After over two decades, Nissan this week announced it will end production of the Tsuru, its popular Mexican compact, in May 2017.
Nissan says Mexican consumers are drawn to the Tsuru, essentially unchanged since 1992, for its reputation for durability and reliability. The Tsuru is affordable as well, with a brand new base model selling for around $7,600. Powering the five-passenger sedan is a 1.6-liter inline-four rated at 105 hp and 102 lb-ft of torque.
To date, Nissan has produced 1.8 million Tsurus in Mexico. That number goes up to 2.4 million if you count the first- and second-gen models. Nissan says it has no plans for a Tsuru successor, and will instead point customers to the Versa. The current-generation Sentra is also sold in Mexico.
Despite the Tsuru’s popularity, it suffered from dismal safety records since most are sold without airbags. Reuters attributes the compact to over 4,000 deaths in Mexico between 2007 and 2012 and reports that it received a zero-star safety rating from the Latin New Car Assessment Program. This week, the NCAP and IIHS performed a crash test of a Tsuru and a 2016 Nissan Versa. The demonstration is part of the NCAP’s effort to eliminate “Zero Star” vehicles from Latin America and other regions.
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