The 2016 Nissan Maxima was designed to excite drivers in more ways than one.
The redesigned “4-door sports car,” as Nissan likes to call it, features a dramatic, head-turning style similar to the new Murano crossover, is lighter than the eight year-old model it replaces, and is powered by a new 3.5-liter V6 with 300 horsepower that Nissan says is good for 30 mpg. It was unveiled at the New York International Auto Show on Thursday.
The front-wheel-drive full-size sedan features a new CVT transmission that’s been tuned to better appeal to driving enthusiasts, and is available in a high performance SR trim level with stiffer shocks and a chassis damper to reduce any vibrations they create.
The interior is spacious and upscale in appearance. It features diamond-quilted leather upholstery on its “zero-gravity” front seats, which use a NASA-inspired design to improve comfort, giant paddle shifters for simulated gear changes behind the squared-off steering wheel, an 8.0-inch touch screen display with tablet style pinch and swipe controls, and a center stack angled toward the driver.
High tech aids include 360-degree cameras with motion detection, adaptive cruise control and a drowsy driver alert that sets off an alarm if it detects erratic behavior that suggests a driver is dozing off behind the wheel, which sounds helpful, if it a little out of place in a allegedly exciting 4-door sports car.
The new Maxima hits the streets this summer at a starting price of $33,235, where it will compete with the likes of the Toyota Avalon and Chevrolet Impala.