In one of the most extensive mid-cycle makeovers in Nissan history, the 2016 Nissan Altima stands ready to build on its segment-leading growth over the past five years with a new design, new driving feel, improved fuel economy, a new sport Altima SR grade and a wide array of enhanced technology, connectivity and safety features.
The Altima transformation for the new model year includes a new look for the exterior, a refined personal space interior, enhanced connectivity, more available safety and security features and an expanded model lineup – all designed to make Altima a better value and better choice for mid-size sedan buyers than ever before.
A new look
Though totally redesigned just three years ago, Nissan has since developed a bold new design language. Known by designers as “energetic flow,” the new look was introduced in the 2015 Murano and 2016 Maxima.
In order to bring the new Altima into the new look, the front and rear sections feature totally new designs and sheet metal. In front, that means adding a new lowered muscular front fascia with distinctive “V-motion” grille and new bumper.
The major design changes continue in the rear, where a new fascia and bumper add a more dramatic character. The new look is highlighted by the lower and wider four-piece taillights featuring a boomerang shape.
Along with the revised appearance, the new Altima also offers a 10-percent improvement in coefficient of drag – to 0.26 Cd from the previous 0.29 Cd. The changes come from the addition of an active grille shutter (3.0 percent gain), underfloor aero cover additions (three percent) and the new front and rear fascia and windshield designs (4.0 percent).
A new, information-centric interior
Inside the new 2016 Altima’s refined, personal space interior, the most noticeable change is in the center of the vehicle, where a new C-stack and center console offer easier use. The new interior appearance shares the “gliding wing” design language established with the new Murano and Maxima.
The Altima features a standard 5.0-inch color audio display, which is used for a number of tasks including viewing images from the RearView Monitor and accessing the standard NissanConnect with Mobile Apps system.
The NissanConnect with Mobile Apps system allows Altima owners to stay connected to their digital lives, even when in the vehicle. Apps include Online Search powered by Google, Facebook and others, along with the flexibility to introduce new apps throughout the ownership experience.
Along with the 5.0-inch color audio display, the system includes a USB port with iPod connectivity. Also standard on all models (except 2.5) is Siri Eyes Free, which allows a hands-free voice connection to Siri commands.
Standard on Altima 3.5 SL and optional on 2.5 SV and 2.5SL is NissanConnect with Navigation and Mobile Apps. The system is packed with a rich range of features and is easy to use with its 7.0-inch touch-screen, 3D-effect map views, Nissan Voice Recognition and turn-by-turn navigation.
Every 2016 Altima also offers an Advanced Drive-Assist Display. Located in the center of the instrument display between the tachometer and speedometer, it features a 4.0-inch color display and is customizable, easy-to-use and integrates key information right in front of the driver.
The advanced Zero Gravity front seats, which are standard on all trim levels, utilize an articulated seat shape with continuous support from the pelvis to the chest and distribution of localized deformation characteristics.
Also available, depending on model, are leather-appointed seats and trim, 6-way or 8-way power-adjustable driver’s seat with power lumbar support and a 4-way power front passenger seat. Heated front seats are also available, along with Carbon Wave tone (Charcoal interior) or Brushed Silver Wave tone (Beige interior) interior trim finishers.
The new Altima SR grade includes sport interior accents, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, paddle shifters and leather-wrapped gear shifter.
Available audio systems include an AM/FM/CD design with RDS, MP3, aux-in and six speakers, along with an available Bose Premium Audio System with nine speakers (including woofers), designed in conjunction with Bose engineers during vehicle development to deliver rich sound and acoustics.
With the available Hands-Free Text Messaging Assistant (part of NissanConnect with Mobile Apps), drivers can manage incoming text messages via voice control without taking their hands from the wheel or eyes off the road. Drivers are alerted to an incoming text and, after initiating the system, can hear the text read out loud and respond via voice recognition, or via the steering wheel switches using pre-set answers such as “driving, can’t text,” “on my way,” “running late,” “okay” or a custom message.
Best-in-class fuel economy
Once again in 2016, Altima is offered with a choice of two refined powerplants – a 2.5-liter DOHC inline 4-cylinder and a 3.5-liter DOHC V6.
The 2.5-liter engine features an expected one mile per gallon increase for highway fuel economy rating, bringing it to 39 mpg and giving Altima the best-in-class standard highway fuel economy of any vehicle in the mid-sized segment. The increase is from a combination of a 10-percent improvement in vehicles aerodynamics – such as the addition of an active grille shutter, a revised engine compression ratio, reduced internal engine friction and an optimized oil pump.
Matched with the standard, smooth and efficient Xtronic transmission, estimated fuel economy for 2.5-liter models is rated at 27 mpg city, 39 mpg highway and 31 mpg combined.
The Xtronic transmission adds third-generation D-step Shift logic, which is shared with the Nissan Murano and Maxima , creating a more responsive acceleration feel both from a standing start and during reacceleration in situations such as passing slower vehicles.
The 2.5-liter QR25 engine includes variable valve timing on both exhaust and intake camshafts, helping keep the torque curve flat. Featuring cutting-edge technology such as a thermoplastic resin intake manifold, the engine produces 182 horsepower.
For 2016, the four-wheel independent Altima suspension has been redesigned to deliver more dynamic handling, with new shock absorbers, rear springs and bushings – along with new tire designs across all models.
The Altima front suspension uses an independent front strut design, while the multi-link rear suspension has been benchmarked to leading European sports sedans.
Altima also features an Active Understeer Control system, which utilizes intelligent control logic and high-response brake actuators to lightly brake the inside front wheels during cornering (as required) to increase yaw-moment. Using the Vehicle Dynamic Control (VDC)/Traction Control System (TCS) as its base, Active Understeer Control is almost undetectable when it operates.
Responsive steering is provided by an Electronic Hydraulic Power-Assisted Steering (EHPS) system that preserves the feel of hydraulic steering rack while offering the efficiencies of an electric power steering set-up.
The four-wheel power-assisted disc brake system provides a premium blend of immediate response and confident braking. Anti-lock braking system, electronic brake force distribution and brake assist are standard.
The 2016 Altima again features Nissan’s Easy Fill Tire Alert function for the Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS), which is standard on all grades.