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1995 Nissan Altima Sedan

4dr Sedan XE Manual

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1995 Nissan Altima for Sale

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  • $14,999 original MSRP

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Printable Version

1995 Nissan Altima Sedan

Printable Version

1995 Nissan Altima Sedan

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1995 Nissan Altima

Source: New Car Test Drive

Overview

The Nissan Altima offers an interesting alternative to those looking for a compact sedan. It's just slightly off the mainstream in several areas - styling, ride and handling, interior layout - and these traits give it an appealing character that makes it stand out from the crowd.

The Altima was introduced in 1993, and because it has been setting a strong sales record all along, a natural conclusion is that Nissan must be doing something right. We think what appeals to buyers is the well-appointed interior, distinctive styling and exceptional roadability, all available at a reasonably affordable price and with commendably good fuel economy.

The Altima is available in four trim levels: XE, GXE, sportier SE and top-of-the-line GLE. The price differential from the base XE to a fully equipped GLE will be more than $5000, so there's a lot of room in the Altima line to suit a wide range of budgets. Final assembly of all Altimas takes place at Nissan Motor Manufacturing Corporation in Smyrna, Tennessee.

Walkaround

The Altima has a striking exterior, with some of the heavily rounded-off look and detailing of the Infiniti J30 (Infiniti is Nissan's luxury line, and the Altima and J30 were both styled at Nissan Design International in California). This drop-shouldered look, the unified and rounded shape of the side window openings, and details such as the elliptical door handles (all signatures borrowed from Infiniti) give the Altima a certain elegance and distinction that sets it apart from the majority of compact sedans.

Depending on your viewpoint, under the hood is one of the Altima's best or worst features: a 2.4-liter, 16-valve

4-cylinder engine. It's rated at 150 hp, offers good low-speed torque for respectably responsive acceleration and scores well on the fuel economy scale. But it lacks the smoothness, verve and performance of a V6 and detracts from the Altima's luxury feel.

With the XE, GXE and SE models, a 5-speed manual transmission is standard. A 4-speed electronically controlled automatic is optional on those three models and standard on the GLE. Brakes are discs in front and drums in the rear, but

4-wheel discs with anti-lock braking (ABS) are available as an option. If you must consider only one option, we heartily endorse ABS as one of the most worthwhile of safety features.

Standard safety features include dual airbags, 3-point belts at all outboard seating positions, and childproof rear door locks. Other standard items include power steering, halogen headlamps, tinted glass with a dark upper windshield band, and dual power mirrors.

Changes for 1995 are minor. Outside are a new grille, taillamps, badging and five new exterior colors. Inside are new seat and door-trim cloth on the SE and GLE, a new center console armrest and the inclusion of a leather-wrapped steering wheel with the GLE leather package.

Interior Features

The Altima's interior has the same sort of distinction as the exterior, with a look of elegance and luxury. The instrument panel has a graceful, sweeping curvature. On all but the XE there's wood-pattern trim, and if you opt for the leather in the SE or GLE, you'll find it's tastefully crafted in that expensive-looking wrinkled style that's become so popular these days on luxury cars.

Ergonomics are also about as good as they get - everything you need to operate is both easy to see and easy to use.

Standard interior features on all trim levels include a tilt steering wheel, rear defroster, cupholders, lockable glove box, dual visor vanity mirrors, cut-pile carpeting, adjustable headrests, and remote releases for the trunk, hood and fuel filler door.

On the GXE, SE and GLE, the standard equipment list includes power windows and door locks, center console and rear-seat center armrest with trunk pass-through.

There is also a variety of sound systems, including an AM/FM stereo with cassette and CD players and Dolby sound. Automatic temperature-control air conditioning is an option on the high-line GLE only.

Probably the weakest aspect of the Altima's interior is that it's not overly large. The EPA rates it as a compact, while competitors such as the Toyota Camry, Hyundai Sonata, Mazda 626 and Buick Regal are rated in the midsize category. This means acceptable space for four adults, but five (depending on their size) may be a pinch.

Driving Impressions

Over-the-road behavior is one of the Altima's strongest suits. Nissan's engineers worked hard at giving the car excellent handling traits in a way that could be appreciated by most drivers (instead of just racers and sports-car enthusiasts), and that work paid off.

At the same time, the Altima delivers a well-controlled, comfortable ride that is apparent on long highway cruises or over rough, secondary roads.

One of the primary targets of the engineers was steering feel, and in this category the Altima scores well. You'll notice, for example, while driving briskly along a curving mountain road that the steering sends accurate messages from the front tires to you, giving a feeling of confidence and security. On the other hand, it also provides excellent power assist in low-speed, tight maneuvering, such as what you'd encounter in crowded parking lots, where steering ease is so desirable.

On rough roads the suspension does a good job of soaking up bumps that are either big or harsh or both, aided by a structure that feels tight, solid and rigid. The Altima has what its engineers call "Super Toe Control" rear suspension, meaning a system that maintains a more optimum alignment of the rear tires during driving maneuvers. All in all, the Altima offers one of the better driving experiences in the midrange sedan class.

We would like more power, though. The 4-cylinder engine is willing but just can't match the smoother, more powerful V6 engines that are becoming increasingly popular with sedan owners.

Compared with a modern V6, the Altima's 4-cylinder is noisier, rougher and less sprightly. Much of the time, as when cruising easily around town, the driver might not notice. But step down on the gas pedal, as when accelerating hard to merge on the freeway, and the 4-cylinder will make itself heard and felt.

With good V6 engines available from a wide range of nameplates - including the new Ford Contour/Mercury Mystique and the Chrysler Cirrus/ Dodge Stratus - the Altima seems behind the competition on this score.

The 4-cylinder engine may have some fuel economy benefits when compared with the V6 offerings, but we'd gladly pay the difference.

Summary

Nissan says the Altima offers "affordable luxury," and we think that would be a fair way to put it. The Altima enjoys a price advantage over much of its likely competition, particularly when you consider the level of luxury features and appointments.

In addition, it provides a superior driving experience when compared with many other sedans in its general size and price category, and it displays the kind of ride and handling behavior that most drivers can probably recognize and appreciate.

There are certainly lots of good sedans worthy of your purchasing dollar. What the Altima offers is an alternative to the majority, a unique blend of characteristics that large numbers of buyers have found appealing. It stands out from the crowd, not like a sore thumb, but with a level of style, flair, luxury and flavor missing from many models.

Model Line Overview
Base Price (MSRP)
$15,189
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Price as tested (MSRP)
$20,279
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Printable Version

1995 Nissan Altima Sedan

Safety Features & Equipment

Braking & Traction

4-Wheel ABS Opt

Passenger Restraint

Driver Air Bag Std
Passenger Air Bag Std
Child Safety Locks Std

Road Visibility

Intermittent Wipers Std
Printable Version

1995 Nissan Altima Sedan

Nissan Certified Pre-Owned Warranty  help
Certified Pre-Owned Warranty
To be eligible for Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) status, vehicles generally must be recent models with relatively low mileage. CPO vehicles must also pass a detailed inspection, outlined by the manufacturer, which is measured by the number of inspected points.
Warranty coverage can vary from one manufacturer to the next. While most certified pre-owned programs transfer and extend the existing new car warranty terms, others offer a warranty that simply represents an additional year and mileage value. Always check with the manufacturer for the specific warranties they offer.
Common features and benefits of Certified Pre-Owned warranties include:
Age/Mileage Eligibility
To even be considered for certification, a car must be a recent model year and have limited mileage. The exact requirements are established by individual manufacturers.
Lease Term Certified
Some manufacturers offer certified pre-owned cars for lease. The length of the lease is often shorter than a new car lease, but it will cost you less.
Point Inspection
These inspections entail a comprehensive vehicle test to ensure that all parts are in excellent working order. The point inspection list is simply a numbered list of exactly what parts of the car are examined. While many inspections range from a 70- to 150-point checklist, most are very similar and are performed using strict guidelines. Ask your local dealer about specific details.
Return/Exchange Program
Some manufacturers offer a very limited return or exchange period. Find out if you will get the sales tax and licensing/registration fees back should you return or exchange the car.
Roadside Assistance
Most certified pre-owned programs offer free roadside service in case your car breaks down while still under warranty.
Special Financing
Reduced-rate loans are available through many certified pre-owned programs. Manufacturer-backed inspections and warranties help eliminate the risks involved with buying pre-owned, so buyers who qualify can take advantage of the great offers.
Transferable Warranty
When a new car warranty transfers with the certification of the car and remains eligible for the next owner, it is known as a transferable warranty. Once the original transferable warranty expires, an extended warranty takes effect.
Warranty Deductible
This is the amount for which you are responsible when repair work is performed under the warranty. Some manufacturers require a deductible while others don't, so always ask.

7-year/100,000 mile limited warranty. Only Nissan models less than 6 years old and under 80,000 miles qualify for the Nissan Certified Pre-Owned program. The CARFAX® Vehicle History Report ensures your vehicle has a clean title history.
Age/Mileage Eligibility Model years 2010-2015 & less than 80,000 miles.
Lease Term Certified Yes
Point Inspection 167 point comprehensive Certified Pre-Owned Inspection and reconditioning. Inspection includes OEM service bulletins and recalls, diagnostic trouble codes, powertrain/chassis, body frame, road test, interior and body exterior.
Return/Exchange Program No
Roadside Assistance Yes for the duration of the 7 year/100,000 mile limited warranty from the original in-service date of the vehicle.
Special Financing Yes
Transferrable Warranty Yes
Warranty Deductible $50 per claim

Learn more about certified pre-owned vehicles

Printable Version

1995 Nissan Altima Sedan

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