November Sales Snapshot: Subcompacts

Paul Niedermeyer
by Paul Niedermeyer

Are you surprised that the Versa is the segment leader? It does offer a roomy versatile package for the buck. And it reflects the reality of 2009: maximum utility for minimum price. The Fit’s a bit pricey, and is coming off a stellar 2008. The Accent and Rio’s sales combined would make the true subcompact leader, not surprisingly. Their success can be seen in the Yaris’ less-than stellar numbers. Aveo is a perpetual laggard. Mini got hit hard recently, but not as bad as Smart, which is really smarting. Chart follows:

Ranking by YTDNovember 09 Sales% changeYTD Sales% changeNissan Versa555423%76097-5%Hyundai Accent383193%6393732%Honda Fit3570-21%62745-16%Toyota Yaris3557-15%58726-40%MINI2564-44%41736-17%Chevy Aveo2212-28%35157-34%Kia Rio349664%30734-12%Smart649-66%13731-38%Scion xD822-36%13531-49%
Paul Niedermeyer
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  • Brettc Brettc on Dec 09, 2009

    According to the Ford site, the Fiesta comes with rear drum brakes. 2010 is less than a month away, right? I don't think it's 1990 anymore. I can spend a little bit more money ($2999) and get a Golf TDI that has a lot more standard features, a 6 speed transmission, better fuel economy and rear discs. And here I was somewhat interested in the Fiesta. If they're skimping on brake components, I don't want to know what other corners have been cut.

    • Rnc Rnc on Dec 09, 2009

      You're using a comparison of convenience that isn't apples to apples. For the $13k base model yes it has drum brakes, most people spending $13k on a car aren't to worried about the brakes (and would be quite impressed with what ford is offering for that price). Now the four door TDI on the VW site starts at $23k, thats a alittle bit more than $3k (actually $10k or so) so yes I would expect to have a few more standard features. Price the fiesta to $23k and then do the comparison.

  • Psarhjinian Psarhjinian on Dec 09, 2009
    Nissan must be doing something right The Versa and Cube are huge inside, and we're not talking Chevy Impala/Ford Crown Vic huge, where the space is compromised by a chopped roofline, low and badly angled seats, intrusive consoles and a steering wheel that leaves a few inches of clearance between itself the seat. They're big in ways that fit actual people---especially anyone much taller than average---and the seating is very comfortable, with a high hip point and a good angle for support. I bought a Fit, mostly because of the cargo space, but I would have bought a Cube were it available at the time and it was a real toss-up between the Fit and Versa and I'm not always sure I made the right choice. Kudos to Nissan for building cars that are practical and comfortable, rather than Lutzian pseudo-coupes.
  • Steven Lang Steven Lang on Dec 09, 2009

    I've been telling folks about the Versa being the best in class for about three years now.

    We had a 2008 Fit. If you're mostly in town it's excellent. But as family hauler or highway runner, the Versa is a better offering.

    You could have bought a Nissan Versa S during the early C4C phase for about $7500 + tax, tag and title. That was definitely the new car deal of the decade.

    A base Versa for $5500 during that time? Naaahhh... Not unless you're from the North Country.

  • Obbop Obbop on Dec 09, 2009

    "Too bulbous (that describes my head), and a lot of the “cute” factor went away (cute is something I lack and lacked. Even as a tyke I was ugly. Sniff). Does that make me "fit"? "Trim" doesn't apply. My morale just plummeted. Sniff