Road test – 2019 Nissan Altima Platinum AWD

When it comes to pricing, the base S starts at $27,998, followed by the mid-trim SV ($31,498), and the range topping Platinum ($34,998) as tested here.

All models are powered by a 2.5-litre, direct injection twin-cam inline four-cylinder, producing 182 hp and 178 lb/ft of torque mated to Nissan’s proven Xtronic CVT transmission.

Among the long list of standard equipment are: Intelligent Driver Alertness; rear door open alert; remote engine start; heated front seat; NissanConnect with eight-inch touchscreen; Apple CarPlay and Android Auto; Bluetooth and four USB ports (two in front, two in back).

ProPilot Assist is found on the SV trim and above, which aims to help drivers stay alert and centered in the lane and navigate stop-and-go traffic, maintain a set vehicle speed and hold a set distance from the vehicle ahead.

The system uses a forward-facing camera, forward-facing radar, sensors and an electronic control module to help the driver stay centred in the driving lane and to maintain vehicle speed as set by the driver.

Thus, it helps keep a gap to the preceding vehicle if the vehicle speed drops below the driver-set speed. It also can slow the vehicle to a complete stop and hold the vehicle during adverse traffic jam conditions.

The AWD system varies grip from 100 per cent to the front wheels for best fuel economy, to 50:50 front-to-rear for best launch traction and 30:70 front-to-rear for best cornering grip.

For improved ride and handling, the Integrated Dynamics Module (IDM) technology borrowed from the Maxima, Nissan’s flagship sedan, empowers the Altima with Intelligent Ride Control, Intelligent Trace Control and Vehicle Dynamics Control.

For the new, sixth generation Altima, the styling is more edgy and is longer, lower and wider with a drag coefficient of just 0.26.

The most noticeable exterior change is the Nissan signature V-Motion grille, which pushes the V-bars to the outside of the grille face, which in turn, imparts a much larger and Euro-like look.

Altima is considered a mid-size sedan and, to tell you the truth, it approaches full-size in the flesh.

Inside, the signature “gliding wing” instrument panel has a pronounced near luxury look and feel with horizontal lines to give the cabin a wider feel.

The drive from Montreal to Trois Rivieres and back was without incident, after clearing the shemozzle of highway construction across the top of Montreal.

During the press drive a year ago in Santa Barbara, CA, I noticed the CVT transmission sometimes struggled to keep up to engine speed, but this was not an issue on the flat Highway 40 in Quebec.

In fact, when it came to passing, the CVT kicked down seamlessly for a surge of power.

For a short period, I clicked the blue ProPilot button on the steering wheel and let the Altima steer itself, again without incident or drama.

The main LCD instrument panel was big and informative and the steering wheel mounted controls for phones and cruise control/ProPilot were intuitive to the point I could sense where they were and use them without looking down after a few hours of driving.

But what stood out the most was the generous rear legroom, which seems full-size no matter what Nissan says.

If you’ve been thinking the sedan is dead, a drive in the 2019 Nissan Altima just might change your mind.