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2014 Nissan Altima Review

The 2014 Nissan Altima has superb fuel economy as well as agile handling and strong acceleration, which make it sportier than many midsize cars. Highlights of its upscale interior include high-grade materials, supportive front seats, and a user-friendly infotainment system. 

Pros & Cons

  • Upscale interior
  • Excellent fuel economy
  • Strong performance
  • Limited rear-seat headroom




Critics' Rating: 8.8
Performance: 8.1
Interior: 8.3
Total Cost of Ownership: 9.2
Safety: 9.5
J.D. Power Ratings Logo

2014 Nissan Altima Overview

Is the 2014 Nissan Altima a Good Used Car?

With its luxurious interior and polished performance, the 2014 Nissan Altima is a well-rounded car, deserving of its standing among the best used sedans. It's also a great value, due in part to a healthy serving of standard features. When it was new, the 2014 Altima was a finalist in our Best Midsize Car for the Money award.  

The Altima handles better than most rival vehicles in its class, providing sharp steering and a controlled feel in corners. It comes with one of two engines: models that include "2.5" in their name are powered by a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine that delivers brisk acceleration. This engine also has one of the highest nonhybrid fuel economy ratings among its peers: an EPA-estimated 27 mpg in the city and 37 mpg on the highway. If you want something even more robust, look for the "3.5" trim designation. Under the hood of these models is a potent 3.5-liter V6 engine, upping horsepower from 182 to 270. Both engines come with a continuously variable transmission (a type of automatic transmission, also called a CVT), which bolsters the Altima's gas mileage.

Read more about Altima performance »

The 2014 Nissan Altima's cabin features impressive materials and attractive styling. Its front seats are especially comfortable and roomy for a vehicle of this size. The rear is relatively spacious, but you may find the 2014 Mazda Mazda6 more accommodating if you ferry a lot of adults in the back seat. For installing child safety seats, the Altima is equipped with lower anchors on the outboard seats and tether anchors on all three rear seats.

Nissan's technology is both high-tech and easy to use, which isn't always the case for midsize cars. The 2014 Altima comes well-equipped with standard features like Bluetooth, a proximity key, push-button start, and the ability to display text messages when your smartphone is linked to the system. For a classier cabin, look for models with upgrades like leather upholstery, heated front seats, a nine-speaker Bose audio system, and a 7-inch touch screen. Safety features such as a rearview camera, blind spot warning, moving object detection, and lane departure warning are also available.

Read more about Altima interior »

Used 2014 Nissan Altima Prices

The price of a used 2014 Nissan Altima ranges from about $13,100 for the base trim with front-wheel drive and a four-cylinder engine to about $24,000 for the fully loaded SX Limited trim with a V6 engine. The price varies depending on the vehicle's condition, mileage, features, and location.

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How Reliable Is the 2014 Nissan Altima?

There's no cause to be overly concerned about the 2014 Nissan Altima's soundness: its reliability rating of three out of five from J.D. Power and Associates is considered average. However, about half of its rivals posted higher scores, including the 2014 Toyota Camry, 2014 Honda Accord, and 2014 Subaru Legacy.

How Safe Is the Altima?

If safety is a top concern for you, you'll be pleased with the 2014 Altima's crash test ratings. Its exceptional performance in Insurance Institute for Highway Safety tests earned it a Top Safety Pick designation. The Altima also received a five-star overall rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. No advanced driver assistance features are standard, but safety equipment such as a rearview camera, blind spot warning, lane departure warning, and moving object detection can be found in some models.  

See Altima safety scores »

Should I Consider Another Used Altima?

Nissan last redesigned the Altima for the 2013 model year. Though the 2014 model year offered a few extra options as well as smartphone app integration (with the upgraded NissanConnect system) when it debuted, there are few major differences between the two models. Buying a 2013 model instead can save you around $2,000 (though reliability slips somewhat). If you want additional performance and tech features – and you have a little wiggle room in your budget – consider a 2015 Altima 3.5 SV or 3.5 SL. Both have more standard tech and safety features than a comparable 2014 model.

Compare the 2013, 2014, and 2015 Nissan Altima »

Which Used Nissan Altima Is Right for Me?

The 2014 Nissan Altima is a front-wheel-drive sedan that comes in a bevy of flavors, with seven different trims available (2.5, 2.5S, 2.5 SV, 2.5 SL, 3.5S, 3.5 SV, and 3.5 SL). Even lower Altima trims are well-equipped, which is great news for shoppers on a tighter budget. With its peppy, fuel-efficient engine and CVT, cozy standard seats, and tech favorites like Bluetooth and a proximity key, you don't need to go far beyond the 2.5 or 2.5 S model to get an upscale, fun-to-drive sedan.

You might consider a certified pre-owned Altima. For its certified pre-owned vehicles, Nissan extends the original new-car warranty to seven years or 100,000 miles. To become certified pre-owned, each vehicle must pass a 167-point inspection. Additional benefits like towing and roadside assistance may be available, so read the Nissan warranty page carefully.

Read more about certified pre-owned vehicles »

Read more about the Nissan certified pre-owned program »

We Did the Research for You: 32 Pieces of Data Analyzed

Our 2014 Nissan Altima review isn't based on personal opinion. Instead, we pulled almost three dozen different data points together to rank and review this midsize sedan. Our overview will help you understand the Altima's mpg, its safety ratings, its reliability, and how well it drives so you can make an informed buying decision.  

Why You Can Trust Us

For the past 84 years, U.S. News & World Report has been a trusted news source. We’ve also been walking people through some of life's most important decisions with our rankings, like the Best Colleges, Best Jobs, and Best Places to Live. Our Best Cars team has been ranking and reviewing cars for a decade, and we have a combined 75 years of automotive knowledge.

2014 Nissan Altima and Other Cars to Consider

Which Is Better: 2014 Nissan Altima or 2014 Honda Accord?

If taxiing taller travelers is a regular occurrence, take a peek inside the back of the 2014 Honda Accord. It is one of the most comfortable back seats in the class, offering more hip- and legroom for rear passengers. Other highlights of the Accord's cabin include high-grade materials, niceties like dual-zone automatic climate control, and excellent outward visibility. Both the Accord and the Altima are available with four-cylinder or V6 engines. Overall, the Accord’s edge over the Altima is only slight. Many of the Honda's attributes are on par with the Nissan, so either model is a good choice.   

Which Is Better: 2014 Nissan Altima or 2014 Toyota Camry?

When it comes to finding a safe, reliable midsize car, the Toyota Camry is the poster child of the 2014 model year. It has some of the highest ratings in both categories. Its performance is not quite as athletic as the Nissan Altima's (unless you opt for the sporty SE trim), but the Camry is steady, quiet, and reasonably energetic. Like the Altima, it has either a four-cylinder or V6 engine. Toyota included a few more standard features in the Camry than what you'll find in a base Altima, like a rearview camera and a 6.1-inch touch screen. Given all these benefits, the Camry's small price increase is pretty trivial. It’s the better buy.  

Which Is Better: 2014 Nissan Altima or 2014 Nissan Maxima?

If the Altima isn't swanky enough for you, consider stepping up to a 2014 Maxima – Nissan's  sportier, more upscale sedan. It's outfitted with much of the same standard technology as the 2014 Altima (plus a few extras, like dual-zone automatic climate control), and it has sporty handling and an energetic standard V6 engine. Higher-level used Maxima trims can get a little pricey, but less expensive models tend to cost only a few thousand dollars more than the Altima. 

Compare the Altima, Accord, and Camry »

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