2018 Nissan Versa- The McDaddy of Small Cars

Someone at Nissan must’ve been paying attention to Ray Kroc’s business playbook for McDonald’s; sell ’em in big volume, sell’ em cheap, and- oh, yeah- sell ’em in big portions. For the better part of this decade, the Nissan Versa has tenaciously defended its title as America’s most affordable car. Against a dwindling legion of subcompacts, such as the Chevrolet Spark and Mitsubishi Mirage, the Versa has stubbornly undercut the price of admission by several hundred dollars year-after-year. Compared to the competition, the Versa has always boasted more interior room, a larger engine, and, for American tastes, a more formal sedan instead of a chintzy, poverty-spec hatchback. The tactic worked, and the Versa is handily the best selling subcompact in the country. Since the debut of this second generation in 2012, Nissan has moved over 660,000 Versas. Impressive for a category that is often the butt-of-late night jokes. So I was thrilled to inherit the keys to a Versa sedan and see what makes the country’s cheapest car, about a third of the cost of the average new car, tick.

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