By on November 18, 2015

IMG_3401

(The Sentra still really needs an SE-R model.)

Nissan unleashed its heavily refreshed 2016 Nissan Sentra on Tuesday at the Los Angeles Auto Show completing the overhaul to the automaker’s line of sedans. The compact sedan, which still uses the same 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine as the last model, sports a few of the Maxima’s designs and even fewer of the new Altima’s curves (we’ll have our first drive for that soon).

The company’s V-shaped grille and boomerang headlights are present, but some of the more unique features will have to wait for the Sentra’s complete overhaul a few years from now.

Nissan announced that the Sentra will start at $16,780 and will go on sale in December. Full pricing would be detailed closer to the car’s launch so … next week?

The same huffy 130-horsepower four cylinder engine is still under the hood, so we’ll have to wait longer for improvements there. Assuming you get the car up to speed, the Sentra has added safety features such as Forward Emergency Braking, Intelligent Cruise Control, Blind Spot Monitoring and cross traffic alert.

The Sentra will be offered in base S, SV, SR and SL trims. A six-speed manual is available only on the S trim.

A new steering wheel and 5-inch high-resolution screen in the car’s instrument cluster highlight the changes to the Sentra.

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61 Comments on “LA 2015: New 2016 Nissan Sentra Finishes What Maxima Started...”


  • avatar

    UGLY

    But not as ugly on smaller bodies.

  • avatar
    davefromcalgary

    Best looking car in Nissan’s lineup.

    • 0 avatar
      bball40dtw

      My dad has a white one and it isn’t bad. It certainly isn’t offensive or gross like some of Nissan’s other products. Since it’s a super cheap 24 month lease, it’s more than adequate.

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      This is really an improvement over the former version. Much more grown up looking, and considerably more upscale.

      • 0 avatar
        bball40dtw

        It’s a decent car for cheap. It isn’t a hateful econobox like it used to be. It still sells on price, but that’s fine.

        • 0 avatar
          CoreyDL

          Seems an odd choice for your dad, who was typically into larger stuff, from your historical recollection?

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            Well he had a truck in the household from 1980ish until last year. So yes it is. He’s retired now and doesn’t drive that much. Since my sister blew up her 3400 powered Alero, my parents sent her the HHR and my dad found the cheapest lease he could find (in a car he could fit in to).

            I was there when my parents called her to say that they were sending her the HHR instead of leasing her a Prius C or some other Earth hugging penalty box. Hilarious!

            He got the Sentra for around $120/month with just first month payment, doc fees, and other start ups down. It’s the SV version with Nav and something that appears to be leather like. He originally tried to get the $79/month lease but they didn’t have any more left. So he has 2 years and 30K miles for about $3000. I don’t know what he’ll do after that.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            Lol, got a NRDC type sister eh?

            That’s a really cheap lease indeed, especially with leatherette and nav. He should buy something older and for funs since he’s retired. Like an Olds or Cadillac of some sort.

          • 0 avatar
            RideHeight

            “I don’t know what he’ll do after that.”

            Nothing frivolous! I respect another tight fist.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            He would like another truck, but he says they are too expensive, even used. I can see him buying a used Lincoln because my parents are happy with their MKZ.

            As far as my sister goes, she is getting a masters degree is International Environmental Policy, with a speciliaztion in marine consevation, at an extremely liberal college in California. That kind of speaks for itself. I get along with her just fine and she still has her sense of humor. She was irritated with my parents when they bought a V6 MKZ instead of some sort of hybrid (LOL). I often tell her that the ocean if full of garbage and that various ocean creatures need to be eradiated. She’s calmed down on posting a bunch of environmental stuff on social media because, in the thread, I often post pictures of Styrofoam cups I threaten to throw away instead of recycle. That’s what big brothers are for.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            Haha, sounds like something I would do. Maybe make a text picture or meme of a Styrofoam cup.

            USES THESE CUPS

            DOESN’T WASTE WATER WITH DISHWASHER

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            She says it is us humans’ fault that there are poisonous sea snakes on the beaches of California and that they have a right to be there. Like they are Syrian refugees or something. I say F sea snakes. We should kill all of them. We can’t let sea snakes into our country. Then they are going to have sea snake babies and stay here. I think we should fight sea snakes across the globe so we don’t have to fight them in our backyard.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            Just like those f*cking giant African snails people keep bringing over here.

            You can’t eat them since they’re very poisonous, and they have ravenous appetites and breeding habits.

            Yep, kill em all.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            The [email protected] Asian Carp are going to ruin everything for the Great Lakes if they get there. They aren’t even tasty like Walleye and Perch.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            Oh, and zebra mussels are already doing their part.

            Asian Carp is no joke!

            http://cdn2-b.examiner.com/sites/default/files/styles/image_content_width/hash/1b/4d/Giant%20Asian%20Carp%20AP_0.jpg?itok=_QUyn0Ek

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Why didn’t the Gulf of Aden step in and provide financing for a Prius?

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            Do they get some free Priuses with their large Hilux orders? Their fleet salesperson at Toyota must be winning some sales awards.

            I wish I could have seen my sister’s face when she found out she was getting an HHR with almost 100K miles instead of a new Prius. Hahahahaha. I also wish I was there when the car carrier dropped it off.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            I do enjoy your veiled threats on styrofoam and hope sis eventually gets a grip. I also hope “International Environmental Policy” has some actual science sprinkled in otherwise the major needs to change to: “this is the debt hole where my future used to be”. The scientific study of the ocean is actually serious business even in my book. This man is a real hero of mine:

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_Ballard

            Oh and F the sea snakes, Asian carp, and African snails. Kill everything and eat whatever is not poisonous. I keep hearing about how everyone is starving in ‘Murica, where is the QE credit card on killing these things and giving them as food to the hungry?

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            Like I said, at least she has a sense of humor. She’s actually a pretty well-adjusted Gen Yer. Once she has to real life, she’ll be fine. She’ll get a job with NOAA, the UN, or someplace else in that vein.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Humor is very important. I just discovered a bug which nullified test results on a second test if you let it time out on the first one. That’s um, really not good in a system designed to administer tests. But I’m smiling :)

  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    It looks surprisingly good to me.

    Laugh about the Sentra’s performance, etc, but it outsells the Maxima nearly 4:1. And it seems to have the greenhouse the interwebs always want. It’s a way better value than the Maxima.

  • avatar
    laphoneuser

    I like it, but I’ll be damned if I ever put money into another normally aspirated small four cylinder engine again.

  • avatar
    APaGttH

    /snark on

    Nissan makes a Sentra????

    /snark off

  • avatar
    banerjba

    Not an earth shattering refresh. Body style is a carry over from the current baby Altima styling with slightly lumpy proportions. Not pretty but not bad especially in higher trim levels.

    I think the design language always worked better on the larger Altima than this model.

    Anyone tried a stick version of this? Any good? Remember driving the dreadful early to mid 2000s model. Styling was pleasant Corolla esque but the powertrain was awful. Nothing like the wonderful Sentras of the early to mid 1990s.

    I really wish Sentra was the car to capture the soul of the old Datsun cars. Plain but good looking. Economical and a blast to drive. Mybe next time.

  • avatar
    RideHeight

    Cheap little crampy cars have gotten unbelievably shiny!

    • 0 avatar
      gtemnykh

      “little crampy cars”

      Try sitting in the back of one, it’s immense.

      Why is the guy that’s constantly bemoaning things like chopped rooflines, huge wheels, and “sporty” rides trashing one of the few remaining cars that bucks the trend? The Sentra is the exact antithesis of compact cars trying too hard to not be frugal, practical vehicles.

      By the way, look up the Toyota Avanza. I rode in one in a Mexican cab fleet last month and it hit all the right points: Roomy, big windows, durable rwd construction with good ground clearance (in a car the size of a Prius V), and a soft, cushy ride. It’d never sell here in a million years because it is totally NOT sexy or sporty looking, but man it hits all the right notes for me. it was massively more comfortable bouncing down the beat up roads and cobblestone streets than the B13 generation Nissan Tsurus that make up most of the taxi fleet there. The cabbie told me they change shocks every 9 months and tires every 12 months just due to the brutal roads.

      • 0 avatar
        RideHeight

        I looked up the Avanza. I’m swooning as I type this.

        I’m going to move in with that TTAC Charlie guy who fled to a Mexican fishing village. Curse the USDM’s restrictiveness!

        • 0 avatar
          CoreyDL

          The Avanza is like the modern version of the lil old Mazda Demio which I enjoyed so much in Gran Turismo 1.

          • 0 avatar
            RideHeight

            Have you seen what the Demio has devolved into?

            God curse aero and the scumbags who’ve thrust it upon us.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            It’s the Mazda 2 essentially now, isn’t it?

          • 0 avatar
            RideHeight

            Wiki say:

            “The fourth generation is based on a variation of Mazda’s CX-5 platform, rather than Ford’s DE platform used on the Ford Fiesta,[61] and features greater length, wider front and rear tracks, decreased interior room for rear-seat occupants and less front head and legroom.”

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mazda_Demio

            Progress!

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            The little 2 / Scion iA should never be called Demio! It’s not right.

  • avatar
    Joss

    Why would you Sentra when there’s the new Civic? The Focus & Golf base both have 160hp +.

    Bit of a letdown.

  • avatar
    wmba

    I am struggling to think of what the Maxima started.

    Furrows brow.

    Nope, cannot think of a single thing.

    So, I suppose Mr Cole, Master of the Fractured Headline, is perfectly correct in assuming the Maxima finishes what the Sentra started.

    Which is precisely nothing.

  • avatar
    Mackie

    I think the new front end is a massive improvement over the current design. I’ve always felt this car had a very nice greenhouse, but the lower half is awkward and forced. The new front end helps. Frankly, I wish Nissan would stop trying to make it look like a mini Altima. Give it its own identity—and some sportier options, PLEASE.

  • avatar

    I like it. if only Nissan should slap the Renault Megane 225 Cup engine in the Sentra’s engine bay…

  • avatar
    Ryoku75

    If theres anything good about the Sentra line its that they’ve been consistently okay, but frankly boring cars.

    btw I’ve never driven an SE-R so I have no idea if those were any fun

  • avatar
    Nick_515

    You said ‘unleashed’ about a Nissan sentra. That’s funny.

  • avatar
    JohnTaurus_3.0_AX4N

    Okay, Carlos, here’s what to do. Create a hatch and coupe variants. Also, bring back the stripper “Honey Bee” (1970s era Datsun B210): vinyl seats, no power anything and no tech crap. Just a cheap (sub $10k would be ideal, below $9k even better) car. Hell, go with rubber floors and manual steering if its cheaper than electric while youre at it. Without all the equipment (including less sound insulation) and a very tall 6th gear, it should get amazing MPG, as did the B210 Honey Bee. Offer it only with a manual.

    If the Honey Bee model is popular, extend it to Versa. Better yet, scrap Versa and give us the Micra. It looks SO much better.

    There are some people out there who would love something like the Honey Bee I described above. These people are currently Mirage buyers.

    The (regular, as in S and above trims) coupe would compete with Civic and Forte Koupe, the hatch with Focus, Golf, Civic and Cruze hatches.

    Id also like to see Ford bring in the Chinese Escort to be a cheaper alternative to the Focus in North America, although it needs a 3 door hatch along with the sedan. Make it super cheap (in some forms) like the Honey Bee. People normally settling for used cars would be tempted by uber cheap new cars like these. Build the Escort in China to make it even cheaper. Dump them in huge numbers into fleets, so Fiesta and Focus can concentrate on more profitable retail sales.

    Here’s how Id set up the North American Escort:
    Escort L = similar to the Honey Bee. Cheap with extra cheap and a bit more cheap. Maybe revive the Pony? Lol
    Escort LX = rental grade and most popular model, with more options than L like power windows/locks, automatic trans, a/c, better audio system, tinted windows, cruise, tilt, cloth seats and carpet. Wheel covers or optional alloys instead of painted steelies as on the L.
    Escort SE = nicest trim, stepping ever so slightly on Focus’ toes. Improved infotainment, alloys, spoiler, key less entry, etc. Few of these will be sold, with most buyers opting instead for the much nicer Focus over this model, but that’s kinda the point.

    • 0 avatar
      gtemnykh

      The whole honeybee thing is silly. Why make it only with a manual and cut out something like 90% of prospective shoppers? Vinyl seats and no carpet, huh? This sounds like a car guy’s oddball dream car, but not something you could ever make a business case for in the US in 2015.

      Nissan sells the Versa for $11k, you can find the most basic 5spds for $10k brand new if you haggle, CVT cars for $11-12k. And yes they sell rather well as it is. It is a much more substantial vehicle than a Mirage for the same amount of money, and can comfortably fit a young family with kids in car seats and their luggage, something that the Mirage can’t dream of doing. Versa has a midsize car’s 15cu ft trunk and 37+ inches of legroom, again, crucial for car seats. At this low price, it has air conditioning and the CVT option is readily available and even with it included the car is still amazingly affordable.

      The Versa is perhaps the only legitimate third world car (think Renault Logan, Toyota Etios, global chevy Cobalt) that is sold in the US, and I think it’s awesome.

      • 0 avatar
        RideHeight

        Can we even still get the Versa or only the smaller Versa Note?

        I agree that the Versa is a noble offering but the Note has stumbled into crampy land.

        • 0 avatar
          gtemnykh

          Versa sedan is alive and well. I test drove a base model earlier in the year just for fun, and I loved just how honest it all was. Brutally simple with cheaply trimmed seats with integrated head-rests and a very simple dash, but a decent ride over bad pavement and perfectly adequate acceleration when coupled with the manual transmission. I’ve also driven one with a CVT, it definitely had that ‘drone’ that everyone complains about, but it too got up to speed on the highway just fine. Once up to speed on flat ground, the CVT drops the RPMS way down for comofortable highway cruising. Again, their strength is being able to comfortably fit 4 grown people and luggage, or 2 adults and 2 kids in car seats, and a trunk full of stuff. For the asking price, that is an impressive accomplishment.

          • 0 avatar
            RideHeight

            So the hatch is only available with the Note?
            That’s a sadness as there’s an original Versa hatch in my work lot that is of a lovely roof height and greenhousery.

            I imagine it must be a few years old but pristine.

          • 0 avatar
            gtemnykh

            So “Note” denotes the hatchback model as of 2013, the generation you speak of was discontinued in 2012, it stayed with the 1st gen platform/body/engine for one year longer than the sedan. That first generation of Versa was really neat too, some sort of platform sharing with Renault’s Megane, and the influence showed not just in the basic underpinnings. The seats were larger and more comfortable than in other subcompacts of that era, and the car as a whole was on the larger and heavier side of things for the class, and had larger 1.8 liter engine than the class norm of 1.5-1.6. The newer Note is much more Japanese and closer to the Fit. Lighter weight, smaller engine. More efficient but I think it lost what made the original Versas distinctive: a nicer riding, more comfortable, larger car within the subcompact class.

          • 0 avatar
            RideHeight

            Thanks for the info. That 1st gen Versa and the 2nd gen Kia Rondo were the last two non-C/SUVs to interest me. Well, the Mazda 5 and Transit Connect, too.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            The Versa Sedan has a very “I’m poor” look to it, compared to the Fit , this Sentra, or the Versa Note. I don’t know what it is exactly, but I really dislike the sedan version.

            (And yes I realize it’s cheaper to start out!)

          • 0 avatar
            RideHeight

            Corey don’t like puffy bodies on little wheels, is all.

            I’m fine with that in the Versa sedan because it gives a roof height only 0.4″ lower than the Fit’s.

          • 0 avatar
            gtemnykh

            The “I’m poor” look is a fairly narrow-track car with smaller (sanely) sized wheels, but with a tall non-sloping greenhouse and long rear overhang to accommodate a genuinely large trunk. They maximize passenger space within a subcompact footprint by placing passengers more vertically in chair-like seats.

            The Renault Symbol (Nissan Platina in Mexico) and the Toyota Echo were among the first subcompacts to do this, and many others followed suit. I like it simply because it appeals to my engineer and pragmatist sensibilities. Form following function and all that.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            Ah yes, the Nissan Plantain!

            Indian market cars look like the Versa Sedan overall, as well. Due to their length restrictions and trunk desires.

  • avatar
    VW16v

    Looks better then most Infiniti’s. Has design without making it look metrosexual.

  • avatar
    Davekaybsc

    The Sentra can now be added to the list of econoboxes with far superior gauge clusters than the ATS/base CTS.

  • avatar
    Big Al from Oz

    This is not a bad looking vehicle.

    If one looks at the Focus, Corolla, etc in the small car arena this is quite nice.

    I would like to see Nissan bring out a SSS version or Nismo does a little work to the suspension and engine. I had a 2001 Nissan Pulsar that had a little tweaking by Nismo and it was a delight to drive for a 1.8 litre FWD.

  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    Color-keyed stitching and leather (vinyl?) on a Sentra? A nice touch. I also notice how it has considerably better gauges than a Cadillac ATS.

    These have quite a lot of room inside, as does the Altima. It’s almost hard to believe until you’re in it just how much space there is. This revision is a big improvement over the last version. The last one didn’t look desirable at all to me when I saw it – this one kinda does.

    The pic of the red one in motion down the street looks like a scene from Breaking Bad. I think Walt is in there, headed to Jesse’s house.

  • avatar
    CincyDavid

    It’s an attractive little car, but it’s a Nissan. My issue isn’t so much with the product as the marketing and perception that people only buy Nissans because they can get a loan with bad credit, sort of an Asian Chrysler. That, and the obnoxious Clay Cooley Nissan TV spots…how he can think that a huckster with a heavy TX accent will not turn off midwesterners is a mystery to me.

  • avatar
    Joss

    The SL with leather & gizmos will be north of 24K. While still 130 below. Yeppa – pizza with all the topping. I can just see an SER lease ender wanting to trade their 5-year-old 180 for 130 with nice guages & color coded stitches.


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