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regfootball

2010 Nissan Altima S test drive road trip

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Well, I had to trip it this weekend, 1000 miles and didn't want to take the Aztek. That, and the Aztek and Taurus X would net about 20 mpg on the trip. So I did the math and decided to rent a car.

I made the reservation for a full size and Hertz, thinking I would get what I wanted, a Chevy Malibu.

Of course, you can only bet, not choose, and I got STUCK with a new (200 miles on the odo) Nissan Altima S. 4 cyl, white.

Gonna go retrieve it soon and do part of the trip this evening. I am not that upset about the Altima, since my main motive was to save gas. I understand the Altima with CVT gets really good highway mpg and in that regard it should be bang on for the trip. I don't really like the Altima, or CVT's so this should be interesting. The car does have an AUX input so I think I am in good shape.

Most of the miles will be interstate, so I won't be canyon carving, but its a great op. for me to evaluate the car as an everyday and long trip family vehicle. Not that I would buy one but I do have a friend who is thinking about an Altima so this should be a great way to advise him.

Any questions I will try to respond as I drive the next couple days (while I am stopped of course). But then I will write up most of my thoughts at the end. I am about to look at Nissan's website to see what comes standard with the car.

And in the meantime I really wish it were a Malibu, but this is not a bad substitute.

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Certainly could have done worse and gotten a Camry.... oh.... wait......

Sure, do an interactive review of it. I'm curious if the interior really is as bad as it looks in pictures. From pictures, it looks like a Pontiac G6 MCE on the inside.

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Certainly could have done worse and gotten a Camry.... oh.... wait......

Sure, do an interactive review of it. I'm curious if the interior really is as bad as it looks in pictures. From pictures, it looks like a Pontiac G6 MCE on the inside.

the interior is not that bad. The design feels dated. For the price I think the materials are ok. Comparing base model to base model the interior is nicer thanthe Accord, but I prefer the Malibu, Fusion, and Legacy interiors to the Altima. Some of the ergonomics feel dated too. But it's not disagreeable.

One thing, the four cyl / CVT is ballsy! And there is not much slop in the CVT! They really are improving these things! More balls than my FIL's Grand Prix. Much better car to drive than the GP! No need for the 6 cyl in this car for 90% of the people.

Turning circle is huge! Chassis is not exactly bank vault solid. Seat sucks. Radio sounds like $h!.

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Mpg is improving as the car is breaking in. The 'mpg meter' was a lot friendlier today.

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How does the CVT feel on the highway? Loose and slushy, like a slipping clutch or unlocked torque converter? Or nice and tight?

What kind of equipment is there on the base model? Trip computer? Keyless go? How does that work in practice?

Thanks.

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How does the CVT feel on the highway? Loose and slushy, like a slipping clutch or unlocked torque converter? Or nice and tight?

What kind of equipment is there on the base model? Trip computer? Keyless go? How does that work in practice?

Thanks.

The CVT is the best of the breed, and is very tight. Most folks might not even notice that it's there. It's better than the Subaru one by far. Return leg is today, so I will beat on it some more and see how it shakes out. Passing power with the cvt4 is very good although it doesn't have the deep reserves of a 6. This cvt almost 'kicks down' faster than most 6 speeds.

It does have pushbutton start. At first I hated it. But you can leave the car running, take your keys with, lock the car , and just let it warm up by itself. I wish it had remote start too, but then you just jump in and go and no key to put back in the ignition.

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too pooped to follow up on this tonight. but the mpg did not come in quite as good as i hoped. don't have the numbers in front of me, but it was around 27 mpg i think. i know the car is not broken in but i think it probably would have been nice to hit the 30 mark. my dad's dts will hit 27 on road trips. with 100 more horsepower. although, the altima and its four popper are probably just as fast as the DTS is......

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Forgive the crotch shots, i didn't get a chance to fully take good interior pics.

post-16-12653118864607.jpg

post-16-12653119033692.jpg

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Gee... Pontiac did lame job on the G6 interior MCE.... :rolleyes:

I'd forgive the crotch shots if there were any decent ones.

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The 2010s are a definite improvement over the previous models. Interior looks pretty good now... the center console is more integrated, and I like the new controls.

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Gee... Pontiac did lame job on the G6 interior MCE.... :rolleyes:

I'd forgive the crotch shots if there were any decent ones.

thanks, you're here all week. :)

you didn't like the camo pants though? y'all see the 44 ounce drink in the cupholder? bladder buster!

btw i plan to get the review up soon. i am using my speech to text on the iphone. quicker to generate text, but it takes a while to edit it too. plus then the kids whining, needing to be fed, diapers, etc.

Edited by regfootball
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The 2010s are a definite improvement over the previous models. Interior looks pretty good now... the center console is more integrated, and I like the new controls.

it's all functional but it really feels dated to me.

i used to love the 'wraparound dash' and this is really a relic of that, and yet it just feels so plain and old. to be truthful if you examine all the entries in this segment, there really aren't any with better interiors, so that general observation is sad.

From the Japanese brands in particular, they are all the same to me, the exceptions in comment are that the Accord's interior is brutally bad in cheaper levels of trim, and overall I think the Legacy interior is the classiest of the bunch. If I went Japan the Legacy is the nicest....although I have sat in a Kizashi and that is nice in a more elemental way.

I like the layout of the Fusion's interior more, and the seats are way better. But elements of the Fusion interior are bland and old. So there is not a major advantage there. The Malibu actually has the most interesting design, but it is really let down by plastics quality, seat cloth and leather quality, panel gaps, too many seams, certain other accent materials quality.

With regards to precise fits, the Altima does very well. Nothing felt loose, and look at how tight the center stack fits to the main plastic dash. Those who were pissing and moaning about the Equinox or Terrain or whatever would need to be a in room by themselves for awhile after seeing how well Nissan gets a lot of these dash parts to fit.

Edited by regfootball
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