Last week, I was invited to test drive the 2012 Nissan Versa in Seattle. Of course I said yes. The chance to drive a not-yet-released car? The opportunity to make best buddies with Nissan marketing folks? The invite to mingle with other bloggers? I was on that flight in a hot second.
I got a chance to drive the new Versa all around the Seattle area (beautiful city, btw). Here are my thoughts on the car:
Why choose the 2012 Nissan Versa?
If you’re looking for a new car that will get your from Point A to Point B, without too many frills or fancy knobs, but that will save you thousands over competitors, the 2012 Versa may be the right car for you. Maybe I’ve just been spoiled by the Evo and 370Z we’ve been testing out lately, but the Versa’s dashboard seemed strangely…sparse. Even on the SL model (which can include a NAV console), it’s a fairly simple car.
If you’re looking for a car under 15K. I was amazed to learn that this car’s base prices is only $10,990. That makes it one of the least expensive cars on the road.
If you’re looking for a sedan that doesn’t skimp on the space or safety. In spite of the low price point, the 2012 Versa is not one of the smallest cars on the road by a long shot. With an interior of more than 90 cubic feet (okay, that wouldn’t mean much to me either, but the back seat was seriously roomy, even for a tall girl like me), the Versa actually has the best-in-class rear legroom and best-in-class trunk space.
Who is the 2012 Nissan Versa made for?
For those of you who don’t spend much time around marketers, here’s some insight – there is always a target market in mind.
For the Versa, this target market is 25 – 29 year old college grads who are still single, without children, and who are “frugal, yet style conscious.” That profile actually fits about half of my friends. Weird.
I think the folks at Nissan got it about right on. The 2012 is a perfect starter car – the one you drive to your first “big kid” job, but that you’ll probably trade in (or run to the ground, depending on our timeline) before the word “family” invokes images of diapers and strollers instead of Mom and Pops.
Plus, all the extra room in the backseat means that the 2012 Versa will comfortably fit your friends. Your car will be the go-to vehicle for the DD on nights out (though you’re hopefully willing to trust others with your baby, lest you become the go-to DD).
All in all, I was pretty impressed with this car. It felt solid, handled well on the highway, and for that price, there’s basically nothing better out there. The 2012 Versa will be on sale in early August. If you’re thinking of getting one, let me know in the comments!
Disclosure: Nissan provided travel to Seattle, meals and the opportunity to drive vehicle before it was on sale (Hipster Megan says: “I drove the Versa before it was cool.”)