The all-new 2014 Versa Note is the fourth of five all-new vehicles Nissan launched in the last year and a half. The Versa family has been the top selling car in this segment for 38 of the last 42 months. Nissan executives say this new model is designed to keep it there.
“This car has the features and the value to continue that momentum, absolutely,” said Nissan Senior Manager of Product Planning, John Curl.
The car has class-leading fuel economy at 40 miles per gallon highway. The 2014 Versa Note also offers best-in-class 31 city MPG & 35 MPG combined city/highway fuel efficiency. Part of how the car accomplished an improved fuel economy is the new Versa Note weighs about 300 pounds less than the earlier model.
“Total cost of ownership is very important for these buyers. When you buy a car in the entry class you don’t want to spend a lot of fuel,” said Curl.
Nissan’s 2014 Versa Note is the only car in its class with an option called Around View Monitor. It gives a virtual 360 degree “bird’s eye” view of the surroundings. Around View Monitor allows drivers to see the lines on either side of a parking space and the wall behind them, so they can park more quickly and more accurately.
“There’s no car anywhere close to this price point that has the Around View Monitor. It’s class exclusive for a couple classes above actually,” said Marcy Maguire, Dealer Principal of Windsor Nissan in NJ.
Four cameras, one on each side of the vehicle, are processed to create this 360-degree view. The feature is available with the SL tech package.
Another new feature available on the Versa Note is something called Divide-N-Hide Adjustable Floor. The system’s large split-folding floor can be used to create a flat cargo area or to provide a hidden cargo storage area.
“With the fold-down seats we have a class-leading over 20 feet of cargo space, so yes, the Divide-N-Hide helps you utilize that to its full advantage,” said a Nissan Sales Executive.
Nissan executives say this new Versa Note will help keep Nissan’s overall Versa lineup number one in the entry-level segment in terms of sales. The 2014 Versa Note has a manufacturer’s suggested retail starting price of $13,990.
It’s unclear as to what exactly the car of tomorrow is going to be like, but you can bet that every manufacturer out there has their own ideas as to what the car of the future should be, and deliver to the customer. However, one thing for certain is that race to deliver the car of future is on and Nissan is the latest automotive powerhouse to announce they’re revving up their investment in research and development.
The Renault-Nissan alliance is the fourth largest auto manufacture in the world, with sales of just under 5 million vehicles in 2012. Earlier this year Nissan made a bold statement to become a leader in this field by opening a research lab in Silicon Valley, which plays home to around 60 Nissan engineers. Nissan’s CEO feels this new research lab is going to play a large role in driving the company forward and helping deliver market innovations that will give Nissan the edge.
It’s an exciting time in the automotive world and Nissan’s future development is going be largely focused on the hybrid, electric and even a driverless Nissan range. The latest craze in the automotive world is the driverless car. Although not a new concept, the driverless car could be on our roads and commonplace by the end of the decade.
Nissan believe that the electric range is going to play an important role in the breakthrough of these technologies. The electric range will be capturing data from every single electric car, every time they are used. They will be using this data to help create the driver-less car.
However, the uptake in the Nissan electric range has been lower than expected and as of February this year only 50,000 Nissan Leafs had been sold. Many believe the reason for this is due to the charging infrastructure. Ghosn says” People who are interested in the electric range are hesitant largely because of the infrastructure”. With only 8,000 charging stations across the US (compared to the 130,000 conventional gas stations) there still seems a long way to go.
The world of automobiles will change drastically over the next decade and Nissan is working as hard as possible to make sure their vehicles are using the latest technologies and that they position themselves as a market leader. The world of electric cars, driver-less cars and technology within cars is something that Nissan is looking to bet the house on.
Author bio: Bradley Taylor is an automotive blogger, journalist and enthusiast. Bradley writes for many automotive companies on different topics including: Premium Cars Direct, BMW, Nissan, Audi and Ford. You can him on Google +
Nissan Cutting Prices on 7 Models; 2013 Nissan Altima, 2013 Nissan Sentra, 2013 Nissan Rogue, 2013 Nissan Murano, 2013 Nissan Maxima, 2013 Nissan Armada & the 2013 Nissan Juke
Nissan is cutting prices on seven of its 18 models in the U.S., hoping its cars and trucks will show up in more Internet searches by shoppers.
The price cuts vary with the amount of equipment on each model and run from 2.7%, or $600, on the top-selling Altima midsize car to 10.7%, or $4,400, on the Armada big SUV. Other models getting price cuts include the Sentra compact car, Juke small crossover SUV, Murano midsize crossover, Rogue small crossover and the Maxima full-size car.
Jose Munoz, Nissan’s head of sales and marketing for the Americas, said the vehicles getting the price cuts account for 65% of Nissan’s U.S. sales. The sticker prices, he said, were higher than some rivals’ similar models, and that kept Nissan vehicles out of some Internet searches.
“In some of the customer searches we may not appear,” Munoz said. “This is an indication that we certainly want to be on the shopping list and we want to be considered by as many customers as possible.”
The company plans to reduce rebates and other discounts to offset some of the price cuts. The cuts come at a time when Nissan faces intense competition from U.S.-based automakers and its prime Japanese competitors, Toyota and Honda.
The price cuts are effective Friday for cars and trucks that aren’t yet on dealer lots. However Nissan will also make allowances to trim prices of cars now in dealer inventories. The cuts will remain in effect indefinitely.
Nissan-Renault CEO Carlos Ghosn has set a goal of taking 10% of U.S. sales by 2016 or sooner, and executives are under pressure to sell more vehicles to hit the goal. In the first quarter, Nissan’s sales (including the Nissan and Infiniti brands) through April are up 3.2% this year with an 8.2% share of the market, down from 8.5% in the period last year, according to Autodata.
Although Nissan denies it, industry analysts say the company can afford to cut prices because of efforts in Japan to weaken the yen against the dollar. That makes cars and parts made in Japan cheaper than goods made in the U.S. One analyst said it could be the start of a price war if other automakers follow.
Jeff Schuster, senior vice president of forecasting for LMC Automotive, a Detroit forecasting firm, said the weaker yen should help Nissan cut prices, as the company makes a bid to increase sales and market share amid intense competition.
“We could be looking at a price war,” he said. “If the yen stays where it is at and competitive pressure does as well, we could be looking at a more widespread battle for buyers.”
Nissan’s Munoz denied that the yen has anything to do with the price cuts, saying that four of the seven affected models are made in North America. Only the Juke, Rogue and Murano are made in Japan, and their sales are small compared with the other models.
Nissan makes about 75% of its cars sold in the U.S. in North America, and that should rise to 89% by the end of next year when the company shifts production of the Rogue and Murano.
Nissan isn’t the first automaker to cut prices this year. In January General Motors trimmed $300 to $770 off the sticker price of its slow-selling midsize Chevrolet Malibu.
It was once a huge red flag: When a car’s odometer would hit 100,000 miles, but thanks to improvements in car design and maintenance, the milestone of 100,000 miles now means something very different.
Although some cars are ready for trade-in at that threshold, many others can travel twice as far without major repairs.
What allows one car to pass the 100,000-mile barrier with few repair bills, while another is ready for the junkyard? It’s all about preventive medicine.
“It’s just like when you get to be 70 and everyone tells you the same thing: exercise, eat right, take care of yourself,” says Lauren Fix, author of “Lauren Fix’s Guide to Loving Your Car” (St. Martin’s Griffin, 2008).
Feeding your car the right things and taking it for regular checkups will make all the difference.
Open the book
The key to keeping your car running smoothly is probably tucked at the bottom of your glove compartment, under the spare napkins and ketchup packets. It’s the owner’s manual, which most people ignore at their peril.
“There is a schedule in the manual that runs well over 100,000 miles,” says Fix, and it lists when to replace parts likely to be wearing out. The list will vary for different cars, so check yours and follow it.
Newer cars may have the maintenance schedule built into an internal computer. A blinking light or a beep will announce that it’s time to replace certain parts, says autoeducation.com founder Kevin Schappell.
“Things like the water pump and timing belt should be changed before you notice a problem,” Schappell says. Replacing them won’t be hugely expensive, but “if that belt breaks, it can cause internal damage to the engine, or if the water pump fails, you can overheat the engine and warp the cylinder head.”
That’s when things get expensive.
“Typically, around 100,000 or 120,000 miles there are some major preventative maintenance things that need to be done,” Schappell says, so it’s a great time to catch up if you’ve been lax until now.
Get fluent about fluids
The liquids that go into your car (gas, oil, brake fluid, power steering fluid, etc.) are crucial to its survival. To extend the life of your car beyond 100,000 miles, these experts suggest frequent oil changes and fluid checks done at dealerships or full-service auto centers.
Find the right shop
Ask friends and neighbors, and search online for reviews of repair shops. Once you’ve chosen one, get to know the staff and ask questions. Sticking with your car’s dealer can be a safe choice, because the staff will be trained to work on your car.
The type of miles matter
It may seem surprising, but highway driving puts less stress on a car that tooling around locally. It requires less quick braking and acceleration, and moisture under the hood has a chance to evaporate. Local driving in colder climates can also cause buildup of ice and snow under the car, which may contain corrosive chemicals.
These small investments will add years to the life of your car.
Have questions about the maintenance on your vehicle, give our service department a call at 609-448-1411.
I make no attempt here to compare the 2013 Nissan Sentra, a subcompact economy car, with something from the ranks of substantially more expensive, bona fide luxury automobiles. But there are samples of the new Sentra, notably the upscale Sentra SL sedan driven for this column, that make you wonder what “luxury” means anymore.
The Nissan Sentra line — including the base S, the popularly equipped SV, the sporty SR and the surprisingly well-appointed SL — has been reworked for 2013.
The front-wheel-drive cars are two inches longer than their predecessors. Interior space has been increased, and the cabins have been made more appealing and comfortable. The top-of-the-line SL, driven for this column, is so loaded it raises the question: Why access luxury at a higher price?
The SL, also the most expensive of the lot, has a starting price of $19,760 — deliberately set below $20,000 to bait more buyers. The idea: If I get all these goodies in a car starting under $20,000, surely I can add a few thousand dollars more in options.
Of course you can. Nissan has Sentra options aplenty. This column’s SL, which included optional onboard navigation with high-definition backup camera, premium leather seat coverings, a power sliding glass roof and a premium sound system, came with a manufacturer’s price of $23,430.
Still, that is not a bad deal for a well-made commuter car (in terms of fit and finish) that is also safe, luxuriously outfitted and engineered to get 30 miles per gallon in the city and 39 mpg on the highway using regular gasoline.
(I wrote “engineered to get.” I should’ve written “advertised to get.” My real-world mileage was okay, but several miles per gallon less than advertised.)
But the new Nissan Sentra line is made to address growing consumer worries over fuel economy and pump prices. That is largely why Nissan has jettisoned — at least for the time being — its high-performance Sentra SE-R and SE-R Spec V models. The current corporate thinking is that consumer concerns about fuel economy nullify demand for more consumptive high-performance models in what was supposed to be an economy-car line in the first place.
Nissan is likely to get criticism for that decision from recalcitrant throttle jockeys, whose need for speed frequently outpaces their incomes. But the company is likely to do well among drivers who just want a small, affordable, well-tailored car with at least decent miles-per-gallon numbers.
The new Sentra offers all that and more in the SL version. There is none of the bland styling and use of subpar cabin materials of predecessor Sentras. Everything is nice and tight. Exterior styling flows in attractive lines front to rear. Cabin leather feels rich. The design of the car’s instrument panel, replete with a handsome center console that is also easy to use, is first-rate. This is a very likable little car quite capable of competing with anything in its size and price class.
“FE” (fuel economy) versions of the new Sentra S and SV are designed to get slightly better mileage. Their enhancements in that endeavor include a rear aerodynamic spoiler (to help mitigate wind resistance), underbody aerodynamic deflectors, and low-rolling-resistance tires (to help reduce fuel-sapping tire-road friction).
For those of you who define luxury as power and crisp handling, you are hereby advised to look elsewhere. Despite its seductive trimmings, the new Sentra SL is what it was designed and engineered to be — an economy car. Like all its Sentra siblings, it comes with a 1.8-liter in-line four-cylinder engine (130 horsepower, 128 foot-pounds of torque). Add to that a continuously variable automatic transmission that continues to leave many drivers (me included) in its transmission of power to the front drive wheels.
But, in the pursuit of more miles per gallon with no loss of safety, style or comfort, I’m willing to accept those deficits. On most highly regulated roads in the United States, I can only go so fast anyway. I might as well settle back and enjoy the drive in what is without a doubt the best Sentra sedan that Nissan has ever made.
**A special thank you to Warren Brown from The Washington Post for this article!**
Most of us were raised by fine, upstanding citizens who taught us right from wrong, so we all know that high-octane gas is better for your engine than regular gas.
Are you sitting down? Good, because none of that is true anymore. Cars have changed, engineering has improved and premium gas costs 20-30 cents more per gallon for almost no benefit. Let’s look at the myths about high-octane fuel.
Increased Performance—The lore about premium gas is that it improves the performance of the engine. In some high-compression engines, you can get more power out of premium gas, but if you offset it with the extra cost, it’s a wash. If your car feels underpowered, it’s probably not because of the gas. You might want to check with a mechanic.
There is one rare instance where premium can help. If you have a vehicle under a heavy load, like towing a large boat with a small car across the dessert, then premium might help the journey by providing more power. But it won’t help your engine life.
Some engines require premium—There was a time when premium gas was “recommended” by the owner’s manual, but now it’s merely “suggested.” That’s because all engines are designed to work using regular gas with no consequences to the longevity of the engine.
Premium reduces knock and ping—Before 1996, using premium did reduce premature ignition and thus reduced knock and ping. And knock and ping did definitively take years off an engine. But now, engines are equipped with a knock sensor that automatically adjusts the fuel and air to prevent this. So again, only under extreme heavy-load situations will premium will be needed.
If you use premium now, test it out. Try regular for four or five tanks and see if you notice any difference. If not, you can probably save nearly $200 a year by buying regular.
Japanese car giant Nissan is to build a new hatchback at its UK plant, creating more than 1,000 jobs at the site and at component companies. The announcement was made by Prime Minister David Cameron and Nissan chief operating officer Toshiyuki Shiga, during a visit to Nissan’s headquarters in Yokohama, Japan on 10 April, The Telegraph reported.
The new medium-sized model will be built in Sunderland in 2014, creating an additional 225 jobs at the factory and 900 at component companies supplying Nissan.
The move follows an announcement last month that the North East plant will also produce a compact car based on the so-called Invitation concept model from next year.
The two new models will result in more than 3,000 jobs being created in the UK automotive sector within the next two years – 625 at Nissan and the remainder across the supply base.
Once recruitment for both models is complete, the Sunderland plant’s workforce will stand at a record 6,225, supporting annual production of more than half a million models.
Nissan said the new hatchback, which will be named closer to its sales launch, marks the carmaker’s return to the mainstream medium segment in Europe and will play a major role in the company’s continued expansion.
Around 80,000 of the new hatchback model will be built annually, triggering the need for the Sunderland plant to launch an additional shift.
This will see both the factory’s production lines operating around the clock for the first time in the plant’s 26-year history, a move which will take manufacturing capacity beyond 550,000 units.
The announcement also consolidates Sunderland’s position as the UK’s largest car manufacturer, a title it has held since 1998.
In 2010 Sunderland became the first UK car plant to produce more than 400,000 models in a single year when 423,000 Qashqais, Notes and Jukes rolled off the line.
The record was beaten last year when 480,000 cars were produced, and Nissan said the plant was preparing to pass the half-million mark for the first time.
Nissan is investing an additional £127 million in its Sunderland operation, supported by an offer of £8.2 million from the Government’s Regional Growth Fund.
Nissan built the Sunderland plant in 1984 and production began in 1986, with total investment set to reach £3.5 billion.
More than 6.5 million cars have been built at the factory, with 80% of production exported to 97 world markets.
*A Special thank you to neurope.eu for this wonderful article!*
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