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2019 Nissan Maxima

2019 Nissan Maxima

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$19,026 — $41,676 NEW and USED
10
Photos
Sedan
5 Seats
25 MPG
(Combined)
Key specs of the base trim
 — 
Compare 5 trims

Overview

Is this the car for you?

The Good

  • Accelerator response
  • Standard V-6 power
  • Lush semi-aniline leather option
  • Front-seat comfort
  • Bold styling

The Bad

  • Front-seat width
  • Backseat room
  • Interior quality not up to luxury-brand rivals
  • Controlled but firm ride
  • Modest handling
  • Glitchy multimedia system
2019 Nissan Maxima exterior side view

What to Know

about the 2019 Nissan Maxima
  • Updated styling
  • More safety features
  • 3.5-liter V-6
  • Continuously variable automatic transmission
  • Available 360-degree cameras
  • Standard Apple CarPlay, Android Auto

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2019 Nissan Maxima Review

from the Cars.com expert editorial team

Debuting at the 2018 Los Angeles Auto Show, Nissan updated its Maxima sedan for the 2019 model year with new styling and safety features.

By Kelsey Mays

The verdict: The 2019 Nissan Maxima has always appealed as more of a budget luxury sedan than a traditional full-sizer. As consumer interest in both groups wanes, however, so does the case for the Maxima.

Versus the competition: More of an alternative to the Acura TLX or Lexus ES than a traditional full-size sedan, the Maxima has aspects of driving fun and premium quality. But it can’t deliver the whole package in either area, leaving it few other legs to stand on.

The Maxima slots above the Altima to cap off Nissan’s sedan lineup. The automaker updated the Maxima for 2019 with styling changes and new safety options, which you can read more about here. Available in five trim levels, the 2019 model retains a standard 3.5-liter V-6 and continuously variable automatic transmission. Compare the trims here or go here to stack up the 2019 and 2018 models. We evaluated Maxima’s two top trims: the SR and the Platinum.

How It Drives

In an era of turbocharged engines and high-tech transmissions with instant torque and short-gear-ratio revving, the Maxima goes it old-school. A big, normally aspirated V-6 (300 horsepower, 261 pounds-feet of torque) doesn’t dole out the good stuff until 4,000 to 6,000 rpm, and the transmission exhibits relatively few of the simulated shift points that many of today’s CVTs throw in for effect. This seems like a formula that would underwhelm, but the Maxima delivers results with swift accelerator response. Press the gas, and the car leaps to attention; the h...

The verdict: The 2019 Nissan Maxima has always appealed as more of a budget luxury sedan than a traditional full-sizer. As consumer interest in both groups wanes, however, so does the case for the Maxima.

Versus the competition: More of an alternative to the Acura TLX or Lexus ES than a traditional full-size sedan, the Maxima has aspects of driving fun and premium quality. But it can’t deliver the whole package in either area, leaving it few other legs to stand on.

The Maxima slots above the Altima to cap off Nissan’s sedan lineup. The automaker updated the Maxima for 2019 with styling changes and new safety options, which you can read more about here. Available in five trim levels, the 2019 model retains a standard 3.5-liter V-6 and continuously variable automatic transmission. Compare the trims here or go here to stack up the 2019 and 2018 models. We evaluated Maxima’s two top trims: the SR and the Platinum.

How It Drives

In an era of turbocharged engines and high-tech transmissions with instant torque and short-gear-ratio revving, the Maxima goes it old-school. A big, normally aspirated V-6 (300 horsepower, 261 pounds-feet of torque) doesn’t dole out the good stuff until 4,000 to 6,000 rpm, and the transmission exhibits relatively few of the simulated shift points that many of today’s CVTs throw in for effect. This seems like a formula that would underwhelm, but the Maxima delivers results with swift accelerator response. Press the gas, and the car leaps to attention; the high-revving punch comes moments later, and the climb up the tachometer is enjoyable enough. Most modern cars have some degree of accelerator lag, ranging from slight to borderline dangerous. The Maxima excels simply by not screwing up where so many other cars do.

The SR gets unique shock-absorber tuning, but in both the SR and Platinum we tested the suspension’s overall character is controlled but firm. Expect plenty of chop over sewer covers, as well as low-level highway turbulence on all but the smoothest pavement. The experience compares to the sport-tuned TLX A-Spec, also a firm-riding sedan, but Nissan should offer a comfort-oriented suspension choice.

Alternatives ranging from a regular TLX or Lexus ES to most mass-market full-size sedans, such as the Toyota Avalon, Chrysler 300 and Chevrolet Impala, ride more forgivingly, and the Maxima doesn’t justify its firmness with exceptional handling. The high-effort steering is precise enough, but the chassis does little to mask the car’s front-wheel-drive architecture. Progressive understeer makes its way into sweeping corners, salvaged only by deliberate lift-throttle or selective braking from the electronic stability system, both of which can slide the tail a bit to reorient the axis. Still, I miss the prior-generation Maxima (2009-2014), a car whose excellent dynamics belied its front-drive roots. The current generation feels less planted, and Nissan’s updates for 2019 don’t change that.

The Inside

Base trim levels have cloth upholstery, while other trims offer three grades of leather, culminating in semi-aniline cowhide. Included with the top-trim Maxima’s Platinum Reserve Package, the semi-aniline upholstery is rich stuff. Lavish padding with double-stitched surfaces down to arm level (and in some cases knee level) goes a long way toward evoking a legitimate luxury car. Alas, certain aspects don’t add up to luxury — or modernity, for that matter. The climate dials feel too clumsy for a premium car, and some controls suggest Nissan’s 2000s-era parts bin. There are cheaper plastics in scattered areas where luxury rivals have richer stuff. And Cars.com editors observed numerous problems with the 8-inch touchscreen in two test vehicles, including choppy, delayed images from the backup camera, faulty Bluetooth music streaming, and navigation maps freezing on Android Auto.

If the Maxima falls short of the luxury big leagues, it’s all the way down in junior varsity in terms of roominess. Editors found the front seats comfortable, but the center console fans out ahead of the cupholders to encroach on knee clearance even for average-sized drivers, let alone larger folks. An outcropping in the footwell limits passenger-side space. Backseat legroom is modest, and some adults may find the seat cushions too short. In cars with the panoramic moonroof (a feature that’s standard on two trim levels and available on a third), headroom is downright stingy. If you plan to drive adults in back with any frequency, the backseats in most large-sedan rivals leave the Maxima’s in the dust.

Features & Value

As of this writing, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has yet to post crash-test ratings for the 2019 Maxima; they’ll go here once the agency does. Pricing starts in the mid-$30,000s including destination and standard features like Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, power front seats, automatic emergency braking, and keyless access with push-button start. Higher trims can add the panoramic moonroof, 360-degree cameras, adaptive cruise control, and heated and cooled seats, among other features. Absent is Nissan’s ProPilot Assist suite of semi-autonomous features, which the Maxima’s 2019 refresh didn’t garner. That means lane-centering steering, a feature widely available elsewhere, remains missing here.

Pricing tops out with the near-$44,000 Platinum Reserve Package, a spread that puts the Maxima on par with a TLX or Avalon. Both alternatives are comfier cars with more technology — and better interior quality, in Acura’s case. Bargain shoppers can undercut the whole group with a lower trim of a traditional full-sizer like the Impala or Chrysler 300. Whether you aim for size, luxury or sportiness, the Maxima is either not quite there or well short. Its updates add some visual pizazz for 2019, and I’m philosophically in favor of Nissan offering the poor man’s (or woman’s) luxury sport sedan. But in the current model, the goods don’t add up. Given the decline in popularity for all sedans, I question if the mission remains worth it.

Cars.com’s Editorial department is your source for automotive news and reviews. In line with Cars.com’s long-standing ethics policy, editors and reviewers don’t accept gifts or free trips from automakers. The Editorial department is independent of Cars.com’s advertising, sales and sponsored content departments.

Consumer Reviews

What drivers are saying

4.8
17 reviews — Read All reviews
Exterior Styling
(5.0)
Performance
(4.8)
Interior Design
(5.0)
Comfort
(4.9)
Reliability
(4.6)
Value For The Money
(4.8)

Read reviews that mention:

(4.0)

great replacement for my older vehicle. thi

by Rod from Boston on July 16, 2020

this car is the right size and has excellent performance. Very spacious trunk and comfortable interior. Maxima is one of the better models Nissan has come out with. Highly recommend it. Read full review

(4.0)

Car stopped dead going 45mph

by Nissan Nancy from Little Rock, Arkansas on June 8, 2020

I am scared to drive this car now, this is my dream car, I am 74 years old. I have owned 4 Nissan before, this is my brand. Read full review

Safety

Recalls and crash tests

Recalls

The 2019 Nissan Maxima currently has 1 recall


Crash and Rollover Test Ratings

Based on 2019 Nissan Maxima 3.5 S

IIHS rates vehicles good, acceptable, marginal, or poor.

Child Seat Anchors (Latch)

Ease of Use
acceptable

Crash Avoidance and Mitigation

Front Crash Prevention
superior

Head Restraints and Seats

Dynamic Rating
good
Overall Rear
good
Seat Head/Restraint Geometry
good

Headlights

Overall Rating
acceptable

Moderate overlap front

Chest
good
Head/Neck
good
Left Leg/Foot
good
Overall Front
good
Restraints
good
Right Leg/Foot
acceptable
Structure/safety cage
good

Other

Roof Strength
good

Side

Driver Head Protection
good
Driver Head and Neck
good
Driver Pelvis/Leg
good
Driver Torso
good
Overall Side
good
Rear Passenger Head Protection
good
Rear Passenger Head and Neck
good
Rear Passenger Pelvis/Leg
good
Rear Passenger Torso
good
Structure/safety cage
good

Small Overlap Front - Driver Side

Chest
good
Head/Neck
good
Hip/Thigh
good
Lower Leg/Foot
good
Overall Evaluation
good
Restraints and Dummy Kinematics
acceptable
Structure and Safety Cage
good

Small Overlap Front - Passenger Side

Overall Evaluation
good
Structure and Safety Cage
acceptable

Small Overlap Front - Passenger Side - Driver Injury Measures

Chest
good
Head/Neck
good
Hip/Thigh
good
Lower Leg/Foot
good
Restraints and Dummy Kinematics
good

Small Overlap Front - Passenger Side - Passenger Injury Measures

Chest
good
Head/Neck
good
Hip/Thigh
good
Lower Leg/Foot
good
Restraints and Dummy Kinematics
good
Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) is a nonprofit research and communications organization funded by auto insurers.

Warranty

New car and certified pre-owned programs by Nissan

New Car Program Benefits

  • Bumper-to-Bumper

    36 months / 36,000 miles

  • Powertrain

    60 months / 60,000 miles

  • Roadside Assistance

    36 months / 36,000 miles

Certified Pre-Owned Program Benefits

  • Maximum Age/Mileage

    6 years/less than 80,000 miles

  • Basic Warranty Terms

    N/A

  • Powertrain

    84 months/100,000 miles (includes LEAF electric vehicle system and powertrain)

  • Dealer Certification Required

    167-point inspection

  • Roadside Assistance

    Yes

  • View All CPO Program Details

Latest 2019 Maxima Stories

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Cars.com Car Seat Check

Certified child passenger safety technicians conduct hands-on tests of a car’s Latch system and check the vehicle’s ability to accommodate different types of car seats. The Maxima received the following grades on a scale of A-F.*

Latch or Latch system

A

Infant seat

A

Forward-facing convertible

(second row)

A

Rear-facing convertible

A

Booster

(second row)

A
* This score may not apply to all trims, especially for vehicles with multiple body styles that affect the space and design of the seating.
For complete details,

Warranty FAQs

What is a Bumper-to-Bumper warranty?

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.

What is a Powertrain warranty?

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.

What is included in 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).

What other services could be included in a warranty?

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.

What does CPO mean?

A certified pre-owned or CPO car has been inspected to meet minimum quality standards and typically includes some type of warranty. While dealers and third parties certify cars, the gold standard is an automaker-certified vehicle that provides a factory-backed warranty, often extending the original coverage. Vehicles must be in excellent condition and have low miles and wear to be certified, which is why off-lease vehicles feed many CPO programs.

See also the latest CPO incentives by automaker

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*MSRP and Invoice prices displayed are for educational purposes only, do not reflect the actual selling price of a particular vehicle, and do not include applicable gas taxes or destination charges.