2016 is shaping up to be a great year for Nissan and the all-new 2016 Maxima lineup will be a significant force in that resurgence. We had our first opportunity to drive the new Maxima in May of this year, just before it arrived in dealerships. Based on a full day behind the wheel of the Maxima SR sport trim level model, we reported that the new Maxima had met the Nissan goal of repositioning Maxima as a premier 4-Door Sports Car (4DSC) with new standards for performance, styling and technology – providing a driving experience like nothing else in the segment today. In a word, we said “WOW”.
Recently, Nissan sent us a 2016 Maxima Platinum, which is the top-of-the-line trim level and priced at $39,860. That’s it. No packages, no options – just a few accessory items to choose from and you can be off the lot for right around $40,000 with – what is shaping up to be – a luxury four-door sports sedan segment leader in 2016.
Based on our week long ride and drive experience in Central Texas, we would sum it up as “WOW plus”.
One Price Strategy
The new front-wheel drive 2016 Nissan Maxima, not only offers a significantly enhanced approach to the luxury sport sedan segment, but also offers a one-price approach for each trim level – a pricing strategy that simplifies the purchasing experience by allowing the buyer to focus on the drive experience they want without having to sort through package and option choices (usually increasing the price) to get the car they want.
One Price Maxima SR
For example, the Maxima SR we previously reviewed, is targeted to buyers who would be looking for a performance version of the new Maxima with sports car level attributes. Features like its Sport Tuned Suspension Yamaha Performance Damper and SR specific Integrated Dynamic Control Module (IDM) system that adds electronic chassis management with Active Ride Control (ARC) – all designed to provide a more sports car like precise drive experience.
With a number of other sporting amenities like aluminum sport pedals, the SR one-price MSRP was $37,670. A whole lot of 4DSC luxury sedan for under $40,000
Click on the Suggested Link at the end of the article to see our report on the 2016 Maxima SR.
One Price Maxima Platinum
Our 2016 Nissan Maxima Platinum – one priced at just $2,170 more – came with a dynamic Coulis Red exterior and Charcoal Premium Ascot leather-appointed and diamond quilted-leather inserts interior, specific to the Platinum model. As with all Maxima trims, the Platinum is powered by the 3.5L V6 delivering 300 horsepower and 261 lb.-ft. of torque through the Nissan Xtronic CVT transmission with manual shift mode, D-Step logic and sport tuning driving its finely styled 18-inch aluminum alloy painted insert wheels shod with 245/45R18 All-season tires.
Every bit as fully loaded as the Maxima SR, the Maxima Platinum is loaded up with a few more (and some different) features those few dollars more. Differences between the SR and Plantinum trim levels has the Platinum equipped with the standard suspension, no Integrated Dynamics-control Module, eliminates the aluminum sport pedals and changes to 18-inch instead of the 19-inch diamond turned finish wheels found on the SR.
The Maxima Platinum adds more premium amenities and features like a Dual Panel Panoramic Moonroof with privacy glass and wind deflector, Power Tilt and Telescoping Steering Wheel, Outside Mirror Memory with tilt-down feature when reversing, Rain Sensing Windshield Wipers, upgraded Premium Ascot leather-appointed with diamond quilted interior, Mahogany wood-tone faceted interior finishers, Around View Monitor, Power Rear Window Sunshade and the full suite of NissanConnect Services powered by SiriusXM that includes automatic collision notification, remote start via smartphone and emergency call features among others.
We would also note it includes the very clever Driver Alert Attention (the coffee cup symbol on the IP) that detects driver drowsiness through multiple sensors and ‘suggests’ that it may be time for the driver to take a rest brake.
Speaking of fatigue, a distinct Platinum level feature that reduces fatigue for taller drivers is the manual thigh extender on the driver seat. Already very comfortable seating with the new NASA design engineering and 8-way power adjustment, the thigh extender makes a real difference for the driver on long drives.
Lastly we found a really helpful feature on the Platinum that helps all drivers of this Maxima – the Forward Facing Camera with integrated guides (plus Around View) that also has an optional right side view also with integrated guides. We found this forward camera system seriously helpful when it came to parking our test Maxima in the garage. We were easily able to guide the Maxima properly to the front of the garage plus position it along the right side in order optimize getting in and out of the driver door without risk of hitting anything with the car either coming or going. Similarly, this system can save time and reduced damage potential when parking in structures or on lots around town.
The Perfect Maxima Platinum
If we were buying this new 2016 Maxima Platinum, we would have made a couple of changes to get it just right for us.
The Charcoal interior is nice, but the Cashmere in the Premium Ascot Leather would have been a knockout paired with the Coulis Red. We would have also added the Exterior Ground Lighting which features key fob operated LED lighting under the doors ($240); the Interior Accent Lighting which offers 20 LED color shades to light the front footwells and cup holders ($250) – and to tie them together, added the Illuminated ‘Maxima’ Kickplates ($350).
Again, we repeat, 2016 is setting up to be a great year for Nissan with the new Titan XD pickup (already the winner of the prestigious 2015 Truck of Texas award), the new Murano is getting lots of attention and now the new Maxima – first wowing us with the SR trim level – and now making it a ‘wow plus’ with the Platinum.
Oh yes, and the new Maxima sibling, the 2016 Altima, is just around the corner and is looking like it is going to wow us as well. Stay tuned.