New 2013 Nissan Sentra steps up in terms of mileage, comfort, and looks
The new 2013 Nissan Sentra is no longer an entry level car. There was a time when the Nissan Sentra was the smallest vehicle for sale in the US by Nissan. With the two offerings called Versa and the Nissan Cube, the Sentra is now free to move a little up-market. Just as the Altima was for many years just a little short for the court, the Sentra is now out of its former category and knocking on the door to a bigger gymnasium ready to play ball with the bigger kids.
Sentra vs Altima
To keep this 2013 Nissan Sentra in perspective it is helpful to jump back in time. This car is just about the size of the second generation Altima and it has features and specifications beyond what that car offered. Consider fuel economy. According to the US department of energy the 2001 Altima had a fuel economy rating of 20 city and 28 highway, 23 mpg combined. This new Sentra is able to get 34 mpg combined. Yes that’s right about a 32% increase over 10 years. The Sentra you will buy will get and EPA rating of 39 mpg on the highway, though Nissan created a special model called the FE+ which gets 40mpg. Nissan did that so it could advertise 40 mpg on all its billboards. Maybe FE+ stands for “Forget it Exists.” This does not diminish the fact that 39 mpg highway is utterly amazing in a car this size at this price point.
CVTs Work (Unfortunately)
In order to achieve the high mileage number in the 2013 Sentra, Nissan again employs its CVT transmission, this time coupled to a 1.8 liter engine. Yes, all auto writers hate CVTs, but frankly this is where a transmission like this belongs, in the small commuter car world. Most customers will never know or care it is there.