Listen to this article

Nissan introduced the all-new Sylphy in China back in April at Auto Shanghai, but it won’t be until next week before the compact sedan will put on a pair of side markers for its North American counterpart. Car and Driver has learned the 2020 Sentra will premiere on November 19 at a standalone event scheduled to be organized just before the Los Angeles Auto Show. That’s when we will learn the technical specifications regarding the U.S.-spec variant, although some might have emerged already.

If you recall, an order guide surfaced onto the Internet a few weeks ago to reveal the 2020 Sentra might lose the manual gearbox as the standard model was listed only with a continuously variable transmission. As a refresher, the outgoing Sentra S can be had with a choice between a manual (from $17,990) and a CVT (from $18,680).

Gallery: 2019 Nissan Sylphy

On the flip side, the same document sent out by Nissan revealed the sedan will have a naturally aspirated 2.0-liter gasoline engine producing 149 horsepower and 145 pound-feet (196 Newton-meters) of torque, which would be an improvement over the outgoing base model. The entry-level 2019 Sentra has a 1.8-liter engine with 130 hp and 128 lb-ft (173 Nm) of torque, so you’d get an extra 19 hp and 17 lb-ft (23 Nm) by waiting for the 2020MY car, provided you can live without the six-speed manual. Perhaps a more fair comparison would be with the CVT-equipped 2019 Sentra, which offers 124 hp and 125 lb-ft (169 Nm) or 25 hp and 20 lb-ft (27 Nm) less than its replacement is projected to have.

It’s worth mentioning we spotted a prototype in August that clearly had a six-speed manual gearbox lever, so not all hope is lost for those who prefer to row their own gears. It’s better to wait for the official reveal before assuming the new Sentra will be a CVT-only affair.

2021 Nissan Sentra Spy Shots
2020 Nissan Sentra prototype
2021 Nissan Sentra Spy Shots
2020 Nissan Sentra prototype

Aside from getting extra power, it is believed – based on the same order guide – the U.S.-spec 2020 Sentra will ditch the torsion beam rear setup for a multi-link suspension available as standard across all trims, which should liven up handling while tackling corners.

All trim levels will get the Nissan Safety Shield 360 array of systems as standard equipment even on the entry-level car. Expect the car to have lane departure warning, blind spot warning, rear cross-traffic alert, automatic high beams, and automatic emergency braking without having to tick any of the boxes on the options list.

We’ll learn everything there is to know about the eighth-gen Sentra next Tuesday.

Got a tip for us? Email: