Offering a tantalizing look at a likely future addition to its popular compact sedan, the Nissan Sentra Nismo Concept made its world debut in Los Angeles. "Fans have asked that we bring back a high-performance Sentra straight from the factory, just like in generations past," said Nissan Vice President of Product Planning, Pierre Loing at the reveal. "With Nismo, our in-house motorsports arm already producing versions of the 370Z Nismo, Juke Nismo, JUKE Nismo RS and upcoming GT-R Nismo, we wanted to demonstrate where we could go in the future."

Also: More first looks from the 2013 Los Angeles Auto Show

In typical Nismo fashion, this super-spec Sentra matches tasteful but effective cosmetic tweaks with functional chassis upgrades and a healthy bump in power. Finished in Bright White Pearl with signature red accents, it sports a full body kit that includes aero-optimized front and rear fascias flared fenders, integrated side sills, a subtle decklid spoiler and functional rear diffuser plus a pair of prominent chrome dual exhausts outlets. Rounding out the look are a Black Chrome/Dark Chrome grille, smoked head/tail lamp lenses, and a set of black-finish 19-inch RAYS aluminum wheels wrapped in sticky 225/35 Michelin Super Sport tires. To take full advantage of the added grip, this high-intensity Sentra one-off also boasts a full Nismo chassis makeover that includes high-performance springs and shocks as well as red-painted Brembo brake calipers snagged from the 370Z. 

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Heart of the Sentra Nismo Concept is a turbocharged/sequential-direct-injected 1.8-liter/4-cylinder engine that's an upsized version of the 1.6-liter from the new Juke Nismo RS. Cranking out  a bit more than 240 horsepower - roughly 90 more than the naturally aspirated 1.8-liter in a standard Sentra -- this prime mover is backed by a beefed-up 6-speed manual transmission that sends power to the front wheels via a limited-slip differential. Inside, the Nissan Sentra Nismo Concept complements its underhood might with an equal measure of high-performance character that starts with Recaro Sportster front buckets wrapped in black leather and Alcantara, as is the sport steering wheel. Alcantara covers the rear bench as well as much of the rest of the the soft cabin trim while the instrument cluster gets a satin carbon finish and all bright bits are rendered in Dark Chrome. 

We're betting that Nissan is serious about bringing a production version of the Sentra Nismo Concept to market, the only question is when.

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