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Nissan Maxima



  • Must choose between the Maxima SL and Accura Tl-S. Anyone faniliar with both vehicles who can offer advice, I would appreciate it. Test drove both and was equally impressed.Thanks
  • kennyg5kennyg5 Posts: 360
    You should check out the TL-s board first about the tranny problems. As to the 04 Max, although I am not a fan of its exterior design, the engine is a gem if you don't mash the gas pedal, which I understand creates quite a bit of disturbing unwanted torque.
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    I agree with kennyg5 on the TL-S transmission issue. There are several posters on the TL/S boards that are on their second or third transmission after only 20-30k miles. I assume you are considering a 2003, since I understand there won't be a TL-"S" with the upcoming redesign.

    Regarding the Maxima, it is a new model and now is made in the US, so there isn't much history to go on. I noticed the SL automatic is a 4-speed (pretty behind the engineering times). If you must go with an automatic, the SE has a better performing, more fuel efficient 5-speed auto.

    I am a Honda fan (own an S2000), but if I were replacing my Maxima with something other than my first choice BMW 530i, it wouldn't be with a TL-S. Probably another Maxima or G35.
  • bowke28bowke28 Posts: 2,185
    yes, its a new model, but very few of the parts are new. engine/tranny has been used many times, platform is from the altima, etc...other than the sheet metal, its mostly from the parts bin.
  • I have my '00 max in for it's 60k service at the dealership. They just called with all kinds of extra services that I 'need'. I was wondering if anyone can provide any advice about any of these, in terms of whether they really need to be done.

    In case it helps, I drive mostly highway miles and plan to keep the car for about 200k miles. I'm inclined to get all the service done b/c I just don't know any better.

    Sorry that some of these aren't very specific...

    1) Emissions service...something about keeping an EGC valve (or something like that) from getting clocked.
    2) Throttle assembly cleaning..they say it's sticky and will get worse in the winter.
    3) Power steering fluid flush...they say it's dirty and will save a potential $1,500 pump replacement down the road.
    4) Transmission flush...they say the fluid is dirty.
    5) Rear issue here, I knew this was needed. After 60k miles with no brake problems, I'm satisfied.
    6) In-cabin microfilter (as part of the 60k service package). Since it costs $50, I said "wait until it clogs to replace it."

  • bowke28bowke28 Posts: 2,185
    all i can say is this: ive never seen a person who follows dealer recommendations have more problems than not. all of it is legitimate...could wait, but legitimate. personally, i would get it done now...early bird gets the worm.

    keep in mind: there are lots of maintenance items that wont be listed in your owners doesnt tell you when to replace tires, brakes, battery, wiper blades, etc... some of the things you mentioned are no different. the microfilter should have been done at 30k miles anyway.
  • I just had my dealer recommend a fuel induction service to clean the injectors of carbon build up (2002 Max has 37.7k). A Honda dealer once provided this same service under warranty. Anyway, how necessary is this service? The dealer claims it is routine maintenance on new cars but my manual does not even mention it. I do a considerable amount of city driving.

    Also, he recommended changing the air filter to a Nissan filter since they are "oil charged" and therefore provide better performance. I have been using Fram filters and the car seemed to perform just fine. Does the Nissan filter really make a difference?

    Walter 3rd: I am in a similar situation as you--additional services being pushed by the dealer. For what it is worth, I would pass on the power steering pump fluid flush. I have owned many cars with over 100k miles and never even changed the power steering fluid. I would have done the cabin air filter instead. Good luck!
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    I'm not sure I can be much help with the specific services your dealer is recommending, but I have taken my 1995 Maxima w/ 143,000 miles to the dealer for service at least every 15,000 miles and have never needed #1, #2 or #3. On the transmission flush, I thought they change the fluid at 60,000 mile intervals, but I may be wrong (I have a 5-speed manual). #5 - I didn't need new front brakes until 90,000 miles (just got my second set installed at 143,000 miles) and the rears lasted until 105,000 miles. The rears should not wear out before the fronts.

    I have been fortunate to have a dealer that appears trustworthy about not suggesting extra services when they are not needed. In the past, I have not been so fortunate and it's obviously difficult for a lay person to know when they are getting hosed with a "throttle assembly cleaning".
  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    $ 1500 for a new power steering pump? How did they come up with that quote? Maybe for a 2000 Rolls Royce, but not for 2000 Maxima.

    I would have the brake fluid changed instead - it is hygroscopic and will absorb moisture over time. You can check for yourself just how "dirty" your power steering fluid really is. I do not see how it would get dirty in such a short time unless you had dirt in the system to beging with or somebody contaminated the fluid on purpose. I never changed power steering fluid on any of my cars (and I kept some for eight years and well over 100K miles) and never had power steering problems or leaks.
  • I recently purchased a 2002 Maxima SE with 23K miles (rental). I began using 91 octane but cannot appreciate a difference in power. I seem to remember that premium fuel is needed for the 255 horsepower rating, 87 octane provides around 240. Am I wasting money? Am I just boosting my power hungry ego?
    Just a comment. I traded in my 2001 Accord VP with 130 ponies. The Max is FUN to drive, after being in the accord you can imagine how much joy I get overtaking other cars.
  • There are only a handful of cars that actually require premium and the Max is not one of them. I tried it on my '02 SE and my gas mileage went down from 24.5mpg to 23.3mpg. I did not notice any improvement in performance either. No sense giving the oil companies any more money then we are already giving them. I too purchased a rental car. It only had 9.5k miles and was less than 5 months old. Not sure why they traded them in so quickly (there were 6 to choose from). I have had the Max for 1.5 yrs and now have 38k miles on it and it is just as solid as the day I bought it. Only problem I have had is the rear oxygen sensor needed to be replaced about a week ago. Looking forward to many years of dependability. Good luck!
  • There are only a handful of cars that actually require premium and the Max is not one of them. I tried premium for a while and saw a decline in mpg and no change in performance. No sense giving the oil companies any more money than they are already getting from us! Check out and in the upper right search for "premium gas" and scroll down to second article entitled "People using premium gas when they don't need to."

    I too, bought a rental Max. mine had 9.5k miles and was less than 5 months old. It now has over 38k miles and is still as solid as the day I bought it. Only problem has been a new O2 sensor that went out a week ago. Great car! Good luck!
  • monte4monte4 Posts: 101
    Premium is not required but as the ownwers manual say " for optimal performance it is recommended" Most of us 02-04 Max owners use it I definatley notice the small difference in performance, although if I'm going on a long trip where I will be at a constant speed I will use 89 or 87 octane.
  • Hi all, I am in search of a used Maxima for my son. Any recommend on what year model is most reliable. I am thinking of 96-98 model. I have a '87 Camry with 170,000+ miles without any problems so I have no hesitation to select another Camry. But I thought I may try Maxima. Thanks
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    I can speak strongly in favor of the "4th generation" Maxima, model years 1995-1999. I have a 1995 SE 5-speed with 143,000 miles. Over the past year, I have finally had some "non-routine" maintenance and repairs: water pump ($500 =/-), starter ($500 +/-), and most recently CV boots ($640). But, other than those items, the maintenance costs have been very reasonable and the car very reliable. I have only had to have new front brake pads twice (90k & 143k) and rears once (110k). The rotors have not had to be replaced. The original clutch is fine. The engine runs smooth and strong.

    I have owned Toyota's (2 Supras), Hondas, Acuras and a couple of other brands and my 1995 Maxima experience has been the best of all, especially given the amount of mileage I've put on it. I have not heard as positive things about the 2000/2001 model.

    Good luck.
  • monte4monte4 Posts: 101
    Cduong I can speak on the 4th gen as well having owned one for 6 years before trading it in on my 03. I would say a 97-99 because the beefed up the bumpers and they are much stronger than the 95-96's (test proved that) and in 98 they offered side air bags, plus the updated style of the 97-99 they look more aggressive/attractive than the 95-96. The 95-99 is totaly different feeling car than a Camry and is more of an enthusiast car, if you want a smooth riding boring car Camry, if you want something sporty not so smooth and fun Maxima.
  • Hello all. I've got an automatic '01 SE with 28,200 miles. About ready to replace the Potenza RE 92s. Still have good tread in the center of each but not much left on the sides. Getting scary in the rain. Have read a lot of posts about how poor a tire these are but honestly, I have found them to be pretty good. Never had a balance / vibration problem with them and I rotated around every 7,000 miles. I am planning to replace them with Michelin Pilot Sports A/S which I see as being an upgrade after all I have read , mostly on Anyone have any feedback on these? BTW - I know they are pricey - around a grand installed.
    Thanks in advance.
  • jg28jg28 Posts: 257
    My gas mileage always is BETTER when I use premium so I'm astounded to hear that it would go down. I figure I make up the difference in what I pay for the mileage. Well, okay I don't. I'm really surprised to hear than anyone is getting 23-24 miles a gallon. Best I do is around 21, though I did get close to 23 on the hwy (2002 SE). Don't trust your trip computer, it's way off on gas mileage.
  • jg28jg28 Posts: 257
    last winter I bought some winter performance tires because these RE92s were slipping around even in just wet. They're not the right size because they didn't make em in our OEM size back then. (They're 225/45/17). Since I have dedicated winter tires I'm going to be trying the Kumho ECSTAs grand touring summer tire. They're selling like mad at Tirerack and people speak highly of them in the surveys and comments (many of these are from Maxima drivers).
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    I do not have any specific feedback on the Michilin's you are considering, but I do have a general comment on the price.

    I have a 95 Maxima SE 5-speed and a Honda S2000. One of them is a sports car and can make good use of $200+/- tires and the other, albeit very good for its class, is a FWD sedan. And the fact that you have an automatic suggests, perhaps wrongly, that you probably aren't trying to wring every last ounce of performance out of the car.

    It's your money, but I really question the prudence of putting $1,000 per set tires on a 2001 Maxima. I have driven the 00/01 models and do not feel any difference in handling or suspension over the 95-99 4th generation. With my 95, I have replaced the original tires twice in 143,000 miles (about every 50-55k) thanks to regular rotation and balancing. Both replacement sets cost between $400 and $500 with taxes, recommended as the best at the time by a highly reputable tire shop that handles truly high performance cars.

    P.S. Even the "W" rated ultra high performance Bridgestone Pole Postition S03 tires for the Honda S2000 are under $850 per set installed. Just what in the world are $1,000 per set tires on the Maxima supposed to accomplish?
  • I put these on my 2000 Maxima SE at about 80k.

    They are a significant step up in performance from the factory Potenza's, particularly in wet conditions. They do make more noise at highway speeds so take that into consideration.

    I paid around $180 each from (2 years ago) and they are listed there now in 225/50/17 for $191.

    As to whether it's smart to spend that amount of money on your tires, well it's your money and if you want the Michelins, then go for it. They were the first Michelin's I've ever bought and there is a difference.

    I would also suggest that you monitor your tire air pressure a little more frequently, especially if your going to spend that much on tires. The fact that your current tires are showing consistent wear patterns on the outsides suggests your running them under significantly inflated.

    You'll reduce your gas mileage, your tire life, and your handling with this practice. The only thing you gain is a little softer ride.
  • I would like to ask car man and others if paying $500 over invoice for se & sl in bergen county new jersey is a good deal & if any incentives are out there for this car. I would of like to of posted this on proper board but I could not find my way there. Please help as I am ready to go ahead with deal soon. Thanks for help in advance.
  • I was wondering what options were available on the 1997-1999 Nissan Maxima SE.

    I am interested in the Maxima.

    Anyone remember any of the pkgs available on the 1997-1999 Maxima?

    Thanks in advance
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Max - while you are waiting for some input, you can click on the blue Used Cars tab at the top of the page, then click on TMV, then follow the links to Edmunds details of those MYs.
  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    If I remember correctly the following options were available in 98:

    1. Convenience package (8-way power driver's seat, Homelink garage door opener, remote keyless entry, security system)

    2. Automatic transmission (5 speed manual was standard equipment)

    3. Power tilt/slide sunroof

    4. Bose stereo system (includes casette/CD player). Standard stereo was AM/FM/casette

    5. Leather seat package: (leather seats, power passenger front seat, climate control A/C system)

    6. Several individual options, such as floormats, sunroof deflector, splashguards, trunk cargo net.
  • bowke28bowke28 Posts: 2,185
    why do so many people ASSUME there are incentives on vehicles? especially on new products? can the vehicle itself not be incentive enough? i cant wait to see what the incentive mentality of the public does when they go away.

    "you mean i have to get the car I LIKE?!?!?!?!"
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    I suspect that consumers are reacting to Nissan's past pricing policies / strategy. Name one new model by Nissan or Infiniti that hasn't had incentives or significant discounting within 6 months or less of introduction.

    I, on the other hand, was pleased to get a Honda S2000 for $880 under MSRP a full 2 years after the vehicle was introduced. And I almost fell off my chair when a neighbor brought home a new 2003 BMW 530i at $3,000 under invoice thanks to the first ever incentive offered by BMW on the car to make room for the new model. Had I been ready, I might be driving one myself.

    I got a reasonable discount on my 1995 Maxima SE 90 days after the new model was introduced in mid-1994. But 2-3 months later, the price had dropped to $xxx over invoice. I don't think I would ever pay anywhere near MSRP or even much above invoice for another Nissan, given that they do not control the volume the way Honda has on the S2000 or BMW does on many of their models. They will saturate the market with as many vehicles they can sell at invoice or less. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out that if you have a long history of doing this, consumers will come to expect it.
  • berbelberbel Posts: 167
    I bought a set of these and they do provide great
    wet and dry traction.....considerably better than
    the oem Bridgestones. However, they are also sig-
    nificantly noisier than the Bridgestones, especially at interstate speeds. The noise factor
    alone convinces me that I would NOT repurchase this
    particular tire. Just my two cents.

  • ccermakccermak Posts: 260
    Just got my new Automobile mag last night. I read the comparison of $30,000 sedans and they ranked the Maxima LAST behind the Pontiac Grand Prix GTP. They Actura TSX was first, then BMW 3, then G35, then Maz 6??, can't remember after that. They had WRX, EVO, and many others that are of course much smaller and different purpose, but they said the only good thing about the Max was the engine. On another note, they had the G35 0-60 time at 5.6 secs, tieing the EVO. It was the fastest car to 100mph.
  • bowke28bowke28 Posts: 2,185
    my point was that customers ask me if the quest or maxima has 0%, and HOW MUCH the rebate is...forget about asking IF there is one. when i tell them there is no rebate, and their rate will be determined by their CREDIT SCORE, they get this incredulous look on theur face, like im trying to rip them off. when the big incentive game cools back off, im just looking forward to people shrugging and accepting that they are not being paid to buy a car anymore.

    nissan's goal, actually, is to emulate honda's inventory practices, and move steadily away from the incentive game. the only nissan rebates right now are on xterra, sentra, frontier, and pathfinder.

    "Name one new model by Nissan or Infiniti that hasn't had incentives or significant discounting within 6 months or less of introduction."

    actually, i can name a few. ready?

    1. murano
    2. 350Z
    3. G35
    4. altima
    5. maxima (debuted in 3/03)
    6. FX35 & 45

    there may be more, but im not sure yet.

    altima offers 1.9%, but lots of banks have 2-2.5% now, so i dont consider that an incentive.
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