2021 Nissan Sentra review: Not a benchwarmer, not quite a benchmark

Prolonged an also-ran, present day Sentra is healthful and incredibly fashionable. Sean Szymkowski/Roadshow It truly is been a very long time since the Nissan Sentra could be viewed as not just a “amazing car or truck,” but a genuinely good car or truck. Fortunately, the folks inside the Japanese automaker […]

Prolonged an also-ran, present day Sentra is healthful and incredibly fashionable.

Sean Szymkowski/Roadshow

It truly is been a very long time since the Nissan Sentra could be viewed as not just a “amazing car or truck,” but a genuinely good car or truck. Fortunately, the folks inside the Japanese automaker have hashed out a winning system with placing appears to be, a lofty options record and a cozy package deal with benefit to boot. Some rivals may have an edge right here or there, but by and huge, the Sentra is squarely back again in the recreation.


  • Quite fashionable in its very own right
  • Critically cozy seats for very long drives
  • Plenty of options for a fair cost

Really don’t Like

  • Scatterbrained transmission
  • Dated infotainment

There is certainly anything inherently charming about this minimal compact. Proper from the begin, the 2021 Nissan Sentra oozes an attractiveness all its very own. It would not appear like a different beautiful car or truck, the sedan is simply its very own issue. If nearly anything, there is certainly a great deal of mini-Maxima likely on right here, alternatively than shrunken Altima, which I consider is a very good issue. Nissan’s V-Movement grille sits proudly up front with chrome and black accents connecting to edgy headlights. This Sentra SR trim features the optional Top quality Deal, which amongst options we will chat about later, provides sharp LED headlamps and premium daytime running lights, way too. At night, they supply a great deal of mindset, and my tester even athletics underglow lights. Sure, like, factory things straight out of a Rapidly and Furious flick. The optional lighting package deal tosses some white lights beneath, which appear really terrific paired with this tester’s two-tone Electric powered Blue Metallic and black paint scheme.

Out back again, family ties to the Altima are far more crystal clear with a identical taillight remedy, while the Sentra however rocks its very own appear with a widened stance and this SR trim’s sportier one exhaust outlet. A modest spoiler carries on to flirt with the diet plan Rapidly and Furious appeal, and 18-inch alloy wheels aid fill the fashionable profile in.

People appears to be never automatically translate to sporty general performance, but the Sentra’s wholly able of serving as a stupendous everyday driver. Below the hood is a in a natural way aspirated 2.-liter inline-4 engine matched with Nissan’s XTronic consistently variable transmission, which features simulated “shifts” to aid motorists try out and overlook it really is not a CVT. It truly is not fooling any one, I guarantee. In truth, I located CVT to be the lowest position of the Sentra’s overall package deal while zipping close to. From a quit, the XTronic invites a surge of lower-conclude torque. Although snappy, the momentum made can sense like a circumstance of the cart receiving in advance of the horse. The “shift factors” continue being scattered, way too. Embrace the CVT and enable it rev, I say. Usually, the inline-4 hums alongside with no problems and returns an EPA-approximated 28 mpg city, 37 mpg highway and 32 mpg blended. The engine’s 149 horsepower and 146 pound-ft of torque are far more than able of scooting the compact sedan close to.

Driving the Sentra continues to be clean when it will come to dealing with, way too, many thanks to a new multilink independent rear suspension and stunning confident-footed qualities when cornering. The steering surprises as very well, with a all-natural weighted sense. The Honda Civic and Mazda3 cater far more to fanatic motorists, but the Sentra is not certain to the rental great deal anymore, friends.

Pleasingly practical, but with a modicum of type.

Sean Szymkowski/Roadshow

Plopping down inside reveals a single ace up the Sentra’s sleeve — practically as you sit down. Nissan’s Zero Gravity seats are stupid cozy and remarkable for very long stints behind the wheel. The interior’s also dressed up correctly in the SR trim with some fake carbon fiber accents, contrasting orange stitching and tender components the place your arms normally relaxation in the cockpit. The flat-base steering wheel is also a wonderful touch and feels at residence right here.

What I adore about the Sentra’s interior is how basic it is. Sure, the Hyundai Elantra wows with a huge exhibit screen and electronic gauges, but you know what? Actual physical buttons and analog gauges however function, and they function really very well in the Sentra. Every thing sits within access and designers laid all the controls out in basic manner.

There are a couple of screens to maintain up with the tech manner. In involving the two gauges in the cluster is a seven-inch driver-details screen that showcases essential details evidently, while an eight-inch touchscreen on the SR trim handles infotainment obligations. The infotainment appears to be a tad dated and it would not review to sexier shows like in the aforementioned Elantra, but it works reasonably very well, help you save for the occasional input lag. Apple CarPlay and Android Vehicle (wired) appear alongside for the trip, as do baked-in SiriusXM and Bluetooth capabilities. Crank the quantity knob and audio funnels via an optional 6-speaker Bose audio method. It truly is an adequate improve for people who like to jam behind the wheel, but never count on residence-theater-like crispness.

The benefit-laden 2021 Nissan Sentra has received your back again, Jack.


Preserving with fashionable-day tech, Nissan’s Basic safety Protect 360 reports for responsibility as common machines on all Sentras. Computerized crisis braking, blind-spot alerts and the standard slew of lively-security machines are all current and accounted for. The accessible 360-diploma digicam coverage is also a wonderful reward for the segment. Gladly, these options all function very well, way too — I observed no hiccups while driving the sedan close to town and on the freeway. The SR trim also features optional adaptive cruise handle which gets A-Ok marks from me. I didn’t expertise a one issue during its time lively.

The 2021 Nissan Sentra would make a strong circumstance for by itself, and not for the reason that it simply ticks a great deal of boxes compact car or truck consumers appear for. With this tester’s $25,910 cost immediately after a $925 spot demand, the Sentra SR will not likely depart you longing for far more machines. More interior type? Maybe, but Nissan’s compact car or truck eventually feels like it has some temperament all over again to go with its strong benefit participate in. And as SUVs continue to reign supreme, why not be a little bit far more of an individualist and go with a sedan?

Rosa G. Rose

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