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1996 Nissan Altima

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Consumer Reviews & Ratings

Overall Rating
8.3
Out of 10

Based on 221 Ratings for the 1993 - 1997 models.

Review this car
more rating details
  • Value
    8.6/10
    Quality
    8.6/10
  • Reliability
    8.7/10
    Performance
    8.4/10
  • Comfort
    8.5/10
    Styling
    8.1/10
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Decent vehicle, cheap on gas and repairs.

By on Wednesday, March 28, 2012

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 160,000

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Cheap, drives well, good on gas"

Cons: "not the best looking car, noisy if neglected."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"Compared to the repair costs of other vehicles from the same year, this car is relatively cheap. It runs well even while having several issues under the hood. As a certified technician, I can say this is one of the easiest cars I have ever worked on. Some spots are a bit tight to get to depending on what you're replacing/ repairing, but it's manageable overall. The particular altima that I own was totaled before I got it. The entire front end was cut off and replaced, frame and all (you can see the welding marks on the frame) but it still runs fine. These vehicles are also great on gas. $20 in gas will get me back and forth to work for almost 2 weeks. These cars will develop a LOT of rattling noises over time if improperly cared for. Usually this can be attributed to motor mounts being bad and sending vibrations through the rest of the car. The dash on these cars are made of really cheap material and will warp over time, causing even more noise. If taken care of properly though, you can eliminate the noise problems. If you need a cheap and dependable car that can still haul a few people at the same time, this is a great choice overall."

31 people out of 31 found this review helpful

Very nice starter vehicle

By on Saturday, March 24, 2012

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 126,500

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
7/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
7/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

Pros: "fuel economy, ride, reliability, comfort"

Cons: "rear seat space, cup holder placement,"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"I just got this 95 Altima in December, but in that time I can tell it will be around for a while. I bought from a private owner who neglected the car and repairs are adding up. Despite the abuse, this little Nissan rides so nice. I am impressed that with all the issues the vehicle has it drives as if nothing is wrong with it. I do not like that I have put almost 2200 in this car in repairs, but that is from previous abuse and neglect. I had to do things like motor mounts, rack and pinion boots, flex pipe,sway bars,and sensors, basically little things that add up but for a 17 year old car, there are no major issues with it. My job is a 32 mile round trip and the gas needle hardly moves afterwards. Even with today's gas prices it is not expensive to fill up($40 will give you a full tank). I am happy to see that it always starts up when I see newer cars on the side of the road. The car is very comfortable and seats are supportive. Backseat space could be better but this is a compact car. I have 125,000 miles I know I can get at least 200,000 out of this car. Thank you Nissan for making such a reliable vehicle."

12 people out of 12 found this review helpful

The Ultimate Commuter Car

By on Thursday, December 11, 2008

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

"I have owned my altima for 5 years now with 236,000 miles and still runs perfect, as good as the day it was born. No signs at all of mechanical deterioration what so ever. It is amazing how well this car performs and how unbelivably reliable it is. The 4 cylinder engine is so powerful, it makes me wonder why anyone would ever want a 6 or 8 cylinder car. Everything still works perfect, still gets great gas mileage for a car of its size (29-30 mpg), clutch is still strong, even the AC still blows cold! Great in the snow, handles very reponsive and predictable. Non-abs brakes work superb in all conditions. Visability is excellent, very comfortable for driver and passengers. I would like to emphasize how rough of a life this car has had and still not a single mechanical breakdown. I purchased this car used from a highschool kid that did not take care of it. The day his parents purchased it for him, he repeatably traveled down a steep hill and pulled the e-brake, initiating a 180 deg turn, and tacked the car to redline, and spun the tires for approximately 150 ft while the car was still traveling backward, and then over 1000 ft forward up the hill, with smoke billowing from the front wheel wells, with the poor engine on the rev limiter the whole time. This was just one example of many, of the extreme abuse this car was subjected to for the first 140k miles of its life. I have owned it for its next 100k miles and also have not been easy on it. I have taken it to the local 1/8 mile drag strip and raced it a dozen times or so. On a daily basis this car sees hard acceleration, cornering and breaking. I have driven this car so hard that a set of brand new 60k mile yokohama tires lasted me 7k miles before they were completly bald. Countless occasions I have brought this car up its top speed of 134 mph in 4th gear and sustained it for several miles, and never an issue, smooth as can be, an outstanding automobile! If this car wasnt subjected to the extreme weather of the north, I am convinced that with periodic maintainence this car would literaly last forever."

12 people out of 12 found this review helpful

She just won't quit

By on Saturday, September 07, 2013

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 288,635

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
8/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
7/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Easy price, easy ride"

Cons: "Repair cost, age."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"I call her my somewhat reliable old lady. Minus a few major fixes (Seeing as the car is almost 20 years old, it's to be expected) this car has been nothing but amazing. Good gas mileage for a 1990's decade car, wonderful driving, just overall a good car. Just be prepared to sink some money into routine maintenance, and wear and tear repairs. I replaced the fuel distributor at 250k miles, and radiator at 270k. As I said, this old lady just keeps chugging."

7 people out of 7 found this review helpful

Good Solid Vehicle

By on Tuesday, February 19, 2008

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

"This is a really great car! It wont stop running i swear! i recently went into a ditch because of a serious ice storm in the midwest and my car was pulled out (front end in ditch) and it just went right along without any problems. This car does have a slight tendency to lose hubcaps but i found a set that stays on nicely... Never had any major mechanical problems and this thing runs like a tank! great car for teens, although the styling is a bit outdated, what can you expect from 1994?"

7 people out of 7 found this review helpful

Best car I've ever had in my LIFE!

By on Tuesday, February 05, 2008

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

"My parents bought me the 97 altima as my first car in 2002. It had 58K miles on it at the time. Here I am 6 years later still driving it! Since then I have driven the living daylights out of that car, making trips across three states multiple times a month at one point. The car has NEVER broken down on me or left me stranded! EVER! I LOVE it! In 2005 I had to get new CV joints which I've been told are just a regular thing that goes in older cars. I had to get a new AC but that's because I wrecked it and busted the old one. Even after a car accident that gave it some serious body damage, it started right back up and ran like a dream! I recently had to get a new alternator, but again, we're looking at a vehicle with almost 200,000 miles on it so that's not really something to be too upset over. Overall, I love this car and even as the poor thing has started to kind of go down hill cosmetically, it has been an amazing car and I have absolutely NO complaints. I will most certainly get another Altima when this one dies. Go buy an ALTIMA! I swear they're the best cars ever made if they're anything like mine!"

7 people out of 7 found this review helpful

Very reliable

By on Sunday, March 01, 2009

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
8/10

"Owned since 02, have over 160k now with only a bad alternator at 140k. Other than that nothing ever goes wrong with this car, extremely reliable. Great car. Had in europe for 4 years, drove in all types of conditions and constant high speeds on autobahn. Now back in the states and nothing has changed with this car. Still runs and drives the same when I bought her. All I ever do is change the oil. Never burns any oil and doesnt even have any leaks. 2.4L is very tough and is in many nissan applications. I've even seen this engine in a kuwaiti nissan van. Little work van with a manual, really fun to drive, would drive circles in the deep sand around our 4wd six passenger chevy truck. Great vehicle although nissans quality seems to be going down a little with the newer vehicles which really seems to be the same with every car manufacturer. Have a newer pathfinder and have had a few more problems than i'd like. Big quality difference between my 97 altima and my 06 pathy. I'd still buy nissan though. So if you're looking for a cheap, reliable, fuel efficient ride, an older altima or newer even is your ticket. Great car, but you can't have mine, bet this car will go 300k with hardly any problems. I really don't even drive it that nicely. I really do wish I could buy american, you know help out America with the economic crisis, but until their quality is equal to that of a jap vehicle, I won't be. Don't have the money to be putting parts into an American car all the time. And yes most of my family has American cars and there's always someone in my family having to dump a ton of money into them. The most maintenance related exspenses I spend on my altima is 20 bucks every 5k for oil and filter. And even my pathy hasn't cost me but maybe 150 bucks for non routine maintenance items which I did myself. My aunt and uncle had to drop 3g's into their s-10 with 50k b/c it threw a rod, and they always have the dealership service their vehicles. But on the other hand they have an old s-10 with 200k and mainly just had tranny problems, somewhat big problems but not as bad as their newer s-10. Gramps has a F-150 and had to take in into the dealership for a bunch of little things, but it seems like it's a monthly thing, and it's an 08. Anyways, getting way off track, altima is a great car, don't hesitate buying one as long as it was serviced like it's supposed to."

6 people out of 6 found this review helpful

Awesome

By on Tuesday, July 17, 2007

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
10/10

"This car at 134000 miles is runnin smoothly, on the highway at high speeds. havent had any oil problems or ne other problems. probably the best used car i have purchased"

6 people out of 6 found this review helpful

Excellent!

By on Saturday, July 14, 2007

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
10/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

"I have owned this car for 7 years and have never had any problems with it. It has been a great reliable car."

6 people out of 6 found this review helpful

i love my car

By on Wednesday, January 25, 2012

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 165,000

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
7/10
Styling
8/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "great gas mil, great commuter car"

Cons: "suspension, and stock speakers"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"i have had this car for over 11 years and i love her , she has been more reliable then any man i have ever had in my life. I have drivin this car from california to texas twice, then from california to idaho 4 times and she never gave up on me. I have had some minor problems that have just started to appair but i guess after 11 years of driving her i should except that."

5 people out of 5 found this review helpful

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