2019 Nissan Altima Has Its Work Cut Out Against The Honda Accord And Toyota Camry

If you need further proof that American automakers were beaten at the sedan segment long ago, all you need to do is look at the front runners.

Toyota has long dominated the market for midsize sedans, with the Camry consistently ranking as the best-selling passenger car in America. In recent years, however, the Honda Accord has given the Camry a good run for its money. The fight continues with all-new models, as both sedans have been redesigned for 2018.

These two are well ahead of the pack, but this year marks the arrival of a new contender: the all-new 2019 Nissan Altima. Replacing a rather lackluster predecessor, the sixth-generation Altima brings an attractive design inside and out, interesting optional extras such as the innovative VC Turbo engine and all-wheel-drive (a first for the nameplate) plus a comprehensive suite of safety systems.

Also read: 2018 Honda Accord Vs 2018 Toyota Camry: Let The Battle Begin

So how does the 2019 Altima compare to the Camry and Accord? Cars.com put all three cars side by side to find out. Requirements included a price range of $28,000 to $32,000, a volume-selling engine choice, and an automatic transmission.

As a result, the contestants included mid-range trim levels of each model: the 2018 Accord 1.5T EX-L, 2019 Altima 2.5 SV, and 2018 Camry XLE. Each car was awarded points by each of the three judges in 12 different categories. Those included front seats, rear seats, interior quality, in-cabin storage, visibility, multimedia features, powertrain, ride quality, handling, braking, noise, and value.

We won’t spoil the outcome for you, but we will tell you that this was one of the closest races in the publication’s history. Even better, the final ranking took us by surprise – and we’re sure many of you will feel the same.

  • HaltestelleLuitpolthafen

    Never in a million years would I choose an Altima over the Accord.

    All previous Altimas have been rental fodder and other than space, did nothing better than the Camry or Accord. There’s a reason why with the previous generation, over 1/3 were sold to fleet.

    • charlotteharry57

      And the other 2/3 were deep-discounted and sold to the gangs in the ‘hood. Most crimes, at least here, involving a moving vehicle (kidnappings, crooks on the run, etc), involve an Altima.

    • TJ Houston

      I would. The accord doesn’t look good with that fast back coupe design these midsized sedans keep going for.

  • charlotteharry57

    The biggest thing the new Altima has going for it, other than the stupid floating roof, is its looks. The Camry isn’t bad looking, but the Altima is prettier. The Accord is vomit-inducing.

  • LJ

    It’s all about perceived reliability. Both the Accord and Camry are butt ugly, yet they sell like hotcakes because your average driver values getting from point A to point B without problems over looks, power or handling.

    Car manufacturers can put out the world’s most stylish midsize car (see the Mazda 6) and if it doesn’t have that square “H” or round “T”, it won’t matter.

    • Arthur

      This is the sad truth and mainly why today’s cars look like another appliance you would buy for the home and are powered by a glorified vacuum cleaner with no thought given to igniting any of our senses. I love what Mazda is doing and what they stand for, bringing a bit of fun to driving but I fear it may not last long if their sales don’t justify the lengths to which they are going to differentiate themselves in the marketplace and will resort to being another Toyota or Honda with regards to driving and engine characteristics.

      • Bananarama

        The new Camry and Accord are far from “appliance” looking. If anything, they make the 6 look boring.
        Mid-size sedans have been relatively boring and bland for years, but as soon as the larger companies start trying some interesting stuff, the narrative somehow remains the same.

        Everything is relative today, but you cannot tell me if Toyota zapped the current Camry back to 2003 that it wouldn’t be lauded as aggressive and luxurious. Accord and Altima the same.

        I’d take a 6 over them all but the Accord any day because it drives better and is a more tasteful design, but I think we’re far past the days of Toy-onda sleeping on their laurels and churning out bland crap.

    • Mike P

      Perceived reliability?

      Mazda, on average, continues to make vehicles that don’t match the reliability of Toyota or Honda. That isn’t perceived, or imagined – it’s fact based on statistics.

      Unless you’re a mechanic, or don’t care about long-term reliability, many are going to choose the safe bet.

  • ctk4949

    Mazda6 >>>>>> The rest

    • Bo Hanan

      But only with the 2.5L Turbo engine.

      • ctk4949

        Of course!! lol 😉

  • Ganfu

    I’m currently shopping for a mid-size car to replace 2 vehicles – 2014 Chrysler 300C AWD 5.7 and 2014 Ford Escape Titanium AWD. We live in Canada, it snows a lot, we take the kids snowboarding, but we don’t need two cars. Having tried pretty much everything in the segment, we’re down to the Accord 2.0 sport, a Mazda 6 GT, and a Mazda CX-5 GT… I’d consider waiting to try the new Altima (none available in our market yet), but this review tells me what I already know – the Honda’s just better inside for quality and quietness than anything else out there in its price range.

    • Mind Synthetic

      how about a v60 or if money allows a v90?

      edit: if you have access to a mazda 6 wagon, may be the more affordable choice as it does come with awd.

      • Ganfu

        Sadly, no Mazda 6 wagons in the Canadian Market. v60 starts in the mid-40’s, and I’m working with about $35-37k as a budget (Canada bucks) – if it was in budget, the decision would be made. Golf Sportwagen was an option, but it’s a bit small inside for the price.

        • Mind Synthetic

          i see your predicament, perhaps explore a used land rover or multitude of other suvs, i dont think there are any used v90s on the market that are down to your price margin just yet. maybe save the cash for now and make do with what you have for now, something better will be out soon enough.

          • Mike P

            He’s likely leasing the cars he currently owns – they are both 2014s?
            Sounds like he’s ready for a longer term ride.

            Land Rover? Considering the category he’s shopping in, I really don’t think Land Rover even comes into the conversation.
            Not exactly an inexpensive vehicle to keep running.

    • Big Black Duck

      give Subaru Outback a shot while you are at it…a wagon with suv accessability

      • Ganfu

        Ooh, fantastic idea! Subaru had completely slipped my mind. Any idea how Subarus are for long-term reliability? I want this car to last 5-10 years before handing it down.

        • Ary Wisesa

          Subaru offers good quality. It’s on par with Honda or Toyota. And you have excellent AWD as the bonus from Subaru.

          • Ganfu

            Heading out to drive the Outback and Forester right now! Thanks for the advice, folks! 🙂

          • Mike P

            Subaru quality is absolutely not that of either Toyota or Honda. Completely false.

      • Belthronding

        here we go

    • Thetruthísntalwayspopular

      Buick Regal Tourer drives better than them all.

      • Ganfu

        No Regal Tourer in Canada, and the sportback starts at 44k, out of my budget.

    • Bash

      Are you looking for AWD or not, maybe you can have a look on the New Avalon, it starts at 34K and the top version is in the low forties, so at 36-37K I’m sure you could find a very satisfactory equipped Avalon.

      • Ganfu

        Avalon starts in the mid-40’s in Canada, so we’re at 50k for a decent one. Also, Toyotas don’t fit me at all – they have large intrusions from the B-pillars for the seatbelts, and I have very broad shoulders.

        • Bash

          I hope you find what suits you the best then, I thought I could help. Cheers

        • Mike P

          Go for the Accord 2.0t, if you think it’s enough room for your family and you don’t need awd. I’m sure with snow tires and the traction control system, you would be fine.

          Although, both of your current vehicles are considerably larger than any of these offerings in this article.

          The Mazda CX-5 awd isn’t a bad choice and potentially better for your snow road trips?

          The Crv awd or Forester may be boring for you, I’m not sure.
          I personally like the 3.6r Outback because it’s somewhat unique looking, yet it’s Subaru and on average, their reliability is not that of Honda or Toyota.
          Lots of good choices, good luck.

  • Craig

    The Accord is the car version of ‘butherface’. [Is that the word? lol] But in spite of that – it’s the one I’d take. Well… not the 1.5 liter version but the 2.0. It’s a great looking car – EXCEPT for that one thing. Change that Honda.

    • BGM

      *Butterface*.

      • Craig

        lol thanks. It means ‘but her face’. Right?

  • Very bias. They purposely didn’t take the SL Altima and even the SR that is much loser in price to the Accord EX-L than the SV…
    I wonder how much Honda paid them..

  • Simon Simmons

    By far the Camry is the ugliest, weird curves, ugly face, silly fake plastic vent thingy on the rear bumper. The instrument panel is silly and not user friendly at all, way too much clear plastic and that will be all scratch in no time, cheap little buttons here and there. Close the doors and you hear a clang and not a solid thump of quality. Road noise is high, the transmission is a mess. I like both the Accord and the Altima way better.

  • Paul

    It is a worthy improvement but still the others do well on name alone.

  • Ary Wisesa

    I’d go for Camry or Accord. I don’t really care about “high-performance”, because I prefer overall comfort (including after-sales service quality). As the owner of both brands, owning Honda and Toyota gives me peace of mind: the cars itself are decently comfortable, with sufficient power (I currently choose 3.5L V6) and highly reliable (mine never break downs), and their customer services, especially Toyota, are excellent.

  • HaltestelleLuitpolthafen

    I’m not kidding anything, I hate the Camry too, but at least 1/3 of them don’t go to fleet.

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