Here’s a look at the totally redesigned 2013 Nissan Altima sedan. The changes are found both outside and inside the car and it has a sleeker, more upscale look to it. Visibly it is a very pretty car with great lines.
I am driving the 3.5-liter V6 which is rated at 270-horses. The only transmission choice is Nissan’s popular CVT (continuously variable transmission). The combination makes the Altima extremely quick upon acceleration, and at the same time Nissan is getting some great mileage numbers out of the car.
Inside, the new Altima appears to have much better quality than in years past, and has evolved into a much more luxurious feel, especially the front seats. Nissan used NASA research for the front seats, and they were designed to relieve common pressure points and improve comfort, especially on long trips. You notice the difference in feel of the front seats, and for me, I had trouble getting comfortable, but that won’t be the case for everyone.
My test car has the Tech Package, which in this car is an outstanding value. For $1090, you get a terrific navigation system, steering wheel controls, blind spot monitoring, and lane departure warning system. Antilock brakes and stability control are standard for the 2013 Altima. Front-seat side airbags and side curtain airbags are also standard. A rearview camera comes standard with all but the two lowest trim levels, the base and the S.
The instrument cluster is nicely presented with the large, highly readable speedometer and tachometer on either side of the crisp, 4-inch LCD screen. Everything is easy to see and operate from the driver’s seat. If you are over 6-feet tall, make sure you are comfortable in this car, the headroom seems a little short to me.
Handling is much improved from the last Altima I tested, as is steering. Nissan revised the suspension system and the result is much sharper handling and a better ride. The car really feels good in all situations. The V6 and the CVT make the Altima a real pleasure to drive.
Altima has always been a great car, and this 5th generation version is the best yet.
What I liked most: Performance of the V6 and CVT combo.
What I would change: I would like the seats to be more comfortable.
Fuel Economy: 22 city/31 Highway
2013 Altima in a few words: A great car got better