With plenty of cargo space, budget-friendly fuel efficiency and an array of safety features—in addition to a starting price of $10,990—KBB.com's editors saw the Nissan Versa as a sensible solution that meets the needs and wants of students.
"As the least expensive car in America, the Nissan Versa makes an excellent choice for students looking for the most sensible way to get from A to B," says Jack R. Nerad, executive editorial director and executive market analyst for Kelley Blue Book's KBB.com. "Despite its low price tag, the 5-passenger Versa sedan includes a full suite of creature comforts plus unexpected niceties like an auxiliary audio jack for portable music players."
Earlier this year, Kelley Blue Book's KBB.com gave the 2012 Nissan Versa sedan the title of "Best Total Cost of Ownership" in its class. In addition, the Versa was awarded "Top Safety Pick" by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), an honor given to vehicles that achieve the IIHS's highest rating for front-, rear- and side-impact protection, and the highest rating in the roof-strength test.
The 2012 Versa's fuel-sipping 38 MPG efficiency is a perfect fit for any student's budget and is achieved by the variable valve timing that continuously adjusts engine output to deliver no-nonsense acceleration. This fall, as students return to classes, the 2013 model goes on sale offering versions that push EPA highway fuel economy to 40 mpg.
To help parents feel confident that their young driver is safe behind the wheel, six airbags come standard on the Versa with two dual-stage front air bags, air bags for side-impact protection built into each front seat and two roof-mounted curtain side-impact air bags to help provide head protection for both rows of occupants.
The Versa family includes sedan and hatchback versions in the U.S. and leads the subcompact market with 60,919 sales thus far in 2012, outselling its nearest competitors for a more than 22 percent share of the segment. Additionally, about a quarter of Versa buyers are Millennials.
"Although small on the outside, the 2012 Nissan Versa offers big value on the inside with its exceptional roominess and an unexpected level of available entertainment and connectivity features," said Al Castignetti, vice president and general manager, Nissan Division, Nissan North America. "Versa's design, performance and standard equipment provide a sense of ‘modern value' that goes far beyond the mere purchase price."
To help college graduates get into their first car easier, Nissan offers stress-free buying experience with its College Grad Preferred Pricing Program. Individuals graduating within six months or the past two years, as well as current Graduate Students, qualify to buy a new Nissan for less than Dealer cost. For more information on Nissan's College Grad Program, please click here.
The second-generation Nissan Versa sedan, introduced last year, redefines compact car value. In 2013, the Versa hatchback will receive a fresh new look as a part of Nissan's offensive of five new models in 15 months.
For a complete list of the 10 Best Back-to-School Cars of 2012, please visit http://www.kbb.com/car-reviews-and-news/top-10/best-back-to-school-cars-2012/.