I forgot just how quiet hybrids are. Like, silent. As in, so silent when you start one, you turn it off and try again because you think nothing happened. So silent that it's like a party trick I perform for Lovely Rita and Ali at the parking garage downtown. Check this out! It's RUNNING. No, really!!
The Altima Hybrid would be a lot less amusing to me if it weren't such a perfectly normal Altima in everyday use. It looked normal. It drove fairly normally, although felt a bit clunky over rough pavement. Nice materials inside, solid Nissan design inside and out. No sackcloth and ashes here.
I actually got engaged in the act of saving fuel through the shaded orange area under the speedometer, where the Altima's range is constantly displayed and a small darker orange EV MODE box lights up just under 30 mph. Around town, I found myself feathering the throttle to keep that EV MODE light on. Because it was free!
After driving 100 miles, I'm pleased to report that the RANGE figure dropped only about 30 miles because of my diligent efforts at low speed. Okay. On to the Audi S5.
Jean Jennings, President & Editor-in-Chief