Nissan will deploy this year its advanced D-Step Shift logic in the CVT versions of the 2015 Versa, Versa Note, Sentra, Altima V-6, Pathfinder and Quest. It was already made available for the 2013 four-cylinder Altima and the 2014 Rogue. More models will be equipped with the D-Step Shift in 2016.
The feature will make CVTs sound and feel less like one by creating a sensation a CVT is shifting gears like a traditional automatic gearbox.
Nissan is currently leading the auto industry in CVT use while responding to critics of the technology, remarked John Curl, Nissan North America regional product manager for small sedans, sports and electric vehicles.
Nissan is also aiming ease owners' worries that their transmissions are malfunctioning when they don’t change gears. A CVT could result to better fuel efficiency and a smoother ride by continuously increasing its gear ratio as the vehicle further accelerates, instead of stepping from gear to gear.
D-Step Shift makes the gearbox to jump ahead slightly in the ratios at around 4,000 rpms, depending on the speed of the vehicle. That causes a slight and momentary drop in driving force as well as provides a sense of a gear changing just like what can be felt a traditional automatic transmission.
A year after the Versa Note was introduced, the Versa Sedan got its much needed makeover in 2015. Changes range from the front and rear fascias, interior upgrades, new grade level and packaging content, as well as new Bluetooth Hands-free Phone System. But after all the improvements, the price remains unchanged at $11,990.
The Versa Sedan is Nissan’s entry level model for their dynamic lineup, and it is marketed towards new car buyers according to the VP of Product Planning, Pierre Loing. It was also very important to give the Versa a fresh look while keeping its value equation high.
As mentioned earlier, the 2015 Versa Sedan went through both exterior and interior changes. The most noticeable change can be seen in the front with its larger set of headlights and chrome plating on the grille. This look reminds us of its siblings - the Sentra, Altima and Maxima.
Apart from those, it also got new side mirror designs for SV and SL trims, a new fog light finisher design, and a more dynamic rear fascia design. It also got a 15-inch V-spoke aluminum alloy wheel design that’s exclusive to the Versa Sedan.
Loing said that “while keeping Versa Sedan’s efficient dimensions and packaging intact, the enhancements to the exterior give it a stronger, more contemporary presence.”