Value Menu: Nissan Slaps a Low Price on 2018 Kicks

Matthew Guy
by Matthew Guy

Replacing the toenails-for-turn-signals Juke, Nissan created the Kicks and has been showing it off for some time now. Scheduled to appear on dealer lots later this spring, the company has been mum on pricing, no doubt in an effort to not show its hand in the murderously competitive subcompact crossover segment.

The Canadian arm of the company apparently has no such concerns, releasing pricing details this morning for that market. Safe to say, Nissan is angling for the budget crown, as its base price of $17,995 undercuts its competitors in the land of maple syrup and hockey sticks.

Three familiar trims will comprise the front-drive-only Kicks family, from base S to volume-leader SV and sport-themed SR. I say “themed” because the same powertrain team is offered across the board: a 1.6-litre DOHC 16-valve four-cylinder making 125 horsepower and 115 lb-ft of torque. Hooked to the company’s Xtronic transmission, highway fuel economy is rated at 35 mpg.

“The new Kicks is designed to fit the needs of singles or couples looking for expressive styling, personal technology, smart functionality and advanced safety features at an affordable price starting under $18,000 CAD,” said Scott Pak, a senior manager in product planning at Nissan Canada.

Emergency braking and a rear-view monitor will be available on all Canadian trims, as are seven airbags and an infotainment system featuring the latest toys. While American content levels haven’t officially been released, a quick perusal of Kicks propaganda on that country’s Nissan website reveals a promise of similar equipment.

It’s natural to assume that any new car will be cheaper in America, but Nissan has a history of bucking that norm. The 370Z, which is in production for its 342nd year, stickers at $29,998 in Canada and $29,990 in the States. Content levels and powertrain options are all but identical. With this in mind, your humble author thinks the Canadian price point is a reasonable ballpark for the American Monroney, as well.

If so, it would certainly undercut its rivals. Like-for-like, the Kicks price is $2,000 less than the base Qashqai Rogue Sport, a machine advertised for $19,995 in the Great White North. Customers stateside see an MSRP of $22,110. Perhaps they’re paying extra for a name that is not inscrutable.

At other showrooms in Canada, customers will pay more for similarly sized machines. The alarming Toyota C-HR starts at $24,750, while a base EcoSport will hack your life for $22,099. If that pricing gulf carries over to America, there’s every reason to think the Kicks will post strong sales numbers and take a piece of the subcompact crossover pie in short order. Its non-alien styling will probably help, too.

Canadians will be able to get their Kicks in June. We’ll keep our ear to the ground for American pricing.

[Images: Nissan]

Matthew Guy
Matthew Guy

Matthew buys, sells, fixes, & races cars. As a human index of auto & auction knowledge, he is fond of making money and offering loud opinions.

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2 of 17 comments
  • Carrera Carrera on Apr 28, 2018

    Infinitely better looking that the Juke.

  • Jcisne Jcisne on Apr 29, 2018

    342 years making the 370Z? That's a record. 17th century drivers surely must have had a hard time finding suitable roads for their 370Z.

  • Wjtinfwb Two years? Biden's been occupying space in the Oval office for 3.5 years. And has spent 5 billion on EV chargers with less than 10 to show for it so far. And an additional 2.5 Billion earmarked for the technology, which has demonstrated zero advance in range or charging speed beyond what Tesla demonstrated with the Level III Superchargers. I'll choose not to get any more personal than that, as the Wall, Mexico and Trump have absolutely zero to do with Biden's lying and outrageous claims.
  • Zerofoo According to some here, there is zero demand for these sorts of vehicles, because the are not EVs....or Tellurides.....or something.
  • Zerofoo Personally, I'm waiting for Henrik Fisker's 3rd car company. I'm sure by then, all the charging limitations, and the financials of EVs will have been worked out by then.
  • Kars This article was about Ford not Tesla - you are clearly confused.
  • Ollicat Those are individual charging stations vs entire gas stations that have 8 - 16 pumps. And gas stations take 3 minutes to fill vs 30 min to hours for a charging station. And gas pumps are much more likely to be working vs charging statins. Nice try with more propaganda though.