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2013 Nissan Altima 2.5 SL Long-Term Update 7

The Multitasking Camera

Zach Gale
Feb 26, 2014
Photographers: Motor Trend Staff
The tiny camera on the back of the 2013 Nissan Altima wears an impressive number of hats, and nearly pulls off its multi-tasking feat. I say "nearly" because the Altima's rearview image quality leaves a little to be desired.
Whenever I jump back into my own 2005 model-year vehicle, I remember just how reliant I've become on rearview cameras in vehicles like the 2013 Altima, a car with a high rear deck. So I'm incredibly grateful the Altima has the camera, but its image quality isn't especially good, and neither of its two views maximizes the screen's 7-inch size. Some midsize competitors feature rearview camera views that are not only displayed on a bigger screen, but appear to be of higher resolution as well. Then there's the rearview camera on higher-end Accord sedans, which has an overhead view to help you determine how close you are to a parking berm or curb.
Photo 5/16   |   2013 Nissan Altima Dash Reverse Camera Screen
On the 2014 Altima (ours is a 2013), Nissan makes a rearview camera and 5.0-inch center stack screen available on the S trim as part of a $320 package. It's standard on the SV and its image is presented on a 7-inch screen for Technology package-equipped SLs. That $1090 package also adds a navigation system plus Moving Object Detection, Lane Departure Warning, and Blind Spot Warning—three systems made possible by that same camera. Moving Object Detection is useful in crowded shopping center parking lots. If something is approaching the rear of the car, the Altima will beep and a yellow border appears around the rearview camera image.
The other two safety systems are useful, too, but if they could be replaced by a better-quality or larger rearview image with an overhead view, I'd take that in a second. I've experienced the Nissan/Infiniti Around View Monitor system (multiple cameras provide visibility on every side of the car), and the best-possible improvement would be adding that technology as a more expensive option. Whether Nissan will offer that on a refreshed 2015 model remains to be seen, but you can find it on the subcompact 2014 Versa Note hatchback and 2014 Rogue crossover.
Photo 6/16   |   2013 Nissan Altima Front And Rear End View
Can Uconnect Faster Than Altima Nav's Voice Commands?
We've previously written about how the Altima's navigation system is easy to use, and while that's still true, it's worth mentioning how quick Chrysler's Uconnect allows drivers to voice-command navigation directions. In a recent 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee test car, getting directions was as simple as pressing a steering wheel button and saying, "Navigate to [full address]." After the system processes the information, and possibly asks a question if a choice needs to be made between two or more results, you're set.

Compared to the long-term Altima and a MyFord Touch-equipped Fusion I recently drove, the Uconnect option cuts at least a minute off the time it takes me to get directions, from the moment I press the steering wheel button until the directions have fully loaded on the center stack screen. An 8.4-inch touch screen -- with its decently sized on-screen zoom-in and -out buttons -- is offered on the 2015 Chrysler 200 sedan. The Altima can accomplish the same task, but as with its rearview camera, the navigation system is affordable, but not class-leading.
Photo 7/16   |   2013 Nissan Altima Front Passengers In Motion



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