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Nissan Maxima



  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    The lack of rebates is not necessarioy a bad thing. For example: GM is ofering $ 3500 plus $ 500 cash back on their full size pickups. When I priced one such truck at the local dealership, they were willing to discount the truck only $ 1800 (There is a $ 4200 markup over invoice on this truck). So some dealers will use hefty rebates as a bait to make more money on the vehicle for themselves. I do not mind paying $ 500 over invoice, but I certainly will not let them make $ 2400 (plus holdback) on this vehicle.
  • roar1roar1 Posts: 193
    Are you saying in post # 8196 that you did not test drive a TL before you bought it ??
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    No, I test drove a TL 6-speed on four separate occassions before deciding on one. What I meant was that I didn't want to buy a vehicle off the lot that others had test driven. I was the same way with the S2000 when I bought it. I'd be less concerned about an automatic. The TL I bought had 3 miles on the odometer off the truck from Ohio, period.

    FWIW, at least two dealerships in the DC area have set aside a 6-speed for test drives. I guess they will be selling them as demos, rather than new cars. I think this is the way all dealers should go, assuming they have sufficient volume to support it. Unfortunately, I never got an opportunity to test drive a Maxima SE 6-speed. Even my local dealer (VOB) never seemed to have one in stock when called. Not that I was seriously interested, but it can't help Nissan's struggling sales to make it exceedingly difficult to try the 6-speed out.
  • roar1roar1 Posts: 193
    I know exactly what you mean. The '02 Max that I wanted could not be located in my immediate area. My dealer did a search and found an exact match at a dealer located 100 miles away. I told them I'd buy the car provided they transported the car on a rollback. Fortunately they did what I requested.

    Regarding sales, actually Nissan sales have been way up most of this year basically because they've introduced so many new models. Maxima
    sales have been in limbo. It's as if Nissan does not care about the Maxima. Why would you self impose a production limit of 80,000 units down from 120,000. I thought the whole point of manufacturing a product was to make money. They don't even advertise the car on prime time TV and I live in the 6th largest TV market area. Oh, I know.... they want to create an air of " exclusivity ". BS.

    Honda and Toyota can sell anything. They could slap 4 tires on a bathtub and they would STILL sell 100,000 / yr. Look at the Scions.
  • lichtronimolichtronimo Posts: 212
    How late can you order a 2004. I've read conflicting info on various other sites. I've got a call into my dealer right now, but if you get this first I'd appreciate what you know.
  • kennyg5kennyg5 Posts: 360
    Do you know if there are any improvements and/or differences between the 04 and 05 Max? I hope the 05 will have better interior materials, fit and finish, and less torque steer.
  • nd4spdnd4spd Posts: 23
    Wow, I cannot believe that people that don’t even own 2002-2004 Maximas talk about torque steer. Just out of curiosity, have you ever experienced it? I did, and it is not all that bad!, actually it is fun, if you know how to drive the car. In addition, why do you people always complain so much about it?, Do you actually rip it, every chance you get? I have to stomp on the pedal to get it to start spinning tires and get the torque steer monkey out.
    And believe me, that is not the way most people drive. So please put the torque steer issue to bed already, if you don’t like it, don’t buy an overpowered FWD vehicle. Get yourself a CamCord and enjoy the boring ride. Or be smart like Habitat1 and buy a TL.
    Actually, next year, the TL will have AWD, and then it really will be a great car (super Acura).
  • bowke28bowke28 Posts: 2,185
    if you want an 04, order now...

    im not sure the changes on the interior upgrade probably wont happen, and torque-steer correction would take a MAJOR overhaul of the steering components...if these changes ever occur, it probably wont be this year.
  • lichtronimolichtronimo Posts: 212
    I put in my order today for an '04 Max SE with 6spd manual in Onyx over black cloth, sunroof, premium audio and floor/trunk mats for $27,200. I faxed over what I wanted to a dealer that had let me test drive a 6spd they had in stock a few weeks ago and then stopped in to get the sale price and sign the paper. Whole deal took 10 minutes tops.

    I'm totally pumped - the next 8-10 weeks will be killer.
  • bowke28bowke28 Posts: 2,185
    i remember you have been dealing with the idea for quite a while. good job.
  • kennyg5kennyg5 Posts: 360
    I own an 03 Max GLE and I have experienced torque steer. If you think torque steer is "fun", tell it to the Highway Safety Commission and your insurance company when you injure someone or damage their property due to torque steer. LOL!!

    For everyday driving, however, one would not usually experience torque steer. I have only experienced it twice in the past 20 months since I bought my 03 Max. Once when trying to merge full throttle into a fast moving highway with a very short acceleration lane, and the other time trying to avoid being hit by an apparently drunk driver who was barrelling the street with his SUV. To someone who is unfamiliar with torque steer, the experience could be scary. IMHO, to say torque steer is "not all that bad" and is actually fun is irresponsible. The TL, like the Max, is also a high-powered FWD car, but its torque steer (according to commmentators) is less than the Max. Thus, a lot of it has to do with clever engineering.

    I have been driving for more than 25 years, and I have never gotten any moving violation or speeding tickets. I am a safe and non-aggressive driver and I pay the lowest insurance premium. So, to me, torque steer in the Max is not a big issue because it rarely happens. I enjoy my Maximas and that is why I have three (92, 97 and 03), but I don't enjoy the torque steer (when it happens) because I don't think it is "fun".

    If you think the TL with AWD is better in handling, think again, because the added weight may decrease performance. The benefit of AWD, IMO, is to improve traction in snow. But for an FWD TL, the benefit of additional traction won't be substantial. In fact, you can do better with dedicated winter snow tires and switch to high performance tires for the other three seasons (if you happen to live in the snowbelt).
  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    Torque steer could be serious issue for people who rent a Maxima for the first time and do not anticipate this condition. Some people may actually lose control of the car if they do not hold onto the steering wheel firmly. Torque steer is less of a problem for Maxima owners, once they become familiar with this phenomenon.

    I wonder if there should be a warning label inside the car warning people about this condition. At least rental cars should have one.
  • bowke28bowke28 Posts: 2,185
    there is a warning in the owners manual.
  • kennyg5kennyg5 Posts: 360
    I agree with you. When I first experienced torque steer, I was startled. But since I always drive with both hands on the steering wheel, I quickly took control, thus avoiding any potential mishap. I don't recall what hp do the 00-01 Maxes have, but the incremental increase in hp in the 02-04s brings out the beast in the FWD MAx.
  • rswaglerswagle Posts: 27
    Hi all. I am in the market for a new car and will be parting with my beloved Maxima soon. What i am distresssed with is the offers I have been recieving with private sale vs. Trade in at dealers.
    2002 Maxima GLE w/ Sunroof
    Upgraded Harman Kardon Navigation unit
    3M metallic tint 3M clear bra
    Fed only the best mobil 1 super sybnthetic oil
    35 K miles
    Clean title and no cosmetic issues

    End result of offers... 13K-16500. OUCH!
    Tell me if I am way off base or does the maxima really depreciate that bad.
    Thanks for the input.
    Best Regards,
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Jay, also ask your question in our Real-World Trade-In Values discussion - the folks hanging out there are very helpful. You'll need to give them your approximate location with your details.

    Good luck - let us know how it goes.
  • biancarbiancar Mid-AtlanticPosts: 918
    I have a 2000 GLE, excellent condition, low miles for the year (about 51,500), and on "real world trade in values" the numbers Terry gave were in that same ball-park that you're getting. Since your car is 2 years newer, it seems like your offers are a little low but not way out of line.

    If you love the car why are you trading it?
  • rswaglerswagle Posts: 27
    Thanks for the input. I am trading the Maxima bc. I have entered a different phase in my business career and entertain business clients frequently. I have been looking at the MB E320/500 lately. Phenomenal car and well engineered. The maxima has truly been an outstanding car however not the right vehicle at this time for me personally.
    Best Regards,
  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    I checked Kelly blue book trade-in value for an 02 Maxima Gle with 35K miles in excellent condition. It is around $16.2K.

    Many decent dealers use Kelly blue book trade in values as a guide when assessing your trade. However, they will play games with the car condition. Mostly they will consider any vehicle "good", not excellent and this will lower the value (in your case by $ 1000 to $ 15.2.

    Unethical dealers will use the auction black book and quote you the lowest auction price in the book for a car that could have been stolen and recovered, be a lemon with 4 owner history, have collision history, etc. As a rule of thumb I will not seriously talk business with dealers who resort to this type of deception, because if your vehicle is truly mint, they will make a maximum dollar on it selling it on their own lot. There are reasons for using the auction book, for example for vehicles with extremely high mileage or very old vehicles that no bank will finance. However, using auction books on premium 2 year old used car is not in my opinion justified, unless they sell you a new car $ 2K below their cost, minus all rebates and incentives.

    I have bought a lot of new cars in my time and I have seen many of the tricks pulled by car dealers. It is amusing for example, that for starters, every one will claim that their dealership is the largest volume dealership in the area and have received the greatest number of recognition awards and have the best service department. This is designed to make you relax into thinking that you will definitely get a good deal and will get great service afterwards.

    Occasionally I run into very decent people and those are the once I do business with.
  • rswaglerswagle Posts: 27
    Thanks for the response. Bunch of good people on this board! I had a funny feeling that the numbers were lower than anticipated. However, in the real world the used car market is probably saturated bc of the low interest rates on new cars. Thanks again.
  • nd4spdnd4spd Posts: 23
    So, I stirred the pot a little bit. This forum is almost dead otherwise.
    No offense Kennyg5 but your reply shows how much you know about vehicle dynamics – I’m sorry to say it but … Zero
    AWD TL will run circles around the FWD TL (take AUDI A4 Quattro, vs FWD and find out which handles better – it comes at no surprise – AWD, is better then FWD.)
    There are several reasons –
    1) Weight distribution – in awd cars it is closer to 50-50, in FWD it is more like 60 – 40 or worse.
    2) In FWD cars the front wheels have to do a lot of work – to steer, drive and brake, this puts too much load on the front end of a car, and reduces it’s handling ability (i.e. accelerating out of a corner, or taking a sharp turn at high speed).

    In addition, performance is hardly measured by pure acceleration only – I doubt that you would be drag racing in your TL (assuming you had one). As far as handling goes: FWD hinders TL as of now. That’s why G35 outperforms TL – because it is RWD.
    To answer your other comments: TL costs about 5,000 more then the similarly equipped Max, and it should as it is a better car – that is why it doesn’t exhibit torque steer as much, in addition – it has less torque in lb/ft therefore it will not be as jumpy as the Max.
    And finally – if you don’t enjoy the famous torque steer – please, don’t mash that pedal!!! I cannot say that my driving record is as perfect as yours, but then again I am probably 20 years younger than you are- so I have plenty of time to catch up and get in the right lane behind you and drive 64 in 65 just in case.

    Lets put this forum back in “D”
  • charlew55charlew55 Posts: 6
    I have a 2001 Max GLE which has been serviced exclusively at the dealership where it was purchased. (It's the 2nd Max I bought there..also referred a customer who bought a Max) When I was nosing around looking at smaller coupes a month or two back, another dealer asked if the car was still under warranty as he picked at my wheels. I said yes, why do you ask? His reply was that the chrome was pitting and beginning to peel in the corners of a couple of the wheels, and that they should be covered under warranty. I took the car back to my dealer who took digital pics & sent them in to Nissan for an opinion. He told me not to expect any coverage..that they would blame it on environmental factors. Well, a few days ago I got my response from Nissan, and lo & behold, the problem was indeed " environmental factors and/or improper cleaning". Now that about covers it all, I suppose! Either you let the environment damage your wheels, or you keep them clean and get hit with "improper cleaning"! I called Nissan's 800 number and asked how they could tell so much from a few digital pics that were emailed to them...they told me to go back to the dealer and try to set up a meeting with the regional Nissan rep, which I did today. Anybody else have any experience with this issue? By the way, the car has only 19,945 miles on it and was purchased in Oct. 01 - only driven occasionally in snow, and kept clean with TLC. The wheels were cleaned using only proper cleaners, and no harsh brushing of any sort was ever done. Any suggestions? THANKS!
  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    I had all four alloy wheels replaced on my 99 Mazda 626 under warranty at 30K miles. What happened is this:

    These are polished clearcoated wheels, very susceptible to pitting if the clearcoat gets damaged. Pitting shows as ugly veins of aluminum oxide under the clearcoat. In this case it was the Mazda dealer himself who damaged the clearcoat because they used improper balancing cone to balance the wheels and wrong wheel weights which damaged the clearcoat. Of course they did not admit to this and blamed everything on the environment (salt spray in coastal Florida). At first they claimed that the wheels were only covered for 12k miles. I went to another dealer and they offered to pay the cost of refinishing the wheels. It turns out that the cost of refinishing (I had to get an estimate) was higher than the cost of new wheels. So I finally got a set of four new rims mounted and balanced at no charge. This time I asked to dealer to tape the balancing cone to avoid the damage to the clearcoat.
  • kenm8kenm8 Posts: 71
    Here is some "data" per R and T July, 2004 on handling of Maxima versus some other cars discussed in Msg:

    Standardized R and T slalom test of 700 feet and cones placed every 100 feet. R and T states that significant difference is 1.0 MPH for this test.

    Maxima 3.5 SE - 62.1 MPH
    Audi A4 3.0 Quattro - 64.1 MPH
    Acura TL - 65.8 MPH
    BMW FWD Mini Cooper S - 69.5 MPH
    Infiniti G35 sedan - 65.0 MPH

    Maxima is slowest, but somehow the FWD Acura beats the AWD Quattro by 1.7 MPH, which is "significant" according to R and T. Acura even beats the RWD Infiniti by a small 0.8 "insignificant" margin.

    AWD is great if one drives a lot in snow or on dirt or gravel roads. If not, what is the point of poorer handling as well as hauling around a couple hundred pounds of extra weight. Extra weight is also extra parts that could go bad or need repair.
  • nd4spdnd4spd Posts: 23
    Don't forget the 245 mm tires on the TL, vs. the puny 215 on the G - the G is by far a better handling car than the TL - just check the data for the G35 coupe, that has better tires on it.
    As far as the cooper is concerned: it is totally out of place in this comparo, might I suggest a mitsu evo? or a WRX sti for that matter?
    Audi S4 - that has the turbo V8, bigger tires and comparably tuned suspension like the TL, will kill all of the above-mentioned cars. Case in point - please compare apples with apples.
  • kennyg5kennyg5 Posts: 360
    Kenm8, good points and great corroborating data from R&T!! I vaguely recall that Habitat made the same points in the context of whether the TL would benefit substantially, if at all, from an AWD setup.

    Unlike Habitat, who is a seasoned car enthusiast, I have limited knowledge about "driving dynamics" (as my undergraduate degree was in biochemistry rather than engineering), and what I do know is gained from reading articles written by experts in the field. If Habitat is not too busy enjoying his new TL, perhaps he could refresh my memory with respect to his position on this subject.

    As further support of the points expressed by Kenm8, the tech experts of Edmunds have also noted the following in "Tips & Advice; Tech Center; What Wheel Drive":

    "So, it seems like 4WD/AWD is the best way to go, right? Well, not exactly. Both of these systems add substantial weight, complexity and cost to a vehicle. They also reduce gas mileage because of increased drag on the drivetrain. When you consider that traction control is becoming more and more common on front- and rear-wheel drive cars, the supposed advantages of 4WD/AWD start to wane."

    "By now it should be obvious that there is no 'best' drivetrain layout; just different designs with different characteristics. Hopefully, after reading this column, you'll have a better idea which one is right for your circumstances and not get suckered into buying an all-wheel drive Subaru for your daily commuter in Phoenix or a BMW M3 for exploring the Yukon."

    In view of the foregoing comments and observations, even if the Max offers an AWD system as an option, I will not buy the option because I will not benefit from any purported advantages of AWD, particulary in light of the fact that I am not an aggressive driver who likes to make sharp turns at high speed.

    Also, unlike some of us who takes joy in characterizing Camcords as "boring", I believe Camcords are fine vehicles (as evidenced by their high consumer satisfaction index) because they are "just different designs with different characteristics."
  • kenm8kenm8 Posts: 71
    Thank you Kennyg5 for your quotes from Edmunds on AWD-4WD.

    Apples to apples - 4 cylinder car comparisons suggested in MSG 8233:

    From R and T July 2004 again - Subaru WRX sti AWD with 300 HP does slalom at 68.4 MPH vs BMW FWD Mini Cooper S with 163 HP does slalom at 69.5 MPH. What good is all that HP? Mitsu EVO with 271 HP does slalom at 68.9 MPH.

    If AWD is so great, why does not Subaru and Mitsu beat Mini? I know, I know. The mini is not as heavy as the Subaru and Mitsu. Less mass to move around those pylons.

    The Audi 6 cyl Quattro is slower than the 6 cyl TL by a margin that is significant per R and T data. If TL gets a V8, then lets see what times are for TL vs an Audi with AWD and V8.

    Again, nobody would dispute that AWD is better than any other setup if you drive a lot in snow, mud or gravel. How many people drive a lot in these conditions?

    I guess it would be nice if AWD fans would show real data and facts rather than subjective feelings when comparing AWD to FWD and RWD.

    Wonder if a Maxima with AWD would be slower in the R and T slalom than a FWD Maxima.
  • nd4spdnd4spd Posts: 23
    Good to see that some people are still out there, that care about this place. Thanks for your response guys.
    We could argue all day, about which setup is better, some prefer FWD, the others RWD and some even AWD. However, all I was trying to show is that the FWD setup is inferior by nature of its' design to RWD and AWD, when it comes to performance. If you equip the max with AWD, and make the weight go close to 50/50, you will see a huge improvement in handling, now if we go ahead and make it RWD, with 50/50 weight distribution - it will be a blast to drive, just like the G35. Did you see, how quickly the G captured all the first places in all the comparos? R&T, Car and driver and so on. I wonder why the I35 did not even make it to that category? Because it is a rebadged maxima, and it does not handle as well as the rest of them.
    Acura said that the new AWD system would enhance the performance of the RL, and the future TL.
    I do not wish to argue that awd adds extra weight, and maintenance to a vehicle, but it also enhances its' overall performance.
    As far as the FWD is concerned - it is the worst of the 3, and if anyone argues, then ask them a question: why is that all of the worlds greatest sports cars are either RWD or AWD? Why wouldn’t they make a FWD Porsche or a Viper? Do you think that people would pay 120+ K for a FWD Sports car? Even the s2000, which is not really a sports car is RWD. And finally, please stop comparing the mini to other cars, compare it to hugo, or the beetle if you wish, I myself would rather drive a ford Crown Vic, than the mini, at least I can play with all the switches and the light bar. 69.5 mph vs 68.4 mph - ha-ha what a big difference, they say a 1 mph is a significant difference. What a bull, do you believe everything you read?
    I asked our instructor about emergency maneuvers and extreme driving, and he said that any RWD car is a lot better handling than its' FWD counterpart. I know one thing, that if my max was a RWD it would be as good as my cruiser, unfortunately it is not, but I still love it, plus it looks very nice. I just got the XM radio (Delphi setup) and loving it, it's like having cable in your car - just keep clicking that remote - fun - fun.
  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    One of the last remaining American full size rear wheel drive cars is Mercury Marauder. It is essentially a luxury Crown Victoria police interceptor, but with more power (301 HP). It uses a double overhead cam 32 valve 4.6 liter V8 instead of the detuned Crown Victoria single overhead cam V8. The car has a heavy duty auto transmission borrowed from the Crown Victoria police interceptor, along with some suspension components, dual exhaust, performance axle ratio, limited slip rear differential, nice chrome 18 inch wheels, and full leather interior.

    I am quite impressed with this car and its road manners. There is a $ 3500 rebate on this car now and you can buy one for under $ 30K. Base sticker price is just over $ 35k. This is a nice car for the money, especially if you like big cars.
    For some reason this vehicle does not sell well as evidenced by hefty rebate.
  • ccermakccermak Posts: 260
    What about the new 300C Hemi? What's that got that sells versus the Marauder? This is off topic from Maxima, but I drive a Max and am thinking of looking at 300C so figure I post. If I was buying something new now, wouldn't be Max, would be maybe 300C or TL or G35, or something AWD. I don't like the interior of the Max, the faux suade looks like it belongs in the quest.
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