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Nissan Maxima 2004 Redesign

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  • My thoughts...

    Love the external styling...
    Internal styling nice...
    Cheap interior...

    Whereas last year was wheel-a-deal for outgoing car since it was competing with the New Altima, this year's car can produce real sticker shock when you realize you are paying MSRP and not invoice....

    My advice, test drive the I35 and call every dealer in your area and demand a great deal. Because of the G35, the I35 is selling poorly and they are offering great deals.

    You can do close to the same for a very similar car, with better nameplate/service, lots of standard features. The I35 is very nice. In past, people said go for the Maxima as it was close and cheaper. Now, I say the reverse. Go for the luxury car that they are discounting and demand eihter a cut rate price or a super financing deal.
  • otoluvaotoluva Posts: 139
    Fitzmall.com has one in stock selling at $ 1500 off sticker!
  • victord1victord1 Posts: 94
    there's also one SL model at Carmax in Whitemarsh, MD. Liquid silver with black interior and NAV system, and it's priced at $30,258. According to the '04 brochure, any max with NAV is loaded to the teeth, except for the "traditional" sunroof and TCS(which includes full-size spare).

    Still a bit high, but it's about $2,200 off sticker, which is not bad considering it just came out a few days ago.

    I might stop by this weekend to see it, if it'll still be there.
  • achadhaachadha Posts: 106
    Went to the rosenthal nissan dealership in Tysons, VA they had 5 04's there none of which were 6 speed so I did not bother test driving them. The car actually does look better in person but I still like my 03 much better especially the interior. I can't believe they got rid of the spoiler on it as well. One thing I noticed was this new LCD screen which is very cheap looking. Very disappointed going to keep my 03 for a long while...
  • srocsroc Posts: 15
    Test drove a 2004 maxima SE. After test driving extensively, here are my thoughts:

    Looks and feel:

    The car certainly looks great in person. The back seat has limo-like space. The dash and steering wheel have a great look and feel. Without navigation, LCD screen looks a little downmarket.

    The driving

    1. There are gobs of power available, even with the 5-speed auto I drove
    2. Manumatic worked well as I down-shifted while passing on the highway.
    3. Car is prone to wheel spin under hard acceleration from standstill - so VDC would be advisable (unfortunately available only with Driver preferred package in my area, which pushes cost up to 32,000)
    4. Not much torque steer, in fact none at all that bothered me.
    5. Unfortunately, the car still handles like the big sedan it is. Going through corners, there is a lot of body roll and the feeling of total control is absent.

    On point 5, I may be biased by the BMW 3-series and Mazda6 I test drove right before the Maxima (thats right - the V6 Mazda6 has an amazing level of conrol along with some serious scoot!)
  • monte4monte4 Posts: 101
    I agree with some of the guys it just feels much bigger than the 03 behind the wheel. I test drove it and brought it to my neighbor hood and my neighbor said you traded in your new car on that, I said no he said man that car is Ugly I laughed the salesman even laughed. The LCD is definately out of place and look like a late 70's early 80's video game.
  • dralekdralek Posts: 4
    Just test-drove a Black-on-black SE 6-speed with a sunroof at my local St. Louis dealer. Much different than I was anticipating...
    I first checked out the 04 Max at the Auto show, and was very disillusioned with the interior and the overall look. I'm not sure what they did to it since then, but when I got into a, SL in the showroom today, I thought it was a totally different car. The interior materials still have a sort of plasticky feel, but much more sturdy and refined than I remember. The inside dimensions look and feel as they would accommodate a giant - IT'S HUGE!!! Especially the back seat. The power tilt/telescoping steering wheel with auto-exit feature is brilliant.
    Anyway, then I tore myself away from the luxury and got into a base SE with a 6-speed. I pulled out of the dealership, and before I could fully realize it, I was doing 85 mph on a 40 mph speed limit road. The dealer goes: "It's our car, bur you're still paying your own speeding tickets..."
    I have had my 00 Solara V-6 with the 5-speed manual for almost 3 years now, and I truly love it. I've always thought of it as a pretty fast car (can do 0-60 in ~ 7 sec). Still, this 04 Max took my breath away. For the luxurious feel and the soft/quiet ride, it sure packs a lot of punch. I didn't experience any torque steer or wheel-spinning they write about in the reviews. The ride feels solid. There was a hint of a body roll while doing 75 mph on a highway exit ramp, but I think that is more than acceptable. My favorite feature, though, was the shifter: short, presice, smooth - I simply loved it.
    As far as the exterior styling, I think it'll tale a little getting used to, bur overall I kinda like it. The only part that bothers me is that little plastic peace between the rear fender and the tail light. I'm not sure why it's there, and can envision it popping out after a couple of years. Otherwise, the car looks pretty solid with 18-inchers and all...
    I definitely put it on my top 2 choices list. The only thing left to do is to test drive a Volvo S60R 300 HP 6-speed next month, and if that ride does not convince me to dish out 10K extra for the sweed, I'm definitely getting the Max!
    Good hunting, everyone.
  • giant56giant56 Posts: 9
    Went to local Nissan dealer in Hampton, Va this morning and spotted a 6spd SE. Still do not like the grill but the rest of the exterior is pretty nice. My wife likes it. Does anyone know if Nissan will offer incentives for remaining 03 Maximas?
  • dralekdralek Posts: 4
    According to Edmunds and KBB, Nissan offers $1000 cash, and 2.9% financing on remaining 03 Max's trough the end of this month.
  • I took my wife to look at the 2004. She loves it!!! Thought it was cool looking (She's 38).

    She loved the front badge and the headlights. Also loved the skyview.

    This car is much better looking in person. I particularly like the spirited bronze color, but she seems to want a black with the frost leather.

    The car is really big inside and has enough room for three childseats across the back. the bench seat in the back is fairly flat so that will help with keeping them in. you do not have a big hump in the middle.

    We'll probably wait until the summer to buy as I'm sure they will be willing to deal by then
  • maxamillion1maxamillion1 Posts: 1,467
    That color is up there with Gray Lustre IMO. I wish they had kept that color!!
  • achadhaachadha Posts: 106
    Just test drove a 04 Maxima SE with the Bose and sunroof...I have to say the car looks 100X's better in person then pics. Front grill doesn't look that bad at all. Overall I think the car really stands out. The salesguy took me to the gas stattion with him and everyone was staring at it. The trunk is huge almost twice as big as the current generatioon. The handling and rear suspension have definitely improved. The interior is pretty nice it had a 5 inch LCD screen similar to the Nissan Murano. The car overall felt huge. Pickup was excellent and the tiptronic was nice. This car did not feel like your normal Maxima though something was wrong with it. Maybe I am used to the 6speed on my 03. It feels more like an Acura TL type S than it does a Maxima. Not great enough for me to trade in my 03 which I lov to death....Thanks
  • bartalk2bartalk2 Posts: 326
    Check Consumerguide.com
  • chooseychoosey Posts: 6
    The 2004 Maxima SE is a sweet drive, so much so that I bought one with automatic just a few days ago. I've never driven former Maxima's so I can't contribute to that thread. I am a Nissan man thanks to amazingly reliable 1993 Altima (which I traded in). I love the new styling and the interior. Library quiet. I get little lean in corners and am not bothered by torque steer. (I test drove a Sentra SE-R Spec V, not THAT'S torque steer.) Expect the SL to lean more in corners because of the softer sprints and such. The ride is nicely damped yet firm, a successful blend, I think. The only downside is the multi-buttoned heating, air conditioning and I-don't know-what-else-module with LCD screen. It will take some time to get used to it.

    I expect that this Maxima edition will be a winner despite the higher price.
  • tedescm1tedescm1 Posts: 309
    I recently test drove a new 04 Maxima and I think the exterior of the car is really well done (except the grill). The interior of the car is quite a different story…it’s down right cheep.

    If one compares the interiors of the new Accord and the new Maxima, the Accord wins by a long shot. By the way the Honda is about 6 or 7 k less!
  • lmp180psulmp180psu Posts: 393
    Unless I missed any posts, I think you are the first member of town hall to purchase the 04 Maxima. I think that most people are down on this version mostly because of the increased price. I love the new look, especially exterior, and wish I could have the opportunity to buy it. What did you pay, and how do you like the quality of the interior, people seem to think it is cheaper than the previous generations.
  • maxappealmaxappeal Posts: 17
    In referrence to discounts offered on 03's... I live in the L.A. area and Internet Managers are offering $1500 below invoice. If I haggle a little, I'm sure that I could knock of an extra 300-400.
  • ldldl5ldldl5 Posts: 4
    3.5 SL, Liquid Silver, Frost Leather!
    I upgraded from a 1999 Altima. I have the moon roof, but wished I had the driver preferred package (memory seats, etc.) Out of four cars on the lot, this one was the only one without the bucket seats in the back. So far, I have no complaints. It handles well and is very roomy. I also like the idea of practically being the only one on the road with one!
  • mariner7mariner7 Posts: 509
    We look forward to your reports. Many owners of new Nissan/Infiniti (Z, G, FX, Murano) products say their cars draw a lot of attention, and it can get a bit dangerous on the road. Do you find that with the Max?
  • kennyg5kennyg5 Posts: 360
    Congrats on your new purchases. You're almost like celebs on this Board, but hopefully will not be called guinea-pigs. Just kidding :-)

    We all look forward to hearing your periodic reports as owners of the new Max. In my neck of the woods, the only 04s I have seen are in showrooms, and there aren't that many to begin with. Happy motoring and write soon and often.
  • clpurnellclpurnell Posts: 1,087
    would you mind sharing what you paid?
  • ldldl5ldldl5 Posts: 4
    clpurnell...
    I paid around 31K.

    mariner7....
    Yes, I am getting a lot of attention. Almost too much!!! But..... I LOVE IT!!!!!

    I live in the Philly suburbs, so there isn't a need for a lot of parallel parking. I went to show my Mom (who lives in Philly with no driveway and gararge) the new car and had to parallel park in front of her house. I couldn't see the back of the car to judge because of the Maxima's short rear window. I had to rely on the side view mirrors.
    I now have the "cockpit" under control. I know how to work everything. I even have the CD player default to the name of the track playing.
    The Heated Seats...
    I wish that the control for the heated seats operated in the same manner as the rear window defroster. Although the thermostat cycles on and off, the control remains on unless you turn it off manually. If you never had heated seats before (I never had), you may tend to forget to turn it off as I did and only noticed that it was on when I was showing a friend how it worked.
    I've already washed the car, only because of the disc brake dust on the wheels. Tried to just clean the wheels, only to get water on the car.... What's a man to do???? Wash it! It was fun!!!!!!
    Last, but not least... went to the gas station, didn't want to put regular or premium in it so opted for the middle of the road. Stood there admiring my beauty and from afar, heard "Hey.... what kind of car is that?" Of course, I heard the guy, but I wanted to hear that phrase again, so I said, "HUH!!!!!" And, he repeated it. I didn't want to brag, so I just said, "IT'S A MAXIMA!!!" Now....I could have gone on to say that it was a 2004!!!, but I'll save that for later.
    I am sooooooo happy with this car!
    I just like the fact that it will be a current car for over a year and a half!!!!
    Any questions... just ask and I'll reply.
  • bartalk2bartalk2 Posts: 326
    Drove an SL and SE over the weekend. Rear suspension and ride much improved over previous Maximas. Very noticeable. SE more fun. Manual shifting with auto 5 precise and enjoyable. Torque steer occasionally noticeable with SE with auto 5, but not objectionable. SE is son of G35, in that direction (but front drive), but not as sporty. Lots of gismos for people who like gismos: power folding mirrors, power tilt/telescope steering wheel, elaborate trip computer, key-in maintenance intervals (oil change intervals, tire rotation, etc), power lumbar, dual climate control, memory seat, steering wheel and mirror, power seat automatically moves back and and steering wheel lifts on exit, compass, etc, etc.. Lots of small buttons but not confusing and easy to learn, excellent brakes, some noticeable thrum on choppy road with fat SE tires (but less than previous generation.) In all, lots of fun and very impressive. Mysterious why car is larger on the outside but almost identical interior dimensions compared to previous Maxima.
  • tedescm1tedescm1 Posts: 309
    I recently drove a new Maxima with leather interior. The doors and dashboard were covered and trimmed in a terry cloth like material that really looked cheep. Can you upgrade the material to make it look better? Or, are we stuck with cheep looking material.
  • monte4monte4 Posts: 101
    Tedescm1 your stuck unless you do some aftermarket upgrades, Nissan should have left the materials as they were in the 03 Maxima. They were much more classy for this type of car.
  • chooseychoosey Posts: 6
    I drove my new 2004 Maxima for an 80 mile round trip over the weekend. This I-78 Pennsylvania road is know as a rough one and PA has some dooseys. Lots of trucks over this route. It's that thrump, thrump, thrump as you go over the joints. This was heard and felt in the car but it would be heard and felt in any car. When the road is reasonably smooth, you feel like you're gliding. The Bose stereo is very good and I'm navigating the LCD readout better.

    I got a "base" SE so the sticker was 28K something. I don't have the heated seats and memory seat (wish it had the latter). Traded in my 93 Altima. The allowance was over double book value so I was happy. I bought the first and only one the dealer had at the time. I was convinced to buy the extended warrantee and I'm not usually the kind to do that. The computers and electronics on this car must be something to troubleshoot and it gives me some peace of mind down the road. I plan to keep the car long. My 1993 Altima was a "first" car and it was reliable as hell. If the first year Maximas are as reliable, I just blew a thousand bucks.

    By the way, this car feels way fast! It takes some careful feathering of the throttle not to blast away from every red light. This is fun!
  • You have add a $3,500 package to end up with the Xenons! What is up with THAT???

    I'll take my 02 SE with cloth interior, sunroof (only option) and standard Xenons!

    Obi
  • yichingyiching Posts: 6
    I ran out to the dealer yesterday to test drive the 04 SE with the six speed. Man, was I impressed! I'm the owner of a 00 SE five speed and I gotta say the new car betters mine in every way. It's more powerful. The handling feels more buttoned downed with the new suspension. It's quieter with a LOT less wind, road, and engine noise. And even though it's larger, it actually feels lighter and smaller on the road. I put my foot down in second gear on the on ramp and next thing I know I'm hitting 80 mph and 6K rpms with much less vibration and noise than in my car. The only thing I don't like is how Nissan made the car much bigger. For my needs, the previous generation was already plenty big enough and this new size is just humongous. The only thing I wonder about is the pricing. At MSRP, the G35 is a minimal step up in price. Personally, I'd probably pay the difference.
  • monte4monte4 Posts: 101
    I agree with you obi give me an 02/03 SE anyday over the 04 and I have driven the 04 exstensively. Yiching have you driven an 02 or 03 Max much more powerful(3.5 enginevs the 3.0) than the 00-01 and can compare better to the 04?
  • ldldl5ldldl5 Posts: 4
    I guess it depends on the color of the interior as to whether it looks cheap or not. Mine is the frost leather (gray) and I think it looks anything but cheap! Also, they say the material on the doors is supposed to be suede.
This discussion has been closed.