Nissan’s Altima sedan offers new Midnight Edition option

The Nissan Altima midsize sedan moved into its sixth generation with a complete makeover just three years ago, along with its first turbocharged engine and all-wheel drive options, as well as new safety and convenience technologies.
For 2022, the Altima offers the same five basic trim levels as last year, with no major changes except for the addition of the special Midnight Edition Package ($1,750) exclusively for the SR model.

Trim levels for 2022 begin with the base S 2.5 model with front-wheel drive ($24,550, plus $1,025 freight), SV 2.5 front drive ($25,550), SV 2.5 AWD ($26,950); SR 2.5 front drive ($26,550); SR 2.5 AWD ($27,950); SL 2.5 front drive ($29,990); SR 2.0 VC-T front drive ($30,900); SL 2.5 AWD ($31,390); and Platinum 2.5 AWD ($34,250).

The 2.5 models come with the base normally aspirated 2.5-liter inline four-cylinder engine, with front-wheel drive standard on all but the Platinum, which comes only with all-wheel drive. 

All of the 2.5-liter models except the base S model are available with the intelligent all-wheel drive, which costs $1,350 extra except on the Platinum model, where it is standard.

The 2.5-liter inline four-cylinder engine is rated at 188 horsepower and 180 foot-pounds of torque with front-wheel drive, or 182 horsepower and 178 foot-pounds of torque with all-wheel drive.

EPA fuel-economy ratings for the 2.5-liter engine are 28 mpg city/39 highway/32 combined with front-wheel drive S models, and 27/37/31 with front-drive SV, SR, and SL models. 

With all-wheel drive, the 2.5-liter SV and SL models are rated at 26 city/36 highway/30 combined, while the SR and Platinum AWDs are 25/35/29.

Altima’s new 2.0-liter turbocharged inline four-cylinder engine is offered only on the SR VC-T front-drive model. This engine produces up to 248 horsepower and 273 foot-pounds of torque when run on premium gasoline. It replaces the previous generation’s V-6 engine, which is no longer offered.

A continuously variable automatic transmission comes on all Altima models. No manual is offered even on the sporty turbo models.
Our test vehicle was the SR all-wheel-drive model with the Midnight Edition Package, which comes only in the Gun Metallic exterior color -- a dark gray – with Charcoal sport cloth/vinyl seats with red contrast stitching. 

The Midnight Edition Package adds LED fog lights, heated front seats, two-way driver’s-side power lumbar support, single-panel moon roof, gloss-black painted sport grille, gloss-black painted rear spoiler, satin-black Midnight Edition badge, gloss-black painted 19-inch aluminum-alloy wheels and black painted heated outside mirrors with LED turn signals.

The Nissan Safety Shield 360 package is standard on the SR model. The Driver Assist Package is included, as well, but also is now available on even the base S model.

Platinum models now have an outside-mirror-position memory. And the Piano Black interior trim is offered on the SV, SL and Platinum models.

SV, SL and Platinum trims continue to come with Nissan’s ProPilot Assist, a precursor to autonomous operation. It’s not offered on S or SR models. This system eases the driver’s workload by reducing the amount of acceleration, steering and braking input during highway driving. The goal is to reduce driver fatigue and accidents.

ProPilot Assist helps to keep the vehicle centered in its lane, navigate stop-and-go traffic, and maintain both a set speed and a set distance from the vehicle ahead – all done with a simple two-button operation. It includes use of the new Intelligent Cruise Control, a feature that is quickly becoming standard on even lower-end cars these days.

Altima’s ProPilot Assist uses a forward-facing camera and radar, various sensors and an electronic control module to help keep the car in the driving lane and maintain the cruise speed set by the driver, and to help maintain a gap between the car and the vehicle ahead. The system also can bring the vehicle to a complete stop and hold it there in stop-and-go traffic conditions.

The new Intelligent All-Wheel Drive system is capable of automatically sending up to half of the engine’s power to the rear wheels when slippage is detected, or keeping 100 percent of power at the front, which is the default mode.

Standard on all models are Automatic Emergency Braking, Intelligent Forward Collision Warning and Intelligent Driver Alertness. 
The Intelligent Around-View Monitor is standard on the Platinum models only.

Front, side and rear safety monitoring and intervention technologies under the Safety Shield 360 system include Automatic Emergency Braking with Pedestrian Detection, Rear Automatic Braking, Lane Departure Warning, radar-based Blind Spot Warning, Rear Cross Traffic Alert and High Beam Assist.

A Traffic Sign Recognition system picks up speed-limit information using a camera on the windshield in front of the rearview mirror. That information is transmitted to and shown in the Advanced Drive Assist Display. In vehicles equipped with navigation, the speed-limit information comes from a combination of navigation system data and the camera’s view.

Also new in the sixth-generation Altima is a dual-pinion electric power steering system, designed to enhance steering feel and reduces steering noise.
The Integrated Dynamics Module includes Intelligent Ride Control, Intelligent Trace Control and Vehicle Dynamics Control – similar to those on the Nissan Maxima sedan.

Available wheel sizes include 16-, 17- and 19-inch.
Altima SR models come with 19-inch aluminum-alloy wheels, a unique rear diffuser color, sport suspension (front-wheel drive only), sport interior with sport seats, leather-appointed steering wheel with paddle shifters, dark chrome V-motion grille, exhaust finishers, black side mirror caps and body-color door handles.

After the sixth-generation redesign, the Altima is 1.1 inches lower, an inch longer overall, and 0.9 inches wider than before, and it has a wheelbase 1.9 inches longer.
Among exterior features are a V-motion grille, LED projector headlights with Daytime Running Lights, LED fog lights, a “floating” roof with slim pillars and a single-panel moon roof. 

Altima’s interior was designed to give the car a near-luxury feel, with premium materials and the lightweight, layered and more horizontal "gliding wing" instrument panel. 
Our SR model had remote keyless entry with pushbutton start; rear-door alert; and tire-pressure monitoring with Nissan’s Easy Fill alert system. Our climate-control system was manually operated, however.

Comfort and convenience features include the standard 7.0-inch Advanced Drive Assist Display, enhanced Zero Gravity seats with dual-density foam and additional bolstering. Leather interiors are standard on SL and Platinum grades.
Standard on all models is the NissanConnect system, featuring Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility. It comes with an eight-inch multi-touch color display, Bluetooth hands-free phone system and streaming audio, Hands-free Text Messaging Assistant and Siri Eyes Free/Google Assistant Voice Recognition. 

It also offers Apple Watch and Android Wear compatibility through the NissanConnect Services app – allowing remote engine start and stop, remote lock/unlock and more, along with Amazon Alexa compatibility.

While our tester did not have navigation, the NissanConnect audio system came with an eight-inch color touch display and associated services, including over-the-air updates, SiriusXM radio, and Bluetooth hands-free phone, text messaging and audio streaming.
We had two front and two rear illuminated USB charging ports, and the audio system came with six speakers. Platinum models have a Bose premium audio system with nine speakers, including a new digital amplifier.

There was no lack of power for everyday driving with the 2.5-liter engine. It includes Hill Start Assist and traction control, along with the electronic stability control and four-wheel antilock disc brakes with electronic brake-force distribution and brake assist. 
There is also an electronic parking brake with auto-hold feature.

Up to five people can ride in the Altima, but it’s much more comfortable for two than three in the back seat (normal for this class), which has a pull-down center armrest with dual cupholders. 

Rear passengers have their own center heating and air conditioning outlets, along with the USB charging. They also have seatback storage pockets and door storage bins with single cup or bottle holders.

Dual front USB ports and an auxiliary port are positioned at the front of the center console just under the dash for the driver and front passenger, along with two cupholders.

The Altima has a relatively roomy trunk with 15.4 cubic feet of space. The rear seatback has a 60/40 fold-down feature to expand trunk capacity into the passenger area.

Besides the Midnight Edition Package, the only option on our tester was All-Season Floor Mats ($130).
Total sticker price was $30,855, including freight and options, for our well-equipped Altima SR 2.5 with all-wheel drive and Midnight Edition package.
The automotive columns of G. Chambers Williams III have appeared regularly in the Express-News since 2000. Contact him at or on Twitter @gchambers3.

2022 Nissan Altima

The package: Midsize, four-door, five-passenger, gasoline four-cylinder normally aspirated or turbocharged, front- or all-wheel-drive sedan.
Highlights: Altima moved into its sixth generation for 2019, with a complete makeover and its first turbocharged engine and all-wheel-drive options. This is the best version yet, offering a luxury-car appearance, sporty performance, comfortable ride, plush and roomy interior and lots of new high-tech safety and driver-assistance features.
 Negatives: No manual gearbox available for those who want a sportier driving experience, especially with the turbo engine option.
Engines: 2.5-liter inline four-cylinder, normally aspirated (standard); 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder (optional).
Transmission: Continuously variable automatic.
Power/torque: 188 HP/180 foot-pounds (2.5); 248 HP/273 foot-pounds (2.0).
Length: 192.9 inches.
Curb weight range (base): 3,212-3,329 pounds.
Brakes, front/rear: Disc/disc, antilock.
Trunk volume: 15.4 cubic feet.
Side air bags: Front seat-mounted, roof-mounted side-curtain for both rows, standard.
Electronic stability control: Standard. 
Fuel capacity/type: 16.2 gallons/unleaded regular (front drive); 16.0 gallons (all-wheel drive).
EPA fuel economy: 28 mpg city/39 highway/32 combined (2.5, front drive); 26/36/30 (2.5, all-wheel drive); 25/34/29 (2.0).
Major competitors: Toyota Camry, Honda Accord, Hyundai Sonata, Kia Optima, Mazda6, Volkswagen Passat, Subaru Legacy. 
Base price range: $24,550-$34,250 plus $1,025 freight.
Price as tested: $30,855, including freight and option (SR 2.5 AWD with Midnight Edition package).
On the Road rating: 9.2 (of a possible 10).
Prices shown are manufacturer's suggested retail; actual selling price may vary.