Despite becoming the world’s second largest automaker after acquiring Mitsubishi in 2017, The Renault-Nissan Alliance (now Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance) doesn’t hold the same spot on the U.S. market. It’s not even the second best-selling Japanese carmaker in the U.S. as first two positions belong to Toyota and Honda respectively. One of the main reasons for that is the fact their French companions from Renault haven’t been present on the U.S. soil since they abandoned the AMC ship and sold their shares to Chrysler. Still, Nissan alone have managed to sell 1,440,049 vehicles in the U.S. during 2017 which is around 45,000 units short of Honda’s record. While Honda and Nissan’s positions might trade places by the time 2018 and 2019 are over, Toyota is safe beyond their reach with more than 2.1 million units sold during the same period. This time, we’ll focus on the 2019 Nissan lineup with a short reflection on its premium Infiniti division.
MY 2019 doesn’t bring that much news for prospective Nissan buyers. The Japanese are revising their entire sedan lineup, and making the new Frontier mid-size pickup their focus alongside it. The former showcases their commitment to what was traditionally one of the most important segments in the U.S. The latter, on the other hand, means they’ve finally recognized the potential of the revived intermediate pickup truck segment and decided to once again become a major player in it. Other than that, their crossovers, which are getting more popular by the day, are being mostly carried over with the exception of the new Infiniti QX50. Sadly, their focus on more utilitarian vehicles has left two of their most exciting nameplates neglected. The Fairlady 370Z and GT-R are slowly dying on the vine with no major updates in sight. Here’s what to expect from the most relevant 2019 Nissan models.
What’s Hot In the New 2019 Nissan Lineup
2019 Nissan Altima
The best-selling Nissan sedan is clearly in crisis, sales-wise. After reaching its peak in 2014 when Nissan sold 335,644 units of their mid-size sedan, total sales have plummeted to 254,996 units in 2017. The fifth-generation Altima was introduced in now-distant 2013, and after five years on the market, it was high time for the Japanese to finally field its replacement. Enter the sixth-gen 2019 Nissan Altima which perfectly fits the above-stated script and even manages to up the ante. The all-new Altima doesn’t only sport a new, more aggressive design but builds upon it with new technology and significant powertrain revisions. Alongside being lower, longer, and wider, the new Altima also sports the ProPilot Assist adaptive cruise control and a number of other advanced electronic safety features. What’s more, not only does it come with a new engine option that the company refers to as the world’s first production-ready VC-Turbo engine, but it also offers all-wheel drive for the very first time.
The engine in question is the variable-compression-ratio 2.0L unit that was first unveiled with the upcoming Infiniti QX50 (more on that later). The turbo four develops 248 hp and 273 lb-ft of torque in the Altima, which is 22 hp less and 22 lb-ft more than what the outgoing 3.5L V6 used to make. The biggest advantage of the new mill should be its fuel efficiency which was actually one of the main reasons behind its development. It’ll only be optional with the top SR and Platinum models, whereas most of new Altimas carry over with a 2.5L 4-cylinder base engine. Although carried over, the revised naturally aspirated four now develops 188 hp and 180 lb-ft of torque which is an increase of 9 hp and 3 lb-ft compared to the outgoing model. What’s more, the aforementioned all-wheel drive will be exclusively available with the base 2.5L unit. This may not be the news prospective top tier buyers wanted to hear, but nothing is perfect.