The 2013 Nissan Altima was a big hit at the New York International Auto Show, and experts are predicting this car could be the best-selling family sedan by the end of the year. This projection is made all the more impressive as the newly-redesigned sedan won't hit dealers nationwide until July.
"Overall with improving fuel economy, we expect 2012 new car sales to jump roughly 15 percent over 2011," said Kelsey Mays, an automotive analyst for Cars.com. "Taking the redesign of the Altima into account, we'd expect the 2013 Altima to outsell its 2012 predecessor by 39 percent by year's end, 24 percentage points above our expected market growth."
The new Altima was among the many gas-powered vehicles on display in New York that offer improved fuel economy over previous models. In fact, a continuously variable transmission, coupled with weight reduction and a more aerodynamic design make the new model 15 percent more efficient than the 2012 version. The overall look of the Altima is relatively the same, but tweaked to appear sleeker, with a smoother front end, streamlined tail lights and a low-profile rear hatch. The sides of the car's body are also a bit more muscular in the new model.
While the newest model may outperform its predecessor, older models are still a good bet for those looking for a reliable family car that gets decent gas mileage. A 2012 Altima gets 32 miles per gallon on the highway. Those in the market for used cars in NJ can head to New Jersey State Auto Auction, which has a wide variety of makes and models sure to suit the needs of every driver.
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) recently named the 2012 Nissan Versa sedan a Top Safety Pick. This rating is given to vehicles that get the highest rating of "good" on frontal offset, side impact and roof strength tests.
The 2012 model features six standard air bags, anti-lock brakes with electronic brake distribution, vehicle dynamic control with traction control and brake assist. It is also the first Nissan in North American to be included in the automaker's PureDrive initiative, which focuses on reducing emissions and improving fuel economy. The new car has a combined fuel economy of 33 miles per gallon (30 mpg in the city and 38 mpg on the highway.
"Nissan remains committed to the highest levels of safety and innovation, as is reflected in the Nissan Versa sedan receiving the Top Safety Pick from IIHS," said Brian Carolin, senior vice president of sales and marketing for Nissan North America. "The 2012 Versa provides customers with a remarkable level of value, comfort and security for an MSRP starting under $11,000."
Since the car is fairly inexpensive when it's new, drivers looking to get behind the wheel of a used model can expect to find prices well below the $10,000 mark. The IIHS reports the Versa had ratings of "good" for the 2007-2010 models when it came to side impact testing and frontal offset tests. The roof strength for these model years was found to be "acceptable," which is the next grade below "good."
Drivers interested in the Nissan Versa can head to New Jersey State Auto Auction, which offers a wide variety of used fuel-efficient sedans. Even if the Versa doesn't meet their needs, consumers can check out a number of comparable vehicles at NJ Auto.
It may seem like something out of a science fiction movie, but Nissan is moving closer to creating a car that can read a driver's mind. The manufacturer recently announced its plans to work on a Brain Machine Interface (BMI) with Swiss scientists that will help cars and motorists work together while out on the road.
The focus of the program will be on using BMI and statistical analysis to assess a driver's cognitive state to help predict what he or she might do next while out on the road. This can be done in a number of ways including brain activity, eye movement and examining the environment around the car.
"The idea is to blend driver and vehicle intelligence together in such a way that eliminates conflicts between them, leading to a safer motoring environment," said professor José del R. Millán, the man leading the project.
While mind-reading cars may be years off, motorists looking to get behind the wheel of a used Nissan may want to check out New Jersey Auto Auction, which offers numerous makes and models at affordable prices.
As anybody who has driven through a crowded parking lot can attest, there are plenty of drivers out there who can't park very well. Whether it be parallel parking or simply backing in, the process can be difficult for some. However, there are certain models that make parking a little simpler, according to Automobile magazine.
Although small vehicles, like the Smart car or the Mini Cooper, are certainly a good choice, sometimes driving such a compact ride is not feasible. If that's the case, the publication suggests that less-than-perfect parkers might want to check out the Nissan Cube.
The Cube gets the nod because not only is it a few inches shorter than the compact Mazda MX-5 roadster, but it can also fit five people and offers plenty of storage room.
Those looking for a luxurious car that is easy to park will find it with the Infiniti EX. In addition to being an easily-manageable size, the car features the Around View Monitor, which offers a 360 degree view of the car's surroundings.
Drivers looking to get behind the wheel of an easy-to-park used car may want to check out New Jersey Auto Auction, which has plenty of models at affordable prices.
The accolades keep stacking up for the innovative Nissan Leaf. Theelectric car recently earned a five-star safety rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, making it the first fully-electric car to earn the distinction.
The rating was part of the administration's New Car Safety Assessment Program (NCSAP) and was issued using its updated, stricter guidelines. However, it's no surprise the Leaf earned an excellent rating given the number of impressive safety features.
Among the fixtures are dual-stage supplemental front air bags with seat belt and occupant classification sensors, a child seat upper tether anchor and a traction control system that comes standard in every model.
"The Nissan LEAF is the first all-electric vehicle to achieve 5-star overall for safety," Brian Carolin, senior vice president, sales and marketing, Nissan North America said. "Not only is the LEAF the most innovative car on the planet, it is also one of the safest."
Whether drivers are looking for fuel-efficiency or safety, New Jersey Auto Auction has plenty of makes and models at affordable prices.
For years, the Nissan Micra has been a popular car in the United Kingdom and elsewhere, and if rumors hold true it may be making its way to the United States. Ken Davis, president of the Eaton Supercharges vehicle group, hinted that a the company will launch a supercharged model in the U.S. sometime in the near future.
In an interview with Automotive News, Davis said that his company sees great growth potential in working with Nissan, and that the popular Japanese automaker will be expanding its horizons in terms of supercharged cars.
"Nissan will bring their supercharged vehicles here [the U.S.]." he told the news source. "We'll be on Audi and Volkswagen platforms, too. We are starting to get some attention."
Supercharger engines work by allowing more fuel to be burned per cycle, resulting in greater power output, and is especially beneficial to smaller engines.
Drivers looking to get in a reliable Nissan may want to stop by New Jersey Auto Auction, which carries plenty of used cars at affordable prices.
The Nissan Leaf has turned heads as the country's first mass-produced fully-electric vehicle, but it appears the model may fall short of the sales expectations originally set by Nissan.
The Japanese automaker estimated that it would sell at least 20,000 of the model by the end of the year, but revised projections are finding that the final total will likely be closer to half of that, with Automotive News reporting that Nissan now expects 10,000 to 12,000 Leafs sold.
"It's different than anything we've ever done, launching the car in three global markets at the same time," said Al Castignetti, Nissan VP of sales. "We knew it wasn't going to be easy."
In order to even purchase a Leaf, drivers must submit a request through a reservation system, which requires a $99 deposit. The system filled up with 20,000 requests back in September 2010, but Nissan has since found that many are not ultimately pulling the trigger on the purchase – only 46 percent are taking delivery.
The good news for Nissan is that the car is not yet available in all markets – so some of these reservations are in cities that don't have the Leaf yet. The company has also opened up the system again to accept more orders for the vehicle.
Though electric vehicles (EVs) offer an eco-friendly way to get from point A to point B, there is always the lingering risk of running out of power. Nissan and the Japan Automobile Federation are looking to allay the fears of drivers with a roadside assistance program that will offer stranded motorists a recharge on the side of the road.
It's no surprise that the Nissan is at the forefront of the so-called EV rescue truck, as the company's Leaf is the first modern fully electric car on the market. According to USA Today, Nissan has sold just 1,200 of the Leaf in the United States, but its production signals a shift in how cars are powered and similar models are likely on their way to the states.
"As EVs gain wider consumer acceptance, it is important to create a roadside assistance system that can help motorists driving EVs which have run out of battery power," said Hitoshi Kawaguchi, a Nissan senior vice president.
The Nissan Leaf has become famous for its all-electric capabilities – but how does it handle a professional race environment?
The world is about to find out, as the Japanese automaker has announced that the Nissan Leaf will be entered into the upcoming Pikes Peak International Hill Climb. This isn't the previously unveiled Nissan Leaf NISMO RC, a racing-inspired Leaf outfitted with a special carbon-fiber body. The challenge of scaling the hill will be left to a regular production model with no modifications.
Piloted by off-road racing champ Chad Hord, the automaker believes that the Leaf has a pretty good shot in the competition, as it will be competing against other electric vehicles. The automaker also believes that the car's electric motor will ultimately come in handy in the competition.
"The instant torque available from the electric motor makes the LEAF a fun car to drive and the abundance of corners on the hill climb will give Chad a chance to take advantage of that torque," said Ron Stukenberg, senior manager of marketing communications.
There's no doubt that the Leaf is an interesting car, but drivers may not want to take the plunge just yet. A smart play might be to wait for electric vehicles to hit the used car market, then snag one at a discount.