Test drove the 2009 Nissan Sentra yesterday (12/28/08). I'll start by saying that for my own car, I've been driving Honda Accords for 20 years (3 over that time) - and have loved each one of them! Why my change of heart? The newer Accords have become too large -- and the lines are, well, unattractive. That said . . . I drove Sentra SL. In a word: NICE! Leather seats, seat heaters, keyless entry & ignition (proximity sensor in the fab), tire pressure monitoring, moonroof, alloy wheels, aux input. There's more, but those were the most impressive items (standard for that trim level). Drove surface streets and freeway. Cabin is QUIET! Smooth. Responsive enough. Two things that kept me from plunking down my money right on the spot (besides a very pushy, aggressive sales manager)? 1) My husband and I are 5'11" and while the in/out of the front doors was good, it's when we got in/out of the back seats -- for an idea of what our passengers would experience: we both bumped our heads. A significant amount of ducking is needed to get in/out. However, in it's defense I will also say that the back door width is significant for a smaller car and opens *wide*. And, once inside there was sufficient clearance to sit upright. Also, rear seats were comfortable - though could have used a smidge more leg room. 2) When I jumped on the freeway and gave it some go - it went. But, while it did feel responsive and did keep up with the other cars -- the sound of the CVT was a bit disconserting. I wound up, but didn't seem to level off. I admit - I did not do *all* of my homework before the test drive. But I have now. Some really good, candid comments available at http://usnews.rankingsandreviews.com/cars-trucks/2009-Nissan-Sentra/ Will I buy this car? I'm still on the fence. But it sure is still on the list! (I did not mark 'reliability' as I only test drove the car).
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