What Changed for 2008:
- New Altima coupe model joins the Sedan
- New D-platform architecture
- Next-generation V-6 engine
- Optional stability control program
- Optional Bluetooth phone system
- Optional Bose audio system
- Two transmission choices
- Available satellite radio
- Standard Intelligent Key with pushbutton ignition
- Standard anti-lock brakes (ABS) with Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD)
Following the all-new Altima Sedan introduced for 2007, the Nissan
Altima coupe has been completely redesigned for 2008. Nissan's plan was to develop a whole new car that shared common parts to help improve brand awareness and expand the Altima's appeal to a wider audience. Although it shares the name, the only body panel the coupe shares with the Sedan is the hood. Nissan emphasizes the Altima's up-to-date technological features. Items like a pushbutton ignition and Nissan's Intelligent Key system allow the driver to keep the key in a pocket or purse and lock, unlock, and start the vehicle.Model Lineup
Consumers have many options when choosing a 2008 Altima. The Altima coupe is available in four models: 2.5 S 6MT, 2.5 S CVT, 3.5 SE 6MT, and 3.5 SE CVT. The Altima Sedan is available in 2.5 6MT, 2.5 S CVT, 3.5 SE 6MT, 3.5 SL CVT, as well as Altima Hybrid trim. With the exception of the hybrid model, both the transmission type and engine displacement are included in the model name, hence the extra letters and numbers. All 2008 Altima models feature standard items like a 60/40 split/fold rear seat; tilt/telescoping steering wheel; AM/FM/CD audio system with 6 speakers; power windows/lock/mirrors; Intelligent Key; cruise control; air conditioning; anti-lock brakes; and 16-inch steel wheels.
The 3.5-liter gasoline models feature upgrades such as steering wheel-mounted audio controls; auto on/off headlamps; foglamps; power moonroof; traction control system; leather-wrapped steering wheel; heated side-view mirrors with integrated turn signals; power driver's seat with manual lumbar support; glovebox valet switch and lock; and 17-inch alloy wheels.
The 2.5-liter gasoline models and Altima Hybrid model may be fitted with the optional Convenience package, which includes alloy wheels; power driver's seat; auto on/off headlamps; steering wheel audio controls; and other niceties. The optional Premium package includes a Bose audio system; satellite radio; auto-dimming rearview mirror; Bluetooth hands-free phone system; leather seats; and dual-zone auto climate control.
The 3.5 optional Premium package adds many non-standard features from the 2.5 Premium package. The optional Technology package can be had on either trim, and includes a navigation system and rear camera.Powertrain
Nissan's Altima Sedan and new Altima coupe come in several performance flavors. The gasoline models include a 2.5-liter inline 4-cylinder, good for 175 hp and 180 lb.-ft. of torque, or a 3.5-liter V-6 engine good for 270 hp and 258 lb.-ft. of torque. The 3.5 is one of the VQ engine series powerplants, and is found in myriad other Nissan cars and SUVs. The inline 4-cylinder engine has a Partial Zero-Emission Vehicle (PZEV) rating, and in California it loses about 5 hp and 5 lb.-ft. of torque. Choose between a 6-speed manual or the Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT) with either engine. EPA fuel economy estimates for the 2.5S with the manual transmission are 23 mpg city/32 mpg highway, while the CVT gets 23 mpg city/31 mpg highway. On the bigger V-6 engine, estimates are 19 mpg city/27 mpg highway for the 6-speed manual, and 19 mpg city/26 mpg highway for the CVT. The Altima Hybrid Sedan is powered by a 2.5-liter 4-cylinder engine rated at 158 hp and assisted by a 40-hp electric motor. Mated to a CVT, EPA fuel economy estimates are 35 mpg city/33 mpg highway.
Standard on the 2008 Nissan Altima are anti-lock 4-wheel disc brakes; Electronic Brake-force Distribution; and a vehicle-speed-sensitive power rack-and-pinion steering system which Nissan says is designed to deliver nimble handling at any speed.Safety
Standard safety items on the Altima models for 2008 include front and side air bags for front-row occupants as well as the side curtain bag for all outboard riders. Zone body construction is designed to provide initial impact protection with front and rear crumple zones. Active head restraints, the Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children (LATCH) system, and a tire-pressure-monitoring system are also standard on all 2008 Altimas. The 2008 Altima Hybrid Sedan has been crash tested by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA
); it scored 5 stars-the agency's highest rating-in both frontal and side-impact testing. The 2008 Nissan Altima coupe has also been crash tested by the NHTSA. It received 4 stars in frontal testing, and 5 stars in side-impact testing.Technology
Besides hands-free Bluetooth cell phone availability in the 2008 Nissan Altima, the optional Technology package offers a navigation system with a 6.5-inch color monitor. Included with the package is Nissan's RearView Monitor, a backup camera that uses the navigation screen to display the area behind the vehicle to ease in parking, and increase safety while reversing.