In my opinion, there is a great deal of misinformation out there on the 2012 Nissan Versa Sedan, and little to no information on the base model 1.6S MT with 5 speed manual transmission.
In an effort to inform others, I submit the following.
Due to the absence of inventory of the base model, I had to order the car. It took approximately 2 months to arrive, so I advise those looking for the stripped down version of the car to simply go to the dealership and order the car (assuming you have the luxury to wait).
Dealers are reluctant to stock the manual transmission model.
I give the Versa my highest praise for value & quality on a budget. This is a fine automobile at a very fine price.
Favorite features of the car are as follows:
Ride quality is superb. The car is very smooth and handles varying types of terrain with style and poise. The seats have just the right amount of softness and support to them.
The height adjustable drivers seat is great.
When getting into the car, you don't fall downward into the car seat, but rather sideways into it.
Extremely easy to transition into and out of the automobile.
Excellent trunk and interior space with good ergonomics. The 5 speed transmission shifts like butter and the engine has adequate pep.
The engine is very quite.
Cabin noise is good as well as visibility.
Nice stereo. Tilt steering/intermittent wipers appreciated.
With all the great things this car brings to the table, there are some glaring and irritating short comings.
-No interior trunk release
-No key lock on the passenger door, forcing the driver to have to enter the car, lean over, and unlock the door in order for the passenger to enter.
-No trunk light.
Try finding things in the dark.
-No tachometer (personally I benefit greatly from having a tach on a manual transmission)
-And finally, my biggest gripe is the type of cloth that is used for the car seats themselves. It is simply sub-standard. Nissan could have made a much better choice.
Hair, lint, etc. sticks to the cloth immediately.
Awful! Maybe Scothgarding will help.
Can you get cruise control on this or is it easy to add after market cruise control?
That is the one thing I must have in my commuter car.
Also, what kind of mpg are you getting?
I'm thinking of this as an alternative to the Mazda 3 Sky motor with a stick which gets good MPG but it costs about 5-6 grand more OTD!
Yes, the thin loose fitting charcoal cloth(causing the sedan interior to look like a dark cave with soot covered walls) is asking to be ripped & a major reason for Versa sedan buyers to go one trim level higher, costing a bunch more..... oh, how sneaky of Nissan!
Did I hear right...... the back seats don't fold down in the S?
What was your manual transmission MPG? You said the manual transmission engine noise is quiet? At highway speeds? Must be noisier than the engine with CVT which has very low rpms at high speeds.