Exit Interview

So in 2016 I bought a 2015 Nissan Versa.

It was brand new, at least.


It was a purchase of necessity; the “least expensive new car in America.” It was the base model, manual transmission, no frills kind of thing. I can’t fault it for not being exciting, really. It was designed to perform a specific function at a minimal level, but would never aspire to do anything exceptional.


Overall, I liked it well enough to put 28,000 miles on it over three years, which included a trip out of state totaling 1,100 miles over four days.

The Versa’s 1.6 liter engine produced 109 horsepower and the total curb weight was only about 2360 pounds, but the engine had to wind itself out to nearly 4k RPM to feel like it was even a little bit motivated to get out of its own way. So acceleration was weak in general, but passing on the highway was out of the question even if the offending vehicle was doing a mere 45 MPH. The incredibly light weight also made the vehicle a bit unruly on snow or in windy conditions. Pretty much every benefit of being front wheel drive was negated by it’s minimalist weight and diminutive power output.

Fuel economy was a respectable 34.41 MPG over the three years I owned it, at least, and the total cost of ownership for the period was $15,908.51 (57 cents per mile, or $13.87 per day).

I had a number of relatively minor complaints over the duration of my time with the car, but it was reliable enough (as a new car should be, I suppose). I probably would have kept going with it another year or two if I hadn’t suffered a knee injury in the summer of 2018. The discomfort associated with working the clutch pedal was sufficient excuse to move on to something else.

It was time to get back into something I could feel a bit passionate about. It didn’t have to be anything beyond the bounds of reason, but it absolutely had to be able to compete aggressively with the daily commute.

I made the determination that it was time to ride a Mustang once again.



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