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#31 OP Andre S.

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Posted 04 January 2013 - 21:03

Just went to a real Nissan dealer today, had 2 interesting Versas there. One 2010 almost new at 13000$, one 2008 77000km at 8800$. The more I look at it the more I think I can get something very good under 10000$ and I shouldn't spend more. Obviously the newer one will have a better resale value in 2 years, but I'm thinking of keeping this 4-5 years at least, so in the end it won't matter much.

For 8800$ that 2008 gives me a CVT (!), Silver color (the best IMO), Cruise control, ABS, tinted windows, a 6 CD changer, brand new Nissan front brakes, mags, vehicle fully inspected on 155 points (not just the security inspection), height adjustable front seats, adjustable driving wheel, air conditioning, etc., vehicle is certified to have had no accidents, only one owner, 5% financing over 48 months but if I want to pay faster to avoid interest I can as much as I want so it's flexible.

About the CVT: I had read several bad opinions about it, but I personally found it delightful. It's every bit as responsive if not more responsive than the 4-speed automatic I'm used to, and it delivers incomparably smooth accelerations from 0 to 65. Obviously this is good for the engine and fuel economy. It's certainly not fast or exciting though.

Only shadow of doubt about the car right now is that it vibrated significantly at 120km/h on the highway, the dealer's telling me that's because there was ice in the mags. I asked for another test drive with the car pre-heated, he agreed and I'll be able to verify that on Monday. Mags are apparently a cool-looking feature in summer but not great when it freezes. To this end I'm getting a set of rims as well, which should end up saving me on changing tires every year.

I liked that the guy didn't try to push me into a sale agreement on the spot unlike the Suzuki guys I dealt with yesterday, and even agreed to reserve the car for me over the weekend.

At this point I might go check out the Fit tomorrow if the dealer's open, but I doubt I can get half the features I get on a Versa for that price.

Did I mention the room inside the Versa is amazing? I sat in a 2013 Maxima which is a mid-size luxury car, and it had way less headroom than the Versa. Ditto for the Sentra. I honestly would rather sit in a Versa than a much larger luxury car, for the comfort, it's ridiculous.


#32 vetBrian

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Posted 05 January 2013 - 03:11

Just went to a real Nissan dealer today, had 2 interesting Versas there. One 2010 almost new at 13000$, one 2008 77000km at 8800$. The more I look at it the more I think I can get something very good under 10000$ and I shouldn't spend more. Obviously the newer one will have a better resale value in 2 years, but I'm thinking of keeping this 4-5 years at least, so in the end it won't matter much.

For 8800$ that 2008 gives me a CVT (!), Silver color (the best IMO), Cruise control, ABS, tinted windows, a 6 CD changer, brand new Nissan front brakes, mags, vehicle fully inspected on 155 points (not just the security inspection), height adjustable front seats, adjustable driving wheel, air conditioning, etc., vehicle is certified to have had no accidents, only one owner, 5% financing over 48 months but if I want to pay faster to avoid interest I can as much as I want so it's flexible.

About the CVT: I had read several bad opinions about it, but I personally found it delightful. It's every bit as responsive if not more responsive than the 4-speed automatic I'm used to, and it delivers incomparably smooth accelerations from 0 to 65. Obviously this is good for the engine and fuel economy. It's certainly not fast or exciting though.

Only shadow of doubt about the car right now is that it vibrated significantly at 120km/h on the highway, the dealer's telling me that's because there was ice in the mags. I asked for another test drive with the car pre-heated, he agreed and I'll be able to verify that on Monday. Mags are apparently a cool-looking feature in summer but not great when it freezes. To this end I'm getting a set of rims as well, which should end up saving me on changing tires every year.

I liked that the guy didn't try to push me into a sale agreement on the spot unlike the Suzuki guys I dealt with yesterday, and even agreed to reserve the car for me over the weekend.

At this point I might go check out the Fit tomorrow if the dealer's open, but I doubt I can get half the features I get on a Versa for that price.

Did I mention the room inside the Versa is amazing? I sat in a 2013 Maxima which is a mid-size luxury car, and it had way less headroom than the Versa. Ditto for the Sentra. I honestly would rather sit in a Versa than a much larger luxury car, for the comfort, it's ridiculous.


He's not lying about ice in the alloys... What the ice will do is it will unbalance the rim. Each rim is balanced with lead weights to make sure that it spins true, and ice stuck in them can throw off that balance. Before you buy, ask them to store the car indoors to melt it, and then find out if it still shakes. Make sure you do it.

You sound like you're big on the Versa, and you're right -- the Versa is a very budget minded car. You're getting a lot of options that you wouldn't otherwise see on the higher priced Honda. The Yaris is quite feature packed as well, but if you're going to go Yaris, I'd recommend a brand new one (which can be had for about 15k + tax, but that's a base model). I'm partial to a Honda Fit with a 5spd manual transmission as I much prefer feeling my car, as well as enjoying the drive. For the type of driving I do, the 5spd Fit would be perfect (I have a 2000 Subaru Legacy, AWD with a 5spd manual, so I'm pretty happy at the moment) but if I was buying new, I'd go Fit or New Yaris... Because you've found a car with all the options you want, THAT should be your main goal is working yourself into that car. I always thought that, oh, I won't miss feature A, or feature B, and then I ended up wrong... Buy EXACTLY what you want. Don't compromise. If fun spirited driving isn't your thing, but toys and such are, then go for that. That Nissan sounds LOADED and sounds like a great deal for the price. It all comes down to the one you can live with the best. If you're niggling about space in the Fit, you'll be niggling about it a year from now and it'll only wear on you -- so go with what feels the best!

I've never driven the Versa, but I have driven the Sentra -- and I HATED it. Hopefully the Versa isn't the same.

Good luck, and make sure you take TONS of pics when you finally decide! Car buying is so exciting.

#33 OP Andre S.

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Posted 05 January 2013 - 05:47

He's not lying about ice in the alloys... What the ice will do is it will unbalance the rim. Each rim is balanced with lead weights to make sure that it spins true, and ice stuck in them can throw off that balance. Before you buy, ask them to store the car indoors to melt it, and then find out if it still shakes. Make sure you do it.

Yes, that is already planned :)

The Yaris is quite feature packed as well, but if you're going to go Yaris, I'd recommend a brand new one (which can be had for about 15k + tax, but that's a base model).

I can't afford to buy new anyway. Any reason why you wouldn't recommend buying one used?

Because you've found a car with all the options you want, THAT should be your main goal is working yourself into that car. I always thought that, oh, I won't miss feature A, or feature B, and then I ended up wrong... Buy EXACTLY what you want. Don't compromise. If fun spirited driving isn't your thing, but toys and such are, then go for that.

Thanks for the advice. I'm just wondering if I'm not sacrificing reliability too much for all these accessories. For instance there's a another 2008 Versa at the same price but with half the mileage and half the options on it. Wouldn't it be more reasonable to give up cruise control and adjustable seat height for a vehicle that has much less overall wear? At the same time I know the vehicle has been and will be again, thoroughly inspected, and is on full warranty until June (and engine and transmission warranty until 2015), and I can always buy more warranty on it, and nothing guarantees the one with lower mileage won't have issues either.

For the record I love driving and if I was mainly going to drive this alone on twisting roads I'd totally get the Fiesta or such sporty drive instead. Given my main usage scenarios however - slow-moving rush hour traffic daily commute, and hauling 3-4 people to go out skiing/hiking, the spacious comfortable Versa wins.

Good luck, and make sure you take TONS of pics when you finally decide! Car buying is so exciting.

Thanks for the tips, very appreciated!

#34 +zhiVago

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Posted 05 January 2013 - 07:37

The thing about CVT is that they usually don't last longer than 150,000 km.

The service book in the car might actually tell you exactly when the manufacturer recommends to replace it. And it's a good resource overall to get an idea of what kind of expenses await you in the future.

#35 OP Andre S.

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Posted 05 January 2013 - 21:43

The thing about CVT is that they usually don't last longer than 150,000 km.

That's ok, I'll probably sell the vehicle before that. I plan on doing max 15000km/year. Once cash has started rolling in and I don't have too many outstanding expenses, say in 3-4 years, I'll probably trade the vehicle in for a brand new or as-new car, maybe another Versa (the hatchback is seeing a very cool redesign this year).

Oh yeah also the CVT is guaranteed until 2018 or 200000km. :)

#36 OP Andre S.

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Posted 14 January 2013 - 21:43

Happy owner :)
Album here: http://imgur.com/a/y0ZLO
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#37 Steve B.

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Posted 14 January 2013 - 22:02

This is slightly off topic, but coming out of a degree with $10k to spend on a car, how different things are in the US! You'd be lucky to afford a car at all after you finish Uni in the UK, never mind having somewhere to live for when you start working, and even then that'll be around £18k pa, more if you're lucky!

Nice car btw, Nissans are great. :)

#38 OP Andre S.

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Posted 14 January 2013 - 22:22

Paid internships in Software Engineering + low tuitions fees (Quebec, Canada, not US) + no girlfriend = money left in the bank ;)

#39 pes2013

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Posted 14 January 2013 - 22:37

Itll take a while Ill warn you :)

Im looking at pretty much the opposite used car: Big car, 4 door, big ass........


Hard to find good and trusty deals these days

#40 Steve B.

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Posted 14 January 2013 - 22:39

Paid internships in Software Engineering + low tuitions fees (Quebec, Canada, not US) + no girlfriend = money left in the bank ;)


Hahaha not bad at all, I've got the cheaper end of tuition fees (I started 4 years ago now, so still on £3k ish a year), and no other monetary source other than loan, so I probably will have to go home for a job nearby :p

#41 KingCracker

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Posted 14 January 2013 - 22:49

Now drive it like you stole it :D lol.