Ancira Nissan Compares 2017 Nissan Altima VS 2017 Toyota Avalon Near Boerne, TX

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2017 Nissan Altima

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VS

2017 Toyota Avalon

Safety Comparison

Both the Altima Sedan and the Avalon have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, front-wheel drive, height-adjustable front shoulder belts, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, available crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, blind spot warning systems, rearview cameras and rear cross-path warning.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does 35 MPH front crash tests on new vehicles. In this test, results indicate that the Nissan Altima Sedan is safer than the Toyota Avalon:

 

Altima Sedan

Avalon

OVERALL STARS

5 Stars

4 Stars

 

Driver

STARS

5 Stars

4 Stars

Neck Injury Risk

19%

33%

Neck Stress

216 lbs.

354 lbs.

Leg Forces (l/r)

32/46 lbs.

492/592 lbs.

 

Passenger

STARS

4 Stars

4 Stars

HIC

172

269

Neck Injury Risk

35%

38%

Neck Stress

113 lbs.

188 lbs.

Neck Compression

62 lbs.

108 lbs.

Leg Forces (l/r)

537/329 lbs.

467/455 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does side impact tests on new vehicles. In this test, which crashes the vehicle into a post at 20 MPH, results indicate that the Nissan Altima Sedan is safer than the Toyota Avalon:

 

Altima Sedan

Avalon

 

Into Pole

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

197

365

Spine Acceleration

42 G’s

45 G’s

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

For its top level performance in all IIHS frontal, side, rear impact and roof-crush tests, with its optional front crash prevention system, and its available headlight’s “Acceptable” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Altima Sedan its highest rating: “Top Pick Plus” for 2017, a rating granted to only 46 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Avalon is only a standard “Top Pick” for 2017.

Reliability Comparison

J.D. Power and Associates rated the Altima Sedan second among midsize cars in their 2016 Initial Quality Study. The Avalon isn’t in the top three in its category.

Engine Comparison

As tested in Consumer Reports the Altima Sedan 3.5 DOHC V6 is faster than the Toyota Avalon:

 

Altima Sedan

Avalon

Zero to 60 MPH

6.3 sec

7 sec

Quarter Mile

14.7 sec

15.2 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

101.5 MPH

97.7 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

On the EPA test cycle the Altima Sedan 3.5 V6 gets better fuel mileage than the Avalon (22 city/32 hwy vs. 21 city/30 hwy).

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

The Altima Sedan stops shorter than the Avalon:

 

Altima Sedan

Avalon

 

60 to 0 MPH

133 feet

134 feet

Consumer Reports

60 to 0 MPH (Wet)

141 feet

148 feet

Consumer Reports

Tires and Wheels Comparison

For better traction, the Altima Sedan 2.5 SR/3.5’s tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Avalon (235/45R18 vs. 225/45R18).

The Altima Sedan has a standard easy tire fill system. When inflating the tires, the vehicle’s integrated tire pressure sensors keep track of the pressure as the tires fill and tell the driver when the tires are inflated to the proper pressure. The Avalon doesn’t offer vehicle monitored tire inflation.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

The Altima Sedan 2.5 SL handles at .85 G’s, while the Avalon XLE pulls only .82 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

The Altima Sedan 3.5 SL executes Motor Trend’s “Figure Eight” maneuver quicker than the Avalon Limited (27.1 seconds @ .66 average G’s vs. 27.7 seconds @ .64 average G’s).

For better maneuverability, the Altima Sedan 2.5/2.5 S’ turning circle is 3.9 feet tighter than the Avalon’s (36.1 feet vs. 40 feet). The Altima Sedan SV/SR/SL/3.5’s turning circle is 2.6 feet tighter than the Avalon’s (37.4 feet vs. 40 feet).

Chassis Comparison

The Nissan Altima Sedan may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 100 to 250 pounds less than the Toyota Avalon.

The Altima Sedan is 3.4 inches shorter than the Avalon, making the Altima Sedan easier to handle, maneuver and park in tight spaces.

To almost totally eliminate engine vibration in the passenger area, the Altima Sedan V6 has an electronically controlled liquid-filled front engine mount and conventional liquid-filled engine mounts (standard liquid front mount on other versions of the Altima Sedan). A computer-controlled electric current in the liquid changes its viscosity, allowing the mount to dampen the engine completely at all RPMs. The Avalon uses conventional solid rubber engine mounts.

The front grille of the Altima Sedan 2.5 uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The Avalon doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

As tested by Car and Driver while at idle, the interior of the Altima Sedan 2.5 SV is quieter than the Avalon XLE (38 vs. 39 dB).

Passenger Space Comparison

The Altima Sedan has 1.5 inches more front headroom and 2.9 inches more front legroom than the Avalon.

Cargo Capacity Comparison

The Altima Sedan’s standard rear seats fold to accommodate long and bulky cargo. The Avalon doesn’t offer folding rear seats, only a ski pass-through.

Ergonomics Comparison

If the front windows are left down on the Altima Sedan the driver can raise them using the key in the outside lock cylinder. On a hot day the driver can lower the windows from outside the vehicle using the key in the outside lock cylinder or the keyless remote. The driver of the Avalon can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

The Altima Sedan’s speed-sensitive wipers speed up when the vehicle does, so that the driver doesn’t have to continually adjust the speed of the wipers. The Avalon XLE/Touring’s standard manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) conducts detailed tests on headlights for their range both straight ahead and in curves and to be certain they don’t exceed acceptable amounts of glare to oncoming drivers. The Altima Sedan’s available headlights were rated “Acceptable” by the IIHS, while the Avalon’s headlights are rated “Marginal” to “Poor.”

On extremely cold Winter days, the Altima Sedan’s optional (except Base/S/SR) heated steering wheel provides comfort, allowing the driver to steer safely and comfortably before the car heater warms up. The Avalon doesn’t offer a heated steering wheel.

Economic Advantages Comparison

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Altima Sedan is less expensive to operate than the Avalon because typical repairs cost much less on the Altima Sedan than the Avalon, including $90 less for a water pump, $104 less for a starter, $20 less for fuel injection, $17 less for a fuel pump, $222 less for front struts, $1185 less for a timing belt/chain and $206 less for a power steering pump.

IntelliChoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the Nissan Altima Sedan will be $2760 to $5279 less than for the Toyota Avalon.

Recommendations Comparison

J.D. Power and Associates rated the Altima Sedan second among midsize cars in owner reported satisfaction. This includes how well the vehicle performs and satisfies its owner’s expectations. The Avalon isn’t in the top three in its category.

The Nissan Altima Sedan outsold the Toyota Avalon by over six to one during the 2016 model year.

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