Used 2006 Nissan Sentra SE-R Spec V

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2006 Nissan Sentra
2006 Nissan Sentra

Pros

  • Speedy SE-R models, nimble handling, lots of standard features, simple controls.

Cons

  • Noisy ride, uncomfortable front seats, extremely tight legroom in back, some low-grade interior materials, poor side-impact crash test score.

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Edmunds' Expert Review

Despite its age, the 2006 Nissan Sentra offers a decent amount of equipment for the money and there's plenty of fun to be had with the SE-R models. However, newer competitors are vastly superior when it comes to interior room and overall refinement.

vehicle overview

When Nissan introduced the current-generation Sentra in 2000, it hailed it as an inexpensive sedan that broke the mold for economy cars by offering sporty styling, numerous features and a fun-to-drive character. It may have sounded like the usual marketing hype back then, but compared to its competition at the time, it was in fact a more entertaining car to drive than most of the lifeless cars in its category.

Heading into its seventh year of production, the 2006 Nissan Sentra is still a solid sedan, but its competition has improved considerably. It's still one of the fastest economy cars on the market in SE-R, but it's outclassed by its peers in most other areas. The Sentra's biggest drawback is its cramped cabin. It's hard to find a comfortable driving position and legroom is almost nonexistent in the backseat. A decent features list and the solid performance of the SE-R models still make the Nissan Sentra a viable choice, but most small-car buyers would be better served by the Civic or Mazda 3. A fully redesigned Sentra is coming for 2007, but until then small-car shoppers should explore the many other candidates in this class.

2006 Nissan Sentra configurations

There are four Nissan Sentra models available -- 1.8, 1.8 S, SE-R and SE-R Spec V. The 1.8 is truly an economy car as it offers only the most basic features. Moving up to the 1.8 S scores you power windows, locks and mirrors; remote keyless entry; a split-folding rear seat; cruise control; a trip computer; air conditioning; an eight-way adjustable driver seat; and a CD stereo. The base SE-R performance model features larger 16-inch wheels, foglights and a rear spoiler, while the top-line SE-R Spec V gets even larger 17-inch wheels, sport seats and optional Brembo brakes.

2006 Highlights

The Audio Fanatic package gains a six-disc CD changer this year, and some interior trim has been revised. The 2.5 S model has been dropped.

Performance & mpg

There are two engines available on the front-drive Nissan Sentra. The base 1.8 and 1.8 S both use a 126-horsepower, 1.8-liter, four-cylinder engine. The 1.8-liter makes most of its torque at low engine speeds, resulting in good in-town response. The SE-R model uses a larger 2.5-liter engine that makes 165 hp and 170 lb-ft of torque. The Spec V bumps those figures to 175 and 180, respectively. The 1.8 and 1.8 S come standard with a five-speed manual transmission. A four-speed automatic is standard on the SE-R and optional on the 1.8 and 1.8 S. The high-strung SE-R Spec V packs an exclusive six-speed manual only.

Safety

The 1.8 and 1.8 S have front disc/rear drum brakes, while the SE-R and SE-R Spec V have discs all around. ABS and front seat-mounted side airbags are optional on all models, except the 1.8. In NHTSA testing, the Nissan Sentra earned four stars (out of a possible five) for driver and front-passenger protection in frontal impacts. However, only two stars were given for front-occupant protection in side impacts. The IIHS gave the car an "Acceptable" (second highest) score for its performance in the 40-mph frontal offset crash test.

Driving

In 1.8 and 1.8 S trim, there is little to get excited about in terms of the driving experience, but there's enough power for daily commutes and errands. The SE-R model adds serious power that makes the 2006 Nissan Sentra one of the fastest cars in its class. The upgraded suspension on the SE-R and Spec V makes for a bumpier ride on the highway, but enthusiast drivers will appreciate the improved cornering ability.

Interior

The dash is laid out in a clean fashion, making it easy to find and use the controls. Seat comfort is not one of the Sentra's strengths. The front seats have a short seat-bottom cushion and a limited adjustment range, while the cramped rear seats put the squeeze on even average-size passengers. Trunk space is listed at 11.6 cubic feet, placing it near the bottom of the compact sedan segment.


Consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 2006 Nissan Sentra.

Overall Consumer Rating

Most helpful consumer reviews

Love this car!
lordkeystroke,08/03/2014
I bought this car in 07 with 19k on it. Added a Greddy Spectrum Elite catback and Falken Ziex tires. It is fun, and gets decent mileage, and handles really well. My only complaints are: The rings are weak, and my oil consumption has tripled (73k on it now), and sometimes when downshifting into 2nd, it pops out of gear. Keeping oil in it is simple, however, and I just hold the stick in 2nd to prevent the annoyance.
Great performer
John W.,12/28/2006
This is my second Sentra; the other is a standard 2002. From experience I know the cars are reliable and strong. I decided to buy a SPEC-V because I wanted the performance and comfort. I could have gotten a Mazda 3 for less and the driving experience was similar; but the Sentra has tons more room and has good cargo room for a small car. Very likely my next car will also be a Nissan.
I Love This Car
LGrif57266,09/07/2005
From what i can tell you as far as owning this car, it is great all around. If you're in the Import Tuning scene, then this is a definite alternative to the Honda Civic SI. This car flies like it's no tomorrow and it will throw your head back into the headrest. Nismo has all kinds of parts for it as well as other aftermarket companies so you'll be killing most 4- bangers on the road. the engine sound is wonderful especially at the top end of the RM range band. It also handles like a dream. In short, if you buy this car, you deffinitely won't be disappointed
Fun when it works, never again though
SeanJ,06/29/2010
This car had 11,900 miles when I purchased it and was like new. It was great when it was working but I have had a multitude of problems and issues. It won't crank easily after the engine has been warmed up, it turns over and over forever before starting. Dealer fixed it once but it's doing it again and now it's not under warranty. The crankshaft sensor has gone bad and is a listed recall but Nissan says my VIN wasn't affected, obviously. Now the car wants to turn off while driving. It consumes oil like crazy, have to add oil in between changes. Fun to drive when it's working but not worth the headache. Nissan doesn't honor anything, steer clear.
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Features & Specs

MPG
20 city / 27 hwy
Seats 5
6-speed manual
Gas
175 hp @ 6000 rpm
See all Used 2006 Nissan Sentra SE-R Spec V features & specs

Safety

NHTSA Overall Rating

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver4 / 5
    Passenger4 / 5
  • Side Crash Rating
    OverallNot Rated
  • Side Barrier Rating
    OverallNot Rated
    Driver2 / 5
    PassengerNot Rated
  • Combined Side Barrier & Pole Ratings
    Front SeatNot Rated
    Back SeatNot Rated
  • Rollover
    Rollover4 / 5
    Dynamic Test ResultNo Tip
    Risk Of RolloverNot Rated
IIHS Rating
The Insurance Institute of Highway Safety uses extensive crash tests to determine car safety.
  • Side Impact Test
    Poor
  • Roof Strength Test
    Not Tested
  • Rear Crash Protection / Head Restraint
    Poor
  • IIHS Small Overlap Front Test
    Not Tested
  • Moderate Overlap Front Test
    Acceptable

More about the 2006 Nissan Sentra
Used 2006 Nissan Sentra SE-R Spec V Overview

The Used 2006 Nissan Sentra SE-R Spec V is offered in the following styles: SE-R Spec V 4dr Sedan (2.5L 4cyl 6M).

What's a good price on a Used 2006 Nissan Sentra SE-R Spec V?

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Find a used Nissan Sentra for sale - 6 great deals out of 24 listings starting at $14,532.

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Should I lease or buy a 2006 Nissan Sentra?

Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.

Check out Nissan lease specials
Check out Nissan Sentra lease specials