It's only been three years since the Nissan Altima received a full redesign and in that short span its competition has surpassed it in many ways. The 2016 Nissan Altima strives to restore relevance with an exterior styling update, a handful of new features and a sporty new SR trim.
The new V-shaped grille up front brings the Altima up to date with other Nissan vehicles and, when combined with sharper headlights and taillights, it does breathe some life back into its predecessor's comparably plain appearance. The addition of adaptive cruise control, paired with forward collision warnings and automatic braking, may also entice shoppers.
Unfortunately, the interior has largely been ignored in this midcycle refresh. The drumbeat of technology has made the Altima's once praiseworthy infotainment system old news compared to the latest units from rivals. The same holds true for the materials used in the cabin. The Altima's engine performance is still strong, however, and fuel economy remains at or near the top of the field for both the four-cylinder and V6.
Overall, the current-generation Altima isn't quite as dominant in 2016 as it was in 2013. It's still perfectly adequate on its own, but when compared to newer A-rated sedans like the Honda Accord, Mazda 6, Hyundai Sonata and its Kia Optima cousin, it becomes very clear that the Nissan has been surpassed.