Exclusive! 2023 Nissan Sentra: New Nissan Sentra Compact Sedan Review

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2023 Nissan Sentra reasonable, spacious, and fuel efficient are the three best descriptors we can think of for the current Nissan Sentra.

Despite its compact size, the Sentra offers passenger space and cargo capacity on par with some of the larger midsize sedans.

And with strong fuel economy ratings and a host of standard and advanced driver assistance available, the Sentra continues to make a good case for itself, even with rivals like the Honda Civic and Mazda 3.

The Sentra had a complete redesign just three years ago, so it’s unlikely that Nissan will make any major adjustments to its formula for 2023. That’s not to say we don’t want to see some changes. For starters, the Center could use a little more power.

Even if it comes at the small cost of some fuel economy, Sentra is downright slow when compared to its competitors. And, moving inside, we’re eager to see Nissan’s latest infotainment system integrated into the Sentra dashboard.

These two changes alone are likely to see the Sentra move up a few spots in our small sedan rankings.

For those of you who are too lazy to click on the link, the ranking is currently dominated by the Honda Civic, followed by the Kia Forte and Hyundai Elantra behind.

Honda is once again running a packaging, engineering, and efficiency master class with the current Civic, while offerings from Kia and Hyundai boast great value with big warranties and plenty of standard features.

2023 Nissan Sentra Review

The Nissan Sentra 2023 remains a competent and comfortable 5-passenger compact sedan that saves your budget and is good at the fuel pump. The 2023 Sentra should see very few cosmetic changes or adjustments to the available options, as the current model only applies to the 2020 model year.

2023 Nissan Sentra

Since this generation of Nissan’s compact sedan was introduced, more safety features and technology have been installed as standards for each trim level.

The infotainment system is compatible with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, an optional Wi-Fi hotspot and each Sentra is equipped with a forward collision warning system that has automatic emergency braking.

Nissan Sentra 2023 also has blind-spot monitoring, a rear automatic emergency brake, and standard automatic high-beam headlights.

It’s worth noting that many of these safety items — especially reverse automatic braking and blind-spot monitors — cost extra for a car that costs thousands more than the Sentra. So in terms of safety and value, the Nissan Sentra scores highly.

Where this 2023 Sentra small sedan stumbles is in how it drives compared to its competitors. While Sentra’s 149-horsepower 4-cylinder engine and continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) deliver strong fuel economy, the powertrain is far from the most powerful or fuel-intensive on the compact sedan market.

For example, the Honda Civic and Mazda3 are more fun to drive, while the Toyota Corolla offers great mileage (especially on the hybrid trim).

If there’s any downside to the Nissan Sentra 2023, it’s here: There’s no particularly sporty model (like the SE-R) or hybrid variant that can exhaust 53 miles of a gallon of gasoline (like a can of Corolla Hybrid).

At least the cabin has a classy look and feels, considering the attractive prices of Sentra. And the trunk, at 14.3 cubic feet, holds plenty of gear.

Nissan Sentra SR 2023 Refresh

Nissan is rumored to be giving Sentra a refresh. The compact sedan underwent a complete redesign in 2020, so while we can’t be sure that a refresh is in the books, we imagine that it wouldn’t be too drastic if it were.

No spy shots are available to confirm the design changes to the next Sentra, but refreshes usually come with minor updates to the grille, fascia, and head and taillights. On the interior, a refresh may be a slightly larger display screen and other options for upholstery.

The Sentra 2023 currently has only one powertrain option, a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine paired to a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) that produces 149 horsepower and 146 lb-ft of torque.

The top EPA rating is 29 mpg city, 39 mpg highway, and 33 mpg combined. It’s speculated that the refresh could introduce a new independent rear suspension.

If so, it can improve ride, handling, and fuel economy. It may also be a performance version of the Sentra that comes with a 1.6-liter turbo four-cylinder engine.

The current MSRP for the Sentra starts at $20,835, and it’s doubtful that that will change much for the 2023 model, except perhaps for the performance version, if one is produced. Since this refresh is speculative only, we don’t have a release date, but the next Sentra will likely be out in late 2022.

The sedan is a shrinking class, but possible competitors for Sentra include the Chevrolet Malibu, Hyundai Elantra, Hyundai Accent, Honda Civic, and Kia Forte.

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2023 Nissan Sentra Nismo

Nissan has acknowledged that it could expand the Nismo lineup in the United States.

Currently, the only Nismo model sold in the US is the flagship variant of the Nissan GT-R. For six years, the 370Z Nismo was also sold locally.

The only other Nismo models sold in America are the Sentra and Juke, but during a recent interview with Auto News, Nissan’s global chief executive Takao Katagiri revealed that the brand is in discussions about how it can introduce more Nismo models locally.

Nissan has long wanted to expand its Nismo presence and boost sales worldwide. Katagiri stated in 2017 that the Japanese automaker would double the number of models offered with the Nismo variant and he wanted to increase global Nismo shipments from 15,000 units in 2016 to 100,000 units in the early 2020s. So far, Nissan hasn’t hit that target and, as Auto News notes, isn’t even releasing sales figures for its Nismo brand.

Katagiri did not suggest which Nissan models sold in the US could get the Nismo variant.

2023 Nissan Center Nismo

Nismo for realz for $27K? No chance. At least not in the sense you’d expect – the badges are there, and boy-racer trim pieces, but a front-drive car with a continuously variable transmission (CVT) is never going to be a recipe for track-day fun.

Nissan should have known better than to melt the Nismo’s niche stamp even with building this thing.

The good news is that there are sticks available, and the Nismo suspension tuning makes this little scooter quite agile.

I had a blast driving our manual-trans Sentra Turbo SR a few months ago, and there’s no reason to think that, with comparable gear, the Nismo wouldn’t be more entertaining.

Plus, when you need something for your daily work, the Sentra is a roomy base to start with, with ample luggage space.

Take it for what it is — an economy car with a sporty trim package rather than a budget GT-R — and the Sentra NISMO offers above-average smiles at an affordable price.

Do yourself a favor: if you want an automatic transmission, look elsewhere.

2023 Nissan Centra SR

The 2022 Nissan Sentra is a stylish entry in the compact car segment, but it lacks the driving spirit. Anyone looking for fun behind the wheel should look elsewhere.

Anyone looking for a standard set of active safety features and comfortable passenger accommodation all in an affordable sedan that doesn’t look like it belongs to a charter fleet should take a closer look at the Sentra.

2023 Nissan Sentra

But unlike many competitors who offer turbocharged engines or hybrid powertrains, Nissan only comes with underpowered four-cylinder engines. There is also no manual transmission option or an all-wheel-drive system is available.

There are SR models with sportier suspensions and 18-inch wheels, but they do more damage to ride quality than enhance the driving experience. However, Sentra 2022 is attractive and well-equipped—a quality that many buyers love.

For 2022, the Sentra lineup adds several new option packages. The SV trim can now be equipped with the All-Weather package which adds a heating element to the steering wheel, front seats, and mirrors.

The SR trim can now be paired with the Midnight Edition package, which adds a bit of black exterior and unique interior promise.

Each Sentra is powered by a 149-hp 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine paired to a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) and front-wheel drive.

While the gearless automatic simulates a traditional gear shift, that doesn’t change the fact that the Sentra we tested was noisy and slow, especially when trying to pass at highway speeds.

Not much entertainment behind the wheel. Steering effort is weighty and predictable, but not at all as communicative as on rivals like the Honda Civic and Mazda 3.

The Nissan has independent rear suspension and wheel sizes that range from 16 to 18 inches. The version we rode glided in the largest set, which contributes to solid ride quality and excessive road noise.

However, Sentra is comfortable and suitable for day trips and weekend trips. We are very impressed with the braking system. It provides a convincing pedal feel and solid stopping power from 70 mph, stopping at a competitive 170 feet in its class.

The Sentra is expected to deliver up to 29 mpg in the city and 39 mpg on the highway. Those numbers drop to 28 mpg city and 37 roads on the sporty SR trim.

Still, the Nissan is as efficient as some of its competitors also powered by a 2.0-liter four-cylinder and a CVT, but the Toyota Corolla tops the list with 31 mpg city and 40 roads.

The Sentra SR we ran on the 75 mph highway fuel-efficient route—part of our extensive testing regimen—matched its government highway rating at 37 mpg.

However, the Corolla XSE sedan we tested delivered 41 mpg. For more information on Sentra’s fuel economy, visit the EPA website.

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2023 Nissan Sentra Interior

Inside, the Sentra has one of the prettier designs in the segment. Drivers face a simple set of analog gauges flanking the 7.0-inch screen on all but the base model. The center of the dashboard houses a trio of circular air vents on top of the rugged climate control.

The interior material is a mix of soft and hard plastic, but it’s the former that covers the surface that counts and helps cover the rest.

The model equipped with upholstered leather looks very luxurious, although it doesn’t match the sporty steering wheel with a flat bottom.

Nissan also pampers passengers in the front with extra comfortable Zero Gravity seats, which are roomy, flexible, and supportive. Opting for an available sunroof cuts into the headroom of the cabin but otherwise, adults have ample room at the front and back.

We also managed to fit seven carry-on luggage into the 14-cubic-foot Sentra luggage; it’s another one from the Corolla sedan.

The touchscreen appears from the center of each Sentra dashboard and is equipped with physical volume and adjustment buttons.

While the base model has a 7.0-inch display with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, the rest have 8.0-inch units as well as USB access in the front and rear seats.

The latter system is also compatible with better options such as SiriusXM satellite radio, eight-speaker Bose stereo, and a Wi-Fi hotspot.

2023 Nissan Sentra Features

Nissan packs its compact sedan with a standard payload of driver assistance technology. Buyers can also get adaptive cruise control and a 360-degree camera system on all models except the base model.

2023 Nissan Sentra

For more information on Sentra’s crash test results, visit the websites of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS). Key security features include:

  • Standard forward-collision warning and automatic emergency braking
  • Standard blind-spot monitoring and rear traffic warning
  • Standard rear automatic emergency braking

Nissan offers a competitive, albeit mediocre, limited warranty and powertrain. However, compact rivals from Kia and Hyundai have much better coverage. Likewise, both Toyota and Volkswagen come with free maintenance.

  • The limited warranty covers three years or 36,000 miles
  • The powertrain warranty covers five years or 60,000 miles
  • No free scheduled maintenance

Is Nissan Centra SR a Good Car

Is Nissan Sentra a Good Car? Yes, the Nissan Sentra is a fine compact car. It has adequate power, decent handling, and good mileage. The well-built cabin looks great, and the two rows of seats are spacious and comfortable.

2023 Nissan Sentra Price

Nissan Sentra 2023, Price We expect the Nissan Sentra 2023 in standard trim to have a starting price of around $20,000, plus destination costs.

It’s a bit cheaper than major rivals, such as the Honda Civic and Mazda3, so budget-conscious sedan buyers take note.

On the other hand, the Subaru Impreza is slightly cheaper than the Sentra and comes with the added advantage of having a standard all-wheel drive (AWD).

Since there’s only one powertrain option and no high-performance halo model (like the Honda Civic Type R or Hyundai Elantra N), the price difference from the base Sentra to the range-topping trim isn’t that great.

In SR trim and loaded with every amenity available, the 2023 Sentra rings for around $26,000. This includes cosmetic embellishments such as larger alloy wheels and 2-tone exterior paint.

Remember to check KBB.com’s Fair Purchase Price to see what other car buyers in your area are paying for their new Nissan Sentra.

Nissan Sentra 2023 Release Date

The current MSRP for the Sentra starts at $20,835, and it is doubtful that that will change much for the 2023 model, except perhaps for the performance version, if one is produced.

Since this refresh is speculative only, we don’t have a release date, but the next Sentra will likely be out in late 2022.