Nissan Altima Makes List of Most Comfortable Cars Under $30,000

Whether it’s for cross-country road-trips, commuting across town, or performance driving, your car’s comfort should be a top priority. Not all cars are created equal when it comes to comfortable and supportive seating, especially a practical interior designed with comfort in mind. To help us break down which affordable cars offer premium comfort, AOL Autos has created a list of the most comfortable cars under $30,000.

It’s no surprise to us that the 2014 Nissan Altima makes the cut. The roomy Altima is quiet, spacious, and features high-quality, supportive seats. In addition, an array of features add security, connectivity, and efficiency, making it a front-runner in its class.

2014 Nissan Altima Specifications

Features include Bluetooth streaming audio, passive entry with push button ignition, a rearview camera, Advanced Drive-Assist Display, Xenon headlights, LED taillights, BOSE audio, navigation, and heated leather-wrapped steering wheel. Yep, Nissan even kept your cold hands in mind when designing the Altima.

The Altima isn’t just packed with useful features; it’s also incredibly efficient. Powered by either a 182-hp 2.5-liter four-cylinder or a 270-hp 3.5-liter V6, you can choose the Altima that best fits your lifestyle. Now, your wallet can also stay comfortable.

Next time you get in your car, get cozy, settle in, and enjoy your trip (without your bottom falling asleep). Stop by Nissan of Lake Charles to put the Altima to the test!

Brett Michaels and Nissan Manage to Create Viral Videos for Commercial Vans

We’ll be honest. We thought after “Rock of Love” Brett Michaels was pretty much a done deal. Possibly a has-been? Apparently we were wrong. Brett Michaels and Nissan teamed up to create some videos for Nissan’s commercial vans, and they have gone viral. No really.

The B-to-B ads may actually be Nissan’s response to Jean-Claude Van Damme’s epic split-between-trucks stunt, and it’s working. Nissan hired Michael to star in a series of videos for their new “Tough Love” ad campaign, which promotes Nissan commercial vans with the slogan “The tougher we test them, the more you love them.”

A four-minute tongue-in-cheek music video features Michaels singing “Endless Love” to a commercial van as it endures the rigorous tests set at the Nissan Testing Facility in Stanfield, Arizona. A series of six other videos feature Michaels telling tales of his past that relate to some of the tests Nissan conducts on the commercial van.

Nissan claims that they subject their commercial vans to “6,600 brutal tests” in order to make sure the vans are built to withstand just about everything. The campaign focuses on the van line’s toughness and resilience – traits that Brett Michaels obviously knows something about. Just when we thought we’d seen the last of him… here he is again.

Enjoy the videos here.

When you’re done watching the videos (we know you can’t help it), stop by Nissan of Lake Charles to learn more about Nissan’s tough commercial vans!

Instant Retail Feedback Should Improve Customer Satisfaction at Nissan Dealerships

Nissan has a new goal, and that’s to obtain customer feedback on their retail experiences right away. Ideally, the automaker would like to get feedback as soon as the transaction is over, while the experience is still fresh. Even feedback within hours would be better than the current standard of weeks or even months post-purchase.

Usually, the dealership or a third party data company will send surveys to customers shortly after their shopping, buying, or servicing experience – but the responses are processed and shared with the dealership weeks or even months after the customer has come and gone.

Fred Diaz, Nissan senior vice president for U.S. sales and marketing and operations said to autonews.com, “We’re working to move away from that because we believe that the industry has fallen into this trap of customer satisfaction that is managed by surveys, where OEMs and dealers alike are doing nothing more than chasing the score instead of optimizing the customer experience.”

Nissan is working with dealers to create a system of obtaining feedback while the customers are still at the store, or at worst, within a few days of their transaction in an effort to immediately improve customer satisfaction at Nissan dealerships across the country.

“This allows a Nissan dealer to address the customers’ issues immediately and fix the processes within their store so that it doesn’t happen again,” Diaz said. “The weeks or months that traditional customer satisfaction processes have typically taken — we all know it’s far too late.”

If you’ve recently been in our store and would like to let us know how we can better serve you (or how impressed you were!) please stop by Nissan of Lake Charles today. We’ll make sure you leave our store a happy camper.

Nissan Will Introduce Two New Self-Driving Technologies

Fully autonomous cars are a work-in-process. Google has an autonomous car out and about, being tested on the same roads you and I drive daily. Plenty of other automakers have jumped on the bandwagon, testing their own systems and developing new technologies. Before we can run though, we must crawl, as such, Nissan is proud to introduce two self-driving technologies that will change the way we drive.

Nissan has announced that fully automated parking systems will be available by the end of 2016. Yep, that’s right. That means you can say goodbye to the days of parallel parking and adjusting the position of your car several times before getting it just right.

In addition, Nissan has announces the “traffic-jam pilot”, which will drive your car for you in congested traffic scenarios. By 2018, we can also expect to see a “multiple lane controls” system, which will allow cars to autonomously navigate road hazards and change lanes.

“Before the end of the decade, we will introduce intersection autonomy, enabling vehicles to negotiate city crossroads without driver intervention,” said Carlos Ghosn, president and CEO of Nissan Motor Co., according to an edmunds.com article.

We don’t yet know which vehicles will feature these driving technologies first, but by 2020 we can expect Nissan’s autonomous drive systems commercially available.

Stop by Nissan of Lake Charles to learn more and to test drive a Nissan for yourself!

Could Your Car Color get you Pulled Over?

We know that certain car colors simply stand out more and earn more attention. It wouldn’t be a far cry to assume that a red or yellow car is more likely to get pulled over than a white or black car, purely because they are more likely to grab a cop’s attention as they zoom by.

Usually though, once the cop’s attention is directed at that particular car, they then notice that the car is speeding, has a broken tail light, is swerving, or another legitimate concern for which they then pull over the car. But could your car color get you pulled over?

It might sound crazy, but according to autos.yahoo.com, “In 2010, a deputy in Florida’s Escambia County saw one Kendrick Van Teamer drive by in a bright green Chevrolet. The deputy ran his plates, and found the registration matched a blue Chevrolet. There were no warrants out for Teamer, no reports of stolen vehicles and no pending crimes that involved either a blue or green Chevy. Teamer also wasn’t violating any traffic laws.”

The cop went ahead and pulled the car over, despite the driver not breaking any laws. As it turned out, the car hadn’t only been repainted – it contained small amounts of cocaine, marijuana and $1,100 in cash.

Despite this, the court recently ordered Teamer free on the basis that the deputy was wrong to stop Teamer simply because the color of his car didn’t match its registration. While this ruling was made by the Florida Supreme Court, we shouldn’t be surprised if we see a case like this eventually work its way up to the Supreme Court. States across the country have dealt with similar cases, with rulings falling on both sides.

What do you think? Should law enforcement be able to pull a car over on the basis of its color?

Stop by Nissan of Lake Charles today and let us know what you think!

Are We Entitled to Free Parking?

Let’s face it. Parking is a pain. Just knowing you’ve got to drive into the city center probably induces some sort of anxiety. In many cases you’ve either got to pay ridiculous rates for your parking spot, or spend half your day driving around looking for a free (or close to free) spot – and then you’ll end up having to walk four miles anyway. The parking issue has got some activist groups up in arms, battling for parking that makes sense.

According to an interesting article by TheWeek.com, one group in L.A. has dubbed itself “The Los Angeles Parking Freedom Initiative”, which begs the question – is free parking a right? The U.S. is a driving-centric country, with more than 250 million registered cars, but just like driving is not a right, parking cannot be considered a right either.

It is important that each city has a parking infrastructure that will provide its residents with ample and affordable parking while still supporting the needs of its government. Each city is so different that it doesn’t make much sense to have a blanket policy across the entire country. For example, Detroit spends more money each year issuing parking tickets than it does from collecting on them. It’s actually costing Detroit money to charge for parking.

One study shows that if Manhattan provided free parking, more than 19,200 additional cars would enter the city each day. Other studies have pointed out that limited spots incentivizes people to carpool. Despite different parking dynamics across the country, it’s easy to agree that parking can be a major annoyance, and probably likely one we’ll have to suck up and deal with.

We’d say it’s a small price to pay for the freedom and independence of getting your car and getting where you’re going.

Stop by Nissan of Lake Charles if you’re looking for a car for yourself. We can at least guarantee free parking during your visit.

What do you think? Should parking be free for everyone in your city?

Nissan Expanding Network of Leaf Fast-Charging Stations across US

The Nissan Leaf immediately bolted to the top of the electric vehicle (EV) market upon its release a few years ago, toppling established EV giants like the Prius on its way to the top-selling spot in the United States. And, with 2,347 Leaf sales recorded last month alone, it doesn’t look like Nissan’s EV momentum will be slowing down anytime soon. Nissan remains gleeful with the Leaf’s success, and hopes to see that success continue, as evidenced by the growing number of fast-charging stations across the United States.

You see, the Leaf isn’t only available in California anymore. For example, Toby Perry, Nissan’s director of EV sales and marketing, said that the brand has “seen a big jump in Leaf sales in the Austin, Dallas, and Houston markets” thanks to a Texas state incentive. To accommodate the growing interest in the Leaf nationwide, Nissan has built many more CHAdeMO stations. In fact, there are now 633 stations between the coasts.

As the Leaf continues to sell, Nissan will continue to build more CHAdeMO stations: Brian Brockman, a Nissan spokesman, said the brand plans to “aggressively add fast-charging stations through next March,” as summed up by Autoblog. Over in Europe, Nissan already has over 1,000 Leaf fast-charging stations in operation, and here at Nissan of Lake Charles, we’re hoping the brand hits that milestone here in the States sometime in the next year.

Unusual Car Colors Provide Better Value

We have good news for all you risk-takers who like to stand out in a crowd. It turns out that you could save serious money by opting for a unique, unusual, or crazy car color.

According to a new study by iSeeCars.com, not only can you save money when you purchase the car new, but they also tend to retain their value better, so you can cash in when it’s time for you to sell it. The study analyzed over 20 million used cars of all colors from 1981 to 2010, and the findings were conclusive: unusual colored cars retain their value better over time. For example, yellow cars lost about 26.2 percent of their value over five years, while white cars depreciated 33.7 percent, regardless of car type.

“While a popular car color like black or silver may get more interest and sell faster, our analysis indicates it may not get as high a value as a car, say, in yellow,” Phong Ly, CEO and co-founder of iSeeCars.com said.  “Scarcity may account for the difference — only 1.1% of all cars are yellow and orange; if teal and green are included, the percentage still goes up to just 5%.  The dearth of supply of such colors may drive prices up.”

According to Forbes, consumers can save money on the purchase of a new car if the car is more difficult for the dealership to move, so you might just be able to get yourself a deal on that orange car you’ve had your eye on!

Stop by Nissan of Lake Charles and take a gander at our lot and keep an eye out of unusual car colors, you might just find your dream car!

Could Motorsports Energy Drink Sponsorship Be Coming to an End?

It’s a tale as old as time – motorsports and their sponsors go hand in hand. The ultimate love story – both parties need the other. Frankly, we wouldn’t recognize a race car without its sponsorship logos and emblems – or the driver without his driving suit adorned in the same money-earning patches.

Not too long ago, tobacco companies predominately held these coveted positions on race cars and their drivers, but today that’s illegal in most places. As tobacco companies have retreated to the background, energy drink companies have happily come forward to fill that void. An interesting editorial on Asphalt and Rubber warns teams not to get too used to this funding either, since these popular caffeinated drinks could suffer the same fate as those tobacco companies.

The problem is that energy drinks are already banned to Lithuania’s youth, and are facing bans for consumers under 18 in many other European countries. If a ban actually happens, it would make expensive racing sponsorship far less attractive to energy drink companies since they couldn’t reach nearly the same audience as they once did. Europe isn’t the only issue, either. The American Medical Association is also lobbying to ban energy drinks for minors in the US. It’s an issue that’s worth keeping in mind – as we shift to a more health-conscious society (and world), could motor sports take the brunt of an energy drink ban?

What do you think? Is motorsports energy drink sponsorship on its way out, or is this party just getting started?

Stop by Nissan of Lake Charles and let us know what you think! (And if you’re looking for a sporty car of your own, we’ve got you covered).

Could Your Car Keep You Safe from Lightning?

We’ve all heard it before – the car is actually the safest place you can be in a lightning storm. Something about the rubber tires. But did we really believe your car can keep you safe from lightning? It seems a bit tough to wrap our heads around the idea of a metal box being the safest place to avoid being struck by lightning. Facts are fact though, and folks, we have proof that your car will, in fact, not electrocute you if it is struck by lightning.

Meet Al and Betty Perry, a Canadian couple whose truck was recently struck by lightning (and amazingly, it was captured on film). Ok, so maybe the car didn’t exactly keep them ‘safe,’ as it erupted into a fireball and destroyed the electrical system, so they were locked in, but the couple was not electrocuted.

Luckily, a RCMP officer, Constable Brian Jamont, who was traveling behind the Perrys, was able to break a window and pull the couple out.

Clearly, we do not recommend jumping in your car to protect yourself from lightening, but what an incredible story. We think the Perrys should buy a lottery ticket (or two).

Your car may be the best place to stay safe from lightening

Your car may be the best place to stay safe from lightning