Nissan Altima

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Nissan Altima
Nissan Altima Fifth generation (2013- ) Mar 2013.jpg
2013 Nissan Altima 2.5 SV
Overview
Manufacturer Nissan
Production 1992–present
Body and chassis
Class Compact (1993–2001; 2008-2013 for coupes only)
Mid-size (2002–present)
Layout FF layout
Related Nissan Maxima
Nissan Teana
Chronology
Predecessor Nissan Stanza
Nissan Bluebird

The Nissan Altima /ˈɔːltɨmə/ (Japanese: 日産・アルティマ?) is a mid-size car manufactured by Nissan, and is a continuation of the Nissan Bluebird line, which began in 1957. It is the #1 selling Nissan model. The Altima primarily competes in the mainstream mid-size sedan class in the United States against its main rivals, the Toyota Camry and Honda Accord, managing to become the second best-selling car in the United States in 2011.

It has historically been larger, more powerful, and more luxurious than the Nissan Sentra but less so than the Nissan Maxima. The Altima is exclusively manufactured in the United States and officially sold in North and South America, along with the Middle East and Australia. For other markets, Nissan sells a related mid-size sedan called the Nissan Teana that slots between the Altima and Maxima in terms of sizing.

The name "Altima" originally referred to a top trim line of the Nissan Leopard for the Japanese market in 1986,[1] followed by the Nissan Laurel mid-size car sold in Central America and the Caribbean before 1992. In 1992, Nissan discontinued its much-criticized Stanza, replacing it with the US-built Altima, while remaining a compact car. The very first Altima rolled off the assembly line on November 15, 1992, as a 1993 model. All Altimas had been built in Smyrna, Tennessee, until June 2004, when Nissan's Canton, Mississippi, plant began producing additional Altimas to meet high demand.

First generation (U13, 1992–1997)[edit]

First generation
1st-Nissan-Altima.jpg
Overview
Also called Nissan Stanza Altima
Nissan Bluebird
Production November 1992–June 1997
Assembly Smyrna, Tennessee, United States (Nissan USA)
Oppama, Japan
Designer Jerry Hirshberg (1988)[2]
Body and chassis
Body style 4-door sedan
Related Nissan Bluebird (U13)
Powertrain
Engine 2.4 L (146-cubic-inch) KA24DE I4 150 hp (112 kW)
Transmission 5-speed manual
4-speed automatic
Dimensions
Wheelbase 103.1 in (2,619 mm)
Length 180.5 in (4,585 mm)
Width 67.1 in (1,704 mm)
Height 55.9 in (1,420 mm)
1993–1994 Altima GXE

Like the Stanza before it, the original Altima was based on the Nissan Bluebird SSS (chassis model U13), though its original styling hailed from Nissan's California design studio in 1989. Initially, the car's official name was "Stanza Altima," which appears on the early owners manuals. 1993 models can be seen with a sticker reading "Stanza" in small lettering to the left of the ALTIMA emblem on the trunk lid.[3]

All Altima models used Nissan's 150 hp (112 kW) KA24DE straight-4 DOHC engine mated to a 5-speed manual or 4-speed automatic (Acceleration performance: 9.4 seconds 0-60 mph (100 km/h) with automatic and 8.4 with manual). (By contrast, the Japanese Bluebird SSS could be had with Nissan's SR20DET engine and all-wheel-drive.) Suspension was composed of struts with stabilizer bars at both ends and was noted for providing sporty, satisfying handling (plus a firm ride and moderate road noise); all wheels were 15-inches. Being one of the bigger compact cars, the Altima could seat four adults fairly comfortably, though its body was too narrow for five. Trim lines consisted of the stripped XE, mid-line GXE, sporty SE, and luxury GLE. Some options included a gold emblem package, molded mud guards, and a pin stripe. All models had small cup holders under the radio and a small glovebox which were improved in the 1998 redesign.

The base XE (rare) had manual windows. The mid-line GXE had power windows, a power retracting antenna, pass thru rear armrest, digital clock in dash, and color matched plastic speaker grilles for the rear 6-inch speakers. The XE and GXE models only had the fixed intermittent wiper switch.

In addition to the GXE features, the SE had a stiffer suspension, fog lights, 3 leg mount rear spoiler (1993 models with a clear LED brake light), side skirts (no upper side moldings), and sport seats (plus a standard sunroof in 1994–1995). It also had 4-wheel disc brakes, which came on the other trim lines when antilock brakes were ordered.

The GLE's enhancements included a digital head-up display (1993 and 1994 only), which displayed speed in MPH or KM/H, turn signals, and various warning lights on a unique mirrored patch made into the windshield. The 1989 to 1994 Maxima and 240SX had similar technology but only showed speed. Other features included a coin holder built into the fuse panel cover (1993 and 1994 only), adjustable lumbar support on the front seats, automatic digital climate control, keyless entry with alarm (optional), floor mats, color matched side mirrors, cornering lights, sunroof, and a higher-powered six-speaker cassette/CD stereo which included 6X9 rear speakers with black metal "active speaker" grilles, metal color matched "active speaker" grilles for the front door speakers (1993 and 1994 only), and a pair of A pillar tweeters all powered by 2 factory amps mounted underneath the rear deck. For 1997 it gave up all of the above in exchange for standard leather (previously optional). All SE and GLE models had alloy wheels and variable intermittent wipers.

1993 Altimas came with a rosewood colored dash trim and only had a driver's side airbag coupled with automatic shoulder belts(the center console was slimmer to accommodate the lap belts). The 1994 Altima gained a darker burl wood dash trim, a flush mount passenger airbag and regular seatbelts. 1993 and 1994 models came with chrome inner door handles standard with an auto door lock/unlock feature on the passenger side. For 1995, the inner door handles were changed to color matched plastic, and a plug replaced where the passenger auto door lock/unlock feature was. 1993 and 1994 models also had a slim 1 12 armrest lid, however, if an optional leather armrest was selected, it brought the height up to about 4.5 inches (110 mm). For 1995, all the armrest lids were thicker and about 4.5 inches (110 mm) tall. The 1995 model year (introduced 1994) also brought a new venetian blind-like grille, new taillights (red and clear), and a new 2 leg mount spoiler with a red LED brake light for the SE. Some other changes included the removal of the rear speaker grilles for a flat rear deck, a cheaper cloth interior, a plastic cover replacing the rear ashtray, and the digital in dash clock was now optional. For the 1995.5 model year in March 1995, a raised mount passenger airbag with a new inflator was introduced in post-March 3, 1995 production. 1996 brought new wheel covers for base models. In 1997 the GXE gained a new "Limited Edition" package including alloy wheels, keyless entry, alarm, floor mats, and a Limited Edition sticker on each side near the front wheels. The majority of final-year Altima models were dubbed "1997.5" models, signifying the added crash protection necessary to meet 1997 side-impact standards.[4]

Second generation (L30, 1998–2001)[edit]

Second generation
2nd-Nissan-Altima.jpg
Overview
Production May 1997–July 2001[5]
Model years 1998 – 2001
Assembly Smyrna, Tennessee, United States (Nissan USA)
Oppama, Japan
Designer Diane Allen (1994)[6]
Body and chassis
Body style 4-door sedan
Related Nissan Bluebird U14
Powertrain
Engine 2.4 L (146-cubic-inch) KA24DE I4 (150-155 Hp)
Transmission 5-speed manual
4-speed automatic
Dimensions
Wheelbase 103.1 in (2,619 mm)
Length 185.8 in (4,719 mm) (2000–01)
183.5 in (4,661 mm) (1998–99)
Width 69.1 in (1,755 mm)
Height 55.9 in (1,420 mm)

The second generation (chassis model L30) was an American market-only version, again styled by Nissan's California design center under Diane Allen through 1994 (design freeze in 1995). A new interior brought a revised glovebox and cup holders, a folding back seat (except on XE), and depowered airbags. The Japanese Domestic Markets Nissan Bluebird U14 has different front and rear ends.

While total volume remained identical at 108 cubic feet (3.1 m3), most felt it was distributed better and resulted in a slightly roomier-feeling cabin. On the downside, many were let down by the new model's plainer styling and cheapened interior; some also felt the gas pedal was now too lightly sprung.

Trim lines were the stripped XE, volume-selling GXE, sporty SE, and luxury-trimmed GLE. The SE can be distinguished by its body-color grille, fog lights, rear spoiler, alloy wheels, and white-faced gauges. In this generation of Altima, all GLEs had leather seats standard.

2000–2001 Nissan Altima SE
1998-1999 Nissan Altima rear

For 1999 the uplevel cassette/CD stereo got a new faceplate, GXE and SE models gained variable intermittent wipers, and GLEs gained standard alloy wheels. The majority of changes came for the 2000 model year. The engine increased in power from 150 to 155 hp (116 kW) with 4 way sparks, while it also improved the 0-60 mph time from 8.7 to 8.4 seconds. Gearing and final drive ratios were shortened on both transmissions, stabilizer bars were thickened, and the steering was firmed up. SE and GLE models also upgraded to 16-inch wheels with lower-profile tires, new Monroe struts with "acceleration-sensitive strut valving", and a front strut tower brace for sportier handling (all optional on GXE). The Altima grew slightly longer and got a deeper front grille, one-piece headlamps with turn signals, all-red taillights, and plastic trim on the deck lid. Inside were new front seats with a driver's height adjuster, cup holders for the rear seat (automatic transmission models only), revised seat cloth, a new instrument panel with digital odometers, a new rear window antenna, and the keyless entry fob now included a trunk release. Side airbags were newly standard on GLE and available on GXE and SE. For 2001, the Altima GXE again gained a Limited Edition package: power driver's seat, keyless entry with alarm and floor mats.

Third generation (L31, 2002–2006)[edit]

Third generation
02-04 Nissan Altima 2.5S.jpg
Overview
Production August 2001–October 2006
Model years 2002 – 2006
Assembly Smyrna, Tennessee, United States (Nissan USA)
Kanda, Fukuoka, Japan
Designer Jerry Hirshberg (1999)
Body and chassis
Body style 4-door sedan
Platform Nissan FF-L platform
Related Nissan Maxima
Nissan Murano
Nissan Quest
Nissan Teana
Powertrain
Engine 2.5 L (152-cubic-inch) QR25DE I4 175 hp (130 kW)
3.5 L (214-cubic-inch) VQ35DE V6 (240-250 Hp)
3.5 L (214-cubic-inch) VQ35DE V6 (260 Hp) SE-R
Transmission 5-speed manual
6-speed manual SE-R
4-speed automatic
5-speed manumatic 3.5 SE / 3.5 SL / 3.5 SE-R only
Dimensions
Wheelbase 110.2 in (2,799 mm)
Length 192.3 in (4,884 mm) (2005–06)
191.5 in (4,864 mm) (2002–04)
Width 70.4 in (1,788 mm)
Height 57.9 in (1,471 mm)

The third-generation Altima (chassis model L31) debuted for the 2002 model year.[7] It was the first mass-market product built on Nissan's new FF-L platform, which was unique to North America and had no equivalent model in Japan. The Asian Nissan Teana is similar but not quite identical, designed for Southeast Asian market requirements; all three model lines shared the same platform. The Altima grew enormously for this generation, as interior volume expanded to 118.8 cubic feet (3.36 m3). The Altima's interior dimensions even surpassed that of the higher-end 2000-03 Maxima, so the 2004 Maxima was moved more upscale into the full-size bracket. Also biggest in class was the Altima's 20 US gal (76 L; 17 imp gal) fuel tank.[8] Additionally, the Altima upgraded its rear suspension to a multi-link type and its brakes to 4-wheel discs. This was the first generation to offer a V6 engine. It should also be noted that in comparison to models from Toyota and Honda, in that Altima's reliability was not competitive and was subsequently cursed with engine recalls, Technical Service Bulletins, as well as poorly engineered Crankshaft Position Sensors, as well as the crankshaft engineering in general (Edmunds.com).

2003–2004 models received two tone dash color, and the 3.5 SE received an upgrade in horsepower, from 240 hp (180 kW) to 245 hp (183 kW), though torque stayed the same at 246 pound-feet (334 N·m).[9][10] 2002–2004 models with manual gearbox were the lightest of the V6 (4DR) cars. [11]The 2.5-liter 4-cylinder engine launched the sedan from 0-60 mph in just 8.6 seconds, more than competitive to those in its class.[clarification needed]

2005–2006 Altima 2.5S
2005–2006 Altima SE-R

The 2005 Nissan Altima has received a facelift, including a new front grille, all-red taillights, redesigned interior, and an optional DVD-based navigation system. The V6 was now rated at 250 hp (186 kW) with torque rated at 249 pound-feet (338 N·m), and proven 0-60 mph time in just 6.2 seconds utilizing the 5-speed automatic transmission. Also new was the SE-R model with a 260 hp (194 kW) and 251 lb·ft (340 N·m) of torque version of the V6, a 6-speed manual transmission (automatic still optional), upgraded brakes, 18-inch wheels, a suspension even stiffer than that of the 3.5 SE's, and a high-flow exhaust.[12] Topspeed.com tested the SE-R resulting in 0-60 mph in 6.0 seconds.

Reception[edit]

The third-generation Altima was well received by the press, with many critics praising the new style and extra space, being one of the most powerful and best-handling family sedans available. As the Altima offered the performance and space of the upper-market Maxima in a less expensive car,[13] this significantly reduced Maxima sales but made Nissan competitive in the mid-size segment for the first time.[14] While previous iterations received decent reviews, the third-generation Altima was the first to enjoy considerable success, and it was credited with a turnaround of Nissan's operations from debt-ridden to among the industry's most profitable.[15][16][17]

Most of the criticism centered on the interior found in the 2002-2004 models, which was cited for using hard and brittle plastics. Some also found the steering too light and or abrupt, and the turning circle too wide due to its elongated wheelbase. The 2002 had major oil problems and many disappointed owners had to replace engines.[citation needed]

Fourth generation (L32A, D32 "Coupe" 2007–2012)[edit]

Fourth generation
07-08 Nissan Altima 3.5SE.jpg
Overview
Production November 2006–April 2012
Model years 2007-2012 (sedan)
2008-2013 (coupe)
Assembly Smyrna, Tennessee, United States (Nissan USA)
Canton, Mississippi, United States (Nissan USA)
Kanda, Fukuoka, Japan
Designer Ajay Panchal, Takashi Noguchi (sedan: 2004)
Toshiyuki Abe (coupe: 2005)[18]
Body and chassis
Body style 4-door sedan
2-door coupe
Layout FF layout
Platform Nissan D platform
Related Nissan Maxima (A35)
Nissan Teana (J32)
Nissan Murano (Z51)
Nissan Quest (E52)
Renault Laguna III
Renault Latitude
Renault Samsung SM5 (L43)
Powertrain
Engine 2.5 L (152-cubic-inch) QR25DE I4 175 hp (130 kW) 2.5 / 2.5 S
3.5 L (214-cubic-inch) VQ35DE V6 270 hp (201 kW) SR[19]
Transmission 6-speed manual
CVT (Ratios: 2.371–0.439)
Dimensions
Wheelbase 109.3 in (2,776 mm) (sedan)
105.3 in (2,675 mm) (coupe)
Length 189.8 in (4,821 mm) (2007–09 sedan)
190.7 in (4,844 mm) (2010-12 sedan)
182.5 in (4,636 mm) (2008–09 coupe
180.9 in (4,595 mm) (2010–12 coupe)
Width 70.7 in (1,796 mm) (sedan & coupe)
69.6 in (1,768 mm) (hybrid)
Height 57.9 in (1,471 mm) (sedan)
58.0 in (1,473 mm) (2010–12 four-cylinder sedans)
55.3 in (1,405 mm) (2008–09 coupe)
55.9 in (1,420 mm) (2010-12 coupe)
58.1 in (1,476 mm) (2007–09 hybrid)
58.3 in (1,481 mm) (2010–12 hybrid)
Curb weight 3,179–3,190 lb (1,442–1,447 kg) (2.5L)
3,289 lb (1,492 kg) (3.5L)[20]

The fourth generation Nissan Altima (chassis model L32A) was announced at the 2006 New York Auto Show on April 12, 2006. It is the first vehicle to use the smaller Nissan D platform, with a new front and upgraded rear suspension. The wheelbase is 1-inch (25 mm) shorter than the third generation Altima, but interior space is mostly unchanged. The Maxima and Murano also used this new platform starting with the 2009 models. As with the previous generation, it shares much of its mechanicals and platform with the Nissan Teana which is built for different market conditions in Asia.

The 2007 Nissan Altima used revised versions of the engines from the third generation model. The VQ35DE 3.5 L V6 engine produces 270 hp (201 kW), and the QR25DE 2.5 L straight-4 produces 175 hp (130 kW).[21] A 6-speed manual is standard, and a continuously variable transmission replaced the traditional automatic as the optional transmission.

The 2007 Altima sports some more recent innovations in the market, including, but not limited to, a standard Smart Key (referred to as the Nissan Intelligent Key® with Push-Button Ignition), Bluetooth capability for cell phones, and a parking camera. The dashboard has larger buttons for easy readability and a total of nine cup holders, three hidden under the center console, two in the rear armrest, and one 20-ounce cup holder in each door. Several hidden compartments have been added as well as doubling the glove compartment space to 0.46 cubic feet (13 L). For 2008, all Altima models received ABS with electronic brake-force distribution.[22]

Consumerguide.com tested the inline four-cylinder Altima 2.5S w/ CVT to go from 0-60 mph in 8.5 seconds; the 3.5 SE V6 model w/ 6-speed manual performed 0-60 mph in 5.9 seconds according to the Long Term Road Test by Road and Track.

Facelift[edit]

2010 Nissan Altima 3.5SR sedan

For the 2010 model year, the Nissan Altima was facelifted with a new front fascia, hood, and headlights, as well as new wheels and interior materials.[23] Electronic stability control, previously only offered as part of an option package on V6 models and unavailable with 4-cylinder engines, is now standard on all Altima trims.[24]

Coupe[edit]

2008–2009 Nissan Altima coupe

The coupe version of the Nissan Altima (codename D32) was officially revealed at the 2006 Los Angeles Auto Show, Nissan's first-ever two-door Altima. It had a shorter wheelbase, shorter overall length and lower height than the Altima Sedan.[25] It was released on May 25, 2007 as a 2008 model.

The 2008 Altima Coupe was available with two engines: the same updated VQ35DE in the sedan, a 270 hp (201 kW) 3.5-liter 24-valve DOHC V6 or the QR25DE, a 175 hp (130 kW) 2.5-liter DOHC 16-valve inline 4-cylinder.

Facelift[edit]

2010 Nissan Altima 2.5SL coupe

Like the sedan, the Altima Coupe received a facelift for 2010 which included a redesigned front end, hood and grille, new projector beam headlights, and the Altima Coupe 2.5 S model came standard with 17" x 7.5" 5-split spoke aluminum alloy wheels, along with P215/55TR17 all-season tires instead of the 16" steel wheels provided in the former. The SE model was renamed SR and came standard with 18" x 8.0" 5-split-spoke aluminum-alloy wheels, and there was a revision to the fabric and trim pieces in the interior. The 2010 models came with Nissan's Vehicle Dynamic Control as standard equipment, which was previously a $600 stand-alone option. A new premium Bose audio system with a 4.3-inch color display and Nissan's next generation navigation system with a 6.5-inch color display with an internal hard drive providing 9.3GB of music storage and USB connectivity was also included with the refresh.[26] Azure Blue was replaced by Navy Blue and there were two additional colors: Crimson Black and Ocean Gray.

For the 2013 model year (Generation 5), the 3.5 SR trim level was dropped completely for the coupe, meaning that for this particular model year, only the sedan was available with a 3.5 L V6. Nissan has decided to discontinue the Altima Coupe following the end of production for the 2013 model year.

Hybrid[edit]

Nissan Altima Hybrid

The Altima Hybrid is Nissan's first hybrid car. When first introduced in 2007 and continuing through the 2011 model year, the Altima's hybrid-drive system is licensed from Toyota's hybrid technology. The hybrid model is available only in 10 states in the U.S. that follow California's strict energy laws (California, Oregon, Connecticut, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island or Vermont). The company has asserted that subsequent hybrid models will be based on hybrid technology developed in-house.[27] Up to 40,000 per year will be built at Nissan's Smyrna plant.[28] The Altima Hybrid is also available in Canada. The Nissan Altima Hybrid is also used as a regular taxi vehicle and as a police cruiser with the New York City Police Department.[29]

The Hybrid Altima features a 2.5 L QR25DE engine producing 158 hp (118 kW) and 162 pound-feet (220 N·m) torque, and CVT. The electric motor/generator puts out an additional 40 Horsepower putting out max power of 198 hp (148 kW), and 199 pound-feet (270 N·m).[30] Autobytel observed the Hybrid to go from 0 to 60 in 7.1 seconds, making it one of the 7 fastest hybrid vehicles.

Its fuel efficiency is 6.7 L/100 km (42 mpg-imp; 35 mpg-US) city and 7.1 L/100 km (40 mpg-imp; 33 mpg-US) highway, based on revised EPA measures for fuel economy ratings.[30]

Models[edit]

The Altima comes in several versions:

2.5 Base (Sedan only): Includes 2.5L, 175 Horsepower I4 Engine, 6-Speed Manual Transmission, Audio System Pre-Wiring w/ 4 Speakers, Intelligent Key System w/ Push-Button Start, 16 Inch Steel Wheels w/ Full Wheel Covers

2.5 S: Includes X-Tronic CVT (Continuously Variable Transmission), A/M-F/M Stereo w/ Single-Disc CD/MP3 Player, Aux Input Jack w/ 6 Speakers / Steering wheel-mounted audio controls / Automatic on/off headlights.

2.5 S Special Edition (Sedan only): Includes X-Tronic CVT (Continuously Variable Transmission), A/M-F/M Stereo w/ Single-Disc CD/MP3 Player, Aux Input Jack w/ 6 Speakers, 16" Aluminum-alloy wheels, Fog Lights, Rear Spoiler, Leather-wrapped steering wheel.

3.5 SR: Includes 3.5L, 270 Horsepower V6 Engine, A/M-F/M Stereo w/ XM Satellite Radio, Six-Disc CD/MP3 Changer, iPod/USB Input Jacks, Aux Input Jack, w/ Hands-Free Bluetooth Telephone, Voice Recognition System, Nine Premium Bose Speakers w/ Subwoofer, Eighteen-Inch Alloy Wheels[31]

Hybrid (Sedan only): Includes 2.5L Gas/Electric Hybrid I4 Engine, A/M-F/M Stereo w/ XM Satellite Radio, Single-Disc CD/MP3 Player, Aux Input Jack w/ 6 Speakers, Sixteen-Inch Alloy Wheels

Fifth generation (L33, 2013-present)[edit]

Fifth generation (L33)
2013 Nissan Altima 2.5SL -- 2012 NYIAS.JPG
Overview
Also called Nissan Teana
Production May 2012-present
Model years 2013-
Assembly Smyrna, Tennessee, USA (Nissan USA)
Canton, Mississippi, USA (Nissan USA)
Fukuoka, Japan(Nissan Motor Kyushu Co., Ltd.)
Wuhan, China (DMCL)
Thailand(Nissan Motors (Thailand) Ltd)
Designer Toshiyuki Abe, Giovanny Arroba (2010)[32]
Body and chassis
Body style 4-door sedan
Layout FF layout
Platform Nissan D platform
Related Nissan Maxima
Nissan Quest
Nissan Murano
Nissan Pathfinder
Infiniti JX
Powertrain
Engine 2.5 L (152-cubic-inch) QR25DE I4 182 hp (136 kW) 2.5 / 2.5 S / 2.5 SV / 2.5 SL
3.5 L (214-cubic-inch) VQ35DE V6 270 hp (201 kW) 3.5 S / 3.5 SV / 3.5 SL
Transmission CVT
Dimensions
Wheelbase 109.3 in (2,776 mm)
Length 191.3 in (4,859 mm)
Width 72.0 in (1,829 mm)
Height 57.9 in (1,471 mm)
Curb weight 3,153–3,181 lb (1,430–1,443 kg) (2.5L)
3,311–3,373 lb (1,502–1,530 kg) (3.5L)

2013 model year[edit]

The 2013 model year Altima is based on the Nissan Ellure concept car, and a redesigned Altima came during the summer of 2012 for the 2013 model year. Like the Camry and Accord, it will continue to offer a base 4-cylinder engine with a 3.5L V6 as the range topper,The Nissan specifications for the QR25DE 2.5-liter 16-valve DOHC inline-four engine has 182 hp (136 kW) and 180 pound-feet (244 N·m). While the VQ35DE 3.5-liter 24-valve DOHC V6 remains 270 hp (201 kW) and 258 pound-feet (350 N·m). Nissan estimates the 2.5-liter fuel economy to be 27 city/38 hwy and the 3.5-liter V6 at 22 city/30 hwy thanks to its refined CVT that has been lightened by 8 lbs. Most of the major mechanical components of this generation Altima are carried over.[33] Much of the exterior styling seems to draw familiar traits from the Nissan Maxima.[33]

Despite the larger size of the Altima compared to the previous model, the new Altima weighs about 120 pounds less. The Altima continues to be the lightest midsize sedan in its class; this is mostly due to its efficient use of high strength steel and aluminum in areas such as the trunk, hood, and roof. The front end shares the same new corporate grille as the 2012 Versa with more angular headlights than the Versa's rounded ones. It draws many styling influences from "coke bottle styling", an appearance that popular during the 1960s and 1970s, a return to an appearance Nissan used during that time.

Nissan offers the Altima in seven different trims; 2.5, 2.5 S, 2.5 SV, 2.5 SL, 3.5 S, 3.5 SV, and 3.5 SL. Alongside the L33 Altima sedan, the previous-generation L32 Altima coupe will continue on sale.[17] The coupe will only be offered with the QR25DE 2.5-Liter four-cylinder rated at 175 hp (130 kW) and 180 pound-feet (244 N·m) of torque mated with a CVT. The 6-speed manual transmission is no longer available in the Altima Sedan due to slow sales. The SL model, which was once an equipment package for the Altima 2.5 S, is now a separate model.

Rear view of Altima 2.5 SL

Production started in late May 2012 and the car went on sale in June in the United States, and August in Canada in the same year. The Altima will also be on sale in various other markets (existing or new), particularly the Middle East where it replaces the fourth generation L32A models, and the Australian market for the first time sometime next year, replacing the Nissan Maxima J32 (Teana). In China and other Asian markets, the L33 Nissan Altima will be the third generation of Nissan Teana.

Reception[edit]

In a 2012 comparison test by Motor Trend, the Nissan Altima 2.5 SV came in fourth place out of six cars behind the first place Volkswagen Passat, second place Honda Accord, and third place Ford Fusion.[34]

This is followed by a third place showing in a comparison done by the Car and Driver team. This is a series of 3 comparison tests involving mid-size sedans. In this particular test, 4 cars were tested. It consists of the all new Ford Fusion and Honda Accord as well as the Nissan Altima. The Volkswagen Passat is included in the test as it won the first round of mid-sized sedan comparison. In that round, it won decisively against the Chevrolet Malibu, Toyota Camry, Hyundai Sonata and Kia Optima.[35] However, the Passat only managed last in the 2nd round being lead by the Altima (3rd), Fusion (2nd) and the Accord (1st).[36] This is followed by the final round where the Mazda 6 won against the Honda Accord.[37]

More recently, in a comparison test conducted by Edmunds.com, the Nissan Altima beat out the Honda Accord and the Mazda 6 to win 1st place. It is stated that the Altima is good in almost everything with only minor deficiencies. It drives well, entertaining on twisty roads, has comfortable seats and remains quiet on highways. It is the least expensive but doesn't feel like it. The mileage figures only adds to its high appeal.[38]

Since its launch, the Altima has accumulated several accolades including being named to Kelley Blue Book's Top 10 best new sedans under $25,000,[39] Kiplinger's Personal Finance best new model in class[40] and Edmund's top recommended sedans.[41]

Motorsports[edit]

Kelly Racing announced that it will enter four Nissan Altima custom race cars into the 2013 International V8 Supercars Championship. The car was later revealed in October 2012, and is the first car for the series to be homolgomated for the "Car of the Future" regulations in the V8 Supercars Championship for the 2013 season. This will be the first time Nissan has raced in an Australian touring car series since 1992, after which Nissan's Skyline GT-R was forced out of racing, due to regulation changes.[42]

The Nissan L33 Altima V8 Supercar of Rick Kelly at the 2013 Clipsal 500 Adelaide


2014 model year update[edit]

For 2014, the major enhancements include:

  • Technology Package replaces previous Navigation Package on 2.5 SV and 3.5 SV grades (late availability) – includes NissanConnect℠ with Navigation, NissanConnect℠ Apps smartphone integration and SiriusXM Travel Link®, plus Blind Spot Warning, Moving Object Detection and Lane Departure Warning
  • New Sport Value Package with 16-inch aluminum-alloy wheels, remote engine start, trunk lid spoiler (2.5 S models)
  • New Display Audio Package available on 2.5 S and 3.5 S (late availability) – includes 5.0-inch color display, RearView Monitor, USB port, SiriusXM Satellite Radio (standard on 3.5 S, SiriusXM subscription required, sold separately), NissanConnect℠ Apps smartphone integration for iPhone® and Android™, diversity antenna
  • New accessory 16-inch aluminum-alloy wheels
  • Gun Metallic exterior color replaces previous Metallic Slate; eight available colors total
  • Chrome exhaust finishers added to 2.5 grade
  • Improved navigation system capabilities – NissanConnect Apps smartphone integration for iPhone® and Android, SiriusXM Travel Link® (fuel prices, movie times, stock updates, sports scores), SiriusXM Weather, revised button labels
  • Standard driver and front passenger visor illumination and extensions on 2.5 S, 2.5 SV and 3.5 S grades (previously part of Convenience Package)
  • Rear passenger air conditioning vents added to Convenience Package (from previous standard on SV grade)
  • Offered in seven models: Altima 2.5, 2.5 S, 2.5 SV, 2.5 SL with 182-horsepower (179 hp CAL) 2.5-liter DOHC inline 4-cylinder engine and 3.5 S, 3.5 SV and 3.5 SL with 270-horsepower 3.5-liter V6
  • Next-generation Xtronic CVT® standard on all models
  • Available early August 2013

US model of Nissan Altima Coupe was discontinued.[43]

2015 model year update[edit]

Minor change for 2015 include:

  • Charcoal carpet for beige interior

2015 model year removes[edit]

  • Lid covering AUX ports.
  • One-touch 3 flash turn signal

Awards and recognition[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://www.nissan-global.com/EN/HERITAGE/leopard_turbo_200xs.html
  2. ^ http://www.nytimes.com/1989/03/31/business/company-news-nissan-is-said-to-plan-new-us-production.html
  3. ^ Levin, Doron P. (1989-03-31). "COMPANY NEWS; Nissan Is Said to Plan New U.S. Production". New York Times. Retrieved October 8, 2012. 
  4. ^ http://www.autosafety.org/uploads/phpM2sqjf_ReplyExhN.pdf
  5. ^ Lysaght, Brian (1997-05-25). "Nissan Works To Shave Altima Costs". New York Times. Retrieved 2012-10-08. 
  6. ^ http://www.autoweb.com.au/cms/A_55392/title_Nissans-Stunning-New-350Z-Sports-Coupe-Arrives-in-Australia/newsarticle.html
  7. ^ "2002 Nissan Altima Review". JB car pages. Retrieved 2009-09-28. 
  8. ^ "Nissan Altima – Third Generation". 
  9. ^ "2002 Nissan Altima Specs and Features - MSN Autos". Autos.msn.com. 2010-02-22. Retrieved 2010-11-02. 
  10. ^ "2003 Nissan Altima Specs and Features - MSN Autos". Autos.msn.com. 2010-02-22. Retrieved 2010-11-02. 
  11. ^ "Nissan Altima – Third Generation". 
  12. ^ "2005 Nissan Altima Review". JB car pages. Retrieved 2009-09-28. 
  13. ^ "2009 Nissan Maxima - Test drive and new car review - 2009 Nissan Maxima". Cars.about.com. 2010-06-11. Retrieved 2010-11-02. 
  14. ^ "Nissan Altima Review". Edmunds.com. Retrieved 2009-05-05. 
  15. ^ "CanadianDriver's New Car Buyer's Guide: Nissan Altima". Canadiandriver.com. Retrieved 2009-09-18. 
  16. ^ "Nissan » Preview: 2005 Nissan Altima". CanadianDriver. 2004-03-17. Retrieved 2009-09-18. 
  17. ^ a b Ulrich, Lawrence (2012-09-14). "Sailing Into the Mainstream". The New York Times. 
  18. ^ http://www.google.com/patents/USD565468
  19. ^ "2011 Nissan Altima Sedan, Hybrid Vehicle Specs Nissan USA". Nissan USA. Retrieved 2010-10-27. 
  20. ^ "2009 Nissan Altima". AOL. Retrieved 2010-10-27. 
  21. ^ "2007 Altima Specifications". Nissan. Retrieved 2009-12-15. 
  22. ^ "2008 Nissan Altima Review". JB car pages. Retrieved 2009-09-28. 
  23. ^ "2010 Nissan Altima gets light updates". AutoWeek. 2009-09-30. Retrieved 2010-11-02. 
  24. ^ "2010 Nissan Altima - Test drive and new car review - 2010 Nissan Altima". Cars.about.com. 2010-06-11. Retrieved 2010-11-02. 
  25. ^ "2008 Nissan Altima Coupe Review". JB car pages. Retrieved 2009-12-15. 
  26. ^ Giametta, Chuck. "2010 Nissan Altima Review and Prices". iGuida. Retrieved 2010-11-02. 
  27. ^ "Nissan Altima Hybrid starts at $24,400 for the few who can buy it". AutoBlog. Retrieved 2009-12-15. 
  28. ^ "Nissan To Limit Altima Hybrid Sales to Eight States". Edmunds.com. Retrieved 2009-12-15. 
  29. ^ "New York's NYPD Gets 40 Altima Hybrids Patrol Cars". TreeHugger. Retrieved 2009-12-15. 
  30. ^ a b "Nissan Altima Sedan and Hybrid Specifications". Nissan USA. Retrieved 2009-12-15. 
  31. ^ "2012 Nissan Altima Coupe Specifications". Nissan USA. Retrieved 2012-04-08. 
  32. ^ https://www.google.com/patents/USD699630
  33. ^ a b "2013 Nissan Altima". Edmunds. Jun 19, 2012. 
  34. ^ "Comparison: 2012-2013 Midsize Sedan, Battle of the Best-Sellers". 
  35. ^ "Hot Six". 
  36. ^ "Masters of the Middle". 
  37. ^ "Family Sedans". 
  38. ^ "Comparison: 2013 Honda Accord vs. 2014 Mazda 6 vs. 2013 Nissan Altima Comparison Test". 
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  40. ^ "Nissan Altima awarded Kiplinger's Personal Finance best new model in class". 
  41. ^ "Edmund's 2013 Sedan Buying Guide". 
  42. ^ [1]
  43. ^ The 2014 Nissan Lineup: Charting the Changes - Nissan Online Newsroom

External links[edit]