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Nissan Maxima, Sedan
#547 of 576 Regarding the Sky view
Apr 24, 2003 (6:23 am)
It is really interesting how people can think the exact opposite about a car.
I have the 04 SL Black with Frost leather and Driver preferred package.
I think the Skyview is one of the best things about the car.
It gives you lots of room and the kids (5 and 3) really think it is cool!
I have had several cars with sunroofs and really could care less if I ever had another. They are noisy, tend to leak and I just rarely opened mine.
With the Skyview, I feel like I get the best of both worlds without losing headroom.
As for this cars place in the car world. I really think this is Nissans attempt to compete with the Toyota Avalon. I think you will continue to see more refinement to the upper end (an more costs that will make it more in line with Avalon)while at the same time they will continue to improve the Altima and it will essentially be the direct competitor to the Camry.
#548 of 576 '04 MAX--3 STRIKES
Apr 24, 2003 (10:49 am)
Three recent reviews of the '04 Maxima--Car & Driver, Road & Track, and Money/CNN. All quite negative. If it continues, this car's going to be heavily discounted. Designers tried to distinguish it from the Altima, added gimmicks like the faux sun roof, back seat buckets, excessive power for front drive (producing torque steer), etc. Yet all three tested cars had stick shift. I drove both the SL and SE with automatic, and noticed no torque steer in the SL and only a slight amount during hard acceleration in the SE.
Apr 24, 2003 (12:47 pm)
"Yet all three tested cars had stick shift. I drove both the SL and SE with automatic, and noticed no torque steer in the SL and only a slight amount during hard acceleration in the SE."
That is the problem with a lot of the reviews, almost all of the tested vehicles are manuals, despite the fact that a majority purchase automatics. Car and Driver is especially biased toward manuals/ more "performance-oriented" testing; even their recent economy test, the cars were manuals, and the Protege won despite being noisy and having a choppy ride.
The bad reviews might help consumers in one way, by forcing Nissan to offer discounts more quickly. The only way, despite the reviews, to find out if the 04 Max is the appropriate car for people, is to go a test drive one in the form (SE/SL) that you are most likely to purchase.
#550 of 576 Most of these reviews ...
Apr 24, 2003 (12:50 pm)
mention the fact that the Maxima still has the dreaded torque steer problem.
If Honda can eliminate/minimize the Torque Steer on their 240HP Accord, why cant Nissan? In fact every manufacturer has found some way to deal with the Torque steer (Honda, Toyota, Audi, Cadillac etc.). Nissan still refuses to address the issue, and I dont understand it (that is the impression you get when reading the reviews, they make it sound like the torque steer is pretty bad on this car.)
Apr 24, 2003 (1:51 pm)
The answer to your question lies within. (Ahh, I sound so wise)
"If Honda can eliminate/minimize the Torque Steer on their 240HP Accord, why cant Nissan? In fact every manufacturer has found some way to deal with the Torque steer (Honda, Toyota, Audi, Cadillac etc."
Torque steer has very little to do with horsepower, which is the figure you cite in reference to the Accord. The 240hp Accord produces only 212lb ft. of torque, where as the Maxima produces 255lb. ft. There in lies the problem.
To that extent, torque steer is still very much an issue in front drive Cadillacs. Audi's higher torque vehicles use Quattro. Toyota's highest torque front drive engine has not been introduced in cars yet (I'm referring to the 3.3L 240lb ft) and so its current highest torque front drive engine produces 220 lb. ft.
Apr 24, 2003 (2:17 pm)
that TORQUE steer is a problem with cars that have higher TORQUE in relation to its HP rating. The amount of torque in Nissan cars is what makes them so much fun to drive, and also makes them more susceptible to torque steer. I would rather deal with a car that at WOT has a little torque steer than a car that has very little torque, so it feels like you have no low-end power, or makes you rev to 6-7000 rpm to get any power. My mom's 97 Escort may only have 110 hp, but it has 127 lb/ft of torque 3750 rpm which makes it feel strong throughout the rev band. I actually don't mind driving her car, unlike my dad's 97 Sonata that has 127 hp, and similar torque, but it feels very sluggish off the line.
#553 of 576 Torque Steer
Apr 24, 2003 (5:37 pm)
alpha01: "Torque steer has very little to do with horsepower, which is the figure you cite in reference to the Accord. The 240hp Accord produces only 212lb ft. of torque, where as the Maxima produces 255lb. ft. There in lies the problem."
Yes, that makes sense when you think about it, being that the Nissan Maxima produces more Torque in their FWD Maxima than any manufacturer I can think of ...
however, even back in 1995 when I was test driving a Nissan Sentra SE-R, it had terrible torque steer. All I did was punch the accelerator then all of a sudden the steering wheel had a mind of its own. The thing only had 140 HP, and torque lbs/ft was probably around 140 as well!
I only mentioned the 240HP rating of the Accord because I did not want my comparison to be confused with the four cylinder model. I probably should have stated the "V6 Accord "rather than the HP rating.
There is always going to be a torque-steer problem on high torque/hp FWD vehicles, that is a given. But I think most of the reviewers are complaining about is the fact that Nissan vehicles tend to be the worse of the bunch.
Take for example, the Nissan Sentra Spec-V. This vehicle has only 180 lb/ft of torque, but that thing has torque steer problem as well. This review sums it up: "Its hard to enjoy what is otherwise a nice, little sporty sedan with all that torque steer."
http://cartalk.cars.com/Info/Testdrive/Reviews/nissan-sentra-2002- - - - - .html
Going by your example, the Sentra should not be exhibiting that much torque steer because it only has 180 torque, far less than the Accord's 212. But clearly this is not the case.
Dont get me wrong, I love the Nissan Maxima. I always wanted one, and I am serioulsy considering the 2004 model. However, I think Nissan really needs to address this issue.
Nissan is probably using unequal length drive shafts, which is probably the main reason why their FWD cars tend to turn to the right when "torque steer" rears its ugly head. If you look at the Maxima's engine bay, you will notice the engine is positioned to the right.
Oh well, I still like the new 2004 Maxima.
#554 of 576 Been there, heard that...
Apr 24, 2003 (6:03 pm)
The Acura CL-S' torque rating (232 lb/ft) is much closer to the Maxima than the Accord V6, and it keeps torque steer well under control. And the CL-S is even closer to the Altima (246 lb/ft), another Nissan that is frequently criticized for excessive torque steer. At this level, 14 or 23 more lb/ft of torque doesn't take a powerful car from "the torque rating that doesn't cause torque steer" to "the torque rating that does cause torque steer".
Besides, I think the staff of magazines such as Car and Driver gets the fact that there is a correlation between torque and torque steer, yet they're the ones who criticize Nissan for their inability to tame torque steer on the Altima and Maxima. Clearly, "lots more torque" is no excuse for the torque steer problem. And Nissan should be able to do much better.
Apr 25, 2003 (6:29 am)
The Altima/Maxima platform does in fact use unequal-length half shafts, and that is probably the main reason they have so much torque steer.
I still think Nissan should have offered an AWD system on the Maxima. That would have cured the torque-steer problem and given it a more legitimate claim to sportiness.
#556 of 576 torque steer
Apr 25, 2003 (6:43 pm)
I do not see this as a big problem on my 5 speed 98 SE. I take off from a standing start rather conservatively and then increase my speed gradually. This car will always spin wheels when I release the clutch abruptly. Torque steer generally can be annoying only if you really stomp on the gas from a standing start and do not hold onto the steering wheel very hard. How many of us really drive like this habitually? Jackrabbit starts are not very economical for one thing.