The Nismo variant builds on the SR Turbo with handling upgrades but no additional power

Nissan’s quest to make its Sentra sportier wasn’t finished with the introduction of the SR Turbo trim level. At this year’s Los Angeles Auto Show, the compact sedan gets even more aggressive thanks to the addition of the new Sentra Nismo variant. It’s the fourth Nismo model in Canada, joining the Juke, 370Z, and GT-R.

Despite the Nismo suffix, though, upgrades for this Sentra only slightly improve upon the SR Turbo variant we already drove earlier this year. As in that model, motivation comes from a 1.6-litre turbocharged inline-four, with 188 horsepower and 177 pound-feet of torque; buyers can pick between a six-speed manual and a continuously variable transmission. Nor are there any braking upgrades, with the SR Turbo and Nismo both using 11.7-inch front disc brakes as compared to 11.0-inch ones on other Sentra trim levels.

Instead, the big parts of what make the 2017 Nissan Sentra Nismo a Nismo revolve around handling tweaks. The car’s ride height has been lowered by 0.4 inch and its dampers have all been retuned to provide stiffer handling than the SR Turbo. The stock 215/45R18 Michelin Pilot Sport tires ride on the first 18-inch wheels ever offered on a Sentra from the factory, while Bridgestone Potenza RE-71R summer tires are available as a dealer option.

The upgraded body kit also plays a role in handling, as the larger new rear spoiler and rear fascia help reduce lift by 30 percent. The electric power steering has also been revised for heavier, sportier feeling than even on the SR Turbo, and there’s extra chassis bracing in the cowl and parcel shelf to keep the Sentra stiffer.

"For 2017, we're bringing new excitement to Sentra with the Sentra NISMO, which brings driving enthusiasts aftermarket tuner-style performance straight from the factory," said Bert Books, senior manager, Product Planning, Nissan Canada Inc.

Although there isn't any official pricing for the Sentra Nismo in Canada, we speculate prices will be around the $26,000 mark, or only a little pricier than the existing Sentra SR Turbo. Check back soon for our first drive of the Sentra Nismo.

Source: Nissan


Be part of something big