I don't disagree with any of the positive praise delivered by my colleagues. The continuously variable transmission works pairs well to this 3.5-liter engine. Torque steer is practically absent. Cabin materials are quite nice. However, the Altima still rolls in as a rather bland entry in a bland category. The interior is comfortable and functional, but it's executed without any concerted effort at style. The ride and handling behavior, as others have mentioned, is acceptable yet characterless. For a mid-size sedan, I'd much rather spend my money on a Ford Fusion or Honda Accord.

Eric Tingwall, Associate Editor

"The only way to get a stick-shift V-6 Altima, it should be noted, is to spring for the $5000 more expensive Altima coupe, but the sedan's CVT does its job very well."There it is, the dreaded, life-sucking shiftless CVT. I remember the days when Nissan was the standout, the sporty alternative to a field of blandmobiles that still offered a truly slick manual shifter. Perhaps those days are gone for good, but because of this, the Altima is no longer a stand out for me.

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