Cheap doesn’t mean as much as it used to. But with the current average new car price he’s well over $45,000, the 2023 Nissan Versa definitely qualifies. Starting at $16,825 for the base S trim with a 5-speed manual transmission, it will be the cheapest new car you can buy in the US in 2023.
The Versa you see here is not that Versa. This is a loaded SR model that looks pretty fancy and costs a lot more. Still, he’s under $21,000 and has a surprising amount of equipment for the price. (Remember, even the base Honda Civic is over $26,000 these days.) The 2023 refresh includes a cool new grille, reshaped headlights and taillights, and trim-specific The Versa looks much better thanks to the 17-inch wheels. Our test car’s new $395 Gray Sky Pearl exterior color is no problem.
Inside, the Versa isn’t as cheap as you’d expect. The dashboard has several soft-touch surfaces with contrasting orange stitching, the seat fabric has red accents, and the gauge cluster and infotainment screen are large and have sufficiently modern graphics. It has. I was pleasantly surprised to find automatic climate control, heated front seats, and push-button start. Driver assistance features include Adaptive Cruise Control, Blind Spot Monitoring and Rear Parking Sensors. Many of these features are not available on the Versa’s only true subcompact rival, the Kia Rio. The Kia Rio occupies a similar size and price range.
Despite its refined interior and exterior, the foundations of the front-wheel-drive Versa sedan haven’t changed much since this generation was introduced in 2020. Moderately refined ride on bumpy roads. Steering is too light for much feedback, but his 2690-pound Versa feels nimble and manages his impressive 0.89 g on the skidpad. It also stops from 70 mph at 173 feet. That’s 17 feet more than the 2021 Rio Hatchback we tested.
The only real compromise is in the engine room, where the 122-horsepower 1.6-liter inline-four roars and accelerates the Versa. Many of today’s continuously variable automatic transmissions have mitigated the rubber band feeling of delayed acceleration, but the Versa’s transmission still suffers from this. A 9.5-second sprint to 60mph is one of the slowest cars he’s tested in recent memory. Rio beat that by nearly a second, and Kia’s CVT feels more responsive. Based on his Versa’s manual I’m curious if his transmission would remedy the issue, but unfortunately you can’t combine the stick shift with the better SV and SR trim levels.
The engine runs so hard that it just couldn’t match the Versa’s estimate of 40 mpg EPA highway fuel efficiency. On a real world 75 mph loop he could only manage 36 mpg. That’s 3 mpg below the Rio, and even many midsize sedans beat the Versa, such as Nissan’s own Altima, which, despite its extra size, larger engine, and all-wheel drive, is a He achieved a result of 41 mpg.
There are many new cars that are more attractive than the Nissan Versa. There is always the argument that a used car is cheaper than a new one, but in today’s volatile auto market, it’s not as guaranteed as it used to be. Sure, the Nissan is cheap, small and slow, but it offers shoppers the modern features and contemporary styling that make a new car so appealing in the first place. what do you mean?
2023 Nissan Versa SR
Vehicle type: Front engine, front wheel drive, 5 seater, 4 door sedan
Base/Tested: $20,815 /$21,470
Optional: Gray Sky Pearl Paint, $395.Carpet floor mats and trunk mats, $260
DOHC 16-valve in-line 4, aluminum block and head, port fuel injection
Displacement: 98 inches31598cm3
Power: 122hp @ 6300rpm
Torque: 114lb-ft @ 4000rpm
Suspension, F/R: strut/torsion beam
Brakes, F/R: 10.0″ Vented Disc/8.0″ Drum
Tyres: Continental ContiProContact
205/50R-17 89V M+S
Wheelbase: 103.1 inch
Length: 177.0 inches
Width: 68.5 inches
Height: 57.7 inches
Passengers, F/R: 54/35 feet3
Trunk capacity: 15 feet3
Curb weight: 2690 lbs
CDs Test results
60 mph: 9.5 seconds
1/4 mile: 17.3 seconds @ 81 mph
100 mph: 32.8 seconds
The results above omit the 1 foot rollout of 0.3 seconds.
Rolling start, 5-60 mph: 10.4 seconds
Top gear, 30-50 mph: 5.1 seconds
Top gear, 50-70 mph: 7.1 seconds
top speed (CDs East): 115 mph
Braking, 70-0 mph: 173 feet
Loadholding, 300′ skid pad: 0.89 g
CDs fuel consumption
Observed: 28 mpg
75 mph highway cruising: 36 mpg
75 mph highway range: 380 miles
EPA Fuel Savings
Combined/City/Highway: 35/32/40 mpg
CDs test description