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Nissan Versa among most inexpensive cars

April 26, 2012 12:00:00 AM PDT
The average price of a new car this year is right around $30,000. If you're looking to spend a lot less, you can.

The base model of the Nissan Versa is one of the lowest-priced cars on the market today at just under $11,000. The one with the optional automatic transmission is priced at just over $13,000.

Air conditioning is standard. Nissan figured everyone wants that anyway these days, and there's a basic sound system. That's about the end of what you get.

You'll soon discover what you don't get, especially compared to most modern cars. Everything is manual. The old-school key has to go in the slot. There's no remote, no electric door locks, and manual windows require hand cranking.

There are no electric mirrors either, and the right side one is a bit of a reach to adjust. But that aside, the Versa is a very roomy car, and even has a pretty sleek design.

There is a surprising number of other cars that can be purchased for well under $15,000. Hyundai's new Accent starts at $12,500, and the Kia Rio has a base price of about $1,000 more. There's also the Chevy Sonic, which starts at around $14,000.

There's not much profit for car companies in this low-price arena, but it's a good way to get people into a brand. Compared to inexpensive cars from a decade or two ago, they're way safer with things like airbags and stability control.

Sure, cars like these may not have much in the way of luxury, but they will do something well: get you from point A to point B.

See photos of these inexpensive cars.


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