Japan’s second largest automaker, Nissan, announced recently it would start the US sales of its refreshed mid-size Altima in November in a bid to lower the gap with the segment leading Toyota Camry.
The udapted version of the company’s best-selling model will have prices starting at $23,325, including delivery charges and before taxes. The Altima was delivered in 238,200 units around the United States during the January through August period, which is a modest 1.2 percent surge from the same period last year. While the gain is pretty weak, it should also be seen in perspective, as deliveries of traditional sedans have actually gone down across the US market, mesmerized by crossovers, SUVs and pickup trucks. Also, once a model is updated the sales generally go up faster, even in the general climate of falling deliveries for sedans, with consumers opting for the more versatile and also more expensive SUV and crossover vehicles, as well as light trucks. Jose Munoz, the chief of the Nissan North American unit also claims the refreshed Altima would have a fuel economy of 39 miles per gallon on the highway, when using the entry-level 2.5-liter engine – which is up one mile per gallon from the predecessor.
Through the latest crop of changes the company is looking to tackle the lead of the perennial top seller – Toyota’s Camry – which took home sales of around 292,000 units during the first eight months of the year even as the deliveries slowed by 4.8 percent from the same period of 2014. “Altima has experienced five consecutive years of sales growth … a feat no other mid-size car can claim,” commented Munoz.