US: Nissan promises Note-like Versa hatchback
The second generation Tiida hatchback unveiled in Shanghai last year
A variant of the new Nissan Note, built on the same global V-platform, will eventually replace the current North American Versa hatchback, the automaker's US unit said. The future of models sold in other markets, badged Tiida, was not addressed in the US announcement.
"As a part of Nissan North America's offensive of five new models in 15 months, the sub-compact Versa hatchback will receive a fresh new look that takes design cues from the new Note," Nissan North America said.
The Note "hints at the design direction for the next Versa hatchback to be sold in the Americas. Both are based on the company's global V-platform, but the Versa will embrace features tailored to its markets in North and South America. More details about the future Versa hatchback will be available closer to its launch."
The current Versa family - pitched below the Sentra - includes second generation sedan and first generation hatchback versions in the US and leads the sub-compact market with 60,919 sales thus far in 2012, outselling its nearest competitors, Honda Fit [Jazz], Hyundai Accent and Ford Fiesta for more than a 22% share of the segment.
Previous generation Tiida/Versa models were built on the B platform. Second generation models were unveiled last year at the Shanghai (Tiida) and New York (Versa) motor shows with the sedan version now based on the Micra. It was shown in China as a Sunny and will be sold in Australia from August as the Almera, a name used in eastern Europe for previous generation Tiida sedan models, alongside the older Tiida hatchback.
The redesigned sedan, built in Mexico, was launched in the US for the 2012 model year and has just been updated with improved fuel economy for its 1.6-litre engine. Release date for the 2013 hatchback has not been announced but US publications expect it will be within a year and also made in Mexico.