Saturday, January 28, 2023
Reviews 2022 Nissan Altima Review: Fighting Off SUVs as Best as it Can

2022 Nissan Altima Review: Fighting Off SUVs as Best as it Can

The 2022 Nissan Altima is too little too late despite being a compelling midsize sedan

  • Pricing for the Altima starts at $24,750 in the US, $30,198 in Canada.

  • AWD is standard in Canada which explains the price gap.

  • The current Altima is the best Altima since the 3rd generation car.

My video review of the 2022 Nissan Altima admittedly starts off a little rough, but I like to tell it like it is. I’ve been at this job long enough to have seen brands and cars go from great to bad, and back to where they were, or any other imaginable sequence. With Nissan and Infiniti, few are the times when a product returned to its former glory.

2022 Nissan Altima SR | Photo: Matt St-Pierre

The Altima and new Pathfinder are the exceptions to Nissan’s unfortunate habit and in the sedan’s case, they’ve all but outdone themselves. The current Altima launched in 2018 and in brief, it reset the nameplate to where it was in the mid-2000s.

Had Nissan launched this car as the follow to the 3rd generation Altima, it is very possible that this midsize sedan would be untouchable today as the Camry is today. What I mean to say is that consumers buy a Camry, not a sedan.

Racy looker

2022 Nissan Altima SR | Photo: Matt St-Pierre

One of the best ways for automakers to increase their vehicle’s appeal factor is through design. The 6th generation Altima is the sharpest-looking in 15 years. Nissan’s styling loaded it up with numerous character lines, creases, and visual touches that are equal parts subtle and noticeable.

The tested SR Midnight Edition trim raises the car’s profile thanks to its included 19-inch wheels, LED fog lights, and various black accents including the sport grille and rear spoiler. And at $32,798, it represents the value- and styling-packed trim to consider.

Huge and value-packed

2022 Nissan Altima SR | Photo: Matt St-Pierre

As standard, the $30,198 2022 Nissan Altima SE’s massive cabin includes an 8-inch touchscreen display, Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and more. The extra $2,600 also throws in dual-zone climate control, remote engine start, a heated steering wheel with paddle shifters, and more.

Once settled within the Altima’s vast confines, occupants are met with tasteful materials and plenty of room. The driver gets the best seat in the house with a flat-bottom steering wheel, and simple-to-operate controls. The sole negative comment in relation to the dashboard comes from the touchscreen’s questionable plastic surround.

One drivetrain

2022 Nissan Altima SR | Photo: Matt St-Pierre

To keep things simple, Nissan Canada wisely decided to offer the Altima with only one engine-transmission-driveline configuration. While a FWD version powered by the overly complex 2.0-litre Variable Compression turbocharged engine is available in the US, we are exclusively served by a naturally-aspirated 2.5-litre 4-cylinder engine. This mill is mated only to an Xtronic Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT) and Nissan’s Intelligent AWD.

On paper and in reality, this combination is perfectly adapted to the Canadian driving situation all year round. In normal driving conditions, the AWD layout keeps the going efficient, however, when required, the system’s brain sends power to the rear wheels to keep the momentum going.

2022 Nissan Altima SR | Photo: Matt St-Pierre

With 182-horsepower and 178 lb.-ft. of torque, the 2.5-litre isn’t a powerhouse, but it musters plenty enough get-up and go when required. The CVT does what a CVT does. That is that under mild to strong initial throttle, it enables the car to lurch forward. It also unfortunately occasionally drones in light-throttle situations. The available Sport drive mode helps if only a bit.

The CVT’s main advantage is smoothness of operation once under and under mild throttle. Likewise, in this same driving scenario, the Altima can be fairly fuel-efficient, capable of returning an average of 8.1L/100km.

Lovely ride quality

2022 Nissan Altima SR | Photo: Matt St-Pierre

This part surprised me the most. When I last drove the Altima, in 2019, I complained that “damping is limited in its ability to overcome road surface irregularities.” Incredibly, this time around, I discovered the exact opposite.

Still fitted with a fully-independent suspension with a multi-link rear setup, this 2022 Nissan Altima SR Midnight Edition felt supple, and smooth, with plenty of suspension travel. Back in 2019, the tester also rolled on 19-inch wheels, and I promise you the roads in my neighborhood are at least as bad as they were three years ago.

The segment continues to shrink

2022 Nissan Altima SR | Photo: Matt St-Pierre

However, as long as there is a Toyotas Camry available for sale, it will continue to be the go-to midsize sedan. The Honda Accord comes in second closely followed by the Subaru Legacy.

The Altima’s greatest foe sits across the showroom floor and it’s the Rogue. Both share powertrains and one happens to be an SUV… In a world without SUVs, the current Altima would be a hit.

2021 Toyota Camry XLE AWD Review: The Only Midsize Sedan

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Matt St-Pierre
Trained as an Automotive Technician, Matt has two decades of automotive journalism under his belt. He’s done TV, radio, print and this thing called the internet. He’s an avid collector of many 4-wheeled things, all of them under 1,500 kg, holds a recently expired racing license and is a father of two. Life is beautiful. Send Matt an emai


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