I got my Altima this weekend and I have to say initial impressions are EXTREMELY positive. Since I've only had it for 2 days I obviously can't comment on long-term reliability, however Nissan has a decent reputation, not the best reputation, but not a bad one either, so I'm not too worried about it.
Essentially I think this is the perfect car for me, fitting exactly at the right point of my value curve. On paper I knew this was true, as the power/sportiness was just right for me, I like the new CVT (Continuously Variable Transmission), gas mileage is respectable, interior space is ok, and it looks hot.
None of these factors have disappointed me, in fact most of them have far exceeded my expectations:
- CVT is AWESOME. I love how it works, and I don't think I could go back to a regular automatic transmission
- The ride is soooo quiet and smooth. Not Lexus-level obviously, but it feels very luxurious
- I've fallen in love with the intelligent key system. Controlling the car without ever touching the key is a simple thing, but it's incredibly convenient and I've already become used to it
The combination of a smooth ride and great performance is that I don't even realize how fast I'm going, and end up going 20 above the speed limit without even thinking about it. This is the first time I've driven a car that's even remotely sporty, and it's quite liberating. I'm trying to not be too much of a jerk driver, but I feel a lot more confident and comfortable passing cars, switching lanes, etc. It's just a lot more nimble.
I'm actually glad the car isn't more powerful because I don't know if I could stave off the temptation of speeding. It's already so fun with a 4-cylinder, I don't know how people with V6s and beyond contain themselves. It's like constant blue-balls, always prepared to go but never allowed to pull the trigger.
My two gripes with the car so far are the limited trunk space... which is pretty damn limited. And gas mileage isn't quite what I want it at. Right now I'm rocking 25MPGs, but I've been driving with a pretty heavy foot having fun with the new toy. But long term regular driving I'm hoping to get it above 30MPG.
And for you Canadians I HIGHLY HIGHLY recommend using CarCostCanada.com website. They tell you the invoice price of the car which is actually difficult to find in Canada compared to the US where it's readily available. Using this website and their preferred dealership I was able to score this altima brand new for $500 above cost. A savings of around $2,500! I know that sounds like an informercial, but I honestly had a really good experience with the website and dealership.
And now for the pictures!!