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Nissan Altima Hybrid: Another Way to Vote Green

The Altima Hybrid has two advantages: it drives better than the Camry, and it comes with a $2,350 federal tax credit that may make it a better value than the Honda or the Toyota.

Published: 27-May-2007

LATE to the business of gasoline-electric hybrids and lacking its own technology to match Toyota and Honda, Nissan is following an interesting catch-up strategy. The company licensed Toyota’s industry-leading Hybrid Synergy Drive and grafted it whole to an Altima.

The resulting Altima Hybrid is powered by a somewhat less powerful version of the standard Nissan 2.5-liter 4-cylinder engine, and like the Camry Hybrid uses braking regeneration to charge nickel-metal-hydride batteries that run a 40-horsepower supplementary electric motor.

The gas mileage of the Altima Hybrid is comparable to the Camry Hybrid — 35 m.p.g. in the city and 33 on the highway vs. 33/34 for the Toyota — but it is less powerful than the Accord, which uses a V-6.

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