2015 Nissan Altima Sedan Review & Ratings | Edmunds

2015 Nissan Altima Sedan Review

2015 Nissan Altima Sedan
Build and PriceTMV®?

Build your car and see the Edmunds True Market Value® (TMV®) - the average price paid for this car in your area.

Edmunds Summary Review of the 2015 Nissan Altima Sedan

  • The 2015 Nissan Altima continues to be a top choice among family sedans, delivering excellent fuel economy and a rare blend of comfort and agility.

  • Pros

    Impressive acceleration and fuel economy with either engine; strong crash test scores; satisfying ride and handling balance; capable and user-friendly electronics; above-average cabin quality.

  • Cons

    Relatively modest rear headroom and legroom; four-cylinder engine can be noisy.

  • What's New for 2015

    The 2015 Altima 3.5 SV and 3.5 SL trims now come standard with the Technology package (including touchscreen navigation and upgraded safety features), which remains optional on the 2.5 SV and 2.5 SL. Also, the remote ignition system can detect the ambient temperature and activate climate/defrost functions accordingly, and all SV models get a standard eight-way power driver seat. As a running change to the 2015 Altima 3.5, Nissan discontinued the S and SV trim levels. The remaining 3.5 SL trim later gained front and rear parking sensors as standard features.

Reviews from owners of the 2015 Nissan Altima Sedan

Average Consumer Rating (See all 50 reviews) Write a Review

Unsafe at speeds above 60

by on
Vehicle: 2015 Nissan Altima

I purchased a 2015 Altima S from the dealer. Initially upon taking it home we heard a knocking in the engine. Five weeks after we had it, we took a road trip. It was one of the most horrifying experiences of my life. The car wandered and shifted from left to right at higher speeds. Keeping it on the road was a major ordeal and very exhausting. We were happy to make it to our destination and back. Once we got home the car was taken to the deal where it was purchased. The service manager explained that the new electronic steering in the new models was set that way and I would just have to "learn to deal with it." They checked out the car and claimed that nothing was wrong. At this point I would not drive the card off of the lot as I know it is unsafe and very dangerous. I was forced to buy a Rogue and loose thousands of dollars on the deal after owning the car for only 5 weeks and driving it for less than 1,000 miles. My attempts to explain the situation to Nissan Consumer Affairs were useless. Buyer beware!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Expected better!

by on
Vehicle: 2015 Nissan Altima

It would be great if there was a way to really test a car more thoroughly then you can on a short test drive at the dealers. I've had 2 previous Altima's; a 2004 and a 2012. Both were good solid cars that I enjoyed, so I was expecting the same or better with this 2015. Test drive seemed fine. My major complaints are engine noise, and the CVT transmission. Especially when cold the engine is more like a diesel than a gas engine. VERY noisy even under mild acceleration. Seems better after warming up a bit, but still probably the noiseist engine I've ever had. The CVT seems to have artificial shift points built in. The problem is when cruising at a steady speed (doesn't matter if slow or fast) the CVT feels like a manual transmission that needs to be downshifted a gear. You can feel the slight but noticeable vibration in the steering wheel. Also, the auto climate control is overly aggressive. When in heat mode, the fan goes to full speed and stays there way too long. You need to manually set the fan speed down a notch or two before you turn into toast. When on a test drive, the sales person said the heater was "industrial". She wasn't kidding! OK, a few good points. Good gas mileage, and a comfortable ride. Performance is certainly adequate for a 4 cylinder (other than the raucous engine noise). I was really debating between the Altima and an Accord. Now wishing I would have gone for the Accord!

Silver bullet

by on
Vehicle: 2015 Nissan Altima

It's very sporty and family friendly at the same time.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

2.5s - the good, the bad, and the ugly.

by on
Vehicle: 2015 Nissan Altima

My wife and I were looking for a used sedan to replace her old Toyota and saw that Nissan had a great deal on brand new 2015 Altimas that competed with the cost of used cars so we purchased an 2.5 S in December of 14. The Good: The car is a joy to drive. It has great acceleration for a 4 cylinder. The handling is great and responsive for a car of its size. The steering may be a bit too soft feeling and aggressive for some, but I like it. The car brakes well, the brakes feel tight and I haven't yet, knock on wood, had a situation where I had to engage the anti-lock brakes. The car gets great gas mileage, but I have a heavy foot so I average around 27 mpg mixed highway / city driving. The keyless entry and push button start are a convenience, but the most convenient feature of the car is the car honks when you have filled the tire up to the correct pressure. Just turn the car off. Press the start button twice with your foot off of the brake, fill up the tire until the car honks and you're off. Best feature by far when it's cold and you're pumping air not having to fool around with a pressure gauge exposed to the elements. The Bad: Engine noise. This may not be bad to people who enjoy sports cars or are used to driving manual transmissions, but this car is really loud in certain situations. It purrs when at speed, but roars when getting up to speed and coasting downhill. I'd compare coasting downhill in this car to downshifting from 4th to 2nd in a manual; you feel the car employing engine braking and a tug then the RPMs rev. I think this is a feature of CVT to keep the same MPH going downhill and not over accelerate causing the car to surge MPH down the hill. Engine noise may not be an issue with the V6. The transmission feels a bit frail after accelerating after shifting from reverse. The car flutters a little and even does it sometimes when accelerating from a standstill. I caution you not to reverse roll with this transmission. I feel it's too fragile to handle going in reverse putting it in neutral while you roll and engage the drive gear. That's a bad practice general for any automatic but may be fatal for this one. I bet that's why a few reviews said their transmission went out after 10k miles. The car feels cheaply made after driving it awhile. Road dirt and grime gets from the floor panel all of the way up to the door jamb where the car door closes. Never had that happen in any other car. The rain pings on the car like rain on a tin can; makes me feel the car has little to no noise insulation. At highway speeds there is a ton of wind noise, but one will get used to it unless that type of thing is a deal breaker. The "carpet" on the floor is paper thin. Literally. It's the cheapest carpet I've ever seen in a car. Wait until you vacuum it you'll see what I mean. Feels like it could tear easily. It seems like the carpet that comes standard in the trunk of cars. Nissan decided to cut corners and put that cheap stuff in the interior. The Ugly: The visor fell down while my wife was driving maybe month 3 into owning the car. Took it back to the dealer to get repaired under warranty and they claimed the visor would have cost $300! For that price why is it falling down?! While there we also got the fix done for the hood latch recall. Fast forward 2 months later my wife gets in the passenger seat and the passenger side airbag disengaged light came on. She got out of the car and back in and it stayed on. Drove for fifteen minutes and still disengaged, so I had to park turn the car off and back on to get the airbag to turn back on. It happened two more times. Took it to the dealer and they claim nothing was wrong but gave us a manual on how the feature worked. Mind you the 2014 Altimas had this very same issue. It has happened once since taking it back to the dealer. Trip three to the dealer was because of squealing brakes on a brand new car. If it rains and the car has been sitting they squeal. If it's cold and the car has been sitting they squeal. This is a "feature" of the metal on metal brake pads the dealer says. I say another corner was cut. The projection headlights are dangerously dim. They work OK in dry conditions, but in the rain forget about it. You can barley tell they are on. Just compare other cars' headlight beams on the road to the Altima you'll see. The interior windows fog at the drop of a dime. I live in a humid region and this is a constant problem even with the recirculation off! It takes the defroster awhile to address the fogging. The technology package and Nissan connect are a joke. It barely connects with my Droid Turbo, and partially connects with my wife's iPhone 5s and her Droid MAXX, it did the best with her Galaxy S3. I have to turn the Bluetooth off and on on my phone several times before it connects and when it does the entire system freezes on the In Call for 0:01 display until the car is reset. Does not recognize voice

2 of 4 people found this review helpful

Love the altima butt regret upgrading to the 15

by on
Vehicle: 2015 Nissan Altima

I traded my 14 altima in for a 15. It isn't even a year old and the paint has two chips. I can get over that but when I bought the car I found out it has a stained windshield. After cleaning it numerous times, we reported it to the service bepartment and they have done nothing and suggested nothing. If you buy a brand new car and it is suppose to have a lifetime warranty, you should have a car free of defects.

Better than expected

by on
Vehicle: 2015 Nissan Altima

I looked at all comparable cars similar to a Camry SE I owned except the Nissan Altima! When bringing my wife's Rogue in for routine maintenance I happened to see the dealer had a 2015 6cyl Altima with 4K miles on the internet. This car is above and beyond what I had expected, including the cost.


Full Expert Review: 2015 Nissan Altima

What's New for 2015

The 2015 Altima 3.5 SV and 3.5 SL trims now come standard with the Technology package (including touchscreen navigation and upgraded safety features), which remains optional on the 2.5 SV and 2.5 SL. Also, the remote ignition system can detect the ambient temperature and activate climate/defrost functions accordingly, and all SV models get a standard eight-way power driver seat. As a running change to the 2015 Altima 3.5, Nissan discontinued the S and SV trim levels. The remaining 3.5 SL trim later gained front and rear parking sensors as standard features.


Goldilocks has already starred in a few too many car reviews, but there's no better way to say it: The 2015 Nissan Altima is a "just right" family sedan in most respects. You want fuel economy? Both the four-cylinder engine and the V6 are class leaders. Power? Even the base four zips to 60 mph in less than 8 seconds. Driving dynamics? The ride is quiet and refined, yet the Altima's still got the handling athleticism that has long set it apart. Safety? Check the crash-test scores; they're nearly perfect across the board. It would appear Nissan has built the perfect car.

So why wouldn't you buy an Altima? Well, for one thing, the continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) may not be to everyone's liking. Although it promotes fuel efficiency, it has a tendency to rev the engine noisily during modest acceleration and "lug" it at low rpm while cruising -- especially in four-cylinder models. Also, if you want a backseat that's built for 6-footers, there are better choices. Many rivals offer nearly full-size accommodations out back, and by this measure the Altima comes up a bit short.

One such rival is the spacious Honda Accord, though it's got a similar CVT in four-cylinder models that may also take some getting used to. The 2015 Ford Fusion shares the Altima's slight rear headroom deficit, but it's a stylish and highly competent choice overall. We'll also vouch for the 2015 Mazda 6, which lacks the Nissan's sophisticated infotainment offerings but compensates with comparable fuel economy and even sportier handling.

Returning to our theme, though, it's not easy to pick a bowl of porridge from this group -- they've all got their pros and cons. In the end, only one can be just right for you. We like the 2015 Altima's chances of earning that distinction.

Body Styles, Trim Levels, and Options

The 2015 Nissan Altima is available in two main configurations: 2.5 or 3.5. The number signifies the engine specified (2.5-liter four-cylinder or 3.5-liter V6). From there, you'll have your choice of a base model (2.5 only) or increasing amounts of features through the S, SV and SL trim levels. Note that early in the model year, the 3.5 version loses its S and SV trims, leaving just the loaded "SL" trim level.

The base 2.5 Altima sedan starts with 16-inch steel wheels, full power accessories, a 4.3-inch LCD information display in the gauge cluster, a height-adjustable driver seat, Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity, and a four-speaker sound system with a CD player and an auxiliary input jack.

The 2.5 S steps up to automatic headlights, keyless ignition and entry, cruise control, a six-speaker sound system and an optional power driver seat with six-way adjustability (i.e., a powered version of the standard seat). It's also eligible for the Display Audio package, which contributes a 5-inch touchscreen display, a rearview camera, a USB port, satellite radio and smartphone app integration (NissanConnect).

The V6-engined 3.5 S comes with all of those features (including the Display Audio package) plus 18-inch alloy wheels and steering-wheel-mounted paddle shifters.

The 2.5 SV trim adds 17-inch alloy wheels, foglights, an eight-way power driver seat (with power lumbar adjustment), dual-zone automatic climate control, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, the contents of the Display Audio package and remote ignition.

The Altima 2.5 SL boasts LED taillights, a heated steering wheel, leather upholstery, heated front seats, a four-way power front passenger seat and a nine-speaker Bose sound system. You can also get two additional packages for the 2.5 SL: The Convenience package includes a sunroof, rear air-conditioning vents and an auto-dimming rearview mirror, while the Technology package bundles a 7-inch touchscreen, voice controls, a navigation system and electronic safety features including blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert and lane-departure warning.

The Altima 3.5 SV and SL are equipped similarly to their 2.5 counterparts, but they also come standard with the contents of the Convenience and Technology packages. The 3.5 SL also comes with xenon headlights and, later in the model year, front and rear parking sensors.

Powertrains and Performance

All 2015 Nissan Altimas employ front-wheel drive and a CVT.

The Altima 2.5 models are powered by a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine rated at 182 horsepower and 180 pound-feet of torque. In Edmunds performance testing, an Altima 2.5 zipped from zero to 60 mph in 7.8 seconds, one of the quicker times we've measured for a four-cylinder family sedan. EPA-estimated fuel economy is an extraordinary 31 mpg combined (27 city/38 highway).

The Altima 3.5 models upgrade to a 3.5-liter V6 that pumps out 270 hp and 251 lb-ft of torque. We hustled an Altima 3.5 from zero to 60 mph in 6.2 seconds -- another impressive result. Fuel economy, too, is very good at 26 mpg combined (22 city/32 highway).


The 2015 Nissan Altima comes standard with antilock brakes, stability and traction control, front side airbags and side curtain airbags. A rearview camera is optional on 2.5 S and standard on 3.5 S and all SV and SL models. Blind-spot monitoring, rear cross-traffic alert and lane-departure warning are available on the 2.5 SV and 2.5 SL and standard on the 3.5 SV and 3.5 SL.

In Edmunds testing, an Altima 2.5 SV sedan stopped from 60 mph in 123 feet, which is average in its segment. A 3.5 SL, however, stopped in a superb 114 feet -- about 10 feet shorter than the norm.

In government crash testing, the Altima sedan received a perfect five stars for overall crash protection, with five stars for total frontal impact safety and five stars for total side impact safety. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) gave the Altima its top "Good" rating in its moderate-overlap frontal-offset, side-impact, roof-strength and whiplash reduction (seatbelts and head restraints) tests. In the small-overlap front-impact test, the Altima earned an "Acceptable" rating (second best).

Interior Design and Special Features

The 2015 Altima has one of the nicer cabins in its class. The overall look is simple yet upscale, while a closer inspection reveals tight construction and mostly high-quality materials. Behind the sporty three-spoke steering wheel, the crisp driver information screen is flanked by a large speedometer and tachometer, all of which are easily read at a glance.

Drivers and front passengers of all shapes and sizes should have no problem finding their comfort zone in the standard NASA-inspired "zero gravity" front seats, which are remarkably well-shaped and supportive. The backseat, however, is so-so, with limited headroom and just average legroom for a family sedan. Normal-sized adults will be fine back there, but 6-footers may feel a bit cramped.

The Altima's technology roster is highlighted by the widely available NissanConnect Apps system, providing support for various smartphone applications. The system is paired with a 5-inch touchscreen by default, and it can accommodate multiple users by storing individual profiles for app connectivity. The Technology package adds a navigation system, voice controls and a more advanced 7-inch touchscreen, as well as the safety technologies discussed above. Overall, we've found these systems very easy to use.

Trunk space is pretty standard at 15.4 cubic feet, but the opening is conveniently wide.

Driving Impressions

The 2015 Altima is one of the most rewarding family sedans to drive. The four-cylinder engine provides good power for passing and merging, which is particularly laudable given its exceptional fuel economy. The continuously variable transmission (CVT) does leave room for improvement when matched to the inline-4 -- we've found it too eager at times during moderate acceleration, causing needless engine noise, only to settle into a cruise at an rpm that feels too low -- but on the bright side, its gearless operation means you'll never feel a shift. The V6 powertrain, meanwhile, is one of the most capable in this class, and the CVT draws less attention to itself with the bigger engine.

In real-world driving, it's the Altima's well-roundedness that stands out. The ride is hushed and compliant, even on rough surfaces, but there's a sense of control that you don't get in some similarly smooth-riding competitors. Should you find yourself alone on a winding road, the precise steering and well-tuned suspension will quickly make themselves known. The Altima isn't the sportiest family sedan, nor the most luxurious, but if you're looking for both traits in the same package, it's hard to think of a competitor that does it better.

Edmunds Insurance Estimator

The Edmunds TCO® estimated monthly insurance payment for a 2015 Nissan Altima Sedan in VA is:

$77.17 per month*

Talk About The 2015 Altima

2015 Nissan Altima Discussions See all Started By

Nissan Repeats Recall of 2013-'15 Nissan Altima for Hood Latch Problem | Edmunds.com...

Can anyone help me with the money factor and residuals for a 2015 Altima SL 36 months, 20k miles per year?  I'm also interested in the SV for comparison. ...

2015 Nissan Altima 2.5 SV With Convenience and Technology package...

Compare upfront prices, lock in the best deal, and bring your certificate to the dealer for a no-haggle purchase.

Build your car and see the Edmunds True Market Value® (TMV®) - the average price paid for this car in your area.


Other Vehicles to Consider


Featured Video

MyAppraise driven by Edmunds

How Much Is My Car Worth?

car outline

Get the most accurate price
for your car.
Appraise My Car

New Car Resources


New Car Buying Guides

See which cars and trucks our editors recommend