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Nissan is moving to make its Easy Fill Tire Alert system standard equipment on its 2013 model year vehicles. Taking the federally mandated tire pressure monitoring system to the next logical step, the Nissan system honks the car's horn when you've inflated your tires to the correct pressure. No more reading the tire pressure placard on the door jamb and hunting around in the glovebox for a pressure gauge.
While Nissan actually introduced this feature beginning with the 2011 Quest minivan, its proliferation throughout the lineup makes sense. After all, it's a good idea, and most motorists can't be bothered to care about tire pressure, despite its importance for both fuel economy and on-road safety. If Nissan's system can actually encourage a few of those disinterested drivers to maintain proper tire inflation pressures, it's a win for all.
Scroll down to watch a Nissan-produced video demonstrating the feature on the company's 2013 Altima and read the press release.
Franklin, Tenn. - A new federal study shows underinflated tires triple drivers risk of an accident, so it's timely that NISSAN recently introduced the "Easy Fill Tire Alert" system on its 2013 Altima. It's a way to help motorists maintain optimum tire pressure and it comes standard in all 2013 Nissan models.
"I think a lot of people probably don't think about tire pressure. I didn't, and so this is a good system to have," said Nissan customer Evan Galin.
When the tire-pressure warning system alerts a driver to a low tire, a display shows the pressure and the relevant tire or tires. Then the driver should drop into a nearby gas station and grab the air hose. As the driver fills the tire, the car's four-way flashers come on to confirm that air is going in. When the tire is full, the horn chirps to let the driver know the process is complete.
"I don't feel like I know what I'm doing unless I have something telling me that it's right, so this is good," said Galin.
If the driver puts in too much air, the flashers blink faster and the horn beeps three times. The horn chirps again after enough air is let out to reach proper inflation.
"It's one of those simple slap your forehead moments, as to why someone has not thought of it before," said Vishnu Jayamohan with Nissan Product Planning and Advanced Strategy
Some people don't keep a tire gauge in their glove box, or, they or have trouble using them. And professionals say that from one tire gauge to another you can easily have a three or four pound difference in air pressure readings. "Easy-fill Tire Alert" eliminates both the guessing and the gauge.
"If you get a low pressure tire warning, you're not left wondering if you have a serious condition that requires you to stop immediately, or if its something that allows you to drive home or to the nearest filling station and then fill up," said Jayamohan.
The display will show the driver the pressure for each tire. A delay in correcting tire pressure can cost the driver fuel economy. If the driver's tire pressure is down by even just a little bit, the driver is likely losing some fuel efficiency.