2012 Nissan Versa Still Cheapest New Car
Although you can no longer get one for under $10,000, the Nissan Versa is still the cheapest new car around. Nissan recently announced pricing for its redesigned 2012 Versa compact, which remains the least-expensive new car in America thanks to a starting price of just $10,990.
For the base-level Versa S, pricing has increased $1,000 over last year's model. While that's a substantial jump, the Versa's 2012 redesign adds a standard AM/FM/CD player and air-conditioning, two features sorely missed on entry-level versions of the 2011 model. A five-speed manual transmission is standard, while a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) is available for $1,770 extra.
While Nissan has yet to detail the Versa's standard and optional equipment, the automaker did announce pricing for the rest of its trim levels. Mid-level Versa SV models will start at $14,560 and feature a standard automatic transmission, while the top-level Versa SL has a base price of $15,560.
Interestingly, this pricing applies only to the 2012 Versa sedan, which goes on sale nationwide in early August. That's because the compact car's popular five-door hatchback version is unchanged for 2012 pending a full redesign sometime next year. Until then, hatchback fans will have to make do with the hatch's current body style, which debuted for 2006.
First released at the New York International Auto Show in April, the redesigned Versa will offer a 109-horsepower 1.6-liter four-cylinder – the same standard engine as the outgoing model. While the 2012 Versa hasn't been given official fuel economy ratings by the EPA, Nissan estimates 30 miles per gallon in the city and 38 on the highway, for a combined average of around 33 mpg. Available equipment includes XM satellite radio, an in-dash, touch-screen navigation system and a USB input for iPod and other compatible devices.