The Nissan Sentra is a mid-size sedan with a front-located engine and front-wheel drive. Over the years, the Sentra has changed in size, first from a sub-compact to a compact car, and finally to its current classification as a mid-size sedan beginning with the 2007 model year. The four-cylinder engine makes the Nissan Sentra very fuel-efficient. Combined with a comfortable seating capacity, this makes the Sentra a popular choice for couples or small families.
Depending on trim level, the Nissan Sentra's engine delivers anywhere from 140 to 200 horsepower. This limits the Sentra's towing capacity to 1,000 pounds maximum. However, the engine size also gives the model greater fuel efficiency. The 2011 Nissan Sentra gets up to 27 MPG in the city and 34 MPG on the highway, depending on engine and transmission types. Sentras have been built in many locations through the years, including Smyrna, Tennessee; Cuernavaca, Morelos, México; Oppama, Japan; Santa Rosa, Laguna, Philippines and Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Since the 2000 model year, the vehicle has been exclusively produced in Aguascalientes, Mexico.
The first Nissan Sentra debuted as a sub-compact car in the 1982 model year and served as Nissan's entry-level model until the debut of the Versa in 2007. The first generation Sentras, produced through 1986, were available in two- and four-door sedan, three-door hatchback and coupe, and five-door station wagon models. Model options were dropped throughout the years until the Sentra was only available as a four-door sedan, which began in 1995.
The 2011 Nissan Sentra is available in six different trim options: 2.0 or base, 2.0 S, 2.0 SR, 2.0 SL, SE-R, and SE-R Spec V. All trims include power windows and locks, six airbags, and AM/FM/CD audio system. The 2.0 S also includes remote keyless entry, iPod interface, and cruise control. Upgrading to the 2.0 SR adds sporty features such as sport grille, 16 aluminum alloy wheels, and smoked headlight surround and taillights. The 2.0 SL includes technological features such as Bluetooth interface, XM satellite radio, and keyless ignition. The SE-R and SE-R Spec V are popular trim options for performance-minded drivers and include engines that are more powerful, sport bucket seats, and manual transmission on the Spec V.
Intellichoice.com named the 2011 Nissan Sentra "Best Overall Value" in its class, meaning that the model has the lowest ownership and operating costs in the first five years after its manufacture. The vehicle also won the ALG "Residual Value Award;" indicating that consumers will get the highest possible resale value for their Sentras when they choose to trade them in for a newer model year. The Sentra is also an excellent performer in safety, with four out of five stars in overall crash test ratings.
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