Nissan’s 2006 Altima SE-R dials up the fun equation in a mid-size sedan


By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

The wild success of the new Altima in 2002 turned Nissan from a troubled Japanese automaker at the turn of the century into one of the success stories in modern automotive history.

Nissan sold more than 200,000 of its mid-sized family sedans that year, and reached an all-time high in 2005 with 255,000 sales.

Nissan Maxima moves more towards luxury

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

Perhaps one of the biggest yet overlooked story lines of the 2007 model year is Nissan’s new and maybe somewhat controversial transmission decision.

The Japanese auto company has dropped conventional automatics from several models in favor of its version of the continuously variable transmission or CVT. Unlike a conventional transmission, the CVT has no shift points.

Nissan’s Quest – a better minivan in search of a market

By Jim Meachen

CANTON, Miss. — Nissan officials want to get the message out — quality at their newest U.S. plant in Mississippi has improved dramatically and customer satisfaction has increased proportionally.

As an example, they rolled out the 2007 Quest minivan inside the 3.5-million-square-foot plant in a visual demonstration of how far things have advanced since Quest Job One on May 23, 2003.

Nissan Versa – roomy with a view to practical

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

Small cars have much to offer.

Most obvious, of course, is their fuel economy. Using less gas is a good thing. Frugality is a good thing for the pocketbook — and the environment.

A low purchase price is another advantage.

A small car’s ability to zip in and out of traffic and make use of the slimmest parking spots is yet another plus.

Nissan Sentra SE-R, better performance for the common man (or woman)

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

We think Nissan has aimed the 2008 Sentra SE-R in the wrong direction, namely at the wrong audience. And we think many of our automotive writer colleagues have as well.

The higher-horsepower version of the standard bread-and-butter compact Sentra sedan has been compared more or less head-to-head with the Mazdaspeed3, the Volkswagen GTI, the Honda Civic Si, the Subaru WRX and the Chevrolet Cobalt SS.

Nissan Titan — upgrades freshen a good truck

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

With the much publicized launch of the full-sized Toyota Tundra pickup last year, the complete makeover of the Chevrolet Silverado two years ago and the upcoming fall introduction of an all-new Ford F-150 and a completely revitalized Dodge Ram, we thought perhaps it was time to revisit the full-sized Nissan Titan.

Nissan Cube — Small, efficient and a bit cartoonish

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

A 20-year-old relative said she simply could not own the Nissan Cube, one of the new breed of small, tall, boxy vehicles aimed at the youth market now making their way into the American automotive mainstream. It’s too cartoonish, she said. “[It] reminds me of the movie ‘Roger Rabbit.’ How could I live with that?”

But she doesn’t completely defy the so-called demographics she is the owner of a Scion tC, a trendy sports coupe, but more in the styling mainstream.

Nissan Maxima — A stylish and sporty flagship

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

The 2009 Maxima may be the most stylish family sedan that Nissan designers have ever penned. Sitting on a front porch swing sipping a cold lemonade on a hot late spring weekend afternoon gave us the opportunity to study at great length the Maxima, parked in profile at the curb. As we enjoyed the cool sweet bitterness of homemade lemonade, we drank in the Maxima’s beauty.