Nissan’s Mid-Size Sedan Tries to Survive in the Crossover Market


When the world is mad for the crossovers, the sedans are getting refreshed every year to be in the competition. They might not have the high ground clearance or high seating or all-wheel drive functionality, but still, sedans are the top choices for the family.

Nissan has also upgraded its family sedan, Altima, for the new generation to stand in the competition. Altima is the direct rival to Honda Accord, Toyota Camry & Volkswagen Passat.

Nissan's Mid-Size Sedan Tries to Survive in the Crossover Market

Driving and Performance

Nissan Altima comes with two engine options. First is the base with 2.5L 4-cylinder rated at 180-HP & 177lb-ft. of torque. The second one is more exciting 3.6L V6 producing 270-HP & 251 lb.-ft. of torque.

The 2.5L, surprisingly, has enough acceleration and 179-hp is not exhilarating but it’s enough for a calm and composed ride. If you opt for the 3.5-liter V-6, Nissan will stuff 270 hp under the Altima’s hood. A little growl at lower engine speeds, the V-6 chants out loudly as the needle reaches toward the redline. It’s a quicker choice and increasingly a solitary one, as other automakers switch to turbo-4 replacements for 6-cylinders. You get adaptive cruise control too, but only on the SL trim only.

Every model of Altima gets its own CVT. Nissan has upgraded the design of the CVT’s which has only improved the way they work. They have pre-programmed ratios in which the CVT shifts which has improved the driving of the car. Nissan Altima MPG has been rated at 38 mpg which is much above the segment.

Altima provides a very plush ride. The Altima’s steering is tad bit relaxed—a bit too much in our liking. It’s fairly accurate but slow to respond. It never feels messy, but the setup clearly cares more for predictability rather than quick turn-in.


The Altima gets fresh front fenders and a reshaped hood, a wider V-shaped grille, and a lower front bumper. It also gets reshaped taillights, a new rear bumper, and a new trunk lid. In all, the touches gave the sedan a more attractive shape, though it’s grown less distinguishing over time, particularly when compared with a car that shares almost all its running gear, the Nissan Maxima. It looks much sportier than it actually is in reality, though.


Interior of the Nissan Altima has never been an exciting part. It has an almost awkward design with nice shape & texture of the dash panels & have soft metallic trim on the major group of controls. There are lots and lots of storage space which adds to its practicality and all the things are in symmetry on its wide center console.

We could have easily believed that this is something designed by some other auto-maker but not Nissan. There is nothing in this car that could be pointed out which could become a deal-breaker.

The material used inside does make this car looks inexpensive. But the higher end of the Altima SL does a fairly good job in leaving an impression of the Infiniti but for much less money.


Safety is the point where Altima scores the top points in the competition. It has excellent crash-test points and the addition of the latest safety features as standard further increases its safety ratings.

The Altima achieves a five star NHTSA rating overall, acing almost all test except for a four-star rollover-resistance score.

The IIHS has rewarded it a Top Safety Pick award, for “Good” crash-test scores and “Superior” crash prevention.

This year, Nissan makes forward-collision warnings and automatic emergency braking standard on all Altima. A rearview camera is standard, though, on base models, it displays on a small 5.0-inch screen.

Final Verdict

Obviously, if you are looking for a sedan this is easy going, then Nissan Altima is the car you should look at. It’s nearly good to look at, lots of safety equipment, higher MPG makes it a perfect family sedan. We have, generally, liked the Altima but the newer generations of the competition only highlight the Altima’s insufficiencies in the various areas. But if you are looking for the family sedan with a V6, Nissan Altima might be the only choice left.