Used 2003 Nissan Altima Consumer Reviews | Edmunds
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2003 Nissan Altima - Consumer Reviews

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429 Total Reviews

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The last nissan I'll ever own
1 of 3 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By lola3053
on

Vehicle

2003 Nissan Altima 2.5 4dr Sedan (2.5L 4cyl 5M)


Review

First let me say that I am meticulous about upkeep and basic maintenance (oil changes, etc.) My Altima, with 139,000 km's (100,000 miles) on it absolutely self- destructed over the past two weeks. For no reason that I or any mechanic can find the engine suddenly (over two days) burned out all of it's oil and then scored the cylinders so badly that it needs to be replaced. I never really enjoyed this car. It looked great, but handled like a girls car. It was always sort of "dainty" and overly sensitive to steering inputs. Also, the plastic used in the interior components and the boot around the gear-stick were of extremely low quality.


Best Features

The engine (when it ran properly) was fairly peppy. The trunk is a good size.


Worst Features

I don't care what you do. I'll never trust another Nissan product.


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DONT BE FOOLED WITH THIS LEMON MODEL
2 of 2 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Sara
on

Vehicle

2003 Nissan Altima 2.5 SL 4dr Sedan (2.5L 4cyl 4A)


Review

I purchased this car 5 years ago, paid top dollar for the one year old car. It had all the options on it I was looking for as well as lots of room. This car has had several recalls, all of which have been repaired. However 2 years ago MAJOR probs started when my heat went out. Nissan had NO idea how to fix it. Then just this month my catalytic converted exploded, I replaced and a week later with more probs told it was TOTAL ENGINE FAILURE. At 130,000 highly maintained miles this should not be expected from a Nissan. But the Nissan reps I have spoken to, have said it was old and not surprising. I expected more out of a $24,000 car. I have driven Hondas much more. Will never buy another Nissan.


Best Features

The space, the luxury options. It has always driven good until the whole system failed.


Worst Features

Headlamps overhead, burn out and burn the plastic lamp coverings. The plastic catalytic converter gives out early and with the heat it causes an explosion and engine failure. And for Nissan to find out why hundreds of customers deal with the heat going out around 100,000 miles.


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In the end, reliable
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By wrecks7
on

Vehicle

2003 Nissan Altima 3.5 SE 4dr Sedan (3.5L 6cyl 4A)


Review

The car proved to be fairly reliable, especially since I paid little attention to its upkeep. At the time and at this price point, the Altima stood alone in performance and appearance. The AC went kaput in year four, engine mounts in year six. Downside is the poor material used in for the interior (I've seen GM cars with better plastic), and the body is only slightly more dent resistant than a can of Spam. However, the most frustrating was its awful turning radius. It was inexcusably poor.


Best Features

At its price point, you get a lot of car. An engine with a lot of get-up-and-go. The base stereo provided a good enough distraction from the road noise. Mines even came with steering wheel audio controls. Loved that. The interior space was generous.


Worst Features

Turning radius, of course. And I do believe Nissan addressed the interior in latter iterations of the Altima.


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Held up on West and East
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Rhode I to Nevada
on

Vehicle

2003 Nissan Altima 2.5 4dr Sedan (2.5L 4cyl 4A)


Review

Has been a reliable care up to 113K miles. First (recently), the computer chip that controls the shifting. Second, the struts are now history. However the brakes lasted for 100K miles. I bought this car new in CT and it's not with me in NV. Sslvage life is coming due but I still got a good ROI considering what I paid for it new.


Best Features

Looks sporty.


Worst Features

Ride is a little loud. Car rised really low and does not handle snow that great.


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Holy Pricey Repairs, Batman!
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By SRyan
on

Vehicle

2003 Nissan Altima 2.5 4dr Sedan (2.5L 4cyl 4A)


Review

I love my Nissan, but will not be purchasing another. Mechanically it has been sound, but there have been body issues and minor things that are expensive to repair. (Ex. $103 to change a headlamp BULB). If you live in the snow belt, you will notice that snow packs into the wheel well, making steering in bad weather difficult. Also tends to get stuck in snow, due to riding so low to the ground.


Best Features

Comfortable to drive for long distances. Fun gear shift.


Worst Features

Make it easier to make minor repairs. It's not even an easy reach to check the oil.


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