- - Thursday, February 18, 2016

It’s the all new 2016 Nissan Sentra with a totally revamped exterior and a refreshed interior adding to the reasons why this compact sedan continually gets high marks. In fact, with the new 2016 Sentra, the exterior redesign brings Sentra closer in look and feel to the new 2016 Maxima and the redesigned 2016 Altima.

The most noticeable key features of the new Sentra exterior include a new front fascia, grille, fenders, hood and signature boomerang-shaped headlights.

The Sentra compact sedan has always boasted good numbers in terms of sales for over 30 years. It has also seen seven generations of production and to date there is an impressive 93 percent of Sentras sold in the last 10 years still on the road today.

That’s impressive.

“In what is turning out to be ‘the year of the sedan,’ Nissan has made major changes to our three best-known sedans – launching an all-new Maxima 4-Door Sports Car, a major makeover of our number one selling Altima, and now a redesigned Sentra,” said Pierre Loing, vice president, Product Planning, Nissan North America, Inc.

Competition in this market is fierce with the Ford Focus, Mazda 3, Honda Civic and Hyundai Elantra, but not to worry because the Sentra can hold its own.

Good for five passengers, the 2016 Nissan Sentra has five trim levels: S, FE+ S, SV, SR and SL.

On the base S, you get 16-inch steel wheels, remote keyless entry, height-adjustable driver seat, sliding front armrest, 60/40-split folding rear seatbacks, tilt-and-telescoping steering, cruise control and all power accessories with four speakers and a CD player, USB port and Bluetooth connect.

For the next trim level, the FE+ S version adds to that better fuel economy and a sportier look with low-rolling-resistance tires and a rear spoiler.

For the SV trim, there is not only keyless entry, but also keyless ignition and a higher end cloth for the upholstery. Add to that a leather-wrapped steering wheel, five-inch driver screen and touch screen, a rearview camera and the Nissan Connect that comes with smartphone applications. There are also Siri Eyes Free voice control features and six speakers with Bluetooth audio connect included too.

Back to sporty, the SR will get points here with its larger 17-inch alloy wheels, heated front seats, rear disc brakes, fog lights and a sport body kit.

At the top of the line is the SL, and on this, you get 17-inch alloy wheels with the rear disc brakes as well as a six-way power driver seat, auto-dimming rearview mirror, leather interior and a 5.8-inch touch screen that also has navigation.

For extras, there are several add on packages like the All Weather package for the SV with heated front seats and outside mirrors or the SV has a Style package with a sunroof. On the other trims, such as the SR and SL, you can get a Premium package with some of the Style package goodies including an eight-speaker Bose audio system.

For the SR and SL trims, there is a Technology package and that comes with adaptive cruise control, forward collision mitigation with emergency braking and the NissanConnect.

Under the hood, the 2016 Nissan Sentra has a 1.8-liter four-cylinder with 130 horsepower and 128 pound-feet of torque. The manual transmission six speed is standard on the S and FE+ S and the CVT is standard on the other trims and optional on the S and FE+S.

Safety on the 2016 Nissan Sentra includes antilock brakes, stability control, tire-pressure monitoring, front-seat side and full-length side curtain airbags with active front head restraints. There is also the rearview camera standard on the SV trim or higher and the SL has the blind-spot monitor with rear cross-traffic alert. Options for additional safety include the forward collision mitigation system with automatic braking.

The Nissan Sentra is comfortable in the front and back seats with 15.1 cubic feet of space in the trunk, which is quite large for this class. The interior has also taken on a classier look and feel with the redesign and already the spaciousness gives this new Nissan a head start for buyers looking for comfort.

The roomy Sentra interior has also been revised with a new steering wheel similar to the Nissan 370Z design. Definitely take note too, of the new center cluster design, new console and shifter knob. All these are standout comforts and the instrument panel offers a new TFT-type (Thin Film Transistor) LCD flat panel display with higher resolution than previous LCD screens.

Behind the wheel, it’s just as impressive as inside the cabin with excellent acceleration and very minimal outside noise even when highway driving. You will also find the handling around the curves to be responsive, and no matter if it’s around the corner or a long haul drive, the comfort in this compact sedan will impress.

Should You Need to Know: Also new on the 2016 Nissan Sentra, in addition to the impressive advanced safety and driving technologies is the child safety rear door locks and a new color for 2016 the Deep Blue Pearl.

Miles Per Gallon: On the 2016 Nissan Sentra, you can expect 29 miles per gallon in the city and 38 miles per gallon on the highway with higher fuel economy on the Sentra FE+ S grade with 30 mpg in the city and 40 mpg on the highway.

Cost: The 2016 Sentra has a starting price of $16,780 for the Sentra S with 6-speed manual transmission.

For more auto tips and information, follow Rita @RitaCook13.

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