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Old 07-16-2022, 06:27 AM   #1
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Nissan Versa Manual 5 Speed as Toad

I am looking at the Nissan Versa manual 5-speed. Fairly low priced, but reading this thread I see no mention of this car. I was hoping to hear some feedback from someone towing this model, maybe I will find something in a search here? Anyhow, My MH has a 5,000lb tow capacity, and I would like to keep my weight as far below that as possible. I never realized how much there was to learn about toads until now! I am hoping to use the brake that is kind or out of sight and doesn't require moving a big box in and out of the car.
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Old 07-16-2022, 03:03 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Patio View Post
I am looking at the Nissan Versa manual 5-speed. Fairly low priced, but reading this thread I see no mention of this car. I was hoping to hear some feedback from someone towing this model, maybe I will find something in a search here? Anyhow, My MH has a 5,000lb tow capacity, and I would like to keep my weight as far below that as possible. I never realized how much there was to learn about toads until now! I am hoping to use the brake that is kind or out of sight and doesn't require moving a big box in and out of the car.
Welcome to the forum.

Yes! Go for it. The Versa is a sleeper. You don't hear about it too often but there are plenty of them being towed behind motorhomes. It's not real popular as a toad as it's flat-towable only with a manual transmission (with clutch pedal) and many RVers do not want to mess with a manual.

The manual is only available on the lowest trim level too so many don't like that either. It's one of the few subcompacts (or any vehicle for that matter) left with a manual transmission for those of us who prefer a clutch pedal. I'm a diehard manual person and have never owned an automatic car or truck and I'm in my 70s.

It would seem to me to be an excellent toad as it's light, 4-doors, inexpensive, good gas mileage, and the 2022 model was awarded by U.S. New & World Report as "Best Subcompact Car" and overall, one of the best cars for the money ...but you know these types of awards mean little to most people. And through its years, it has a better and average reliability. The current model is assembled in a Factory in Aguascalientes Mexico but that shouldn't really be looked at as a detriment as it applies to quality and reliability.

2022 Best Cars for the Money - U.S. New & World Report



Here is a listing of all the threads here on the forum (from a Google listing) that are related to the Versa if you want to go through some of them: GO HERE



Here are the baseplate kits available:

Roadmaster - 2022 Nissan Versa

Blue Ox - 2022 Nissan Versa
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Old 07-16-2022, 04:02 PM   #3
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You might also look at a Chevy Spark. We have one of them, it's a fancier higher trim model with the heated seats and roof rack. We've had ours for a couple of years, been a great little car. 5speed manual version. (Activ)

We bought it because our old gas motorhome was limited to towing 4000#. This car is about 1/2 that. we've towed it about 25,000 miles, and driven it about 15,000 with zero issues so far.
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Old 07-16-2022, 04:40 PM   #4
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I tow a 2020 Chevy Sonic LT Sedan that is an "automatic". One of the few smaller cars (under 3000#) that can be flat towed as an automatic. 4 door sedan with a very large trunk....
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Old 07-16-2022, 05:58 PM   #5
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We have a Hyundai elantra standard shift, I think that's called an anti theft device these days.
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Old 07-16-2022, 06:03 PM   #6
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Ah, I didn't realize when reading your post that you might be looking for any lightweight toad alternative.

Here are the 2022 models that are approved by their manufacturer to be flat-towed behind a motorhome without any major modification that are under 3,000 lbs.:

* Chevy Spark, manual transmission FWD - approximate curb weight 2,266 lbs.
* Kia Forte GT Turbo, DCT or manual transmission FWD - approximate curb weight 2,989 lbs.
* Nissan Versa Sedan, manual transmission FWD - approximate curb weight 2,599 lbs.

...and under 3,500 lbs.:

Buick Encore GX, AWD - approximate curb weight 3,258 lbs.
* Chevy Equinox FWD - approximate curb weight 3,274 lbs.
* Chevy Equinox AWD - approximate curb weight 3,465 lb.s
* Chevy Malibu 2.0L FWD auto - approximate curb weight 3,223 lbs.

The above are, again, those vehicles that are approved by their manufacturer to be flat-towed behind a motorhome. There will be instructions in their owner's manuals as to the procedure or at least the manual will mention "recreational towing" and which models are allowed and the general procedures and precautions. FMCA publishes a list every year and for the 2022 models that are manufacturer approved, you can see them in the following link:

2022 FMCA Towing Lineup (again, factory approved only)


If you are looking for a used vehicle, you can find the FMCA Towing Guides going back to 1999 HERE

There are other that some flat tow that are NOT factory approved but are being successfully towed in certain configurations. You won't see them listed on the FMCA list as they only compile those vehicles that are factory approved. A few lighter vehicles that come to mind are:

Subaru Crosstek AWD, manual transmission
MINI Cooper, FWD manual transmission only
Volkswagen, various models with FWD and manual transmission only
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Old 07-17-2022, 08:31 AM   #7
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I had a manual 2014 Nissan Versa toad. It was a great toad, so light and easy hook up. Only sold it as I was downsizing to one vehicle.
Basically hook up, put in neutral and go.
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Old 07-17-2022, 08:47 AM   #8
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Thanks all for the replies. I should have mentioned the Versa is my no. 1 choice and Spark is no. 2. Both are in the price range (cheap) I am looking for since I will have to buy $3K (depending what I go with maybe less maybe more) on top of the price of the car. The spark needs a batter disconnect or do it manually each time, while the versa does not. Also base spark is crank windows while versa is power.
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Old 07-17-2022, 09:19 AM   #9
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We tow a 2021 Versa and absolutely love it. We have the base model which comes with the standard cruise control - not the adaptive cruise control. We have a Blue Ox baseplate which is only available with the standard cruise control. We had a Mini Cooper S convertible prior to the Versa. I like the roominess and flexibility of the Versa. The Mini Cooper was a pocket rocket but didn't have much room. The Versa has become our go to car for everyday use. It gets 35-42 mpg on regular gas depending on driving conditions. We added a receiver on the back to carry our ebikes.
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Old 07-23-2022, 08:05 AM   #10
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Just bought a 2020 Nissan Versa yesterday and ordered the kit from World Camping Inc.
here

Pretty excited to get started with this install and really glad I am done researching the different braking systems! That was making my head spin. I will try to take pics along the way.
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Old 07-23-2022, 09:30 PM   #11
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Can someone with a 2020 Versa confirm the steering wheel does not lock? I am finding conflicting info regarding this and it just seems odd to me that they would not have a locking wheel, since I thought that was a standard feature. I plan to test this when I get it on the lift and will just move the wheels back and forth several times to verify, but want to ask those that have been doing it. With a key it would be easy, but with push button start it is not so simple.
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Old 07-24-2022, 05:53 AM   #12
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Quote:
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Can someone with a 2020 Versa confirm the steering wheel does not lock? I am finding conflicting info regarding this and it just seems odd to me that they would not have a locking wheel, since I thought that was a standard feature. I plan to test this when I get it on the lift and will just move the wheels back and forth several times to verify, but want to ask those that have been doing it. With a key it would be easy, but with push button start it is not so simple.
On my 14, I had to put the key in, turn to on, then back to off, leave the key in and it did not lock. If I took the key out it would lock.
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Old 07-24-2022, 07:11 AM   #13
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Ah,
Here are the 2022 models that are approved by their manufacturer to be flat-towed behind a motorhome
There are 6 versions of Jeeps, all 4wd, that will also fit a weight requirement of under 5klbs, or less.
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Old 07-24-2022, 02:05 PM   #14
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There are 6 versions of Jeeps, all 4wd, that will also fit a weight requirement of under 5klbs, or less.
True, but I was only going on the assumption that Patio wanted something "LIGHTWEIGHT" ...or as he said even though he has a 5,000 towing capacity "I would like to keep my weight as far below that as possible."

So was just listing those 2022 factory-approved vehicles that are under 3,500 lbs.



The most lightweight 2022 Jeep is 3,875 lbs. according to the FMCA towing guide ...screenshot attached below.
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