The 2020 Nissan Altima is a sleek and stylish mid-size sedan that offers families the comfort levels they desire, along with exclusive features not found on other sedans in its class. The roomy interior provides all your passengers ample space while modern technology adds an extra layer of convenience to their ride. And for those who want added assurance when it comes to safety, the Altima stands alone among its peers as the only sedan offering optional all-wheel drive!
Nissan's leading-edge VC-Turbo engine is an incredible advancement that works to maximize fuel efficiency and power. However, the Altima still has a lot of competition from its opponents—the Honda and Mazda models have better looks and driving performance. But don't be discouraged! The Altima offers surprising athleticism with Nissan’s renowned loyalty following it up in tow.
The Altima comes with a 2.5-liter, four cylinder engine that produces 188 horsepower and is equipped with a Continuously Variable Automatic Transmission (CVT). If you prefer more kick under the hood, there's an optional turbocharged 2.0 liter engine boasting 248 hp for the same CVT transmission. In order to get All Wheel Drive capability however, it must be paired with the standard four-cylinder motor; which provides ample yet predictable acceleration on its own merit. Nissan has included advanced variable compression technology as well to further enhance performance in this iconic sedan!
As we stepped on the accelerator, the engine of our four-cylinder Camry grew louder and more feverish. Yet thanks to the VC-Turbo engine that powers Altima, it reaches quicker speeds with greater ease than before. Although this turbocharged and all-wheel drive combo makes Nissan unique, its handling is still not as exciting or enjoyable as Mazda 6's or any Accord's.
The Altima SR's sport-tuned suspension and 19-inch wheels offer an intriguing experience for twisty roads, but at the cost of comfort. What was more surprising is that our highest trim level Platinum model had even more cornering grip than a brand new 2019 BMW 330i xDrive we tested! The Nissan truly proved to be remarkable in this regard, with improved handling and agility over other models.
With its comfortable suspension, the Nissan Altima provides a smooth ride even on rough terrain. Its steering system is precise and effortless compared to other family sedans. Additionally, its brake pedal offers instant feedback with reliable responses when pressed.
The Altima's two gasoline engines boast impressive EPA fuel economy ratings and even more remarkable real-world results. The 2.5L four cylinder engine is estimated to get up to 28 mpg city, 39 highway, although pricier models may still offer 25 mpg city and 34 highway. One thing the Altima lacks compared to its competitors - a hybrid or plug-in variation that could help save on fuel costs in the long run.
According to the EPA, all-wheel-drive models can reach up to 26 mpg city and 36 highway. The VC-Turbo engine is slightly below that at 25 mpg city and 35 highway. Yet in our 75 mph fuel economy route tests, which are a part of our rigorous assessment process, the AWD Altima recorded an awe inspiring 41 mpg while its turbo counterpart managed 37mpg! Even more impressive were results from other nonhybrid Accord or Camry vehicles where they achieved 38mpg & 45mpg respectively!
The 2020 Altima earned a five-star crash-test rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), and it was named a Top Safety Pick by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). While every Altima has forward-collision warning and automated emergency braking, the SR versions and up have standard blind-spot monitoring, high-beam assist, rear cross-traffic alert, and more. All but the S and SR trims levels are also available with a semi-autonomous drive mode that Nissan calls ProPilot Assist.
The Nissan Altima is a great vehicle to have, whether you're driving the sedan or coupe version. Because of Nissan's dedication to quality and performance, you can expect your Altima to last 200,000 to 300,000 miles—or 13 to 20 years.
Owners and lessees of Nissan Altima vehicles have reported several recurring problems with the CVT transmissions, including lurching, acceleration issues, vehicle overheating and premature transmission failure.