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Nissan Maxima



  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    Your description of the 2004 is interesting. I own a 98 SE and I too believe Nissan took a wrong turn somewhere with their designs lately.

    I also own a 95 SE V6 4X4 Nissan pickup and will probably own it for a long time. I can't stand the look of the new pickups with cheap plastic gray bumpers with the fake rivets in them. The ones with bumpers painted the body color are at least reasonable looking, but the gray ones are cheap and shoddy looking directly from the factory. And they fade in the sun rapidly. I saw a left over brand new 2002 Xterra the other day on the dealer's lot and its front gray plastic bumper was faded badly from the sun already and it looked like it was 10 years old.

    There are some of us who are not impressed with extreme styling, especially if the "extreme look" is achieved by using cheap looking materials.
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    I hope your 1998 SE is holding up as well as my 1995 SE has (knock on wood).

    I think "extreme" is an apt way of describing the direction Nissan has taken with vehicle / interior design. Again, not to age myself, but back in 1995, the Maxima fit nicely on the continuum between less expensive cars like the Accord and Camry and the more expensive BMW and Mercedes offerings. And it generally looked the part, especially the interior. Many of my then 30-something friends and associates who owned 3rd and 4th generation Maximas graduated into 5-series and E-classes.

    The "need" for constant redesigns when you essentially have something that works isn't apparant to me. Refinement and evolution are one thing. But abandoning the family tree and going mutant is another. Now, rather than be a nice midpoint between a Honda Accord and a 530i, the Maxima looks like it was infected by some garish GM/Pontiac stains in its DNA.

    I believe time will prove our respective 4th generation Maxima's to have been the peak of Nissan's success with the model. Certainly the peak of respect. Adding 75 horsepower to a FWD platform and shaving a miniscule 0.3 seconds off the 0-60 time since 1995 isn't enough to overcome the "de-volution" of the interior design and material quality.
  • m4d_cowm4d_cow Posts: 1,491
    Well that proves that new Max's popularity isnt as good as one might think.
    I heard Nissan's also targetting for fewer sales than '03 models, not sure whether its true or not though
    Habitat1, where is the dealer youre talking about? In what area? Just wondering since I havent given up my hope yet to get a nice Onyx or Red '04 max :)
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    I bought my 1995 Maxima from VOB Nissan in Rockville, MD. I have been generally pleased with the customer service since.

    Interestingly, they had many 2004 Maxima's in stock and pushed me to take one for a test drive. When I asked for a SE 6-speed, they didn't have any and indicated that those versions will be produced in even lower volume/percentages than the outgoing 2003 due to "limited demand". If that is the case, either the "sport sedan" market is shrinking (doubtful) or the Maxima has become less appealing to those buyers (more likely).

    This morning my wife asked me what I would replace our Maxima with if it were crushed by a tree tomorrow. (A distant neighbor's old BMW suffered this fate a week ago). I was unable to immediately respond. A 530i sport is my first choice, but it's $43k+/- and going through a model changeover. The $38k 330i is a bit tight for our family. In the $30k price range, the G35 sedan may be a decent choice, but I am not a fan of it's looks, inside or out. The Acura TLS is dated and boring - and besides, I don't know how to drive a so called sport sedan equiped with an automatic transmission. There is almost nothing that pops out in the $25k price range that wouldn't feel like a performance and/or quality downgrade compared to our 9 year old Maxima.

    Needless to say, I'm not parking under any trees in a storm.
  • cheerioboy26cheerioboy26 Posts: 412
    Nissan reduced their expected sales of the Maxima when the new Altima came out. Last I hear the target was 75-85K per year. They are currently producing 1,790 per week in Smyrna (acc. to
  • Hello, I'm about to enter college, and I think I've decided on the right car. I currently own a 1991 Nissan Maxima SE, and I love it, but it burns more oil then gas, and I really don't trust it on long distance trips.

    I'm thinking about going for a 1999 Nissan Maxima SE. I know the styling is a little more..."bland" then the current model I have, and looks "generic" among its peers, but at this point, styling isn't really high on the list. The "generic" styling will change a bit if I add the Skyline body kit anyway.

    I'd really appreciate anyone's opinions on this model, or if you feel like I'm going in the wrong direction, a suggested different course would be welcomed. I basically want a sedan with lots o' punch, good gas milage, and decent reliability. Thanks in advance. - Matt
  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    Based on my positive experience with a 98 SE, this should be a good choice. With 5 speed manual I get about 27 MPG on premium fuel in combined driving with A/C on. The car is extremely reliable.

    One negative: These cars are very sensitive to correct wheel/tire balance. And it is increasigly more difficult to find a place that can balance your wheels properly.
  • vmaturovmaturo Posts: 71
    I just can't warm up to the 2004. And I've tried. Too expensive & interior is too "artsy fartsy" for me. I give them credit for doing something different though.

    I bought the 89SE when it came out and loved it more than I thought possible to love a car. Never should have traded it in. But I just had to have the 95GLE I saw in the showroom.
    And now that I just completed 9 years with my 95GLE, I think I may never let it go. I absolutely love this car more than when I first got it. Especially the interior. And the reliability is ridiculously fantastic. It simply is not possible for any car to be as reliable as my 95 has been.

    I guess......"If it ain't broke, don't fix it".
  • bkswardbksward Posts: 93
    If my Max were crushed tomorrow, my choices in the sub $30k range would be TSX, 6, or a used 3 or 5 series.

    At least one review I've read suggested that the TSX, despite being a 4 is akin to the 4dsc days of the Maxima. Haven't driven one yet though...
  • mirthmirth Posts: 1,212
    Yeah, I'd probably get a TSX or 6, too. However, a beemer is too small for my family requirements.
  • kvsm3kvsm3 Posts: 32
    I have a 99 5 speed Maxima SE and am very happy with the car. I am the original owner and the car has been trouble-free since I purchased it. My only expenses have been oil changes, alignments, and just got new Michelins to replace the Goodyears. I am still on my original brakes. The car is quick, roomy,reliable, gets very good mileage, (30-31 mpg hwy) 24 combined. You can't go wrong with the car!
    Just make sure u check the car that u want to buy on to make sure the title is clean.
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    Although I haven't shopped them, I think I would have a tough time with the TSX or Mazda 6 as a replacement for my Maxima. Although Acura has a good reputation, the idea of a 4 cylinder with 35% less torque per pound of car than my 9 year old Maxima is not appealing. That's even less "relative" torque than my Honda S2000. Which is OK for a 240 hp, 2,800 lb roadster with a 9,000 rpm redline, but not what I want in the family sedan.

    The Mazda 6 is likely too downscale. Back in 1995, I considered the Maxima, Accord, Camry, Altima and Mazda 626. They pretty much finished in that order. I may be biased, but I have also never seen Mazda rated anywhere near Honda, Toyota and Nissan in terms of long term reliability. That seems to be reflected by the fact that three year old Mazda's have resale values considerably below their Honda/Toyota counterparts.

    Which leads me to another point. I have 142k miles on my 9 year old Maxima and the 3.0 V6 is running as stongly and smoothly as the day I bought it. We had our Trooper in for service at an independent shop yesterday and I took the opportunity to ask the owner what he thought of the Maxima. First words out of his mouth: "Best V6 engine this side of a Mercedes, without the maintenance requirements of the Mercedes". The only other engine he considers as "durable" is the 2.8/3.0 liter BMW I6's. He thinks Nissan's V6 is better than either Honda's or Toyota's. He also strongly recommended against a 4-cylinder engine in any 3,000+ lb car, even the stalwart Honda Accord. Claimed that the added weight and stress will likely take it's toll after 80,000 to 100,000+ miles.
  • monte4monte4 Posts: 101
    You are correct Nissan(I work for Nissan as an engineer) predicted and new that Sales from the 02 year and beyond would be lower for the Maxima due to the new Altima and the upscaling of it. For 02 and up sales would be under 100,000 units per year and actually 02 was the first year for the upscaling of the Max by adding such things as Memory seats, Nav, heated steering wheel etc. which the Altima doesnt offer. The 95 Max which since you go off mag test times is 7/10th of a sec slower than the 03 Max and traps some 7-8 mph less in the 1/4 mile which is a lot(the best 04 tested so far is 4/10th of a sec quicker and trapped 5-6 mph more than the 95), and also consider the car has gained weight since 95 some 400-500 pounds. Also in the automatic versions 03/04 SE vs 95-99 the acceleration adavantage is greater auto to auto with well over a sec quicker to 60 and 1/4 mile times are over a sec quicker as well which is alot. The 04 is slower than the 03 and I think that the 03 was the last of the great/deal/value packed Maximas, and I have driven the 04 SE extensively, I prefer my 03 and my 350.
  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    "That seems to be reflected by the fact that three year old Mazdas have resale value considerably below their Honda/Toyota counterparts":

    I own a 99 Mazda 626 ES V6, 5 speed, leather seats, power sunroof, alloy wheels, power seat. Bose CD cass, 68K miles, mint condition. Recent trade in offer: $ 4500!!!! This car does not have a resale value, it has a give away value!!!!. I should never have bought this car. It is noisy, sluggish, problematic, unreliable, a gas guzzler, (compared to my 98 Maxima SE), and has maintenance requirements of an exotic car. And above all it is worthless from resale value standpoint.
  • sgrd0qsgrd0q Posts: 398
    Traditionally 4 cyl small engines didn't last as long, but I don't think that is the case anymore. Hasn't been the case with Honda for the last 15-20 years at least.

    You'll see 4 cyl Accord engines outlive the car most of the time.
  • bill_lbill_l Posts: 38
    I am looking for a easy (split) CV boot for a 96' Maxima. I've tried autozone, napa and advace auto parts, none of them has it? Would anyone like to tell me where I can find one? Thanks.
  • ramped1ramped1 Posts: 159
    from my perspective.

    To me, it is what the Maxima used to be when I bought my '92 SE way back when. I've owned most Japanese import brands (except, strangely, a Honda) and I'll put my experience with Mazda up against any for reliabity.

    Now, both of my Mazdas were built in the '80s ('82 RX-7 and '86 626 coupe) so there is the possibility that the 90s models weren't as dependable. I considered a 626 sedan when I bought the Max.

    As far as upscale transportation, shop elsewhere. Nissan isn't and never will be upscale. It is essentially the Japanese Pontiac. It's a fun brand but the sales and service departments have all the charm and efficiency found at GM.

    I agree with habitat's mechanic - the VQ 6 is hard to beat. That's why my next car will likely be either the 6s or the Altima SE. Can't see spending the additional $$ for the Maxima unless the rebates get real, real big.
  • Don't be biased by old reputation. Go and test drive a 6s with MT. It's nothing like those Camcords! Save your judgment 'til then. Or go read the Mazda6 board.
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    Regarding 4-cylinder Honda engines, my mechanic said they are the best in the business - better than Nissan's or Toyota's 4 cylinders. However, he still thought a 6 cylinder in a 3,200+/- pound sedan is a better match if you plan on going over 100k miles. The Honda Accords of yesteryear weighed substantially less than they do today.

    On the "upscale" issue, I'm the first to acknowledge that my 1995 Maxima isn't a BMW 530i. But it had a lot more interior quality than the 1995 Accord or Camry. The 1995 626 wasn't even close. Check little things like the headliner, center console, etc. Frankly, for it's day it was a notch up from the current G35.

    Regarding Mazda 6, I shouldn't be critical of a car that I've never driven, so I won't. But my criticism of Mazda as a manufacturer is based upon the assumption that if they were such good long term cars, they wouldn't have "give away" resale values after only 3-4 years.
  • alpha01alpha01 Posts: 4,747
    My Honda's 4 cylinder (1.5 L , 2400 lb 94 Civic coupe) blew a head gasket right around the 100K mark. Wasnt too happy.

    I havent sworn off Hondas, but I wouldnt say they are better than Nissan/Toyota.

  • ramped1ramped1 Posts: 159
    You are correct in that Mazda's depreciate like crazy, but then again Nissans aren't so hot in that respect, either.

    As a matter of fact, I drove my RX-7 for five years, paid over $1K over list, and still got 50 percent of my investment back when I traded. The reason, of course, is that the public appreciated what a great car the RX-7 was. It never needed a rebate until it became ridiculously overpriced in the early '90s.

    That is the key to resale value. Like stocks, cars are only worth what the public will pay. All of the Japanese imports are good reliable cars, but the public at large has identified Honda and Toyota as those they trust to buy used, hence the large resale on those models. That's why when I buy a used Japanese car, I steer clear of the Hondas. I know I can get quality and reliablity with Nissan, Mazda or Subaru at a discount.
  • kennyg5kennyg5 Posts: 360
    IMHO, comparing reliability among Toyota, Honda, Nissan, Mitsubisha, Mazda etc. based purely on nameplates may be misleading and inaccurate. Because each manufacturer has many cars in its lineup, comparing an inexpensive car made by one manufacturer to a flagship car made by another may be akin to comparing apples and oranges.

    In addition, if you compare an SUV against a sedan, or a 4-cylinder against a 6-cylinder, you are talking about different classes of vehicles that cannot and should be be compared.

    Sometimes, generalization may lead to futile or unproductive analysis and/or argument.
  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    You are right in stating that not all Mazdas depreciate the same. RX7s and Miatas have always maintained much better resale value than 626s. Proteges and 626s seem to depreciate the worst within the Mazda lineup.

    What really annoys me is that my 626 is top of the line ES model which cost over $ 4k more than a 4 cyl 626 LX, but nobody seems to even notice when I try to sell the car or trade it in. Even on E bay, people bid ridiculously low on used Mazda 626s.
  • kennyg5kennyg5 Posts: 360
    I can appreciate your frustration about the 626 which is relatively new (99) when compared to my old Maxima (92) that I sold ten months ago. My old Max, which had about 75k miles but was in very good condition, fetched a sale price (to a private party) of $4k. I believe the Max has built a good name for itself and has a good following, and that has a lot to do with the resale value.
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    "All of the Japanese imports are good reliable cars"?

    That is not my personal reality. I had an early Acura Integra that took me to the cleaners after about 80k miles. But that my one bad experience does not make Acura a bad brand.

    In my research back in 1994 before buying my Maxima, I concluded that the Maxima (with its V6) was equal in quality and reliability to the Toyota Camry and Honda Accord as evidenced by Consumer Reports, the various other car publications and every friend, relative and car mechanic that I questioned. As I recall, the Mazda 626 was not well regarded and considered well below the gold standard for Japanese manufacturers.

    I do agree with ramped1 that there are market anomolies with respect to resale values. In spite of being rated highly, even in 1995 I could see that the Maxima would not likely retain quite as much of it's original price in resale value as the Accord or Camry. But I bought what I believed to be an equally high quality and superior "driving" car, figuring that I would keep it for at least 6-7 years and 100k+ miles, after which resale doesn't matter much. Now at 9 years and 142k miles, I can comfortably say that I made the right decision. For others that are considering the 95-99 4th generation Maxima as a used car, lower resale values may make it one of the best price/quality values out there.

    kennyg5 hit on another reason for resale value disparity: the Maxima, Civic and Accord / Corolla and Camry have been around a long time and have earned "sustained" market respect. Relatively low volume RX-7 and Miata specialty cars aside, Mazda has never achieved that level of success and respect with a mainstream model. It seems that they drop, redesign and rebadge sedan models more frequently than the Honda, Toyota or even Nissan.
  • jpilapiljpilapil Posts: 1
    I have maxima 2001 model and this car have 45,000 mile in it. I don't know what kind of tires I have to use aside from tire that come up with the car when I bought it. I want to replace it with reasonable prices. Please help me, thanks Jay
  • aggiedogaggiedog Posts: 238
    Purchased 02 SE a year and a half ago and attempted to trade in my then 93 Mazda 626 ES V6 5sp. It had 170,000 miles on it and about 20K miles on the 1st clutch replacement. Kelly Blue Book said I should have gotten about $2300 for the trade in. The dealer offered $500. I had $600 in new tires on it. I just donated it to DC's Children's Hospital and took the tax break.
  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    The Kelly Blue book on my 99 Mazda 626 ES V6 is $ 6700. They offered me $ 4500. The car is in showroom condition inside and out. I do not have much luck selling the car privately because everybody seems to want an automatic. Which is strange, because most 4 cylinder Mazda 626s built after 1990 have one of the worst auto transmissions ever put in a passenger car - it is a Ford Tempo transmission. These transmissions rarely lasted past 40K miles on 92-96 4 cyl 626s. I have a feeling that the low resale value of Mazda 626 has a lot to do with this transmission.
  • kyleknickskyleknicks Posts: 433
    you have to specify whether u have the SE or the GLE for people to recommend tires for your car..

    i have a 2000 GLE which i bought Dunlop A2's for $500 total cost...
  • aggiedogaggiedog Posts: 238
    Don't you love that Ford influence?
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