhancements have been made, as well, with the addition of a "370Z-inspired" leather-wrapped steering wheel, suede-like fabric on the seats with orange accents and a piano-black center stack.
The Versa Note SL doesn't offer anything in the way of uniqueness, but instead takes a host of available features and bundles them as standard equipment. This means the Note SL comes packed with foglamps, the company's NissanConnect infotainment system, a 5.0-inch color display, RearView Monitor, Bluetooth streaming audio, 16-inch alloy wheels, heated seats, push button start and so on.
Pricing hasn't been announced for either model, but we expect to know that closer to the cars' on-sale date in the spring. For now, have a look below for Nissan's official release and video from this morning's Chicago Auto Show press conference.Permalink | Email this | Comments
Back in September, reports started rolling in that Amazon would get into the auto sales business after a promo for the Nissan Versa Note appeared on the online retailer's page. That link didn't actually sell a car, but instead acted as a referral service for potential customers, linking them up with dealers. A recent image that's been floating around on Reddit and that was picked up by The Huffington Post, though, has us wondering if Amazon has dived into the actual business of selling cars, rather than just referring people to dealers.
The image, above, shows an enormous Amazon box on the back of a flatbed tow truck. According to HuffPo, this could be one of the cars sold through the earlier promotion for the Versa Note (which was sweetened with the addition a $1,000 Amazon gift card). Apparently, three of the Versas purchased would arrive in such a fashion. Then again, this could all be nothing more than an elaborate publicity stunt. Amazon is, after all, the company has been touting drone delivery of its goods.
What do you think is in the box? Let us know down in Comments. Bonus points for those who come up with an idea as absurd as the bulk order of banana slicers HuffPo mentioned.Permalink | Email this | Comments
The original Austin Mini was not designed as a fun-to-drive, sporty small car. Its go-kart-like handling and general chuckability were an unintended byproduct of essential aspects of its design. Its four wheels were pushed to the absolute corners of the car to maximize interior space, and its front-wheel-drive layout and transversely mounted engine were in contrast to the rear-wheel-drive, longitudinal layouts of the day.
The result was a highly economical car with space for four and some luggage that just happened to be an absolute hoot to drive. Nissan has followed a similar path in the design of its Versa Note, which strives to provide the maximum amount of space and efficiency in a minimal footprint. On this front, it's successful.
First, we must salute Nissan for departing from the styling of the malformed kidney bean it calls the Versa Sedan. The Versa Note is a fashionably conservative design that neither offends nor excites. The front fascia is arguably its most conservative point, with high-mounted headlights and a sharper, cleaner version of Nissan's familial grille. The tail, with its funky I-don't-know-what-shape-I-am taillights contributes most of the car's flair. The large, spacious greenhouse, particularly up front, keeps passengers from feeling hemmed-in while letting in plenty of light.Permalink | Email this | Comments
Nissan is recalling 13,000 of its new 2014 Versa Note hatchbacks due to an issue with various bolts used to assemble the vehicle. Considering the Versa Note was only recently put on sale, this news must be driving Nissan nuts (we couldn't resist), but presumably the lion's share of these vehicles are still at dealerships.
According to a report from The Detroit News, there are two separate issues. The first has to do with the latches for the rear seats, which include bolts that may not be strong enough to keep the seats upright in the event of a crash. The second relates to the bolts that attach the body to the undercarriage. Apparently they may not have been tightened properly, and in rare cases may be missing altogether. No injuries or accidents have been reported from either issue.
Owners are being told to report to dealers for the fixes, with notifications coming in mid-August.Permalink | Email this | Comments
The current-generation Nissan Sunny - the overseas equivalent to the Versa sedan - has been around since 2010, and now it appears that Nissan has some small changes in store for it. Based on these small, dark and grainy photos from Chinese site, Auto Sohu, the Sunny could be set to receive a slight styling refresh.
From what we can tell, the biggest change will be to the headlights with the Sunny getting boomerang-style units similar those on current Nissan sedans in the US. We wouldn't be surprised to see these changes to carry over to our Versa sedan soon. Grille and fascia changes also seem to be in the works, but it's hard to make out any other changes from these images alone.Permalink | Email this | Comments