Nissan’s completely redesigned 2019 Altima was unveiled earlier this year at the New York Auto Show, subbing in for a model that was already 6 years old.
Compared to its predecessor, the new Altima adopts the automaker’s V-motion design language, drawing inspiration from the Vmotion 2.0 Concept that made its way to NAIAS two years back. So as far as upgrades go, the 2019 Altima is certainly a significant one.Unfortunately for Nissan, as well as a lot of other automakers, the sedan segment isn’t what it used to be in the United States, as more consumers are ditching good old fashioned 4-door cars in favor of crossovers, some more quirky than others. Yet, Nissan isn’t giving up on the D-segment.“People are looking for tech,” said Nissan North America chairman, Denis Le Vot during an interview with Automotive News. “There used to be less tech in a D sedan. Now we’re getting back with the most concentrated technology we’ve ever had.”The 2019 Altima does indeed come with all-wheel drive, a new variable compression engine courtesy of Infiniti, NissanConnect featuring Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, plus advanced safety systems like ProPilot Assist and Safety Shield 360 with rear automatic braking.While U.S. sales for the Altima have dropped by 16% this year, Le Vot thinks sedan sales will actually pick up again.“We think 30% is the bottom,” he said while referring to sedans now accounting for 30% of the Japanese automaker’s sales numbers in the United States. “Time will tell. Market intelligence is telling us that Generation Z’s favorite body style is sedans. The big wheel is turning.”He also believes that due to higher interest rates and rising fuel costs, many price-sensitive buyers will give up on crossovers and SUVs and fall back on sedans.“This is just the start. By 2020, we’re going to be renewing 70% of our volume of sales. That is the core sedans, the core crossover and one of the trucks. We’re really in a new phase of renewing.”While it’s hard to predict if sedans are indeed going to make a comeback as far as U.S. buyers are concerned, the fact that Nissan is zigging when everyone else is zagging is quite refreshing.