2018 Nissan Maxima Preview
By Philly Murtha, March 20, 2018
- Standard Automotive Emergency Braking (AEB) and forward collision warning carry over from late 2017 model year
- NissanConnect infotainment system adds smartphone Android Auto to Apple CarPlay integration
- New exterior color: Carnelian Red
- V-Motion front grille has new black accents
- Midnight Edition “blackout” package for SR trim (added late in 2017)
Nissan’s flagship Maxima was launched in 1981 as a successor to the Datsun 810. Maxima has gone through eight generations, with its last redesign for 2016. Currently, the 5-seat large car is marketed as a “4-door sports car.” Built at Nissan’s Smyrna, TN, plant, the 2018 Nissan Maxima, is a large sports sedan with a more dynamic athletic design and some of the best safety ratings among sedans. Maxima is the No. 3 volume seller in the Large Car segment with more than a dozen entries, following leader Dodge Charger and Chevrolet Impala.
Nissan’s 2018 Maxima shares latest architecture with smaller and lighter midsize Altima, but also features a dapper, athletic profile with revised oversize matte chrome grille, lots of folds and creases with LED lighting systems including wraparound tail lights and a seamless floating roofline. Only available in front-wheel drive (FWD), the 4-door Maxima rides on standard 18-in. alloy wheels or optional 19-in. wheels. Six colors, including new Carnelian Red are offered.
The 2018 Maxima is offered in S, SV, SL, SR, and Platinum trim levels that range from entry S trim with 18-in. alloy wheels, LED signature lights and fog lamps to SV trim with power heated outside mirrors and LED turn signal indicators. SR trim, built with firmer suspension and tuned brakes, can be equipped with the optional Midnight Edition appearance treatment group and upscale Platinum comes with rain-swiping sensors, dual panel panorama moonroof and rear window power shade plus outside heated side mirrors.
The 2018 Nissan Maxima’s interior cockpit is sumptuous with deep, padded buckets and low roofline, although cargo space is small (14 cu. ft.). It’s driver-focused with a center stack angled toward the driver, who is treated to a flat-bottom steering wheel and two driving modes (manual and sport). although Entry S Trim comes with cloth seats but also has standard navigation and remote engine start. SV trim is more upscale with leather upholstered, power adjustable heated seats and a host of advanced driver assistance systems plus two new USB ports. Sporty SR features premium leather and Alcantara seats and special tires for cornering. Platinum package adds a leather-wrapped steering wheel with tilt telescope column, driver’s seat memory system, heated and cooled leather seats and a Bose 11-speaker premium audio system.
SR trim Midnight Edition “blackout” treatment package features black V-Motion grille, gloss black 19-in. alloy wheels, black exterior accents including black capped outside mirrors with reverse tilt-down and special badging plus black Sport spoiler with sport tuned suspension.
An array of accessories are optional for each trim including: premium spoilers, splash guards, ground lighting, illuminated kick plates.
Under the Hood:
The 2018 Nissan Maxima is equipped with a 3.5-liter V-6 that generates 300 horsepower and 261 lb.-ft. of torque when paired with Nissan’s cross-lineup Xtronic continuously variable transmission (CVT) with a manual and sport mode to enhance fuel economy.
EPA ratings estimate Maxima averages 21 mpg in the city and 30 mpg on the highway.
The 2018 Nissan Maxima has a large portfolio of safety and collision avoidance driver assistance systems that are standard or optional with each of the five trims. Standard on all trims are Automatic Emergency Braking (AEB) with pedestrian detection. Intelligent cruise, Blind spot warning, rear cross traffic alert are included in SL, SR and Platinum trims, and optional for other trims. For parking the available 4-camera Intelligent Around View Monitor can be accompanied by optional front and rear parking sonar.
In federal crash tests, the 2018 Nissan Maxima receives an overall rating of five out of five stars with highest scores in frontal, side and rollover tests, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Maxima also earns a Top Safety Pick+ from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) with top “Good” ratings in all categories and receives a “Superior” for crash avoidance and mitigation.
The 2018 Nissan Maxima adds Android Auto interconnectivity to already-enabled Apple CarPlay in the NissanConnect infotainment system that features an 8.0-in. touch screen. Intelligent Mobility advanced driver assistance systems are standard on upscale trims, but 4-camera Intelligent Around View Monitor is only on Platinum trim.