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Nissan rolled out the next iteration of its entry-level model, the 2020 Sentra.

It can get risky when you’re redesigning your best-selling product – but it’s just as risky if you try to play it safe.

For its part, Nissan has decided to take the risk of making some immediately obvious changes to the all-new 2020 Sentra, giving the sedan not only a bolder design but also a more powerful engine and lots of new technology to improve both connectivity and safety.

“We believe the all-new Sentra will reach new heights offering refinement and quality, technology and performance not seen before,” said David Kershaw, division vice president, Nissan Sales & Regional Operations, Nissan North America. “The lower stance and more athletic design cues from the Maxima sports sedan give Sentra a sexy new look.”

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Those who haven’t checked out the Sentra in some time could be in for a surprise. What had long been saddled with a relatively plain vanilla look now adopts styling clearly influenced by the Maxima, Nissan’s sportiest passenger car line.

The Sentra gets a new, 2.0-liter DOHC inline-4-cylinder engine that makes 149 horsepower and 145 pound-feet of torque.

The new look highlights the 2020 Nissan Sentra’s 2.2-inch lower height and 2.0-inch wider track. The center of gravity also has bee lowered, something that should translate into a more dramatic ride.

That, in turn, will be enhanced by getting a new, 2.0-liter DOHC inline-4-cylinder engine that makes 149 horsepower and 145 pound-feet of torque. Those numbers are up 20% and 16%, respectively. Nissan says it expects fuel economy to increase, as well, though it didn’t offer specific numbers. The new I-4 engine is paired to an updated version of the automaker’s familiar Xtronic continuously variable transmission.

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The 2020 Sentra also adopts a new independent rear suspension, with a McPherson strut front suspension with twin-tube shock absorbers.

It’s been some time Sentra was treated as a basic, entry-level offering. It today offers plenty of features one might expect of a higher-level sedan. That includes a 7-inch touchscreen, Bluetooth hands-free phoning, Siri Eyes free and Google Home Assistant voice assistant technologies. On higher grades, both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are available, as are active cruise control and the automaker’s birdseye view monitoring system.

The Sentra features a 7-inch touchscreen, Bluetooth hands-free phoning, Siri Eyes free and Google Home Assistant voice assistant technologies.

From a more traditional safety standpoint, the eighth-generation Sentra gets 10 airbags, and there are also a number of advanced driver assistance systems, collectively packaged under the Safety Shield 360 system.

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“The all-new Sentra delivers the whole package, with features and value that are hard to ignore,” said Kershaw. “It’s stylish, confident and connected – a true breakthrough in compact sedans.”

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