The Nissan Cefiro is a mid-size car that was produced by the Japanese automobile manufacture Nissan Motors. Introduced to Japan in 1988 as the A31 series four-door sedan, and exclusive to Japanese Nissan dealerships called Nissan Satio Store, the Cefiro initially shared its basic rear-wheel drive chassis with the Nissan Laurel (sixth-generation) and the Nissan Skyline (R32). The Cefiro dropped its sporting pretensions in the second (A32) and third (A33) generations, switching to the front-wheel drive layout. In Europe and Australia, the A32 and A33 series models were sold as the Nissan Maxima.
In North America, the Middle East, and Africa, Nissan retailed the A32 and A33 series Cefiro sedans through the Infiniti brand as the Infiniti I30 and later as the Infiniti I35. While the styling of the Infiniti versions was essentially identical to the Cefiro sold in other markets, the same car with revised front- and rear-styling was also sold in North America as the Nissan Maxima as cheaper, lower-specification model.
Nissan released the A31 series Cefiro sedan to Japan in 1988. The top-range model, called the GTS-R, used the same engine as found in the Skyline GTS-t (R32), a 2.0-liter turbocharged inline-six cylinder engine capable of 210 PS (154 kW). Other variants came with other versions of the Nissan RB engine. Brand new, the Cefiro was slightly more expensive than the equivalent Nissan Skyline. Many versions featured HICAS four-wheel steering as well. Nissan took the unusual step of making a left-hand drive version of the Cefiro A31, sold in Latin America, Turkey and other Eurasian countries as a Nissan Laurel Altima - in most export markets this slot was filled by the Nissan Maxima. Unlike the Japanese versions, export models are fitted with a carburetted single cam CA20S inline-four producing 102 hp (76 kW) and RB24 engine which was a single-cam 2.4-liter RB inline-six producing 141 hp (105 kW). From 1990, the A31 was facelifted and given a softer look with revised light and bumper/grill design as well as an updated interior. The Cefiro was introduced as a result of Toyota expanding its Mark II platform with the Toyota Cresta and Toyota Chaser triplets, with Nissan offering the Cefiro as a comparable third alternative to the Skyline and Laurel models, selling each vehicle at a separate Nissan dealership.
Left hand drive Laurel Altima was the flagship vehicle of Nissan's Turkish lineup for early 1990's.