Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Nissan Maxima Maintenance and Repair



  • derrickmderrickm Posts: 7

    I'm really looking at either 00/01 or 02/03. I'm particularly impressed with the 02/03--I drove one and it was a rocket! After reading this forum, I'm thinking I'll get one that's still under warranty just to be safe.

    Btw, my Camry is the SE/V6. Passes fine, but anytime you're looking for immediate speed, forget it. A slight lag before the engine starts to rev up, then the tranny lets the engine wind up and doesn't produce any power until higher RPM. All-in-all a >1 second lag.
  • derrickmderrickm Posts: 7
    How embarrassing--every time I've refreshed this page to see recent posts it's reposted my last entry. Sorry everybody.

    Thanks for the advice. I think I'm going to try to find an '02 or '03. They seem to be available in Utah, which is reasonably close to me. People don't seem to be getting rid of them--they're not exactly easy to find.

    I agree that if I go with a 2000, I'd avoid the first six months or so of the new model.

  • ccermakccermak Posts: 260
    I own a 2000 SE loaded automatic with 70K on it and besides an alternator and O2 sensor it's been solid. Not even done brakes yet. However, if I was buying a used max, I'd get the 3.5 motor. I've driven both, and I often long for the greater oomph of the larger motor. Big difference off the line, not so much diff when passing on the highway as the 3.0 will pass in a flash when needed. Get an 02, lots of deals around here in MN. I've even thought of trading up, but with 5 more payments left on a 60mo loan I'm thinking no payment sounds NICE!!!
  • bjoycebjoyce Posts: 1
    This is my 4th Maxima since 1990 and I am not happy. There is a serious shift issue with the new autoshift, 5 speed transmission on GL's sold after Feb 2004. The dealer says "it's normal" but other owners have the same problem!!! The gas cap is designed badly. I just replaced the XM antenna, for the 2nd time and it still works about 60% of the time. Any comments?
  • wainwain Posts: 479
    Renault owns them now
  • ccermakccermak Posts: 260
    Renault owns like a 40-44% stake, don't they? That wouldn't mean they "own" them. They did however send over their CEO Carlos Ghosn, who is a legend over there in Japan now in case you didn't know. Yes he's done cost cutting and forced their parts suppliers to decrease costs or they'd walk away atc, but the stock has been great since he's been there. I know, I own it. I do think quality has slipped a bit, but can it be directly attributed to the "cost cutting" measures of Ghosn? Debatable I suppose. They have opened up factories in the US, can that be the cause of the quality slip??? Think about that.
  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    No doubt there are some assembly issues directly attributable to good old American shoddy workmanship. However, there are also cheaper, lower quality parts being used, which accounts for a number of warranty issues. A good example is cheap coils and Bridgestone tires used on 2000-2003 Maximas, which were assembled in Japan.

    Personally I detest cost cutting measures like introduction of low quality questionable parts in order to save money. No matter how carefully a vehicle is assembled, if you make it out of low quality parts manufactured by people who make 65 cents and hour, you are not going to have a good product. Nissan is not the only company guilty of this approach- there are many others.

    Personally I much rather pay a few thousand dollars more for a well built quality vehicle. This is why I will be looking at Lexus products in the future. I already walked away from an 03 Nissan Maxima and an 04 Nissan Titan. I will not buy a new vehicle that exhibits severe wheel vibration during a test drive, or something that comes out of a factory with a fist sized paint flaw. Are you listening Carlos Ghosn?
  • ccermakccermak Posts: 260
    I believe I have to agree with your response. Lower quality materials are being used. It's noticeable across the line, in all Nissans. I don't like the interiors in the 04 Max and Altima (even with new for 05). I work on databases and I think the old addage "garbage in = garbage out" applies quite nicely ;-). Cheap materials going in is going to result in quality issues. I am in need of a midsize SUV and I'm thinking Pathfinder over Murano, even though the Murano would fit my needs better and gets better mileage, because I feel the Pathfinder is still old Nissan versus new. Until 05 version anyway.
  • wainwain Posts: 479
    i just bought a Highlander and like it
  • gtgraygtgray Posts: 22
    I have a 2004 SL. I had a front end rattle at 10,000 miles that was driving me performance problem, just the presence of a heavy rattle in the front end while driving over minor road imperfections. Nissan knew exactly what it was when I went to the dealership....a bad front passenger-side strut. The head mechanic there said that they've seen so many of them on the 2004's that they are actuallu making money on them. Nissan pays for 1.5hrs of labor for the fix, but they get it done in about 45 minutes.
  • aggiedogaggiedog Posts: 238
    Also, the 02/03 have the 6 speed manual, if you can find one as well as the xenon head lights.

    No problems with my 02 SE.
  • derrickmderrickm Posts: 7
    aggiedog-Yeah, the 6-speed sounds pretty nice. Haven't seena single one of them out here though. I testdrove the '02 with auto and was suitable impressed.

    gtgray- i think all the brands have some problems; especially earlier on. Took 6 months to get the rattles out of my 02 Camry. In the end, was a service bulletin than led them to a bad weld deep under the windshield.

    ccermak- I did did drive a '00 SE and an '02 SE. I was really impressed with each. The '00 had the kind of power I was used to before with my old Maxima. 58k miles and felt brand new in every respect. I do agree with you about the extra horsepower, and will likely get an 02 or 03. Yeah, I had no car payments for 7 years until I made the mistake of getting rid of my last maxima. Are you a DBA or a developer?
  • gatormagatorma Posts: 2
    Bought a used '01 20th AE Maxima about 6 months ago, 28K miles, 2 weeks ago driving along, let my foot off the gas to stop for rush hour traffic and all the lights on the dash came on (Air bag light flashing, ABS, O/D light on), then the engine drops down into O/D and radio/clock/A/C goes off. Just happen to be by the dealer and drove into the service. They called me later in the day to say that it needs a battery, then they do a computer check and he says everything is fine. This all might be in my mind, but just wanted to check with the board.... when you need a new battery, does it stop in the middle of driving? I would think that the alternator should have been charging the battery enough even at driving, but with these new cars, nothing is normal anymore. Maybe something wrong with alternator?

    Another thing, it feels like the car is dragging and not coasting when driving highway. I'm probably not wording properly, but it feels very tight and hesitant to just cruise along like my '96 Maxima did. It doesn't feel like the transmission is missing or slipping, but tight and not cruising smoothly? Anyone have any thoughts?
  • ccermakccermak Posts: 260
    Actually, I'm an Essbase Administrator, dealing with OLAP cube databases. But we source our data from Oracle tables so I'm in there quite a bit as well, usually with Toad. Plus we use Informatica to move the data around. So an Informatica and Essbase developer, SQL programmer, and an Admin, but not a DBA in Oracle.
  • derrickmderrickm Posts: 7
    I have a friend who does that sort of thing--I understand that it's a good skill to have!

    I do .net development using Oracle, SAP, etc.--mostly salesorder entry and processing, material pricing, inventory stuff. :)
  • czechmateczechmate Posts: 3
    I an the original owner of a 1995 Maxima with 155K miles on it. It's been a great car with very few problems. I had major service (tune-up, etc.) done in March and no problems surfaced at that time. When I had it in for an oil change last month, the technician said the engine still looked great and I should get another 50-100K out of it. However, recently my brakes have been pulsing when coming to a normal slow speed stop, like at a stop sign. If I'm stopping a little quicker from say 30 mph, you can really feel it. I have ABS, and there is no trouble light showing on the dash. I suspect the ABS is engaging every time I brake. Has anyone else had this problem? THanks!
  • ccermakccermak Posts: 260
    Sounds very much to me like you need new rotors and probably pads. When's the last time you had your rotors "resurfaced" and had new brake pads put on? Pulsing felt in the brake pedal, and often times steering wheel, when braking hard is almost always the rotors. When the ABS comes on you feel more of a grinding and vibrating feel, along with a groaning noise. It's actually kinda scary if you've never experienced it before and it kicks in. Happens a lot to me here in MN in the winter when it's icy and coming to a stop. I've also felt it though when stopping hard and going over bumps in the road.
  • bkswardbksward Posts: 93
    Also, the 02/03 have the 6 speed manual, if you can find one as well as the xenon head lights.

    The final drive ratio is the same on the old 5-speed as on the 6-speed. I have an 02 6-speed. Most of the time I end up shifting 1-2-3-6 or 1-2-4-6.

    The VQ engine has a wide enough torque curve that the "close ratio" 6-speed doesn't add much. On a car like the S2000 with a very small torque peak it is useful, but not on the Max.

    I would have much preferred that Nissan had done what BMW did with the 5-series and put in a tall, highway gear with the extra cog.
  • claytonjclaytonj Posts: 2
    Hi Guys, has anyone installed aftermarket HID bulbs in a 2004 yet. I heard a rumor that it shouldn't be done to the 04 Max b/c the headlamps must be connected to a special printed circuit board that only the dealer can access. If the HID bulbs are installed without connecting them to the printed circuit board, they will fry a couple of the fuses that protect the car's electrical system and the headlamp fuses. Any truth to this rumor or is fairly safe for me to install the aftermarket HID conversion KIT. Any suggestions???????
  • czechmateczechmate Posts: 3
    Thanks for explaining about the ABS! I did replace both front and rear rotors and pads at 107K miles so didn't think it was time for that again. But you were right...I took it in for a brake inspection today and was told the rotors are warped and need to be milled.
  • keetsterkeetster Posts: 1
    Just bought a 2004 SE and at a little over 500 miles, front end has a developed a squeak and clunk.
  • ccermakccermak Posts: 260
    Haven't there been posts on here before about a problem with struts on the 04's? That's what your issue sounds like.
  • pegasus17pegasus17 Posts: 536
    Hello gents, Haven't been on here in a while but wanted to post an update on my 03 Max SE. Odometer just turned 18000 and mechanically, this car has been trouble-free. There are a few minor problems that mar an otherwise great product: (1)interior squeaks and rattles have increased; fix = increase stereo volume (2)paint seems a bit thin considering multiple chips on the hood (3)occasional engine grinding noise (lasts about a second) on cold startup; known problem with this engine (TSB issued) not worth fixing IMO (4) the sheer silver color does not show dirt but it also doesn't look much better right after i wax it; fix = get a life! In summary, it seems like a good idea to buy a car in its last year of production after the major bugs have been worked out. regards, Mark.
  • bkswardbksward Posts: 93
    Anyone have any recent data on how long it takes for the dealership to get a replacement Head Unit for the Bose system?

    About 2 weeks ago they ordered me a new one for my 2002 Maxima (the CD dropping the left channel TSB issue). They said they'd call me to schedule an appointment when it comes in. (I'm still under warranty) I was just wondering if anyone knows what the current backlog is like.
  • miatamemiatame Posts: 4
    I own a 2000 GLE with 38,000 miles. A couple of days ago, on a damp, rainy day, the engine was running roughly and the "Service Engine Soon" light came on. The engine never died on the drive home from work, but acted like it wanted to. When I started the car today, it ran roughly for 10-15 seconds, and then started running smoothly again. I took it to Autozone, and the diagnostics showed a "misfire on Cylinder 5." They told me this could be a spark plug, a spark plug wire, or any number of things. Does this sound like the ignition coil problem that I have been reading about? Any suggestions on how to go about further diagnosis and repair?
  • ccermakccermak Posts: 260
    Sounds like the coil issue. An expensive fix, but recommended one if you plan on keeping the car a long time would be to buy new plugs and coils from a good Nissan OEM discount parts dealer (I know one in particular but won't solicit), and then pay an independent mechanic $$ to put them in if you're not able to do yourself. Cost would probably be around $500 I'm guessing, but then you have the piece of mind that it shouldn't happen again. That's my plan anyway when it finally happens to me, I have a 2000 SE, but then again I've got 70K on it, not only 38K.
  • blh7068blh7068 Posts: 375
    I dont know if this helps since it was awhile ago, but back in july of 2002 a new head unit was ordered for my 02 SE. It took about 2 months for it to arrive.
  • aggiedogaggiedog Posts: 238
    I've had 4. That's right 4 replaced and it didn't take 2 months on any of them. The first one was the longest, about 2 weeks. I can't remember when the last one was replaced but it's been atleast 6-8 months. The last one works fine. It may depend on where you are. I think they are shipped from CA.
  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    They may be shipped from California, but they are probably made overseas. I had a tuner go out on a one year old TV set and had to wait three months for the part to arrive from Europe! I guess they build these things these days to be throwaway items.
Sign In or Register to comment.