It's a bit out of season, but that darn Happy Rock...
It's a bit out of season, but that darn Happy Rock...
im pretty curious to know the diff between the versa sedan and our versa note. the versa sedan has gotten universal bad reviews, as its the cheapest car you can buy new in the US.
Same platform, drivetrain, suspension & many shared interior pieces. Not sure if the sedan has anti-roll bars or not.
Well, buyers and reviewers disagree sharply about the Versa sedan: despite the criticism, it's consistently the best selling car in its class every month, and has been for years.
I think it's ugly though.
nissan , certainly in the last few years, has almost always made ugly cars.
ive said this before, but its just so surprising they scored with our micra's look . it nails that spunky/bubbly/happy look, without going into mazda smiley territory.
meanwhile, every other nissan is horrible (Cube, LEAF, every single Murano ever, and even the new angry corporate fascia that dominates the new maxima/micra/etc).
maybe it's just me
I liked the Versa Note too.
The problem with the Cube is that it was designed to be art, and as we all ought to know, art is subjective and can even be polarizing. Quite often, art is an acquired taste, which is why someone like me who initially hated the Cube now sees it as very unique and intriguing.
The thing about the Versa, and the reason why so many people find it ugly while so many people buy them, is because it is a clear demonstration of function over form in a world dominated by cars designed with form over function. In a world of fake spoilers, fake exhaust pipes, fake vents, fake ground effects, fake scoops, oversized wheels, fake ruggedness, fake aerodynamics, and overall designs to make cars look more powerful and faster, the Versa sedan is a refreshing break from all of that bullshit. We've become so accustomed to all of this eye candy with useless features designed to break or fail outside of warranty, when a minimalist, purely functional "Appliance" of a car appears on the market, we immediately think it's ugly and lacking in some manner or another.
If you've ever found yourself wondering, what happened to the good, dependable, and inexpensive Japanese cars of the 1980's, the Versa is exactly that. The current breed of Civics, Corollas, Accords, Sentras, Mazda GLC/323, and the like are absolutely nothing today like they used to be, as they've become bigger, faster, prettier, and much more expensive. The people buying the Versa today want the modern equivalent of the sensible 1980's Japanese car, and that's exactly what they're getting.
Ok everyone, here are the "Continuing Adventures of The Little Guy"...
We just arrived back in Edmonton from spending a few weeks in February in Las Vegas and exploring Death Valley; we must have put on an additional 4000-5000 km on the Little Guy. We were getting a lot of strange looks from American drivers, some asked what kind of Nissan we were driving and how the heck did we fit all our stuff in such a small car (hey it helps to be a Tetris addict!).
Little Guy held his own against semi-trailers and other assorted traffic on the I-15; the speed limit in Montana is 80 mph (130 km/hr); everyone was going anywhere between 85 to 90 mph. Our Micra felt stable & rock solid at those speeds (now we know why they race this car in Quebec and Ontario), with the tachometer at about 3500 rpm at 130 km/hr (our car has the 4 speed auto with overdrive). We managed to keep up with traffic at those speeds even going uphill (grades were about 6% to 8%); with our cargo (my wife, myself and about 2-3 weeks worth of luggage) we didn't feel we lacked too much power overtaking the slower semis, buses and other large vehicles who had slowed down substantially. With a 1.6 litre engine we did not expect a big block V8 performance with monstrous amounts of low-end torque, but once the engine spooled up past 4300 rpm or higher, we found that he had enough power to spare.
Between Lethbridge AB and Salt Lake City Utah, we experienced some blizzard like conditions & heavy snow fall, as well as very high crosswinds from the west (like 70 to 80 km/hr chinooks) and occasional driving rain. Some parts of I-15 cross over very high mountain terrain (6000+ ft above sea level). Little Guy's traction control and anti-lock brakes worked wonderfully; one time we were coming around a mountain cut at about 120 km/hr and suddenly encountered severe crosswinds from a gust front and some slush across our lane: Little Guy's "brains" immediately took him off cruise control and cut engine power until he slowed to about 80 km/hr. Traction control must have been working as well; the car followed a good line thru the turn and we had no understeer even though we were on a slippery curve. Probably saved our lives! Snow didn't accumulate enough in the high mountain passes for the local highway authority to recommend using tire chains (we didn't bring any) but we might bring them next time, just in case.
The weather was much better in Vegas and the surrounding Mojave area (about 15 to 20 C during the day with no precipitation), at night it would become quite cool (about 5 C). Death Valley was great; it got to about 88 degrees Fahrenheit (close to 30 C) at Badwater and Furnace Creek. We managed to do some "light" off-roading in the Little Guy thru the 20 Mule Team Canyon (see following pictures), Mustard Canyon and at the Devil's Golf Course. Roads thru these areas are well maintained dirt roads, with some tight turns and steeper slopes (we had a 15% grade heading up to Dante's View, which is the same view of Mos Eisley Space Port from the cliff that Luke Skywalker and Ben Kenobi were on in the movie Star Wars Episode 4: A New Hope). Little Guy's small size helped around some of the tight bends, and his blunt nose & short butt helped with the steeper hill climbing (decent approach & departure angles). The aftermarket splash guards worked great in deflecting rocks and stones from the underbody and side panels.
At about $2.20 per gallon average (that's around 50+ cents per litre) in some States it typically cost about $25 to $30 for a fill, so we didn't break the bank, with a range of about 500 to 700 km per tank full (trip computer said we averaged between 5.8 to 7 litres / 100 km) depending on load & driving conditions. Overall it was a great trip; again we found our Micra to be a quite comfortable and capable little long range touring car, and the size was ideal for navigating around the heavy traffic on Las Vegas Blvd and navigating around the crowded resort hotel parkades on the Strip. With everything that he's been thru on this trip from blizzards to driving rain storms, and from crazy interstate highway traffic to desert off-roading, not a single complaint or any problems from our Little Guy. We would definitely do all it again; can't wait to see what other future adventures Little Guy has in store for us...
Now the least he deserves is an oil change...
The Amargosa Opera House at Death Valley Junction:
20 Mule Team Canyon & some light off-roading:
The Devil's Golf Course, mounds of salt as far as the eye can see:
Wouldn't want to golf here:
Badwater Flats, about 280 feet below sea level (BTW, there is a "Sea Level" sign on the cliff somewhere up there, sorry for the low resolution picture for the upload but it shows up quite well in the original 7 MB pic):
A beautiful evening among the ruins of a desert ghost town:
Last edited by Micra In The Mountains; 03-06-2017 at 01:34 AM.