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Nissan Maxima



  • I thought about buying the 02 Accord V6-Ex, but I have made up my mind and will be buying an 02 Max SE for various reasons (most are obviois) . I will only be adding the moon roof and wind deflector. Do most / any dealers throw in the floor mats and mud guards or will I have to pony up and pay for them as well.

    Also, what is a fair price? $300 over invoice.
  • anyone know if the 03 maxima is going to be restyled. Now lloking at the 02,but will wait if 03 is going to be redone
  • hrvathrvat Posts: 18
    I test drove the Maxima SE and was very pleased with the overall handling of the car.

    What I still don't understand is why the spoiler is standard on the car. Why not give people a choice? Is it too much for me to ask for a Maxima that has a cloth interior, NO sunroof and NO spoiler. Apparently with Nissan, I AM asking for too much.

    If I get the SE, I'm paying approx $800 extra for a spoiler THAT I DON'T EVEN WANT. If the MSRP for the SE is about $27,100, the cost would be about $25,500 for an SE with cloth interior, no sunroof and no spoiler.

    Am I wrong?
  • canadianclcanadiancl Posts: 1,078
  • godeacsgodeacs Posts: 481
    For that price you can the GLE with leather, and other stuff the SE doesn't have so it's a much better deal. Bought mine last month w/no sunroof. The SE is a "sport" edition of the Maxima, hence, the spoiler. Didn't care for a spoiler either so the GLE was a much better alternative. Unless you absolutely don't want/can't stand leather, it's really an easy decision....
  • From reading posts on this board, I believe the 2003 will be redesigned and based upon the Altima platform. I also believe it will be rear wheel-drive? Others on the board keep me honest if I am remembering wrong.
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282 least with respect to the "$800 cost" of a spoiler on the SE. And its not quite an "easy" decision. The SE has a different suspension / tire & wheel set-up that makes it a noticably tighter handling car. Some like this; other's do not. But that's how you should evaluate the $800 difference between an SE and GXE. Back in 1995, when I bought an SE 5-speed, it also came with a few other upgrades and appearance details over the GXE - liquid filled engine mounts, better cloth seats with lumbar support, shadowline trim, etc. But the biggest difference by far is the suspension. I have friends who own 1995 -2001 model GXE's and GLE's and they consistently comment on how much tighter and flatter my car handles.

    To put it in another perspective, I am now considering upgrading to a BMW 5-series. BMW's "sport package" with a suspension upgrade goes for about $2,000, and IMHO it's a must have. By that comparison, the Maxima SE is a bargain.

    I respectfully suggest you extensively test drive the SE and non-SE's. If you like the way the SE handles, I am sure you can get the dealer to remove the spoiler free of charge. Alternatively, if you prefer the softer ride, get the GXE or GLE. Just don't make your decision thinking you're paying $800 for a spoiler that you don't want.

    Good luck.
  • If the spoiler on the SE were optional it would probably cost about as much as the optional one on the Altima, which lists for $399. I'd rather have the choice too, but that's packaging for ya. (Cue music) You can't always get what you want...
  • I received a brochure for the 2002 max. On the page which has a picture of the engine, I noticed a timing belt instead of a chain (Which is very clearly a chain in the altima engine as per the altima brochure). 2002 max owners, what does your owners manual say?
    thanks in advance.I do know that the 2000 and 2001 max had timing chains.
  • aftyafty Posts: 499
    I'll confirm what habitat said about the suspensions on SE vs. GLE/GXE Maximas. My parents have a '95 GLE and one of my good friends has a '97 SE, so I've spend significant time in both. The SE IMO has a much tighter suspension and less body roll, as well as less of a floaty feeling on the highway. I prefer the ride/handling tradeoff of the SE, but you really should drive both before you make a decision.
  • OK, I've always considered myself reasonably intelligent when it comes to stereo equipment. However, after reading and rereading the owners manual for my new I35 (Maxima Radio/CD is the same), I still can't figure out exactly how the AUTOP and PTY buttons are supposed to work in conjunction with the radio. If anyone out there and give me a better explanation than the owner's manual, I would appreciate it.

    Steve B
  • hrvathrvat Posts: 18

    Thanks for responding to my post. How much did you pay for the car, if you don't mind me asking. I know the car has 33 more HP than the previous model, but they sure seem much more expensive than last year (about $1,500 more?).
  • I want to get a 2002 Maxima SE, 6spd and sunroof, and floor mats as my only options, I live in New Jersey and would drive if i could get a better deal, if anyone knows of a place i can get it cheap in the area of new jersey, let me know
  • danny25danny25 Posts: 119
    I believe the SE is "about $1,500 more" than last year because they made the $1,800 (or whatever the price was) comfort and convenience package standard. Every thing that was in that package except the moonroof is now standard on the SE.
  • For your info, I did get the 2002 Maxima base SE with cloth interior and floor mats and front & rear splash guards.

    The dealer was able to source for a base maxima SE that has everything I want except the front splash guards. Then they install the front splash guards for me.
  • It is the same engine family as the 2000/1 maxima. So it is definitely timing chain not belt. Also it is the same engine as the Altima 3.5 SE too.
  • I had the same thoughts too. I was thinking abt Honda Accord V6. But the design is too boring and there are too many similar cars on the road.

    Then I looked at Maxima. 100% Japanese made. HID lights ! 255hp ! Lots of good features with comparable prices to Accord. Accord is not even made in Japan and it has only 30% Japanese parts.

    My Maxima SE has almost the same price as Accord EX V6. Why would I get Accord when I can get Maxima ?

    I feel more "excited" to drive the Maxima than the Accord.
  • I have an '01 SE automatic with just under 3K miles on it. The car runs well however here are a few things I'm observing and wonder if any of this sounds familliar to anyone. First: 1st to second gear isn't "crisp". It kind of "slides" from 1st to 2nd however, the car accelerates strongly - no power loss during the shift change. Second: the engine or tranny seems to "whine" a bit. Normal sound? Again - doesn't seem to be a power loss or slippage except for what I described above. Third: the engine sounds just a little out of time, I suppose mostly when cold but there is no rough feel as I think there would be if the car really was out of time. These are sounds from inside the car. If I have the window opened and I am next to a wall or something, the car sounds most sweet. Lastly, I am only getting somewhere between 18 to 20 MPG (premium 93 octane)in hwy / city type driving. I have a lead foot and when on highway am usually between 70 / 80 MPH. The car seems to run great and realy "goes" when I want it to. Are these "observations" of an overly critical ear? What do you think? I think I may be overly critical and these may be normal for this car. I am realy happy with the performance of this car, all in all. Thanks in advance for any feedback.
  • Merlion - I read your post above in which you wrote "For your info, I did get the 2002 Maxima base SE with cloth interior and floor mats and front & rear splash guards. The dealer was able to source for a base maxima SE that has everything I want except the front splash guards. Then they install the front splash guards for me."

    Those are the same items I want as well. Do you mind if I ask what you paid, did they throw in the mats and mudguards, did you get the moonroof and wind visor?

    When I take the base SE and add in mats, mud guards, moonroof and wind visor, the dealers cost comes to $1,174 over that of the Accord EX-V6 - a price I am willing to pay.

    I am just trying to determine now how much over dealer cost I will need to pay.

    Thanks for your help and enjoy your new MAX!
  • Hi, to all of you guys. I just heard that 2002 Nissan Maxima will be the last yeaar of the factory in Japan. 2003, starting, will be build in the USA. Is it true? Thanks for your feedback.
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    Yes, it is my understanding that all 2003+ model Maximas will be made in the Altima plant. I saw on CNBC a few weeks ago that Nissan is investing $500 million plus to double capacity. I have not heard where the G35 is being built, but since its the same platform as the Altima and 2003+ Maxima, probably US as well. Good for US economy, hopefully not at the expense of Nissan buyers.
  • robertrrobertr Posts: 125
    Are you sure that G35 and new 2003+ Maxima will be on same platform, where did you hear this? Is so, that means new Maxima would be RWD. Hopefully, the Maxima will have the 6-speed manual transmission-it looks like the G35 will not.
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    No, I'm not sure and I can't say where exactly I read the speculation that the new Altima platform will serve as the basis for both the 2003+ Maxima and G35. Inasmuch as I'm not mechanically inclined, I don't know if it's even possible that the same platform can be adapted to both FWD and RWD. However, one of Nissan's/Infiniti's strategies is to become more efficient in research and production. Hence the 3.5 liter V6 will become a real workhorse, appearing in the Altima, Maxima, 350Z, Pathfinder, G35, and I35. It is modified for peak power, torque or something in-between depending upon the application. It is my understanding that they are striving to get similar cross model economies out of platforms, transmissions and other major components, as well. Very smart, in my opinion.

    One thing is for sure, the Maxima SE does come with a six-speed. I saw one. They have been out in limited quantities for several weeks and should be widely available in a couple of more. I don't know if it is the same transmission that will be used in the RWD 350Z, but if it is, it should make it into the G35 sooner or later. Preferably sooner.
  • I don't know where you read this, but the G35 is built in Japan, and is known as the Nissan Skyline over there. It's RWD and is said to be one of the best handling cars. The Maxima will be based off the new Altima and will be built in Tenn. along side the Altima. The only thing they share is the 3.5L V6 which makes 255 for the Maxima and the G35 and 240 for the Altima SE.
  • godeacsgodeacs Posts: 481
    first, I test drove both the SE AND GLE and didn't note any handling difference. But then I don't drive on a lot of curvy roads, etc and don't consider myself the "sports type" of driver (drove a Volvo for 19 yrs!). Others do - if "tight handling" is important to you, then the SE is the car for you. For me, leather was a more important feature.

    I got the 2002 GLE (no sunroofor other options other than mud guards and floor mats!) for $25.8K + TTL from a "no haggle" dealer. They gave me a reasonable trade allowance on my Volvo so was quite happy.

    Good luck! Either the SE or GLE will make you happy....
  • I don't know what it is, but I happen to like the GLE better than the SE model. I know I like the rims of the GLE better than the SE models. I also like the gauges on the inside better in the GLE than the SE. My question is this, to the younger people in this forum, maybe 15-25 years old, which do you prefer, or anybody for that matter, which one SE or GLE.
  • I just had the worst experience with a salesman (Larry) of Amity Nissan in Massapequa. Anyone out their have any positive (or negative) experiences to share regarding Long island Nissan Dealers.
  • Does this mean that 2002 is the last year of the current Maxima design? How long are they going to build the 02 and when can we expect the 03?

    Just curious.

  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    I'll do my best to answer your question as a peer. Please drive both the GLE and SE before making any purchase decisions. I do not advocate 16 year olds driving aggressively. However, the handling characteristics of the SE can even be appreciated in normal driving conditions, as well. If you don't feel that much of a difference, then go ahead and get whatever one you think looks better. However, for most prospecitve buyers, the purchase decision should not be based upon asthetics. The SE simply drives differently than the GXE or GLE.

    Good luck and, assuming you are using your own hard earned money, please post how a 16 year gets to select between a Maxima SE and GLE. I was a pretty successful newspaper carrier and grocery store stock boy in my day, but the best I could do was a new Datsun B210 GX when I was 21 back in 1978!
  • tiger8tiger8 Posts: 120
    I bought my '97 Maxima at Smithtown Nissan about 4 years ago. The salesman was great and it was pretty much a no-hassle deal (considering that it was a car dealership). Nissan was giving huge rebates at the time, so I got it something like $5,000 below sticker. The salesman I dealt with is no longer there, unfortunately. The best thing to do is bring in some of the unrealistic ads from other dealers from Friday's edition of Newsday, and negotiate from that.
  • I also have an '01 SE automatic with almost 4K miles. I sometimes notice shifting from 1st to 2nd and 2nd to 3rd being somewhat rough (but this is mostly in stop and go traffic when I'm hovering right between where the car shifts hard into the next gear right around 5mph to 2nd gear or 20mph to 3rd gear). I haven't noticed any "whining" sound as you have. I'm guessing the car is fairly new to you (because of the 3k miles), and some of the shifting issues are probably just getting used to the new car. I have a friend with a pathfinder and he also notes it doesn't shift as smoothly as his previous car. As for the 18-20 mpg you are getting, that seems low. I have used nothing but premium 92 octane and probably average about 22mpg in mostly city driving (roundtrip of 60 miles to work, the vast majority in Atlanta traffic). I have a feeling your quick starts are what is getting you the low mpg. Bottom line: I wouldn't be alarmed by any of the things you've noticed so far. I think your car is probably just starting to break in like mine is. Enjoy your new car and don't be alarmed unless the conditions you describe get worse. As an aside: you all might want to check your tire pressure. I read a few days ago that your recommended tire pressure is on the inside of the center console (I had never noticed). Anyway, the front Toyo tires should be at 33psi, and the rear should be at 30psi. I checked mine today, and the front were 6-7psi too low, and the rear needed air as well. The car seems to ride a little firmer since inflating the tires and seems to accelerate a little quicker as well. Wish my dealer would have checked this before they gave me the car, but oh well.... My dealer was horrible, but I love the car.
  • I got my SE for 23,730. This price includes the mud guards & floor mats. No sunroof or wind visor coz I am in Michigan !

    It's abt 200 over invoice based on

    I think my price is reasonable.'s prices really suck as they went up real high early Oct. Also I got in when Nissan is offering the special apr for Maxima.

    I love driving this Maxima.
  • for the earlier poster who said that the altima, maxima and g35 are not built on the same platform, im pretty sure your wrong. go check on if you want to be sure. and the new g35, or skyline, is not one of the worlds best handling cars, dont confuse it with the skyline gtr.
  • Its been one month with my '02 Max GLE. I must say that Im loving this car even more than when I first purchased it. Im really driving her now and that buttery V6 moves so effortlessly. I didnt have this feeling w/the '99 Accord. I just felt like ho hum. I put a wind deflector on and IMHO thats all this car needs. The heated seats and steering wheel is on time as the weather is getting cold here in NY. Gas milage has been good considering all the city driving I do.(17.9per gal) I enjoy reading the posting in here and just wanted to share.
  • Thnx for the info. Where did you buy(dealer)? I am looking to buy soon. I am in NY (westchester). Was the dealer someone you would reccomend? Would you mind sharing the price I can expect to pay? Have FUN with the new wheels!
  • Perhaps this has nothing to do with your problem, but the last time I heard such tranny sounds was when the automatic was low on fluid. Shouldn't be a problem at 3k, but worth a check.
  • I too have some issues with the tranny. My 00 has 31K miles on it, and when cold has a real hard time shifting from 1st to 2nd at anything over half throttle. I spoke with a Nissan tech who says there is a TSB out for shifting problems, and told me I have the exact symptom. They will repair for free when I get it in next week for it's 30 checkup.
  • The decision is made. I will be geting an 02 Maxima SE. I just can't decide what color to get. I've narrowed it down to Glacier Pearl, Majestic Blue and Super Black. Any suggestions?
  • riezriez Posts: 2,361
    Whichever one you like best! And whichever one goes with the interior colour you like best. I prefer darker grey/black interiors over browns/tans; dark interior seems to stay cleaner longer (or at least doesn't show all the accumulating grunge over time).
  • It looks very good IMO. The Glacier Pearl looks real nice on the GLE model for 2002. My vote goes to the Majestic Blue, then the Glacier Pearl. Super Black would be the last color I would consider because around here we have a bunch of dirt roads and the black would stay dirty, but then again so would Majestic Blue.
  • I'm in the market for an '02 Maxima SE (only options are sunroof, sunroof deflector, mats and mud guards), what is the price I should be looking to pay if I'm getting a "good deal"? How much over invoice should I expect or shoot for? What are the deals that some of you have gotten? Anyone out there from the Albany, NY area and purchase their car in the Capitol District?
  • Do anyone know if you can add a CD changer to the Premium AM/FM/CD/cassette audio system w/o upgrading to the Bose System? Does the deck have the capabilities to control a changer?
  • With white exterior you cannot get black interior. Black, Majestic Blue, and Grey Lustre do go with black interior. Personally I like Blue, White, Grey, Black, Sterling Mist, Maroon, Green, Tungsten Blue.
  • i have to agree with maxmillion - the three cars currently are not built on the same platform. However, according to nissan the maxima and altima will share the new altima platform in 2003 (6th gen max is due out late CY2002). Plus the Skyline is RWD so it is a different platform and the max and alti are FWD. They do however, as someone stated share the same VQ35 engine.
  • So this IS the final year of the current gen Max, right? The 03 will be out by late Summer 2002? Is that correct?

    Let me know!

  • I am looking to buy a 2002 Maxima SE 6sp. I test drove two different vehicles. Both of them had hissing noises (like wind coming in) from the lower back corner of the rear windows on either side. The sounds weren't audible to the driver and front passenger. However, to rear passengers, it almost seems like doors weren't completely shut even if they were.

    Has anyone else experienced this? Is this normal? If not, what could be the cause?
  • leonivleoniv Posts: 120
    I'm currently experiencing this problem with my 01 Maxima and judging by comments in here, it seems to be a common problem with the 5th gen Maximas. Usually, it's the window seals around the small rear windows. My dealership is stupid and replaced the wrong seals, and now is having problems ordering the correct seals. Good luck with your repair. Be sure and tell them to replace both seals. If one's already bad, the other won't be far behind.
  • also look at

    It would seem that the next generation of maxima will be built in the U.S. in January of 2003. So from this statement I have to assume that the next generation will available early CY2003 not late CY2002 as I said earlier. So you are looking at the spring of 2003 approx.
  • the 02 Maxima brouchure says the 6 disc changer is only available with the Bose option on the SE. says it is standard on all Maxima's. I was at the dealer today and forgot to look. anyone know which is correct?
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