Word from CarsDirect is that Nissan will drop the slow-selling Versa Note hatchback at the end of this year. How slow has it been selling? Nissan doesn’t break out sales for the hatchback and sedan separately, but all total the Versa plunged 29 percent last year. As for why the hatchback is being singled out for destruction is unclear, but we reached to Nissan and confirmed that yes, the Note is going bye-bye.
We’ll assume the Note is going away because it can be replaced by one of the automaker’s compact crossovers. The new Kicks immediately comes to mind, or small hatchback buyers could turn some attention to the all-electric Leaf. Both vehicles are more expensive than the Versa Note – the Leaf in particular is nearly twice as much at $29,990 – but both vehicles seem to have a stronger following. Leaf sales climbed 31 percent last year, and though the Kicks only just debuted for 2018, 23,312 copies of the new crossover found homes.
We heard rumors that the Versa Note could be going away last month. Nissan actually sold nearly 76,000 units last year, which isn’t a small number but again, that includes the Note as well as the sedan. Speaking of which, Nissan already has the next-generation Versa on-deck and ready for a launch next week. We’re expecting to see the exterior adopt several design cues from the recently refreshed Altima, along with some added equipment inside to make the subcompact sedan a bit more appealing.
It could be tempting for Nissan to simply pull the plug on the Versa completely, given the continual rise of crossover and SUV sales at the costs of sedans. Ford has left the sedan building in the U.S., and General Motors has a foot out the door. Other automakers have pledged to stay in the segment, however, and for now at least, it seems Nissan is among them.