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The Most Affordable Cars for New College Graduates


Need an idea for a college graduation gift that’ll jump-start any fledgling career? We’ll give you a hint: it weighs a ton, purrs, and has 4 rubber appendages. Is it Garfield wearing itty-bitty kitty boots? No, we’re talking about a new car, of course.

But not just any new car will do. College grads and ex-students may want all the bells and whistles, but they require a vehicle priced with budgets in mind. Sitting right on the corner of Affordable Road and Bells & Whistles Avenue is the entire lineup of Nissan cars, crossovers, and compact trucks. If you’re searching for the perfect “congratulations” present for your college grad, or if you’re excited to celebrate earning your own degree, there’s no better gift than one of these reliable yet inexpensive Nissan vehicles.


Why Nissan Kicks?

With an MSRP of less than $19,000, the new Nissan Kicks is one of the most affordable SUVs in America. It also happens to be the most fuel-efficient crossover in its class thanks to an Xtronic CVT that returns city/highway MPG of 31 and 36, respectively.

The Kicks is also a self-expression machine, offering highly customizable features, distinctive contrast stitching, and color accents like Monarch Orange and Cayenne Red. It’s all about style.
Inside, the new Nissan Kicks SUV includes those beloved bells and whistles. Standard on each Kicks is Automatic Emergency Braking, remote entry with push-button ignition, RearView Monitor, Bluetooth with Siri Eyes Free, a bright 7.0-inch touchscreen, and 2 USB ports.

A slew of advanced technology features is also available on the Kicks, including heated side mirrors – a necessity during chilly Kansas City winters – Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, heated seats, a class-exclusive Bose® UltraNearfield™ driver headrest speakers, Blind Spot Warning, Rear Cross Traffic Alert, and an Advanced Drive-Assist Display that can be customized to show RPM, MPH, MPG, and more.

Dynamic. Efficient. Chic. Feature-packed. Safe as all get-out. Yep, the new Nissan Kicks has everything a recent college grad could wish for.

Nissan Interior

Why Nissan Versa?

Returning up to 39 mpg at highway speeds, the new Nissan Versa sedan sips unleaded as if it were the finest Napa Valley wine. If that weren’t enough, the base Versa model is also aggressively priced at just over $12,000, making it the most budget-friendly sedan in the compact car segment. Saving money just comes naturally to Versa owners.

Surprisingly, the new Nissan Versa is one roomy car. Its available 60/40-split fold-down rear seat extends trunk space into the cabin via a humongous pass-through opening. That 14.9-cubic-foot trunk mingles with the 90.2-cubic-foot cabin marvelously.

Although the Versa isn’t built with the super-rich in mind, it’s certainly rich in features. Standard on each Versa sedan are technologies like RearView Monitor, a 7.0-inch touchscreen, Bluetooth, Siri Eyes Free, a USB port, and a Vehicle Dynamic Control with Traction Control System.

Move into higher Versa trims, and you’ll benefit from some additional advanced tech, such as remote keyless entry and trunk release, Fine Vision electroluminescent gauges, Nissan Intelligent Key, push-button ignition, NissanConnect, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, SiriusXM Radio, and TPMS with Easy-Fill Tire Alert (this is an amazing feature for first-time car owners). As far as the best cars for college graduates, the Versa is hard to beat.

Nissan Leaf

Why Nissan LEAF?

Isn’t it crazy how good electric cars have become over the last 20 years? With the Nissan LEAF, we’re seeing more range on a full charge, more safety tech, and more excitement than any past EV has offered.

First of all, the new LEAF is super affordable; its starting price is under $30k, which can shrink to as low as $22,500 after taking into account Federal tax credits.
Second, as the world’s top-selling electric car, the Nissan LEAF makes every trip worth taking. Its innovative e-Pedal and ProPILOT Assist technology are godsends, offering convenience at every turn, sudden stop, or traffic jam. Versa’s ProPILOT Assist works by helping drivers keep a safe following distance between other vehicles, applying emergency brakes in stop-and-go traffic, and centering itself in lanes. The e-Pedal is equally impressive, giving drivers just one pedal to brake and accelerate.

Third, the LEAF comes with 2 battery packs. The first, a 62-kWh battery, has a range of 226 miles and can be fully charged overnight, or within 60 minutes via a DC Quick Charging station (up to 80% charge). The second, a 40-kWh pack, has a max range of 150 miles and can be charged to 100% at home in 8 hours, or up to 80% in 40 minutes at a DC Quick Charging station.

To tie it all in a bow, the new Nissan LEAF also inspires confidence with its array of advanced driver-assist and safety features. The LEAF can be had with Automatic Emergency Braking with Pedestrian Detection, Rear Cross Traffic Alert, Intelligent Lane Intervention, Blind Spot Warning, and High Beam Assist. It’s the safe, spacious, tech-heavy, eco-friendly electric car that every millennial and college grad has on their wishlist.

Nissan Frontier

Why Nissan Frontier?

Priced at $19k, the Nissan Frontier is the most affordable small pickup truck in the U.S. But don’t let its small MSRP trick you, as the new Frontier offers plenty more than a low price point.
Its interior is more SUV than truck. A leather-wrapped steering wheel comes inlaid with buttons for cruise control, Bluetooth and audio. Ten high-quality speakers and a subwoofer belt out all those Whitney Houston power ballads. Dual Zone Automatic Temperature Control ensures both driver and passenger stay comfy.

Its exterior is all truck. The Frontier truck bed is supremely impressive; an available Utili-track Channel System provides five channels, four cleats, and the security needed to protect everything from expensive tools and gear to large, awkward furniture. And thanks to its 4.0L V6, the 4×2 Frontier can tow over 6,700 pounds. Weekend road trips just got easier.

Tailgating at an alma mater. Buying new Ikea furniture. Camping with family. Helping a buddy move into a new apartment. Whatever the situation, Nissan Frontier is the ideal truck to get things done – and done well.

Nissan Deals for Students & Grads in Kansas City

Did you know our Olathe Nissan dealership offers college graduates a discount when purchasing a new vehicle? It’s true! The McCarthy Nissan College Graduate Program provides cash back, rebates, and up to $250 off MSRP on select Nissan models.

If you or your son or daughter has graduated within the last 2 years, or will graduate within the next semester from an accredited university or training program, we’d love to pair you with one of our exclusive Olathe Nissan specials. We have great low-APR lease options and Nissan financing offers available to all of you! Contact our Nissan dealership near Kansas City at 913-324-7364 or swing by our showroom at 683 N Rawhide Drive in Olathe, KS, to search, shop, and save.


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