Last post on Mar 09, 2013 at 12:02 PM
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Nissan Sentra, Sedan
#40 of 2065 re: Tires, G20 vs. Sentra, General Performance and Handling
Aug 08, 2000 (11:11 pm)
Also look at the Bridgestone RE730 tires. They're the next generation replacement for the RE71 tires, and I've driven them both.
The RE71 is fun, grippy, and cheap but good low-profile tires, but the RE730 ups the RE71 in three respects - 1. better wet grip, 2. stellar treadwear of 300., 3. quieter than the RE71 -- all w/o losing the grip or performance of the RE71 tires.
I'm very happy with my 205R50/15's on my older 93' Sentra.
tirerack has user ratings for the RE71 and the Yoko's and they're similar in performance and so forth.
2. The rest of the G20 body is boring, but at least it has an attractive toosh. Can't say much for the new Sentra design, which obviously doesn't strike any love accord with me from any angle.
3. Test drove a third SE w/perf. package and I can say that along with the other two reviews I posted earlier, the 2K Sentra SE just isn't 'tight' enough to be worth it for me to upgrade from my '93.
I think I've narrowed some of the mushiness down to a few things.
a. soft suspension. Yep, even with the perf. pack., it's just feels soft and mushy around corners. vague steering and feedback contributes (maybe the non-low profile tires, too).
b. Higher seating than the '93. As a result, w/o lengthening the wheelbase significanlty over the '93' model, you get sort of a floaty feel that emphasizes the bounciness of the suspension more. side to side squishiness is felt more as well.
c. It's just not a SE-R! Maybe they'll have a 180HP later next year with improved suspension, but their latest tack to go cheap and sell to the basic means they've taken some steps that reduce the 'fun' of the SE model.
In any case, it doens't feel as good whipping the SE around traffic or corners as does my '93 on 205R50/15's. Something unsure about the feedback, and I'm not wanting to do 360's by accident on the new SEs.
As for acceleration, I could fall asleep. The tiny engine really doesn't do justice in this heavier body, and 8.0+ sec. 0-60 times (as tested by the major mags.) really isn't anything to run home about. A V-6 Camry or Accord will easily follow you to the next light w/o huffing much, maybe even beating you (a family car even!) =
Baby needs a suspension upgrade and NOS/turbo!
However, I would strongly suggest all buyers get the SE model for the bigger engine and not the wimpy base engine -- you'll need every bit of HP you can get and the wimpy engine will make you want to craw under rocks when merging onto freeways. Don't be dumb and try to save some extra $$ on this point - it isn't worth it at all.
Anyways, along with the other notable mistakes I've noted before, that's it for the SE model. Out of the competition and I'll be looking for something faster and more stable at high speeds in my next vroom.vroom. (At least a Toyota Celica or something with a bigger engine...)
Lacking points noted earlier:
1. Cupholders still can't hold a double big gulp, and the silly removable insert to switch between big and small cups is silly vs. the all-in-one design of the past two generations of Sentras. Cost cutting here. Just where are you gonna put the insert you've removed for the bigger cups? iN your lap? in the silly popup box in the dash that's too tiny? At least they put some rubber pad in the empty compartment slot under the radio & AC to prevent things from sliding out -- but that's another dumb-fix, too - how about angling the entire slot downwards a bit so that things never slide out even without a pad?
2. cheap plastic feel to the knobs, esp. air and radio. like they'll break or something. not as smooth as in prior years.
3. Don't see the dual antennas of the 93' body year for the radio. back to one antenna and poorer reception. cheaper and cheaper...
4. No trunk light. Eh? how can they -take out- a feature found in my 93' sentra?!? that's two features they've removed!
5. Stupid migration of the trunk release to the front dash. you spend a few minutes looking down there for it, then realize they've moved it. then spend a couple more sessions later trying to find the trunk release over and over again until you pick it up. Stick the release down there Nissan ! where we 'expect' it to be next to the gas tank. No reason they should have moved this latch at all.
6. Stage II perf. pckag. that isn't. You will still have to replace the wheels and shocks with better to get away from the floatiness even an import tuner mag said they found with the latest Sentra SE. While upper limit performance may be as good or better, the Corolla has somewhat more feedback in the suspension than the floaty Sentra, IMO.
7. Dumb change to the remote window operation. Now it is a pad on a stick rather than a stick, making it more difficult to adjust. Copy Nissan, copy!! Look at how Honda did their pad. Harder to adjust and use than in models before.
8. Two buttons on the cruise, one for cruise on, another for cruise off. Er? What's wrong with simply one button to toggle it on/off? One button inside another too, so you don't know which controlls which until you memorize.
9. Less useable trunk? Rather than being less tall and wider like the '93', it is not higher, but has a greater tuck in where the tires on both sides are. As a result, I don't believe you can stick in as wide of a board into the trunk as before. Smaller lid means it's tougher to get to items way back there.
10. Tiny sunroof. Maybe Nissan should look at at least the Honda Civic 93-95 sunroof? That at least is better positioned and lets in sunlight the -right- way. Not way back behind your head like the sentra. (Besides, how can we stick our arms out on corners and wave? =-])
11. More of an enclosed feel. Not as panoramic as a Civic, not as airy as the older Sentras, and an overall tighter, closed in feel. maybe good for slower, older drivers, but not good if you need to want some space. rear seat room is tiny and forget anybody taller than 5'8" there or you'll be aching over bumps.
12. vague steering. not like a civic at all, nor my 93'. like you can't tell where the wheels are doing much at all, so that limits high-performance maneuvers. great for slow cruising perhaps, but even then, it's more annoying than good. Maybe this is what happens when a well-designed Japanese car gets redesigned in America? becomes a Buick floater...
13. Not white, white dials. Titanium is their name and it's an annoying light gray. hard to read in glare and bright daylight at times, harder than a basic white on black dial, and you do wonder why they couldn't make it pure, bright white for the highest possible contrast.
14. Uninspiring design. Get's lost quickly. Even the honeycomb grille with waterspots looks very old at the dealer lot. Why can't they put some thought into it and make it look better when dirty, like the Civic? (maybe that's why the civic sells better....) The design looks dated, esp. sitting next to the wierd Maximas on the lots.
15. Outside mirrors don't cover both sides as well as the Civic (eg '95 year) does. The left hand mirror on the 95' civic is esp. good at covering your blind spots, allowing for squeeze traffic here in LA much easier than the Sentra mirrors.
Other than that, a decently good buy for the low $15K price of a new SE and the features you get in a car at this level. Just don't expect to smoke any Civic Si's however, or do high speed turn tricks or you'll find yourself in big trouble... And make sure you can live with the silly design mistakes they've put into this year's design (and I'd also say wait for the brand-new 2001 Civic to arrive later this year to compare before buying anything in this range, too).
Aug 09, 2000 (1:45 am)
Did u cut and paste it from your previous message?
Anyway, if you don't like the car than don't worry about it, because it's NOT going to change other people's opinion for a higher performance car than your 93 sentra(outdated) or the Civic SI.
The Sentra SE has a 2.0 engine, non of the Civics has it. I think making a big deal out of the truck release button is not wise at all. It's just a matter of getting used to it, just like if someone removed the position of your toothbrush, then you have to look all over for it. It is actually easier to reach than the previous position, unless you like to bend over;)
No trunk light? Mine has it.
Aug 09, 2000 (6:13 pm)
I like the idea of the trunk knobs, but let's say you like in a rainy location (FL) and you forget the umbrella in the trunk. I don't like the idea of getting out, getting wet, then getting the umbrella. They should have made a locking seat down as in the Civic that only opens with the master key and not the valet.
Aug 10, 2000 (4:47 am)
For your information. I love the titanium dash lights and as for the floaty feeling you experienced on your one solitary test drive, what do you think a Sentra SE is? A SCCA outfitted racer or a Porsche 911 Turbo....jeeez its an economy car that gives the driver some modicum of fun. If you want a racer....buy a BMW M5 or another performance car. No trunk light? My car also has a trunk light. Lack of trunk space....get an SUV.
I agree with quark99, styling is a matter of choice and I(the car too:) get lots of adoring looks wherever we go. This past weekend I went to a local speed strip on Long Island, NY where both domestic and import draggers come out to play (better known as rice boys). The majority liked the style and were impressed that the car was bone stock with side sills, spoiler and handsome rims. I am still in the break in phase so couldn't impress them more with a 7.9sec 0-60 time...but next week I go over 1000 miles. I'll post how I fared in the stop light to stoplight wars.
But anyway do really think you going to smoke me with any stock civic si....ha! Don't believe honda's hype of 160hp. That is at the fly wheel. I don't have the exact figures at hand but I think the Si makes 133hp - 135hp at the wheels about the same as my Sentra SE.
sentra se = min max and that ain't necssarily a bad thing!
#44 of 2065 I guess that guy ruined 3 new Sentras
Aug 10, 2000 (6:11 am)
If you go to the dealership and "test" brand-new cars by red-lining 'em as soon as you get off the lot......well, hope you buy the dang thing so the next unsuspecting buyer doesn't get saddled with a slightly abused motor....sorta like "sampling" food at the supermarket and then hiding the evidence so someone else pays for the damage.
I'll get off my soapbox and drift back into anonymity now.....
Aug 10, 2000 (12:53 pm)
Whatever it's worth I only buy new cars with
~ 10 - 15 miles on them, just for that reason,
so that someone hasn't taken it home for a
weekend and thrashed it to kingdom come.
I test drove a Saturn SL2 (actually the salesman
test drove it for me) a few years back. He took
the car up to redline 4 - 5 times, applied the
handbrake at speed and performed a few other
stunts with the car. He actually expected me to
but his thrashed piece of junk Saturn after that.
I walked off the lot with nary a word.
Off-hand I've not test driven the new SE or GXE
models, but anything has got to a big improvement
over the 95'- 99' GA16 anemic motor. Nissan
must've retuned the GA16 about 97' cause mine
feels stronger than my wife's 95'. The 95' GXE
engine still does not burn oil, at least noticably, between oil changes but even after a minor tune-up still has ' 0 ' punch to get on the freeway or even pass on the freeway.
As we are, or will be, in the market soon, I may
be able to convince my spouse to consider the SE,
once production and supply increase. In the Houston area SE's, it seems, are in short supply.
Might be a hard sell though 'cause my wife is
ready for the 'large(er) family sedan', i.e Accord, Camry, thing.
Aug 11, 2000 (2:01 am)
Don't go back into neverneverland....your contributions are greatly appreciated. Your advice on the right tire combo for the SE made my friend estatic. He went right out and bought new Sumitomos. Next week we will run our own comparo. Stock vs Upgraded.
Aug 11, 2000 (3:53 am)
I'm planning on buying a 2000 sentre gxe (auto + conv package) within the next two weeks. The best deal I've been offered so far is $14,184 + tax, title,license and documentation. Do you think I could get a better deal? I got this deal through stoneage.com.
#48 of 2065 New tire offer on CA GXE's
Aug 11, 2000 (6:07 am)
When I stopped in to the dealership with my survey yesterday, they had a loaded 2000 Sentra GXE on the showroom floor with some Japanese 16" x 7" chrome alloys and 215-50-ZR16 tires. I think the tires were T/A's.....Anyway, I guess there are no clearance issues on the GXE's. The setup looked great, but there was a $1,995 Dealer Charge for the tire/wheel setup. That's about $600-$700 profit, just on the package. I guess some unsuspecting buyer will go for it, if they're unfamiliar with tire and wheel prices. If I could afford to install 7" wide wheels, I'd add 225-45-ZR16 Yokohama A520's at about $500 a set. Those tires will fit on the stock SE 16" x 6" wheels, but I think you'd lose some sidewall stiffness due to the 3/4" "bulge" of tire hanging outside the wheel. I'm still planning on the 205-50-ZR16 Sumitomo's unless I hear reports about problems from others on this board. Does anybody know if Nissan service will recalibrate the speedo to match different tire sizes? (computer adjustment)
#49 of 2065 Lambosun-Great!
Aug 11, 2000 (6:12 am)
Thanks for your kind comments.
I'll be waiting for the report on the Sumitomo's!
Step-by-step, gotta improve the "jouncy" handling and increase driver confidence during high-speed cornering...we'll get it done, slowly and surely.