The 2017 Nissan Maxima is a great choice for a family sedan that won't break the bank. Although it's not as luxurious as some other cars in its price range, its interior is still plenty spacious and it's packed with features. Plus, Apple CarPlay is now included as standard equipment. This car has been completely redesigned since last year, so you know you're getting the latest and greatest. We think you'll really enjoy the Maxima's unique qualities!
The 2017 Nissan Maxima is a five-passenger midsize sedan that comes in five great trim levels: S, SV, SL, the sporty SR and the luxurious Platinum.
The base S model has all sorts of great features! Enjoy the 18-inch alloy wheels and automatic headlights, as well as foglights, LED running lights, keyless ignition and entry. Dual-zone automatic climate control, power front seats (with eight-way driver and four-way passenger functions), cloth upholstery and a 60/40-split folding rear seat serve as the finishing touches of comfort. You can also stay connected with Bluetooth connectivity and Apple CarPlay, not to mention two USB ports and an eight-speaker sound system with satellite radio, HD radio and a six-CD changer. Plus, you can keep an eye on the road with the large gauge cluster display, 8-inch touchscreen display, navigation system and rearview camera, all controlled with a leather-wrapped tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel.
The SV model offers you the luxury of heated outside mirrors, front and rear parking sensors, leather upholstery, heated front seats, and an upgraded driver seat with extended thigh support and two-way power lumbar for extra comfort. The Dynamic package takes it one step further with a "premium" rear spoiler, stylish 18-inch wheels, and side sill extensions to give your ride an even sleeker look.
The SL model comes with some awesome features like a panoramic sunroof, a heated steering wheel, ambient interior lighting, active noise cancellation, active engine sound enhancement, a top-notch 11-speaker Bose audio system, and adaptive cruise control. Plus, it has several safety features too (check out the Safety section below).
The sporty SR comes with 19-inch wheels (optional summer performance tires available), a sport-tuned suspension, paddle shifters for simulated gear ratios, Active Ride Control (for a smoother ride over bumps), Active Trace Control (to keep you on the right track) and active engine braking to help slow you down when taking corners or approaching a stop. It also has LED headlights, heated and ventilated front seats, and luxurious leather upholstery with quilted simulated suede seat inserts and special interior trim. Unfortunately, it doesn't have a panoramic sunroof, but you can opt for summer tires (with a full-size spare tire) and the Midnight Edition package featuring a sporty rear spoiler, a rear diffuser and glossy black wheels.
The SL's equipment roster is upgraded with the addition of the Platinum, which boasts LED headlights, a power-adjustable steering wheel, driver memory settings, premium diamond-quilted leather upholstery, automatic wipers, a power rear sunshade, a 360-degree parking camera system (with a moving object detection system) and a driver attention alert system. Additionally, the Platinum features Nissan Connect (see the Safety section for more information). For those looking for a bit of extra luxury, the Medallion Edition package adds a "premium" rear spoiler, different 18-inch wheels, interior accent lighting and exterior ground lighting.
The 2017 Nissan Maxima is equipped with a 3.5-liter V6 engine that packs a punch of 300 horsepower and 261 pound-feet of torque. You'll get the best of both worlds with front-wheel drive and a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) coming standard.
In our testing, the Maxima Platinum accelerated from zero to 60 mph in a mere 6.1 seconds, which is a bit faster than the average speed for midsize sedans with V6 or equivalent engines. Additionally, the EPA estimated fuel economy is 25 mpg combined (21 city/30 highway). Our team at Edmunds even managed to get 28.1 mpg on the 116-mile route - a really impressive figure!
The 2017 Maxima may not possess the prestigious brand name of a luxury car, but it does have a luxurious interior. Passengers are embraced with quality materials, including soft-touch surfaces on the majority of the main contact points. Additionally, Nissan's "Zero Gravity" seats are included, which are supportive, though not quite as comfortable as the ones in the Nissan Altima. A particularly thoughtful feature is the bin located in front of the shifter that is equipped with two USB ports, enough space for almost all phone sizes and a slot to mount your phone vertically so you can easily view any incoming messages.
Good news for 2017 Apple users! You won't need to worry about missing out on anything. Thanks to the addition of standard Apple CarPlay, you can control a range of apps, such as text messaging, with both voice commands and the user-friendly Nissan touchscreen, which comes with a useful knob controller, similar to those seen in luxury cars. Unfortunately, Android Auto is not an option.
In terms of space, front and rear legroom is acceptable, but the Maxima can't match the rear seat space of less expensive midsize sedans like the Ford Fusion or Honda Accord, let alone similarly priced sedans like the Toyota Avalon. Similarly, the Maxima's 14.3-cubic-foot trunk is smaller than those competitors as well. It is similar to many entry-level luxury sedans, however.
When it comes to roominess, front and rear legroom in the Maxima is acceptable, but it can't quite match the rear seat space of less expensive midsize sedans like the Ford Fusion or Honda Accord, or even similarly priced sedans like the Toyota Avalon. Additionally, the Maxima's 14.3-cubic-foot trunk is a bit smaller than those competitors. That being said, it is comparable to many entry-level luxury sedans
Nissan has long suggested that the Maxima is a "four-door sports car." In our experience, the 2017 Maxima does feel rather sporty, with nicely controlled body motions and commendable grip around turns that equate to dynamic talents greater than the typical mid- or full-size sedan. However, the steering is oddly slow in parking lots and gets light as speeds rise (the opposite is true with most modern cars), and quick left-right transitions can flummox it. And although the sportier SR improves handling further, its firmer suspension essentially ruins what is a comfortable and controlled ride in all other trims. As a result, we would avoid the Maxima SR.
The 3.5-liter V6 is powerful and responsive throughout the rev range, and it works great with the CVT. You might feel some torque steer (the car pulling left or right as you speed up) when you accelerate hard, but that's normal. With this CVT, there are no fixed gear ratios, but Nissan added seven simulated gear ratios to give you the feeling of a regular automatic. This is great because it minimizes the high-rpm droning associated with CVTs, while still giving you the fuel economy benefits. We really like how this works, as it gives you the best of both worlds.