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Interest rates on auto loans are hitting record lows, a boon to car buyers and a benefit to the nation's recovering auto industry.
The interest rate on a four-year loan for a new car averaged 6.21% in the latest weekly survey of major banks and thrifts, according to Bankrate.com. That's the lowest average rate in more than two decades of tracking. A few lenders are offering rates as low as 2.99%, says Greg McBride, senior financial analyst for Bankrate.com.
Edmunds.com says interest rates on new car purchases overall in December, including automaker-subsidized loans, averaged 4.16%, the lowest since the car-buying research site started keeping track of rates in January 2002.
Rates were a half-percentage point lower than in December 2009. Edmunds recorded the highest average new car loan rate at 8% in January 2006, when sales demand was higher and credit-rating standards looser.
For those that have been on the waiting list for the all-new Nissan Leaf, you’re not alone. Consumers have been eagerly awaiting the arrival of their very own all-electric car, but according to Kicking Tires, car buyers will have to wait just a little longer.
“We’ve already reported on some of the initial supply constraints Nissan is having with its Leaf, and the delays will continue for the next few months to come, according to a company spokesman,” reports Kicking Tires.
Retuers has reported similar delays, but Nissan contends that production will soon be ramped-up to meet demand.
For this LEAF enthusiast, one test drive wasn't enough.
How’s this for a new approach to an old problem: “While minivans remain one of the most maligned symbols of adulthood, where some see them as a surrendering of youth and fun, Nissan sees the minivan as a celebration of family life—not only for moms on weekdays, but for fun times with the entire family on weekends. We view Quest as a reward to parents for doing just that—parenting.”
That’s the word from Al Castignetti, vice president and general manager of the Nissan division in North America, who was on hand at the recent Los Angeles Auto Show to introduce the all-new, completely redesigned 2011 Nissan Quest.
Nissan wants to cater to businesses with the launch of its first commercial vehicle in the U.S., the 2012 NV van. So what better way to win over commercial vehicle buyers than to give them free stuff. For businesses buying or leasing a new Nissan NV1500, NV2500 HD or NV3500 HD commercial van, Nissan is offering a no-charge commercial upfit package or a no-charge exterior graphics package.
The commercial upfit packages will be from Adrian Steel and will include a choice of a cargo management system with a steel cabin/cargo partition and three 44-inch shelving units, or a Utility Package featuring a steel cabin/cargo partition and a utility rack. The graphics package available from Original Wraps allows businesses to get professionally designed, exterior graphic material on their vehicles.
“As part of our commitment to providing ‘innovation for business,’ we’re taking an innovative approach to offering added business solutions – high quality cargo management packages or an industry exclusive offering of custom exterior graphics – right from the launch of the exciting new Nissan NV,” said Joe Castelli, vice president, Nissan Commercial Vehicles and Fleet, NNA. “We know commercial vehicle buyers customize their vehicles to meet their business needs, and we want to be part of the solution for them.”
The 2012 Nissan NV is powered by a 4.0-liter V6 engine or an available 5.6-liter V8, both of which are mated to a five-speed automatic transmission. Buyers will also be able to choose between a standard roof and an industry-exclusive high roof configuration that provides more interior space.
Source: Nissan in the news
On January 19, Nissan will kick off production of the 2012 NV commercial van at the newly retooled plant in Canton, Mississippi. The NV will be Nissan’s first foray into the commercial vehicle market.
The new Nissan NV commercial van will be sold through a network of 240 Nissan commercial vehicle dealers. Sales are slated to begin this spring. One of the NV’s biggest competitors will be the Ford Transit Connect, which saw sales increase by 41 percent in 2010.
Nissan has spent two years and $118 million retooling its Canton plant in preparation for the NV. The plant is also where the Nissan Altima sedan, Titan pickup and Armada SUV are built.
In addition to potentially being a lucrative niche for Nissan, the NV commercial truck is also a boon to Mississippi’s auto assembly business. The plant’s expansion has brought new jobs to the region, which has suffered due to the recession.
Source: Nissan in the news
2011 Nissan Cube
2011 Nissan Cube: good performance in front, side, rollover, and rear tests and standard electronic stability control
To determine crashworthiness — how well a vehicle protects its occupants in a crash — the Institute rates vehicles good, acceptable, marginal, or poor based on performance in high-speed front and side crash tests, a rollover test, plus evaluations of seat/head restraints for protection against neck injuries in rear impacts. To earn Top Safety Pick for 2011 a vehicle must have good ratings in all four Institute tests. In addition, the winning vehicles must offer electronic stability control.
100% Electric Nissan LEAF
On the heels of the world’s first Nissan LEAF delivery, Nissan North America, Inc. (NNA) is bringing sustainable mobility to Southern California with the region’s first delivery of the all-electric Nissan LEAF. Thomas Franklin, a patent attorney with a specialization in clean energy, is taking delivery of his blue Nissan LEAF SL at Mossy Nissan Kearny Mesa. This groundbreaking moment represents the region’s first delivery of an affordable, mass-market, all-electric car.
Franklin, 43, is a native San Diegan who lives in the Village of La Jolla with his wife and three children. He is a partner who practices as a patent attorney in the San Diego office of Townsend and Townsend and Crew. He studied much of the technology in the Nissan LEAF as an electrical engineering student at San Diego State University before attending law school at University of San Diego. Today, many of his patent clients are innovators in the clean tech industry.
2011 Nissan Versa Hatchback and Sedan
Nissan recently announced running enhancements to the model year 2011 Versa lineup. Beginning with December, 2010 production, all Versa trim levels now come standard with power windows and door locks. This change affects all Versa 1.6 Sedans, as well as Versa 1.8 S Sedan and 1.8 S Hatchback models (power windows and door locks are already standard on Versa SL models). As a result of these enhancements, the optional S Power Plus Package is replaced by the S Plus Package, which offers cruise control and remote keyless entry. The 2011 Versa Sedan 1.6 Base 5MT model remains one of the lowest priced new vehicles available in the United States market with its starting M.S.R.P. unchanged at $9,990.
MSRP for the 2011 Nissan Versa Sedan models include (Model/Engine/Transmission):
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