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All-new 2007 Nissan Altima
Nimbler in body... and mind

All-new Nissan Altima mid-size sedan: front side view.

Fourth generation Altima sedan on the all-new Nissan "D" platform.

24th April 2006.

The 2006 New York International Auto Show (12-23 April) was an important North American rendez-vous for Nissan and its luxury brand Infinity, as it was the venue for very significant models, from the all-new Altima mid-size sedan, to the facelifted Maxima (available in the U.S. from June), up to the all-new Infinity G35 sedan (November 2006).

On top of that, Carlos Ghosn, president and CEO, Nissan Motor Co., spiced up the sporty side by announcing that the next generation of Nissan’s renowned GT-R performance car will be available in North America and badged as a Nissan model. The model was previewed as the Nissan GT-R PROTO concept at last year’s Tokyo Motor Show, but has not previously been offered for sale in North America. Scheduled to go on sale in Japan in fall 2007, it will reach the U.S. and Canada in spring 2008.

In volume terms, Nissan's new generation Altima (from November 2006), the brand's best-selling vehicle, was also joined by the all-new entry-level Versa hatchback (from June) and sedan (late 2006) as well as the redesigned Quest minivan (available from June).

Zooming closer to the new, fourth generation Altima sedan (Altima prices), it comes evolutionary in its design, on the all-new Nissan "D" platform (Mid-size category corresponding to the European D-segment, upper medium size) with improved body rigidity and a redesigned suspension 

All-new Nissan Altima mid-size sedan: back side view.

New Altima with Xtronic CVT or 6-speed manual transmissions.

The new front-wheel drive sedan will also offer Nissan’s advanced Xtronic CVT (Continuously Variable Transmission), or 6-speed manual transmissions, a 3.5-liter V6 or a 2.5-liter inline 4-cylinder engines (and electric hybrid versions will follow next year), and other optional features including Intelligent Key with Push Start Ignition, Bluetooth Hands-Free Phone System, RearView Monitor and an advanced touch-screen navigation system.

When the third generation Altima was introduced in September 2001, it targeted the estimated 20 percent of sedan buyers with fresh style and performance, which made it Nissan’s best-selling vehicle (ranked fourth among all cars in 2005 U.S. sales), and the 2002 "North American Car of the Year."

Exterior - The 2007 Altima’s exterior styling offers an aggressive stance, a new Nissan "T-shaped" grille, powerful front fenders, forward A-pillars and Nissan family roofline, Altima-style taillights and dual exhaust finishers on all models. High Intensity Discharge (HID) xenon headlights are available on V6-equipped models.

All-new Nissan Altima mid-size sedan: top down, front side view.

All-new Nissan Altima mid-size sedan: top down, back side view.

Smaller body for nimbleness, without compromising comfort or space.

In terms of size, the new Altima comes back closer to its segment, with the wheelbase 0.9-inch (22.8mm) shorter (109.3 inches, 2776mm) than the previous model, and the overall length 2.5 inches (63.5mm) shorter (189.8 inches, 4820mm), with the interior retaining its roominess.

The body is 0.3-inch (7.6mm) wider (70.7 inches, 1795mm) and overall height is the same (57.9 inches, 1470mm) as in the previous generation Altima, like the trunk space (15.5 ft3, 0.44 metre3).

"Roominess was retained by moving the cowl forward and the rear glass back, while the low beltline allows the use of large side glass," said Brad Bradshaw, vice president and general manager, Nissan Division. "As a result, the smaller body enhances the sense of nimbleness, without compromising comfort, utility or passenger space."

The Altima exterior also offers redesigned 16-inch and 17-inch wheels and 16-inch wheel covers. Nine exterior colors are offered, five of which are new for 2007.

Interior - The 2007 Altima interior gets an expanded use of soft materials (such as padded armrests) and chrome accents. Interior noise levels have been reduced with the new rigid platform and increased sound insulation.

All-new Nissan Altima mid-size sedan: driving position.

All-new Nissan Altima mid-size sedan: console with Bose system and automatic air condition.

Bose system and dual-zone automatic temperature control options.

The instrument panel features a new Fine Vision gauge display for enhanced readability. The centre console includes a new triple front cup holder design (CVT-equipped models), among several cup and bottle areas (up to nine in total, including 20-ounce bottle holders in the door panels) and storage compartments (many of which are covered). The volume of the glove compartment has doubled in size to 0.46 cubic feet (13 litres).

Interiors are available in three colors – charcoal, blonde and frost – in soft-touch suede fabric or leather-appointed seating.

Among the new passenger amenities are the optional Intelligent Key with Push Button Ignition, Bose-developed audio system with 9 speakers, Bluetooth Hands-Free Phone System and dual-zone automatic temperature control.

Platform - The all-new Altima’s promised driving pleasure should come from a tuned combination of acceleration, handling and refined sound – provided by the all-new "D" platform and the enhanced engine designs.

All-new Nissan Altima mid-size sedan: headlight view.

All-new Nissan Altima mid-size sedan: taillight view.

Xenon headlights available on V6 versions (top), Altima-style taillights.

The new Altima is the first global application of Nissan’s advanced "D" platform, which offers much improved body rigidity and an all-new front suspension with new geometry and shock absorbers with rebound springs.

The engine mounting position is 30 millimetres lower (with a six-point pendulum-type mounting system in place of the previous four-point system on V6 models) and the half-shafts have equal angles and are more parallel to the ground – virtually eliminating torque steer.

The subframe-mounted front suspension makes extensive use of aluminium parts. A new X-type upper cowl structure helps improve front body rigidity for suspension mounting. The rear multi-link independent suspension design separates the rear shocks and springs for reduced friction. Shocks are in line with the centre of the rear wheels, for better damping and less harshness. Front and rear stabilizer bars are standard.

In addition to 17-inch wheels and tires, the Altima 3.5 SE offers a sport-tuned suspension with larger diameter stabilizer bars and unique spring rates and strut damping.

Engines - Two engines are available, a new version of the 12-time Ward’s "10 Best Engines" award-winning VQ-series V6 and an inline 4-cylinder. A Hybrid Electric Vehicle, Altima HEV will follow early next year.

All-new Nissan Altima mid-size sedan: turning light indicator in mirror.

Altima-style taillights and dual exhaust finishers on all models.

Turning light indicator (top) and dual exhaust finishers (bottom).

The 3.5-liter 24-valve DOHC V6 is now rated at 265 horsepower (ratings are per SAE J1349, AUG 2004) and 255 lb-ft (345 Nm) of torque, offering stronger acceleration and more refined sound quality. The V6 features new twin induction, reduced friction, improved cylinder head cooling and new twin knock sensors.

The 2.5-liter DOHC 16-valve 4-cylinder generates 165 horsepower and 170 lb-ft of torque (230 Nm). The QR25 engine has been refined with a larger intake manifold, increased compression ratio (9.6:1 from 9.5:1) and reduced friction characteristics. It features a silent chain drive and a balancer system (with balancer changed to a centre-mounted location for better NVH) to reduce vibrations without taking up much space.

Both engines feature continuously variable valve timing, modular engine design, microfinished crank journals and cam lobes, molybdenum coated lightweight pistons and electronically controlled throttles (drive-by-wire).

New dual exhaust system designs reduce exhaust backpressure by 35% on the 4-cylinder and 50% with the V6. Both systems utilize increased tube diameters and include dual chrome-tipped exhaust finishers.

Transmission - The 2007 Altima is offered with two transmissions (for both engines).

A new 6-speed, narrow-gate manual features reduced friction, a new guiding plate, shorter shift stroke, increased torque capacity and closer gear ratios covering a wider range.

All-new Nissan Altima mid-size sedan: gauges and dials.

All-new Nissan Altima mid-size sedan: CVT gearshift gater.

All-new Nissan Altima mid-size sedan: CVT with bottle holders behind gearshift.

CVT transmission available for both V6 and 4-cylinder engines.

The advanced Nissan Xtronic CVT (replaces the previous conventional automatic transmission) is designed to create a true synergy between engine and transmission with smooth, responsive, fluid-feeling performance and efficient operation. The CVT units utilized with both engines have been tailored specifically for use with the new Altima. Unit friction has been reduced by 30% for the 4-cylinder CVT and 20% for the V6 design.

The V6 CVT has been enhanced with an all-new "Sport" mode controller boasting a high-speed central processing unit and Adaptive Shift Controller with adaptive logic for faster shifting in both normal and manual modes.

The adaptive logic feature delivers the best shift pattern based on the driving environment and driver’s guessed intentions by mathematical deductions (from various driving inputs). It utilizes 700 programmed algorithms to adjust to differing conditions, such as uphill or downhill driving, as well as adapting to three styles of driving – economy, normal and sporty.

Nissan began studying CVT technology in 1979, offered its first production CVT in 1992 and the world’s first 3.5-liter V6 CVT application in 2002, remaining today the industry leader with three separate CVT designs currently in production. .

Compared to conventional automatic transmissions, CVTs offer owners, as studies of Murano drivers have shown, real benefits in terms of smooth, responsive, trouble-free performance. By 2008, Nissan expects to sell one million CVT-equipped vehicles worldwide annually, as it will also be offered in the 2007 Maxima, Sentra and Versa.

Structure - The new Altima’s improved body structure exploits ultra high strength steel in many locations, including side-impact areas, which allows for a 30% weight reduction in the frontal body structure. Despite the enhanced rigidity and the additional equipment, the new Altima is just about 55 pounds (24.9 kg) heavier than the previous generation.

All-new Nissan Altima mid-size sedan: top down front view.

The all-new Altima: finesse in the mid-size segment.

A new twin-orifice vehicle-speed-sensitive power rack-and-pinion steering system is standard, with improved "on centre" feel.

Braking is by standard 4-wheel disc brakes. Standard on V6 models and optional on 4-cylinder models is a 4-wheel, 4-channel, 4-sensor anti-lock braking system (ABS) with Electronic Brake force Distribution (EBD), which optimizes brake force depending on load condition (passengers and cargo) and Brake Assist, which boosts braking pressure when it senses hard or panic pedal application.

A new variable ratio pivot brake pedal, the first utilized on a Nissan vehicle, provides a more rigid feel at freeway speeds and less sensitive, more controllable operation in city driving.

With the 4-cylinder engine, Altima gets 16-inch wheels (steel wheels with covers on 2.5 and 2.5 S, aluminium-alloy wheels are optional on 2.5 S and standard on 2.5 S with SL Package and 3.5 SL) and 215/60R16 tires.

The V6 Altima 3.5 SE comes with 17-inch aluminium-alloy wheels and 215/55R17 tires.

Safety - The new Altima comes with standard safety features such as advanced airbag System (AABS) with dual-stage front supplemental air bags, front seat side-impact supplemental airbags for chest protection and roof-mounted curtain side-impact airbags for front and rear outboard occupant head protection.

Other standard equipment includes front seat Active Head Restraints, the LATCH (Lower Anchors and Tethers for CHildren) child seat anchors and tether system and Tire Pressure Monitor System (TPMS).

Optional safety / convenience features include the RearView Monitor, which utilizes a small camera to help show the view behind the vehicle when in reverse gear, an 8-way power driver’s seat, automatic on/off headlights, leather-wrapped steering wheel, steering wheel-mounted audio controls, power sliding glass sunroof, Bluetooth Hands-Free Phone System, satellite radio with choice of XM or Sirius service, Intelligent Key, touch-screen navigation with voice recognition, HomeLink Universal Transceiver, leather-appointed seating, heated front driver and passenger seats, dual-zone automatic temperature control and rear-passenger air conditioning vents.

The 2007 Nissan Altima will be available in six models (versions): 2.5, 2.5 S, 2.5 S with SL Package, 3.5 SE, 3.5 SL and HEV (Hybrid Electric Vehicle for early 2007).

It will be assembled at the Nissan North America Manufacturing Smyrna and Decherd, Tennessee and Canton, Mississippi plants.

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