• (4.6) 32 reviews
  • MSRP: $8,592$18,456
  • Body Style: Sedan
  • Combined MPG: 22
  • Engine: 290-hp, 3.5-liter V-6 (premium)
  • Drivetrain: Front-wheel Drive
  • Transmission: 2-speed CVT w/OD and auto-manual
2012 Nissan Maxima

Our Take on the 2012 Nissan Maxima

Our Take

The Maxima returns in two trim levels, 3.5 S and 3.5 SV, both of which have a 290-horsepower, 3.5-liter V-6 engine. The five-seat Maxima is based on the same platform as the Altima, but it serves as Nissan's flagship sedan. It competes with cars like the Dodge Charger and Ford Taurus.New fo... Read Full Report

What We Don't Like

  • Responsive but ill-suited CVT
  • Steering without Sport Package
  • Trunk volume
  • Smallish cabin
  • Requires premium gas

Notable Features

  • Revised styling for 2012
  • 290-hp V-6
  • CVT
  • Optional panoramic moonroof
  • Shares platform with Altima

Reviews

Our Expert Reviews

Editor's note: This review was written in October 2010 about the 2010 Nissan Maxima. Little of substance has changed with this year's model. To see what's new for 2012, click here, or check out a side-by-side comparison of the three model years. The large sedan is making a comeback these days, and the Nissan Maxima succeeds because it doesn't equate lots of interior space to... Read full review for the 2012 Nissan Maxima

Consumer Reviews

4.6

Average based on 32 reviews

Write a Review

impressed

by candy from on July 19, 2011

I just leased a base 2012 Maxima 3.5 CVT its my 3rd Maxima. It now accompanies our 2009 Maurano and replaces a 2008 Avalon lease. Before that I had a 2005 Saab 9-3x Turbo and 2 other Maximas a 98 and ... Read Full Review

2 Trim Levels Available

Wondering which configuration is right for you?
Our 2012 Nissan Maxima trim comparison will help you decide.

Safety

Crash-Test Reports

IIHS Ratings

Based on Nissan Maxima 3.5 S

Head Restraints and Seats
M
Moderate overlap front
G
Roof Strength
A
Side
G

IIHS Ratings

Based on Nissan Maxima 3.5 S

G Good
A Acceptable
M Marginal
P Poor

Head Restraints and Seats

Dynamic Rating
M
Overall Rear
M
Seat Head/Restraint Geometry
G

Moderate overlap front

Chest
G
Head/Neck
A
Left Leg/Foot
G
Overall Front
G
Restraints
G
Right Leg/Foot
G
Structure/safety cage
G

Other

Roof Strength
A

Side

Driver Head Protection
G
Driver Head and Neck
G
Driver Pelvis/Leg
G
Driver Torso
G
Overall Side
G
Rear Passenger Head Protection
G
Rear Passenger Head and Neck
G
Rear Passenger Pelvis/Leg
G
Rear Passenger Torso
G
Structure/safety cage
A
Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) is a nonprofit research and communications organization funded by auto insurers. IIHS rates vehicles good, acceptable, marginal or poor based on performance in high-speed front and side crash tests. IIHS also evaluates seat/head restraints for protection against neck injuries in rear impacts.

NHTSA Ratings

Based on Nissan Maxima 3.5 S

Overall
Overall Front
Overall Side
Overall Rollover Rating

NHTSA Ratings

Based on Nissan Maxima 3.5 S

Overall
Overall Front
Overall Side
Overall Rollover Rating
Driver's
Passenger's
Front Seat
Rear Seat
Side Barrier
Side Pole
Side Pole Barrier combined (Front)
Side Pole Barrier combined (Rear)
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is part of the U.S. Department of Transportation. NHTSA provides vehicle safety information such as front- and side-crash ratings and rollover ratings. Vehicles are rated using a star rating system from 1-5 stars, with 5 being the highest.

Recalls

Great news! There are currently no known recalls on 2012 Nissan Maxima.


Service & Repair

Estimated Service & Repair cost: $3,000 per year.

Warranty Coverage

Bumper-to-Bumper

36mo/36,000mi

Powertrain

60mo/60,000mi

What you should get in your warranty can be confusing. Make sure you are informed.

Learn More About Warranties

Warranties Explained

Bumper-to-Bumper

Often called a basic warranty or new-vehicle warranty, a bumper-to-bumper policy covers components like air conditioning, audio systems, vehicle sensors, fuel systems and major electrical components. Most policies exclude regular maintenance like fluid top offs and oil changes, but a few brands have separate free-maintenance provisions, and those that do offer them is slowly rising. Bumper-to-bumper warranties typically expire faster than powertrain warranties.

Powertrain

Don't be misled a 10-year or 100,000-mile powertrain warranty doesn't promise a decade of free repairs for your car. It typically covers just the engine and transmission, along with any other moving parts that lead to the wheels, like the driveshaft and constant velocity joints. Some automakers also bundle seat belts and airbags into their powertrain warranties. With a few exceptions, powertrain warranties don't cover regular maintenance like engine tuneups and tire rotations.

Roadside Assistance

Some automakers include roadside assistance with their bumper-to-bumper or powertrain warranties, while others have separate policies. These programs cover anything from flat-tire changes and locksmith services to jump-starts and towing. Few reimburse incidental costs like motel rooms (if you have to wait for repairs).

Free Scheduled Maintenance

Some automakers include free scheduled maintenance for items such as oil changes, air filters and tire rotations. Some include consumables including brake pads and windshield wipers; others do not. They are typically for the first couple of years of ownership of a new car.

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