Nissan is considering the possibility of expanding its Sentra lineup with newer engine models as well as a hatchback.
By introducing such options, it is expected that the small car will gain a competitive edge against similar models from other manufacturers.
The brand has opined that the model is being underutilized because it is currently being offered with a single engine variant. It is powered by a 1.8-liter I 4 engine, which offers 130 horsepower and has 128 lb feet of torque. The car uses a six speed automatic transmission as its default option. There are plenty of competitors out there ready to beat the Sentra because it is highly limited when it comes to giving customers more choices to pick from.
While Sentra is compact in size, competitively priced and is an easy choice for many, it lacks turbocharged engines, among other privileges, to entice someone into going for it. Nissan engineers are also busy considering a hatchback model for the same, especially for the U.S. audience where it is most preferred.
However, the spot is exceptionally busy with the Ford Focus and the Mazda 3. Both of them have a huge customer base and continues to dominate the market for many years in a row. Elantra from Hyundai and Kia Forte are trying to push them off the throne, but with little success. Even, Honda tried to launch a hatchback model of the Civic, but later withdrew the idea.
Nissan is not sure about expanding the Sentra with a hatchback. However, they definitely want to offer more engine variants to choose from. In the 2016 edition, the designers have tried their best to make the car appealing to the masses. A couple of changes has been made to the compact car including the much powerful Nissan Connect infotainment system, a six-way driver’s seat and all-new stylish headlights.
They have also added a couple of safety features including active collision warning, automatic emergency braking and forward collision warning systems. These are hardly overkill at a time where electric cars are the norm and people are discussing about the possibility of autonomous vehicles. Nissan has not officially announced it yet, but they have realized that the full potential of the Sentra could be experienced when there is more for buyers to choose from.
Brand new engine variants should be out next year while a hatchback may take longer as it depends on buyer’s need.