A giddy Nissan Motors jumped a quick gun in proclaiming its all-new 2012 Nissan Versa sedan as the best-selling subcompact in its segment. There should be a very large asterisk on the press release it distributed, though.
Selling 8566 of the subcompact cars, Nissan’s Versa most definitely took August’s crown. However, the company attributes its success to its new sedan, which isn’t completely the case. Selling alongside a yet-to-be-redesigned Versa five-door hatchback, Nissan’s smallest offering owes some credit to the older car.
“We launched the new Versa Sedan from a position of strength, with Versa holding a substantial lead in subcompact sales for the 2011 calendar year, and August sales up 14.9 percent over the previous year,” said an excitable Al Castignetti, vice president and general manager, Nissan Division, Nissan North America in a statement.
What he forgot to mention though, is that the Kia Soul is in the same subcompact wagon class as the Versa hatchback. Selling 6885 of the funky, boxy vehicles last month, Kia pushed its to-date total to 72,003 Kia Souls through August. Compare that to the 59,811 Versas Nissan dealers have sent home with happy customers, and the disparity begins to arise.
We know selling cars is a tough business, having customers part with tens of thousands of dollars for new cars. Any advantage an automaker can get it should probably take, and while the temptation to sweeten the numbers is undeniably strong, we hope Nissan adds a little less fudge next time around.
Sources: Nissan, Kia