The Versa is definitely geared towards people who shop for a car with their head rather than their heart. It's extremely practical and efficient, what economy cars generally aim to be. It's the cheapest car to buy in its class. It's near tops in fuel efficiency. Running costs are low. It offers a lot of room for it's size. Overall, it's a fantastic value.
If you want something stylish, fun-to-drive, with loads of personality, the Versa will disappoint. Think economy car for middle-age folks. It's like driving a well-engineered appliance. It does its job well, but isn't inspiring and won't win over your heart.
I recommend the Kia Rio or Chevy Sonic if that's where your priorities reside.
The interior is cavernous! Definitely the largest interior in its class. Front seats are very comfortable for a little car. Love the seamless power delivery from the CVT when traversing hilly terrain. CVT keeps revs very low while cruising, which contributes to a fairly quiet interior (by small car standards) and great fuel economy. I'm averaging 40-42 MPGs. For only having 109 HP, it moves quite well in most situations.
Interior needs a major quality upgrade. Doesn't stack up to competition. All hard plastic interior looks and feels ultra cheap. Gaps between exterior body panels are rather wide and uneven. Disappointing overall quality from a Nissan product. The lack of a center armrest even on top trim SL baffles me. Versa isn't the least bit competitive with features. Competitors offer leather, sunroof, auto climate controls, etc. None of that is available on Versa sedan, but should be. 2nd generation CVT is unrefined. Jerky at low speeds and surprisingly noisy at times, making whistling, clunking, and creaky door sounds.
Excellent review - I agree with all your points.
I love the gas mileage and roominess, but the interior disappoints.
Nissan could have hit a home run with even a modest effort to upgrade the interior options on the SV and SL models.
Instead, its a great practical car, but wont win any points for style or excitement.
BTW - Center arm rests are available on E-Bay - but only in black.
Cant' imagine why Nissan doesn't offer one as an accessory.
Agree with the interior..... not much else in your report. Given a car that ain't goin' ta visit the mechanic overmuch, unlike a Yugo, keeps gas money in yer pocket, unlike an SUV, & costs the least, like no other car,
ya got opportunity & money to make yer own personality & go where you want to go. Yeah, where you are, where you're goin' & what you will love, is much more important than the car, some people give their love to.