2013 Nissan Versa Review
2013 Nissan Versa Review
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Edmunds' Expert Review
by the Edmunds Experts
- Roomy interior with an adult-friendly backseat
- low base price
- comfortable ride
- many available convenience features
- large trunk
- high fuel economy with CVT.
- Bland performance and driving dynamics
- no telescoping steering wheel
- sedan-only body style
- erratic shifting with CVT.
The 2013 Nissan Versa sedan is now even more fuel-efficient when equipped with the continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT). The hatchback body style is dropped for this year. There are also a number of new additions to the standard features and options lists.
The 2013 Nissan Versa sedan provides simple, spacious and inexpensive transportation.
Calculate my fuel costs
Cost to DriveCost to drive estimates for the 2013 Nissan Versa 1.6 SV 4dr Sedan (1.6L 4cyl CVT) and comparison vehicles are based on 15,000 miles per year (with a mix of 55% city and 45% highway driving) and energy estimates of $3.32 per gallon for regular unleaded in Virginia.
Monthly estimates based on costs in Virginia
Versa 1.6 SV
Avg. Compact Car
The Nissan Versa has been a popular choice for a subcompact, and last year's complete redesign bodes well for the Versa's future. In addition to last year's upgrades, which included a roomier interior and a higher level of overall refinement, the 2013 model gets a number of new standard features and options.
Unfortunately the Versa lineup loses the practical four-door hatchback body style for 2013, though an all-new 2014 version is expected by the end of the year. That leaves the Versa sedan to carry on alone with powertrain tweaks that boost EPA fuel economy estimates to 40 mpg highway on models fitted with the CVT. Performance and handling are unspectacular, though that likely won't be a big issue for most buyers looking for affordable transportation.
Naturally, there are some other great choices for a subcompact this year, including the 2013 Chevry Sonic, 2013 Ford Fiesta and 2013 Hyundai Accent. Compared to the Versa, the Fiesta and Sonic are more enjoyable to drive, while the Accent is cheaper when comparably equipped. We'd certainly recommend looking at these other models, but if simple and inexpensive transportation is your goal, the 2013 Nissan Versa should work out well.
Performance & mpg
The 2013 Nissan Versa is powered by a 1.6-liter four-cylinder that produces 109 horsepower and 107 pound-feet of torque. A five-speed manual transmission is standard on the S, with a four-speed automatic being optional. A CVT is standard on all other Versas.
In Edmunds performance testing, the Versa sedan went from zero to 60 mph in 10.4 seconds with the CVT, which is average for this class of car. EPA estimated fuel economy stands at an excellent 31 mpg city/40 mpg highway and 35 mpg combined, though most other competitors have similar numbers. With the standard five-speed manual transmission those numbers dip to 27/36/30. The automatic is even lower at 26/35/30.
The 2013 Nissan Versa comes standard with antilock brakes (front disc, rear drum), traction and stability control, front-seat side airbags and full-length side curtain airbags. In Edmunds brake testing, a Versa SL sedan came to a stop from 60 mph in 128 feet, which is a respectable distance for a car in this class.
In crash tests by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the Versa sedan received four out of five stars for overall crash protection, with three stars for frontal-impact protection and four stars for side-impact protection. In Insurance Institute for Highway Safety tests, the Versa sedan earned a top rating of "Good" in frontal-offset, side and roof strength tests.
On the road, the 2013 Nissan Versa's 1.6-liter engine is pretty unremarkable, but acceleration should be sufficient for most buyers. This year's fuel economy boost -- up to 40 mpg in CVT-equipped models -- makes it one of the thriftiest non-hybrid models on the road.
The CVT delivers a smooth driving experience around town, but at highway speeds it will occasionally search for its ideal ratio if you abruptly change the throttle input and you'll feel as if the power is surging.
The Versa's suspension is tuned for comfort and the result is a smooth ride quality that many subcompact models just can't match. Of course there's a price to be paid for this, namely uninspiring handling compared to most of its competitors.
The first thing that strikes you about the 2013 Nissan Versa's passenger cabin is the roominess. Nowhere is this more evident than in the backseat, where even tall adults will find a surprisingly good amount of legroom. Even the trunk is big for a car this size, with 14.8 cubic feet of cargo space available even before folding down the 60/40-split rear seatbacks that are available on SV and SL models.
Up front, the seats are fine for short hops but comfort begins to wane on longer drives. Taller drivers might find it hard to achieve a comfortable position due to the lack of a telescoping steering wheel. Gauges and controls are well-placed and intuitive, and the availability of desirable features like keyless ignition/entry and a rearview camera are a nice touch for a car with a sub-$20,000 sticker price.
2013 Nissan Versa models
The 2013 Nissan Versa sedan is offered in three trim levels: S, SV and SL.
The entry-level S model is pretty bare bones, with 15-inch steel wheels, air-conditioning, cloth upholstery, a height-adjustable driver seat, a trip computer and a two-speaker sound system with a CD player and an auxiliary audio input jack. An S Plus package adds the CVT, a rear spoiler, cruise control and two rear speakers.
Stepping up to the SV model gets you keyless entry, upgraded upholstery and gauges, cloth door trim and full power accessories. The SV Convenience package adds a 60/40-split-folding rear seat, Bluetooth, steering wheel audio controls and an iPod interface.
The Versa SL sedan gets 15-inch alloy wheels, foglights, keyless ignition/entry and the contents of the SV Convenience package. The SL Tech package adds a navigation system, a compact touchscreen interface, a rearview camera and satellite radio.
Read what other owners think about the Used 2013 Nissan Versa.
3.2 out of 5 stars
Most helpful consumer reviews
4 out of 5 stars
Nissan Versa SL
2013 Nissan Versa 1.6 SL 4dr Sedan (1.6L 4cyl CVT)
Bought a Nissan Versa SL. The cabin has more than enough space for four passengers, as well as providing comfortable seats. The interior is completely made of hard plastic, make sure your foot doesn't hit the door on the way out. The 1.6L engine is adequate around town and really does sip gas. On the highway, there's tons of wind noise, and the CVT, while providing smooth acceleration … and excellent fuel economy, can be heard at any speed. Don't be fooled by the 109 hp rating, the car has more than enough get up and go. Excellent visibility all-around, smooth ride.
2 out of 5 stars
Ashley E., 07/28/2016
2012 Nissan Versa 1.6 SV 4dr Sedan (1.6L 4cyl CVT)
My 2012 Nissan Versa Sedan has 101k miles and the transmission is bad. I have researched and have seen where older Versa models were covered under an extended CVT warranty due to premature transmission failure. Why is this not the case for the 2012? It is completely unacceptable that a 5 year old car bought brand new, maintenanced regularly has a bad transmission. It made me stall and … have no power or ability to accelerate in the middle of a busy intersection! It has done this 3 times! My children were in the car! Completely unacceptable. This is dangerous. The CVT is very poorly designed and very unreliable, not to mention dangerous. The Versa has been one problem after another. We had to replace the fuel pump at 60k mileage! That is absolutely ridiculous! This car is extremely poor designed and Nissan is no help, and does not back up its cars. Nissan is not reliable as they were once were in regards to quality and reliability. Extremely disappointed.
1 out of 5 stars
DO NOT PURCHASE VERSA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
2012 Nissan Versa 1.6 SV 4dr Sedan (1.6L 4cyl CVT)
I went to trade in my 2001 Ford Explorer for a more fuel efficient vehicle. The dealership showed me was the 2012 Nissan Versa SV Sedan with the CVT transmission. I loved the look of the car, the price was alright, mileage was great, and as I test drove it around the block it seemed to drive wonderfully. The day after I purchased the Versa, I noticed when driving it was acting funny. As … I was accelerating, it acted like it didn't want to go. It lagged terribly and made this odd noise under the hood. I immediately took it to the dealership and asked them to please drive it because it seemed something was wrong. They told me that it was because I was not custom to driving with a CVT transmisson and sent me on. The same thing continued and I kept telling myself I needed to just get used to driving it. A couple months go by and I begin to notice when I am parked or sitting at a light, the entire car will vibrate all over along with this rattle noise. I took it to the dealership and told them about the issues during my service appointment and they gave me the same run around. So I let it go to see if maybe I was still freaking out for no reason. A few more months go by and the acceleration was getting worse and worse. It got to where it took about 3 to 5 seconds for the car to accelerate from a stop, the vibration when idle became worse and louder, and a loud hum noise began to come from the car. I had my service due in a few weeks so I was going to mention it all again then but my visits became early. As I was accelerating from a two-way stop (I was at the stop sign). I saw to my right that nothing was coming and to my left, there was an 18 wheeler coming. I had more than enough time to go on and go. As I did, my car stalled as usual and shut off completely in the middle of the intersection causing the 18 wheeler to drive into the ditch!!! No one was hurt thankfully but it was dangerous! I immediately the nex day went straight to the dealership and told them something had t be done! I wanted a trade in and they wouldn't do this. They suggested fixing the transmission (finally). I was given a rental car for the three weeks it took them to replace my transmission with a new one (@ 74,000 miles). This past Thursday afternoon (3/23/17) I was told my car was ready to be picked up. I went up there to pick it up and immediately as I drive out of the dealership, I notice that the vibration is still there, the humming noise, the brakes acted like they didn't want to work (jerking motion), and the acceleration is better but not perfect. I called my mother and told her that the car is still doing the same things and that I am going back up there tomorrow (Friday... 3/24/17). My mother and I went up there the next morning very angry and upset telling them the same things were still happening and everyone seemed to be getting pissed with us. We were told that the transmission had been fixed and nothing is wrong with my car. I was told that it was in my head and I was worrying for no reason. I overheard a salesman say that we were just looking to trade because I wanted a new car. I had a technician drive the car with me because they suggested him to do so. However, no one would listen to me and drive the car longer than 2 mins around the block. You had to drive it about ten minutes to start to hear the humming sound and feel the vibrations. I became very upset and left because we were just getting the run around AGAIN! Well, as I am driving the rest of the day, the hum noise becomes worse and worse! At about 11:30 pm that Friday night, I am driving home from clinicals and not even a mile from my house, I begin to hear an awful clanking noise coming from under the car and I could feel it in the floorboard. I thought it would be okay til I get home because I was so close. I had one stop sign to stop at before getting to my house. As I accelerate from the stop sign, the hum and clank noise become louder and louder and I notice my car is veering the right. No matter how much I turn my steering wheel to the left, it will not go to the left. I immediately try to brake and the car acts like it does not want to brake. It jerks and is still going to the right. I get down to about 20 miles per hour and I am going off onto the side of the road and finally, I stop by hitting a speed limit sign! I called my mother freaking out asking her to come down the road. We called the sheriff department and wrecker service to come out there. I didn't turn the car off when I got out just because I didn't think about it. As my mother and I are standing out there waiting for them to arrive, we start to hear this loud fan type noise coming from under the hood and see a slight glimpse of smoke. We immediately turned the car off! Now, my car is at the body shop and we are going to the dealership first thing when they open on Monday! PLEASE DO NOT BUY A VERSA!!!!!! I am not the only person I know who has had this type of issue go on with their Versa.
5 out of 5 stars
Great Little Car
Harry Ward, 10/14/2017
2013 Nissan Versa 1.6 S Plus 4dr Sedan (1.6L 4cyl CVT)
At 72 I've driven most car brands since getting my license at 16 -- and this Versa is right at the top for value. Not doing rabbit starts or slamming on the brakes lets me get 40-43 MPG. It is not as luxurious as my old Mercedes -- but adequate and comfortable. I am the original owner and have 68,500 miles on my Versa; and have had zero mechanical problems. I bought a basic maintenance … plan (and have a lifetime power-train warranty), but have only changed a set of tires, wiper blades, & front brake pads -- nothing else except fluid(s) and filter(s) changes. The car has all the options except heated seats and navigation. (Google maps is a lot cheaper.) This should be my last car until I'm buried, and that's just perfect for me! UPDATE: 10,000 more miles since my last update and still very happy! UPDATE: Over 100,000 miles now and still very happy! My mechanic says that I'll start to do more serious maintenance around 120,000 miles -- normal wear and tear. I'll install my third set of tires in a few months. It's a great car and I'm still planning on keeping it a long time! UPDATE: still running great. Finally had to change the spark plugs. Just had my 7 year checkup to keep my lifetime powertrain warranty current (never had to use it yet), but haven't had to put on the second set of tires yet. I'll update again later. UPDATE: 111K now, installed new tires, and the Versa just keeps rolling along. Still have zero major (or minor) problems. My basic maintenance plan keeps me regular with oil changes & checkups (3,500 miles/ 3 months). Mileage still over 40 mpg. I enjoy inexpensive & reliable travel -- and intend on keeping it so! UPDATE: Now over 120K and still going strong. Time for my second 60K mile CVT tuneup -- no problems there. Have zero to complain about yet. GREAT car! UPDATE: 138K now and everything is still running great. Changed brake pads, rotate the tires regularly. Mileage still 40+, which is fabulous for over $4 gasoline. It's still a winner! UPDATE: 150K now and still could not be happier. Faithfully doing the regular scheduled maintenance does the job -- both for the Versa and this 77 year old guy!
We have a limited number of reviews for the 2013 Nissan Versa, so we've included reviews for other years of the Versa since its last redesign.
Features & Specs
- Base MSRP
- MPG & Fuel
- 27 City / 36 Hwy / 30 Combined
- Fuel Tank Capacity: 10.8 gal. capacity
- 5 seats
- Type: front wheel drive
- Transmission: 5-speed manual
- Inline 4 cylinder
- Horsepower: 109 hp @ 6,000 rpm
- Torque: 107 lb-ft @ 4,400 rpm
- Basic Warranty
- 3 yr./ 36,000 mi.
- Length: 175.4 in. / Height: 59.6 in.
- Overall Width without Mirrors: 66.7 in.
- Curb Weight: 2,354 lbs.
- Cargo Capacity, All Seats In Place: 14.9 cu.ft.
NHTSA Overall Rating4 out of 5 stars
The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
- Frontal Barrier Crash RatingOverall3 / 5Driver4 / 5Passenger3 / 5
- Side Crash RatingOverall4 / 5
- Side Barrier RatingOverall3 / 5Driver3 / 5Passenger4 / 5
- Combined Side Barrier & Pole RatingsFront Seat4 / 5Back Seat4 / 5
- RolloverRollover4 / 5Dynamic Test ResultNo TipRisk Of Rollover14.7%
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
- Side Impact TestGood
- Roof Strength TestGood
- Rear Crash Protection / Head RestraintGood
- IIHS Small Overlap Front TestNot Tested
- Moderate Overlap Front TestGood
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More about the 2013 Nissan Versa
Used 2013 Nissan Versa Overview
The Used 2013 Nissan Versa is offered in the following submodels: Versa Sedan. Available styles include 1.6 SV 4dr Sedan (1.6L 4cyl CVT), 1.6 S 4dr Sedan (1.6L 4cyl 4A), 1.6 S Plus 4dr Sedan (1.6L 4cyl CVT), 1.6 S 4dr Sedan (1.6L 4cyl 5M), and 1.6 SL 4dr Sedan (1.6L 4cyl CVT). Pre-owned Nissan Versa models are available with a 1.6 L-liter gas engine, with output up to 109 hp, depending on engine type. The Used 2013 Nissan Versa comes with front wheel drive. Available transmissions include: continuously variable-speed automatic, 4-speed automatic.
What's a good price on a Used 2013 Nissan Versa?
Price comparisons for Used 2013 Nissan Versa trim styles:
- The Used 2013 Nissan Versa 1.6 SV is priced between $11,590 and$11,998 with odometer readings between 87851 and125397 miles.
- The Used 2013 Nissan Versa 1.6 S is priced between $10,990 and$14,998 with odometer readings between 37582 and74870 miles.
- The Used 2013 Nissan Versa 1.6 S Plus is priced between $9,995 and$9,995 with odometer readings between 66277 and66277 miles.
Shop with Edmunds for perks and special offers on used cars, trucks, and SUVs near Ashburn, VA. Doing so could save you hundreds or thousands of dollars. Edmunds also provides consumer-driven dealership sales and service reviews to help you make informed decisions about what cars to buy and where to buy them.
Which used 2013 Nissan Versas are available in my area?
Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap new, used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 2013 Nissan Versa for sale near. There are currently 6 used and CPO 2013 Versas listed for sale in your area, with list prices as low as $9,995 and mileage as low as 37582 miles. Simply research the type of car you're interested in and then select a used car from our massive database to find cheap prew-owned vehicles for sale near you. Once you have identified a used vehicle you're interested in, check the AutoCheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the Used 2013 Nissan Versa.
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Should I lease or buy a 2013 Nissan Versa?
Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.
Check out Nissan lease specials
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