100 Days of Wicked Hot
Sonora Nissan's Official Blog


An article by Jonathan Welsh on Wall Street Journal Blogs, talks about a new survey done by auto industry researcher TrueCar.
“Still irresistible after all these years, the Volkswagen Beetle is the top car among women. Following closely are the Nissan Rogue and Hyundai Tucson compact SUVs and Volkswagen Eos convertible, according to a new survey.”
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“Spy shots have emerged of a Leaf prototype being tested on Arizona roads. The photos published on the Nissan-LEAF fansite were captured by an electric vehicle fan in Arizona. The Leaf on the roads is identical to the vehicle that’s been shown at auto shows around the world, with tape obscuring only the Nissan logo on the front charging port door in the nose.”
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Japan, June 11 (Reuters) – Nissan Motor Co on Friday kicked off a week-long test-drive event for its Leaf electric car, saying it had a combined 20,000 orders in Japan and the United States six months before the car goes on sale.

Japan’s No.3 automaker is inviting 500 journalists, shareholders, government officials, and some customers who have placed reservations to drive the five-seater hatchback at its test track near Tokyo in an exclusive preview through June 19.
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Nikki Gordon-Bloomfield over at www.allcarselectric.com wrote a very interesting article about how the Nissan Leaf would appeal to Mac users, while the Chevy Volt would appeal to PC users.

“Mac users tend to choose Apple products because of stylish design, ease of use and a one-stop shop when things go wrong. Mac users don’t mind being different and quite often seek opportunities to stand out from the crowd. And they pay a premium for the privilege.

In contrast, many PC users will take cues from the business world. They want something which looks smart, but which conforms. It runs the software they know and the rest of the world will understand when they need help.”

Click here to read more!


Nissan North America, Inc. (NNA) today announced U.S. pricing for the 2011 Nissan Versa Sedan and Versa Hatchback, which are on sale now at Nissan dealers nationwide. With a starting Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price* (MSRP) of just $9,990 USD – unchanged from 2009 – the Versa Sedan 1.6 Base retains its position as one of the lowest priced new cars available in the United States market.
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At the recent Apple Worldwide Developer’s Conference, Steve Jobs unveiled the new iAd for the Nissan Leaf!

“What I like about these ads are their interactivity. Jobs illustrates this using a graph that shows how far the Leaf will travel on $1 worth of electricity versus other popular cars on 1$ of gas. The result is comical particularly when comparing a Nissan Leaf to a Hummer.”

Click here to read the whole article!
This article was by Chris Stenberg on chrisstenberg.com.


Found two interesting test drive reviews that help you get a better feel for the new 2011 Nissan Juke!

The first review is by Erin Riches, Senior Editor at Inside Line.

“The Juke is a new crossover priced right around $20,000. It’s based on Nissan-Renault’s global B-segment platform architecture, and it’s a practical vehicle suitable for carrying beagles and particle-board bookshelves. But there’s also an edgier side to the 2011 Nissan Juke. It has a turbocharged, direct-injected 1.6-liter inline-4 that’s rated at an estimated 180 horsepower, and the result is some surprising pop off the line.”

To read more, go to www.insideline.com

The second review is from Motortrend.com

“Penned at Nissan’s European design studio, inspired by the Qazana concept, and built at Nissan’s Oppama, Japan, assembly plant, the Juke boasts audacious styling, with exaggerated, arched fenders, curvaceous, Volvo C30-esque taillamps, and a rally-style front end with bumper-integrated headlamps. The rear door handles are “hidden” for a coupelike appearance, and 17-inch wheels are standard. Whether you find the Juke’s look appealing or appalling, there’s no denying that it’s eye-popping.”

To read more, go to www.motortrend.com

hands on steering wheel
Photo courtesy Edmunds.com. Taken by Scott Jacobs
The test drive plays a pivotal role in car buying.

Before you start thinking about fun thing­s like whether you want a convertible or a sports car, you need to do some self-examination. First and foremost, you need to examine your budget. You should set a reasonable price range for the car and begin to eliminate cars that are out of that price range. As a potential car buyer, you need to be realistic, don’t fantasize about a $45,000 car when your budget will just barely support a $22,000 price-tag. Also, remember that trying to figure out a way to buy a car that is outside your price range is really not a good idea. After all, it’s not much fun to have a car if you can’t afford to go places in it.

You also need to know about your own credit history. If there’s something that you think the dealer will ask, that’s certainly something you should be prepared to answer. Many of the promotions that you see on television are reserved just for people with excellent credit. So having a copy of your own credit report is important. There are a variety of places to obtain a copy of your credit report. All of the three large national credit bureaus — Equifax, Experian and TransUnion — offer single reports and packages from their Web sites. A copy of your report costs $9 plus any taxes, shipping and/or handling charges. You can even get 3-in-1 reports, showing your credit history as reported by all three major credit reporting agencies. For example, the 3-in-1 package available from the Equifax Web site currently costs $29.95.

Finally, you need to know what your automobile needs are:

  • Do you need to haul heavy equipment? You may want to think about a pick-up truck.
  • Do you have a sizeable family or head up a carpool? You may want to think about a minivan, wagon or large sport utility vehicle (SUV).
  • Do you live in an area where you need four-wheel drive? You may want to think about an SUV with all-wheel or four-wheel drive.
  • Do you travel far or use the car rarely? If you log a lot of miles, you may want to research cars that get good gas mileage, like a hybrid car.
  • Do you have a towing requirement — perhaps you need to tow a horse trailer or a boat? You may want to consider a heavy-duty pick-up truck or an SUV with a towing package.

There’s a vast amount of choices for today’s car buyer. Knowing what your autom­obile needs are is the easiest way to begin eliminating some of those options. Eventually, with some additional research, you should be able to narrow the field down considerably.

When you figure out what car you want (or what cars you want to check out up-close-and-personal — think “test-drive”), there are some things you want to learn about the car(s) so that you can get the best deal possible when you’re ready to buy. You will need to know the average price of the car, so you won’t overpay. You can get a good idea of the base price (the price of the car without any special options) by visiting different dealerships and comparing prices and by using the Internet to get price quotes. You should also get an idea of how much the dealer will add on for various options like air conditioning, a cd player or anti-lock brakes. If you can, try to find out what the dealer price is and negotiate up from that figure. According to ConsumerReports, it’s actually a lot better to do it that way as opposed to working from the sticker-price down.

In addition to visiting dealerships to do your research, you should also be reading car reviews in magazines and online. You can learn which cars are given high marks for safety, which cars get the best gas mileage, and so on. Once you’ve narrowed your list down to a few possibilities, you should read as many reviews on those makes and models as you can. Some good places to look for both professional and consumer car reviews are:

­Another good way to find out about a car is by simply asking your family, friends, co-workers and neighbors. Among all these people, you’re bound to find someone that drives or has driven the make or model you’re researching.

Finally, if you plan to trade in a car you already own, you want to know the price of your trade-in. Remember that some car dealers make big money paying you way too little for your trade-in. Do your homework and check out what publications, such as the N.A.D.A. Official Used Car Guide, the Kelley Blue Book and the Consumer Reports Used Car Buying Guide, list as the market value of your trade-in. Keep in mind that these estimates are based on cars in good condition with an average of 12,000 miles per year. So, if your car has been driven less than or more than that, the price could go up or down accordingly. If you have enough information, no one will be able to take you for a ride!


Whether you’re buying new or used, there’s no doubt that the Internet is a great tool for your car quest. If you are buying a new car, you can research the kind of car you want, the options you need, the price of the car and the price of the additional options. If you’ve done your homework, you’ll be able to walk into a dealership armed with loads of valuable information.

When you’re just starting out, a good first step is to go to the manufacturers’ Web sites to check out the cars and the available options. You can usually find local dealers and request quotes or see the Manufacturer Suggested Retail Price (MSRP). Once you’ve narrowed your choices, you can check out an array of other Web sites for more pricing information:

Make sure you go to more than one pricing site to get the best idea of the average price.In addition to using the Internet to research the car you want to buy, you can also use it to figure out your finance options and select a warranty for your car. Sites like E-Loan and Lending Tree offer online auto loans. A warranty is a contract that guarantees maintenance if your car has any mechanical or other problems. Remember that warranties are another way for dealers to get more money out of your bank account, so know what kind of warranty you want and how much you are willing to pay for it.

One of the most useful sites on the Internet is CarBuyingTips.com. This site offers up just about everything you need to know about buying a new or used car. The tips are invaluable for anyone who wants to make sure they don’t overpay for their new ride. One of the best things about the site is that it deconstructs various dealer scams. If you know the dealer’s agenda before you walk in the door, you’ll be able to spot if someone is taking advantage of you. We’re certainly not saying that all car dealers are out to dupe you, but you have to be careful and be prepared. Remember, an ounce of prevention can save you thousands of dollars in the end.


There are several places to locate and buy a used car:

  • a used car dealership
  • many new car dealerships also sell used cars
  • a superstore dealership that specializes in used cars — like CarMax or Hertz
  • used car Web sites like ConsumerGuide.com
  • online and print classifieds

Keep in mind that classified listings are used by both dealers and individuals to sell used cars. Some dealers even post their used cars on used car Web sites. Person-to-person transactions through people you know, or via online and print classifieds can be a good option if you want to avoid a dealership. According to CarBuyingTips.com, no matter what option you go with, if you do decide to purchase a used car, there are four tasks that will increase your odds of success:

  1. Have a mechanic put the car up on a lift for a full inspection and to check for damage — anything that might indicate a previous accident or possibly flood damage.
  2. Run a Vehicle History Report to get a full history of the car. You can get a Vehicle History Report at CARFAX.com. It will include everything you need to know about the car including:
    • if it was ever salvaged, stolen or recalled
    • the number of previous owners
    • if it ever failed inspection
    • if someone tried to create a fraudulent odometer reading
  3. Never sign an “As Is” statement. Many used car dealers will mix that in with the other paperwork you’ll be asked to sign. As with anything that requires a signature, READ BEFORE YOU SIGN. You should have at least 30 days to make sure the car is in good condition. If you sign an “As Is” statement, once you drive the vehicle off the lot, anything that goes wrong is your problem.
  4. Have your own financing and loan approvals ready before you go to buy the car. (This can also be good if you’re planning on making a new car purchase.)

If you follow these simple instructions, your used car-buying experience should go smoothly. Remember that buying a used car from a dealership is similar to buying a new car from a dealership. You want to be armed with all the relevant information before you buy any car, new or used.