Nissan unveiled a thoroughly redesigned 2016 Nissan Altima with class leading MPG and an all new SR trim.
The midcycle refresh was so big for the 2016 Nissan Altima that Nissan went ahead and dropped three press releases on us: one announcing the refresh, one highlighting the Altima as a whole and the last one highlighting the SR trim. Earlier today (Sept. 22, 2015) Nissan unveiled its refreshed 2016 Nissan Altima with a cheaper starting MSRP at $22,500 and class leading 39 MPG on the highway for Altima’s equipped with a 2.5.
We have to admit that the redesign looks quite attractive and almost looks like a new model. The front end is a lot more aggressive with a lower muscular front fascia incorporating Nissan’s “V-motion grill.” Outback, there’s a nice rear faux-diffuser framing two exhaust pipes and up top there are new four piece taillights with the outer pieces incorporating that ever popular boomerang shape that’s been going around (e.g. ’16 Civic.) And thanks to a ten percent improvement in aerodynamics, the Altima is slippier as well with a .26 cD compared to last years .29 cD. Active grill shutters, under floor aero and the all new front ends are to thank for that.
Inside Nissan is really pushing its luxurious interior compared to its competitors ( Accord and Camry.) Full leather seats are optional and standard are cloth seats with what Nissan calls “Zero Gravity” which uses an articulated seat shape. Standard on all models is a 5.0 inch color display that serves as an audio display as well as backup camera.
Power remains the same between the two optional engines. The 182 HP 2.5 bas 2.5 liter is supposedly more efficient with a revised compression ratio, reduced internal engine friction (new oil?) and an optimized oil pump that gets 27 city/ 39 highway and 31 combined. Returning is the 3.5 liter V6 with 270 HP and 251 lb-ft of which only three percent of Altima shoppers choose by the way.
Handling has been improved thanks to new shock absorbers, rear springs, bushings and wider tires.
Nissan went out of their way to throw in a sporty Altima SR available with the 2.5 or 3.5 liter engine. The engine remains untouched but the suspension tuning is where it’s at. Dampers have been specially tuned, front and rear sway bars are thicker and stiffer and the transmission features a manumatic mode with paddle shifters. From outside, you can differentiate SR models from basic models thanks to smoked out headlights, a rear decklid spoiler and 18 inch alloys.
"“Altima SR features a 12.5 percent increase in cornering performance, and we’re making SR available with our refined 2.5-liter inline 4-cylinder engine and our higher-powered 3.5-liter V6. It’s like having your espresso shot in a choice of Grande or Venti®.”"
The changes to the 2016 Nissan Altima are substantial but we wonder if it’ll be enough to dethrone Accord with its 40.931 units last August or Camry selling 37,592 units compared to Altima’s 32,327 units.