Brakes: We seem to have to replace the front brakes more often than we think we should. There has also been a grinding noise in the front brake on the drivers side.
Rotors: We have had the brake rotors replace.
Radio: Has developed some static over the last year (2001). Speakers may be going out. Possibly from a short, don't know. When the volume dial is moved there is also static. But it still works.
CV joints: Have been replaced a couple of times.
Rear Struts: Have been replaced.
Rear Tires: Both rear tires are wearing on the inside. This needs to be repaired. May not be the struts.
Starting: We started having an intermittent problems with the car not starting sometimes, and starting other times, over the last year (2001-2002). We could not find a pattern to this. There is a long story to this, but this is what I believe was the fix. There is a black fuse-able link box near the battery with some large blue fuses in it. One of the fuses is the Clutch Inhibitor, I swapped the fuse with the one next to it (I believe its for the fan) and the car has started without a problem. This fuse can only be purchased through a dealer for around $30.00 (or if you can find a similar one in a wrecking yard you save money). It has to be the correct fuse or it won't work.
Clutch: Has been replaced after about 140000 miles.
Starting Problem: We took the car to two different shops. It would start for them either, so they were unable to diagnose any problem. We bought another used car for my wife and let my son use the Sentra. The car still had the starting problem. When it wouldn't start he would push the car and pop the clutch. We told him this was not good for the engine and he could damage it. He was going to have it looked at. He didn't and blew the head gasket by pushing the car. Do not push this car to start it. Once may be OK. But, frequently will blow the head gasket and/or crack the block. We were fortunate that only the gasket was blown. With some help from friends I replace the gasket. I had no previous experience with this so it took me some time and frustration doing it myself. But, saved me about $800.00. Through trial and error I replace the Clutch Inhibitor fuse-able link located in a black fuse box next to the battery, which fixed the starting problem.
The ride in the back seat gets some road noise.
Getting in and out of the car can be a tight squeeze for tall or large people.
The car is low to the road. Only about 6 to 8 inches clearance. Care needs to be taken when driving through dips or driving over something in the road. Go around it.
The car handles very nice. 1.6L engine is not a powerhouse, but is adequate for getting you where you need to go on the freeway or on streets.
Great gas mileage on the freeway and on the streets.
Most of the repairs we've had have been due to normal wear and tear over an 8 year ownership period. Except for the head gasket replacement. The last 4 years an additional driver, a teenager, drove the car. Which added additional wear and tear and some abuse, that would not have occurred by a more mature driver.