Now with a longstanding tradition of badness, the Nissan Versa sedan is in its fourth year as a member of The Bad 8. “Hear the engine drone,” was the text in 2008. “It’s as dull as December 27th local news,” 2009’s Bad 8 said. And last year? Alternatives were said to include a bicycle built for four.
What more can be said to disparage the Nissan Versa sedan in hopes that Nissan banishes it from showrooms across North America? An assault on the Versa’s design starts things off. Indeed, the Versa doesn’t actually suffer from bad styling – it has no style to speak of. So utterly forgettable, the Versa sedan is an insult to the rest of the car design world, to people who put effort into making something look as good as the Nissan 370Z. Yep, the 370Z is linked consanguineously to the dreadful Nissan Versa sedan.
Good news, you might think, is found in the 2011 Nissan Versa sedan’s MSRP. At $9900 in the USA, the Versa is priced low but, quite startlingly, has no stereo and no mirrors on the visor. You can take a guess as to what else is missing from the Nissan Versa Sedan 1.6 Base. It has the word “Base” right there in its name. Worse than its lack of features, perhaps even worse than its exceptionally terrible design, is the Versa’s wooden ride, its annoyingly ineffective powerplant, and its hateful transmission. Bad has found a home.
Improvements Required: There’s no longer truth to the suggestion that small cars can’t look good. The 2011 Hyundai Elantra is curvaceously spectacular. The 2012 Ford Focus is clean and cool. The new-to-North America Fiat 500 is classy and chic. If Nissan must sell a sedan version of the Versa – as Ford feels it must with the otherwise handsome Fiesta – they could try and create something that wouldn’t be an embarrassment to the brand.
Historical Significance: Apart from the fact that the Nissan Versa sedan has appeared in every version of The Bad 8, this car is insignificant at best.