Last post on Dec 12, 2013 at 12:22 PM
You are in the Nissan Maxima
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Nissan Maxima, Sedan
#3925 of 8985 4apexs - good highway car?
Jan 01, 2002 (12:04 pm)
I have a 1995 Maxima SE (purchased September 1994)that just turned 120k miles. And we just returned from a 1,500 mile roundtrip to visit family in Maine. Here are my responses to your questions:
Driving comfort for 200-500 miles a day: good. Seats in the 95 SE offered slightly better bolstering and adjustments than the GXE. Not sure if that's still the case, but I would check it out. The Maxima doesn't have as comfortable seats as a Volvo or BMW 5-series, but they are better than an Accord or Camry, IMO. The car "cruises" very nicely on the highway at 75+ mph. No extra effort to keep it on track and it's reasonably quiet. I have the SE with the "sport" suspension and it handles extremely well for a front wheel drive car. I personally would always trade the improved handling of the SE over the slightly "softer" feel of the GXE or GLE, but that is subjective.
Milage: I have averaged exactly 24.04 mpg over 120,500 miles with a mix of 30% city 70% highway. For longer trips with cruise control set at 70-80 mph, I average about 26-27, with an occasional 30 mpg tankful.
Dependability: With good maintenance, 150-200k+ seems very realistic. I have had almost no repairs for the first 120k. An airbag light came on and had to be reset for $75 and some early dash rattles that were fixed under warranty. Tires have lasted 50k+ miles per set. Front brake pads lasted 90k miles. Still on original rear brakes. The clutch (5-speed) is original (and shows no sign of wear). The engine is still as strong as new and idles as quiet as new. My grand total maintenance costs over 7 years and 120k miles is just under $4,000, including 2 sets of tires, dealer service every 7,500 or 15,000 miles and oil changes every 4,000 +/- miles. I have never had a problem or repair which has put the car out of service for even a single day (the two mentioned above were fixed as part of a regular service visit).
Clearly, highway milage is a lot easier on a car than stop and go city driving. My dealership keeps reminding me that my brake experience is not the norm for Washington DC. However, the Nissan V6 is about as solid an engine you can find and I am extremely pleased that I did not save a few bucks and get a 4-cylinder Altima or Camry back in 1994. I suspect that at 40k miles per year, you could expect to get 200k-300k miles out of the Maxima V6.
Hope this helps.
#3926 of 8985 habitat1 - Good highway car?
Jan 01, 2002 (1:14 pm)
Thanks for your comments - given your 30/70 city/hwy mileage, would you get the manual again. I do a LOT of cellphone calls, and even with hands free, don't know if manual is too many things, not enough hands.
What are your thoughts on reg oil 4k vs Mobil 1 5-10k?
Have many Maxima owners bought/needed extended warranties?
Lastly, will engine run fine on 87 octane?
Thanks again for your response.
Jan 01, 2002 (2:24 pm)
If I can step in here - I agree with most everything said above, except that I come down in favor of the GLE over the SE. I'm not interested in feeling every bump in the road, and feel the GLE cruises a bit better while still giving every bit the handling that I need. Also I LOVE the heated seats, and would recommend it to you strongly, especially if your driving is almost all in upper Midwest.
The best mileage I've gotten has been pretty close to 30, and that was for long vacations, cruise control set around 70. Around town, it's more like 24 or so.
Absolutely no reason you can't see 150 to 200k miles, so that would mean at your mileage maybe 5 years or so of ownership. I would recommend that you think seriously about moving up a step to the GLE, I think you'd be very happy with it for the long term ownership. The little extra bells and whistles, and better quality interior, I think are worth it. Good luck whatever you decide.
#3928 of 8985 advice on max...
Jan 01, 2002 (7:36 pm)
Hi. I am considering buying a max se 6 spd tomorrow before the 500 rebate is over. other cars I am considering are the altima v6 5 spd, wrx wagon 5 spd, and waiting for the new infiniti g35 if it comes with a manual tranny.
One of the local nissan dealers has a white max 6 spd with bose, sunroof, mats, and flaps. the sticker is 28,254, and the invoice is 25,332. Do you think a good deal would be invoice minus the 500 rebate? Have people done better than that?
I have not driven the wrx yet, but am not impressed with the interior of altima. the maxima seems to have better materials. seems like the only advantage to altima is a more sophisticated suspension. Otherwise I think I still like the max better. Anyone tried a max with the helical limited slip yet?? In Automobile mag they said that sentra with helical lim slip had a bad steering and handling feel bacause of the lim slip. Any thoughts on this?? Is this feature worth waiting for and paying the extra money for, and the loss of rebate, to get it on the maxima 6 spd?? Any thoughts most appreciated! I know that rebate is over tomorrow. Thanks
I tried to drive wrx but local dealer demanded to check my credit before test drive and I walked out becasue i thought it was not worth the check! Anyone have thought on wrx? It sounds like it might be a bit rough and interior cheap.
Jan 01, 2002 (9:28 pm)
but I think the WRX would look silly on anyone over the age of 30. Just too much design "excitement". Sort of like a Japanese version of Pontiac.
Jan 01, 2002 (10:30 pm)
I am Josaredo on Maxima.org and many other places. That name has the first two letter of every body in my house.
JOhnny SAdie REggie DOminique.
Josaredo. I like it.
#3931 of 8985 Bought my 2002 SE on Saturday
Jan 02, 2002 (12:31 am)
On Saturday (12/29/01), I came home with a 2002 Maxima SE (base- cloth interior/no sunroof) in sterling mist and a black interior.
I got it for $23,999 ($23,499 including the rebate). Including reg fees, taxes, the financing (0.9% over 36 months) and some other nonsense, the total cost of the car will wind up being $26K. I put down $10,000.
A good deal? Yes? No?
The car came in only 3 days before and was never taken for a test drive by anyone. It was nice seeing only 2 miles on the odometer. It was a real bitch trying to find an SE in sterling mist with NO sunroof.
BEFORE the $500 rebate a few weeks ago, at least one dealership was willing to go as low as $23,500. Currently, WITH the rebate program, no one wanted to offer $23,500 UNLESS the $500 rebate was already built into the price.
One thing I wasn't happy with is they already had something called "window etching" (which I never heard of at the time) for $200 drawn up on the contract. I knew reg fees, etc, were gonna be extra, but I told them I wasn't too happy that they would include this without first asking me if I even wanted this "option".
When I read the full description of it, if the car is stolen within the first six years AND recovered, the policy covers your insurance deductible and pays you $2500 (admittedly there's some fine print) on top of that. With me parking my car at work in areas that are, shall we say not "desirable", it seemed okay with me at the time and I then signed on the dotted line. Anyone else purchase a Maxima where the "window etching" was already drawn up by the dealer in the contract?
I've been shopping for 2 years now, and I don't see any other car in the 25K and under price range where you get more bang for the money. Yes, the Altima is a BEAUTIFUL car, but to me it seemed a bit cavernous from the outside and inside and I never liked cars that have a high rear-end (like the Chrysler 300M).
I've gotten 16 years out of my 1986 Camaro...I wonder if the SE can match that?
WOULD LOVE TO GET SOME FEEDBACK FROM FELLOW MAXIMA OWNERS ON SOME OF MY POINTS. HAPPY NEW YEAR TO ALL!
#3932 of 8985 4apexs - follow-up
Jan 02, 2002 (4:11 am)
Manual vs. automatic: This is a personal preference question, but I would definitely get the manual again. The performance advantage in 1995 was significant. I like the immediate throttle response and getting in and out of traffic with the 5-speed. I have heard that difference in the 2002 models with the 3.5 liter engine may not be as significant. But I enjoy driving a manual and so does my wife. (We are in our 40's with two young kids and have a Maxima 5-speed, Isuzu Trooper 5-speed and Honda S2000 6-speed. I doubt that more than 15% of our neighbors in DC have even one manual transmission in their households.)
The added difficulty in shifting and using a cell phone hasn't been that much of an issue, since I tend not to place a call until I am at a "cruising" speed where shifting is unlikely. But I will admit having to undertake some interesting steering and shifting manuevers when somebody called me at the wrong time!
Also, just my opinion, but the Maxima 4-speed automatic is not as impressive as the V6 engine it's attached to. A friend who was recently in the market ended up with an Acura TL over the Maxima GLE and Infiniti I35. He claimed the Acura 5-speed automatic was smoother, quieter and offered better acceleration. I suspect that the redesigned 2003 Maxima will match a 5-speed automatic to the 3.5 liter engine.
SE vs. GXE vs. GLE: I would probably agree with bianca2 that you should consider a GLE vs. a GXE given the amount of driving you will be doing. However, I disagree somewhat on the "feeling every bump in the road" comment about the SE. I don't. What I did notice in the 1995 model was less body roll in low and high speed turns / curves and slightly tighter steering. Again, if comfort is an absolute priority, the Acura TL does have a fully independent suspension that absorbs bumps slightly better than any Maxima or the Infiniti I35. But I would test drive an SE vs. GXE/GLE for yourself to determine what feels best to you.
Oil: I've only used regular Castrol 5w30 every 4k miles. On our new Honda S2000, I will likely use Mobil 1. I think for a Maxima, it's a toss up (and with mostly highway driving, you could probably safely get 10-15k out of Mobil 1).
Extended Warranty: Thankful I didn't purchase. I would have had 0 claims between 3/36 and 7/100 (or 7/120, for that matter). I would consider for a BMW or Mercedes where electrical and transmission problems could set you back a few grand, but I don't think an extended warranty on a Maxima is either necessary or a likely good investment (which suggests that the car IS a good investment!)
87 vs. 93 Octane: I previously posted my opinion on this several months ago. I have used premium gas exclusively. I have had 0 problems and the engine runs like new. Are those two related? I don't know. But for the roughly 5,000 gallons I purchased over the past 7 years, at the very best I would have saved $750-$1,000 at the pump (15-20 cents per gallon), assuming gas milage stayed the same. I have heard of 1-3 mpg drops with regular gas. There goes most or all of the savings. Personally, I would stick with premium.
Sorry for the lengthy response. Hope it helps.
#3933 of 8985 Window Etching
Jan 02, 2002 (6:18 am)
Is one of those high profit dealer-installed options. Don't think they are worth it. Notice that insurance companies who pay off the stolen cars aren't pushing it to their policy holders? Do tell your insurance company that it was etched. See what they say and if they'll give you a discount. I doubt they will but nothing ventured nothing gained. (And if they won't give you a discount, think that is instructive about the worth of the etching.) What insurance company is standing behind your etching policy? Is it some small, local, odd sounding, or fly-by-night company?
#3934 of 8985 New 2002 Maxima GLE
Jan 02, 2002 (2:15 pm)
I have my 2002 GLE for about 3 weeks now and VERY glad I chose it over others I considered (Passat,WRX,Altima,I even checked the 300M). The ride is GREAT, as is acceleration. I am averaging about 20mpg..but that is most likely caused by my "playing around" with the awesome acceleration so much. I got it in sterling mist with black leather, the sunroof looks great with the smoked wind deflecter (the color of the deflector looks great with the sterling mist). The car holds the road great. I hope this helps anyone "sitting on the fence". One of the previous posters said he was shopping a car for 2 years. That is sad. Like the Nike ad sez..JUST DO IT! With the finace rate lowered, $500 rebate, now is a good time. Next year the Max will be built in USA, and to some that means a lack of qaulity control.