A solid value, but there are better sedans to be had.
When Nissan introduced its Infiniti J30 knockoff, Altima, in 1993, it was an instant hit. The term "affordable luxury" became synonymous with the new sedan, and consumers rushed out in droves to buy this car. Five years later, the Altima was redesigned with the goal of improving on its original style and appeal. Unfortunately, the second-generation edition didn't include the upscale design details and cut-rate luxury cabin that the original car possessed. Sales suffered as a result.
So Nissan made substantial refinements to the current-generation Altima just two years after its debut. Styling was cleaned up, cabin refinements were incorporated, and the powertrain was refined. Noise, vibration and harshness were quelled through the addition of sound-deadening materials, and a trick new automatically adjustable strut suspension improved the ride and handling.But sales remained stagnant, forcing Nissan to offer hefty customer rebates and dealer incentives to clear inventory. Dear consumer, what this means to you is a good deal on a decent, if not terribly exciting, car. If what you need is a reliable, roomy sedan that offers the ability to have a little fun when the road turns twisty, Nissan's Altima will fill the bill.
Available in base XE, mid-grade GXE, sporty SE and leather-lined GLE trims, the Altima is reasonably crashworthy, scoring average or better in government crash testing. Side impact airbags come standard on GLE and are optional on GXE and SE. Our favorite, not surprisingly, is the SE, since the GLE can't be bought with a manual transmission or four-wheel disc brakes.
When equipped with a stick shift, the standard 155-horsepower 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine manages to get the 3,000-pound sedan to speed with surprising alacrity, running from rest to 60 mph in a hair over 8 seconds, though without refined noises emanating from beyond the firewall. Handling is an Altima strong point, with sharp steering and a nicely balanced chassis sporting an Acceleration-Sensitive Strut Valving (ASSV) four-wheel independent suspension with rear Super Toe Control. Models with 16-inch wheels have a front strut-tower brace for increased rigidity and responsiveness. ABS is optional on all Altimas except XE.
Simple interior design means it's easy to find and use controls and switches. Seating is comfortable front and rear, but beware that the leather used on some models ain't exactly high-quality hide. Wood tone accents dress things up a bit on GXE and GLE Altimas, in an effort to remind you that this Nissan's calling card is "affordable luxury."
Our primary complaint with the Altima, aside from its utter lack of personality and rather gruff truck-based engine, is with the quality of the materials that have gone into its construction. It's too easy to see where corners were cut, and slamming doors and the trunk lid don't impart a sense of solidity.
Nevertheless, the Altima represents a solid value. Want a nice set of wheels for less than $20,000? Drop by your local Nissan store.
GXE is available with a new Limited Edition package, which includes goodies like an eight-way power driver seat, remote keyless entry, floor mats, special badging and a security system.
Read what other owners think about the Used 2001 Nissan Altima.
We bought this car new and had the power windows go out while sitting in Yuma,AZ in 110 degree weather..after having the dealer replace two and a recall was issued and all were replaced by Nissan. We have 95,000 on it and have replaced the defective intake manifold gasket twice..replaced the radiator, cv boots and axles..and it eats brake shoes quite regularly. Just had the check engine soon..now the catalytic converter is shot, $700 or so. Noisy hubcaps are a tradition with this model.
4 out of 5 stars
Love my Alti
GXE 4dr Sedan (2.4L 4cyl 4A)
My older sister got a newer car and gave me her 2001 Altima GXE for my first car. I've had it for about 3 months and I love it. It currently has a bit over 165k miles on it. Exterior wise it's bland and blends in very easily with traffic but it doesn't look bad. The 155 horses seem to work hard and get the job done. If I push the pedal down on the highway it picks up and has quite a bit of pep in its step. It has a brake light out, a broken seal on the front axle, and a valve cover leak but I think the valve cover problem was from my sister abusing the car. So far I'm perfectly happy and impressed with it!
***Update: Almost two years and over 30k miles later, I finally got a new car. I really loved my Altima but at 196k miles and after being thoroughly used for 15 years it was getting worn out. The drivetrain is still fine and it still runs great but the exhaust system was all rotted and it started leaking oil. I hope my 2005 Camry will prove to be a worthy replacement.
3.25 out of 5 stars
GXE 4dr Sedan (2.4L 4cyl 5M)
I have had this car for eight years. It has been okay except for the noisy hubcaps, which have been replaced twice while under warranty. They still drive me crazy when driving under 10 mph. You hear constant squeaks and rattles. Mileage is not great, 23 mpg combined. Ride is comfortable and decent power for a 4 cylinder. Radiator and CV boots needed changing after 80,000 miles. A/C clutch has been making noise for 2 years, but still works.
3.88 out of 5 stars
Nice car to drive, some changes to be made
XE 4dr Sedan (2.4L 4cyl 4A)
I just received the car about 6 months ago and love it so far. Its an overall great car as Nissan is known to produce well-reliable cars. The pros of the car are definitely the fuel efficiency, small compact size, the security of the driver seat and the space this little car has. The only thing that would be great to change is the amount of power this car can put in into high speeds, esp. while merging on the highway or simply having an exhilaration thrill. Wouldn't trade the car for anything else but horsepower could use a hand.
The Used 2001 Nissan Altima is offered in the following submodels: Altima Sedan. Available styles include GXE 4dr Sedan (2.4L 4cyl 4A), GLE 4dr Sedan (2.4L 4cyl 4A), XE 4dr Sedan (2.4L 4cyl 5M), SE 4dr Sedan (2.4L 4cyl 4A), XE 4dr Sedan (2.4L 4cyl 4A), GXE 4dr Sedan (2.4L 4cyl 5M), and SE 4dr Sedan (2.4L 4cyl 5M).
Pre-owned Nissan Altima models are available with a 2.4 L-liter gas engine, with output up to 155 hp, depending on engine type.
The Used 2001 Nissan Altima comes with front wheel drive.
Available transmissions include: 4-speed automatic, 5-speed manual.
The Used 2001 Nissan Altima comes with a 3 yr./ 36000 mi. basic warranty, a 3 yr./ 36000 mi. roadside warranty, and a 5 yr./ 60000 mi. powertrain warranty.
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Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you
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