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Local News / Automotive

Thursday, 26 April, 2012 7:48 PM

2013 Nissan Altima unveiled at SAE Detroit Section meeting

PHOTO BY GLORIA RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

The 2013 Nissan Altima was revealed during the SAE World Congress at Cobo Center in Detroit.

 

by Gloria Rzucidlo
gloria1025@yahoo.com

 

 

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DETROIT -- This year's SAE Detroit Section meeting during the 2012 SAE World Congress was once again held at the Riverview Ballroom at Cobo Center in downtown Detroit. Brian Sangeorzan, Oakland University, 2012 Chair of the SAE Detroit Section Board, began and thanked all the companies whose creativity and innovation influenced the auto industry.

Bob Sump, General Chair, Vice President of Nissan Technical Center North America was the first speaker.

"Nissan Altima is Nissan's best selling vehicle," Sump said. "I am the Chief Assistant Engineer on the Altima. This is the best Nissan ever made. The theme of this year's event is 'get connected.' We need to get connected with various people outside of the organization that need to be a part of it. The Nissan Altima is the first of five new models due in the next 15 months."

John Curl, Nissan's Senior Manager Product Planning, worked on the Altima since 1997. This is the fourth generation Altima and the number two selling U.S. passenger car.

"March 2012 is the best sales month in history," Curl explained. "The mid-size segment has never been more competitive with value and innovation. The Altima has premium style targeted to the professional, confident customer, however our number one priority is family."

The Altima offers the best fuel economy in its class with NASA-inspired "zero gravity" seats. The vehicle integrates next-generation technology with auto headlights, blind spot and lane departure warning system and blue tooth technology. Its starting price is $21,500 and it tops off at $30,000.

Giovanny Arroba, Senior Manager of Nissan Design America, says the Altima has new features such as classic styling and appeal, offers a premium driving experience, chrome window surround and door handles, a sweeping accent line which enhances its dramatic exterior.

"Wraparound headlights capped with large LED taillights, a newly-designed door mirror for aerodynamics and an interior that is NASA designed for continued support, which decreases blood flow and lowers fatigue are some of the other features," Arrobo said.

Carla Bailo, Nissan's Senior Vice President of Research and Development, says the Altima sets new targets to improve fuel efficiency. Our suspension response delivers a confident, stable ride. The suspension utilizes a new shock absorber to reduce vibrations delivering a plush comfortable ride.

"Handling and comfort is our target," Bailo explained. "The 2.5-liter cylinder has been redesigned to save weight and improve efficiency. Altima has the strongest selling V6 models in the segment. Seventy percent of the parts are re-designed on the CVT transmission, with 40 percent friction reduction. The results are expanded gear ratio range."

Engineers looked for every opportunity to reduce weight. Nissan has reduced the weight by 79 pounds and has the lowest weight in the segment.
Nissan made an 18 percent improvement over the 2012 model in mpg at 38 mpg, which means you can save $333 per year in gas.

Susan Brennan, Nissan's Vice President of Manufacturing, says the 2013 Nissan Altima will be built in Smyrna, Tenn.

"We will celebrate start of production next month," Brennan said. "It will be exported to more than 45 countries. The Infiniti JX, will also be built in Smyrna. In the Fall, the Pathfinder, and in late 2012, the Leaf and in 2013 the Rogue Crossover will be built in Smyrna."

There is a 6,800 member on-site team in Smyrna expanding production to three shifts in 2012. The ion battery plant is right next door. "We have a great relationship with our technicians," she added. "Our engineers are moved to the shop floor for improved cross-functional communication."

The next SAE Detroit Section meeting will feature the 2013 Ford Escape. It will take place inside the Ford Conference & Event Center in Dearborn, Mich. on May 22 at 5:30 p.m. Click here for more information or to purchase your tickets online.

Related Story: 'Driving America' is now on display at The Henry Ford in Dearborn

 

PHOTO BY GLORIA RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

The event was hosted by the SAE Detroit Section.

 

PHOTO BY GLORIA RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

Attendees checking out the all-new Nissan Altima.

 

PHOTO BY GLORIA RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

The speakers posed for a group photo on stage.

 

PHOTO BY GLORIA RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

2012 SAE Detroit Section Chairman Brian Sangeorzan

 

PHOTO BY GLORIA RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

Bob Sump is the General Chairman and Vice President of the Nissan Technical Center North America.

 

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