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2014 Nissan Altima Pros and Cons at TrueDelta: My first brand new car in 21 years. It has exceeded my expectations so far and hope it always will. by jadziasman

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Reviewed: 2014 Nissan Altima

4dr Sedan 182-horsepower 2.5L I4 CVT FWD

Why the 2014 Nissan Altima?

Front seat room

I bought this car because of the front seat leg room. I'm 6' 5" tall with a 36" inseam. This is the first car I've ever owned that I fit in perfectly. The cloth bucket seats are very comfortable. Every control is in easy reach even though I have the seat as far back as it can go. The tilt and telescoping steering wheel is great. This is the first mid size sedan since I've owned. It has more interior room than a 1999 Buick LeSabre I owned 10 years ago.

Interior styling

The instrument panel layout is conventional and has 21st century improvements that enhance it. The push button start, bluetooth phone, two 12V outlets, and plenty of storage space make this car one of the best in its price range. The gauges are easy to read, well placed, and there aren't an excessive number of knobs or buttons I need to press. I bought an S model which doesn't have a lcd touchscreen. The displays that are standard are adequate for my needs. The soft touch materials on the dash and on the door panels are excellent.

Quietness

The cabin is very quiet below 55 mph. Above 65 mph the wind noise entering the cabin is louder than it should be but yet it is quieter compared to every other car I've owned the past 40 years. Tire noise is very low with the Michelin Primacy MXV4s. I have the 16 inch steelies which are actually better for the pothole laden roads I have to travel.

Fuel economy

Since the weather gotten warmer, I have been averaging about 35 mph combined mpg which is excellent for a vehicle of this size with a 2.5L four cylinder. The Xtronic CVT transmission is key to obtaining good fuel economy. Once at cruising velocity, engine rpm stays below 1800 rpm at 70 mph and below 1500 rpm at 60 mph. I drive 80 hwy/ 20 city most of the time.

Handling

The car handles well for its size. Easy to drive and park. I tend to be a conservative driver most of the time so I don't push my cars even close to their limits. In instances when I need to accelerate to change lanes and such, the car has been responsive and surefoot.

Why Not the 2014 Nissan Altima?

Quietness

The electric power steering pump high pitched whine can be annoying at times but hasn't been irritating. I guess I'm not that critical because I have a 2005 Toyota Prius which has an electric pump which circulates coolant in the HV inverter which is easily as loud as the Altima electric pump.

Powertrain performance

The CVT takes a lot of getting used to. The CVT is too eager to reduce engine rpm after the engine rpm is increased above 3000 rpm. I will need to learn how to adjust my foot pressure on the accelerator pedal to avoid this. I'm hoping this won't be too difficult.

Interior styling

Although I really like the seats, the cloth fabric nap is too thick and it picks up lint that accumulates more quickly than it should.

Controls and instruments

There is too much of a delay between actuation of the HVAC fan speed adjustment knob and change in the fan speed. I've never experienced this before in any other car and am somewhat perplexed by this lag.

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