A week with a Nissan Versa Note

Nissan Versa NoteNo, it’s not a new cell phone. It’s the rental car I got from enterprise last week. My car is in the shop recovering from the deer I hit last week, and the shop offers a 5-day free rental, so I ended up with this Nissan. I must say, it is definitely the oddest vehicle I have ever driven, hands-down. It’s a 2015 model, so it’s brand new, with only just over 3,000 miles on it, but everything about this car is just a little “off” from the norm, or from what I expect in a car. Let me make a list of my complaints to make it easy to follow:

1. First of all, you can’t put gas in it until you find the secret gas-door release lever. Took me a while, but I found it…Under the steering column!

2. On most full-corner turns, the radio station changes. Turns out my fingers tap the radio controls on the steering wheel “just right” when turning corners. Nice.

3. No matter what I did, I could not get my Android phone properly connected to bluetooth to play music through the stereo, and USB would never work for audio either. All I got every time I tried was a “Please check USB device” error on the screen. A friend of mine tried to use the USB jack to charge his iPhone and as soon as he plugged in the USB, HIS music began playing over the stereo just fine! So it works great on Apple devices, but doesn’t work on Android. Are you sure this car isn’t a year 2000 model?? Come on, it’s 2015!

4. The windows kept fogging up on me all week… I couldn’t figure this out until the last day I had the car. In frustration I pulled over on the side of the road, put it in park, and looked REALLY hard for something I knew had to be there: Something to switch between recirculating inside air–which it HAD to be in for it to always fog up like it was doing–and feeding in fresh air. The symbols for these options were dead center on the dash, near the bottom, inset into the surface. But they weren’t buttons, and there was no lever there. When I got desperate and finally crawled down and looked UP at the underside of the dash, there it was–a level that flipped left or right–one way was recirculate, the other was fresh air. I flipped that baby to fresh air, and viola! The windows began to clear up!

5. It takes FOREVER to warm up the cabin in this car, especially just sitting in the driveway in the morning. Driving it doesn’t make it warm up much faster either though. Must be a “green” thing.

6. Every single time you start the car, the AC comes on. Whether it was off when you stopped the car last or not, it ALWAYS comes on when you start the car. No idea why. I didn’t find a setting anywhere to keep this off. Every day was in the 20’s the week I had it, so I certainly never needed the AC at all.

7. The gas guage goes from 0 to 1 – 0 is empty, 1 is full. What happened to E to F?? Does EVERYTHING have to be digital these days?? It either HAS gas (1) or it doesn’t (0). At least there’s still a “1/2” in the middle… though I’m surprised this doesn’t say “0.5”!

Personally, I’m thinking the car turns the AC on just to burn more fuel. The MILEAGE it gets seems to be pretty awesome–which is the only GOOD thing I really have to say about it, so in sticking with the theme, there’d have to be SOMETHING wrong with it getting this kind of mileage…

Author: Jim

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