Quick Drive: 2013 Nissan Altima SLNissan Altima IMPA
In normal city driving, the CVT keeps the 2.5 liter 4-cylinder low in the RPM band, ostensibly for fuel economy reasons, but the other hidden reason for this is that the 2.5 gets rather unrefined the higher it climbs in RPM. This isn’t my first run-in with Nissan 4-cylinders making quite a racket, and I suspect the reason Nissan has gotten away with a rather unrefined 4-cylinder for so long is due to their excellent CVT transmissions keeping the engine calm.
Over the road, you can feel the lightness of the platform in the corners. Cornering is sharp, but the car feels slightly nose heavy. Noise isolation was another sore spot for me with excess tire and engine noise intruding into the cabin.
Nissan’s 2013 Altima has all of the basics down to take on the Hyundai Sonata and Kia Optima as well as the Accord and Camry, but some work to refine the engine and additional power train choices would make it a stronger contender in this competitive market.
The full gallery of pictures from the IMPA Test days is located here and will continue to be built as quick drive reviews are added:
Trim: 2.5 SL
Engine: 2.5 Liter 4-cylinder with Direct Injection
Driveline: Front wheel drive, Constantly-Variable Transmission
Horsepower @ RPM: 182 @ 6000 RPM
Torque @ RPM: 180 @ 4000 RPM
Fuel Economy: City/Highway: 27/38
Location of Manufacture: Smyrna & Decherd, Tennessee and Canton, Mississippi
Base Price: $21,500
Est. As Tested Price: $29,920
Drew Dowdell is Managing Editor of CheersandGears.com and can be reached at Drew.Dowdell@CheersandGears.com or on twitter as @cheersngears
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