2013 Nissan Maxima Preview

Jeff Youngs | May 21, 2013
FAST FACTS
  • 5-passenger seating
  • Standard 6-cylinder engine
  • Front-wheel drive (FWD)
  • S and SV trim levels
  • EPA-estimated to achieve up to 22 mpg on the highway

Introduction

Long considered the brand's flagship model, the Nissan Maxima is indeed the most powerful sedan in the automaker's lineup, but the redesigned Altima is larger by almost every measure and has enjoyed much broader appeal.

The 2013 Nissan Maxima arrives with only minor changes, including a new SV Value package, revised Sport package, and a new Pearl White exterior paint color.

Exterior Features

Befitting its sporty image, the 2013 Nissan Maxima S features 18-inch alloy wheels and dual chrome exhaust tips, as well as LED taillights and a power tilt/slide moonroof. Automatic headlights and power-adjustable outside mirrors are also included.

A move up to the SV trim level brings with it fog lights and turn signal mirrors.

Interior Features

The interior of the base Maxima S model is home to dual-zone climate control, Bluetooth connectivity, cloth upholstery, auto-dimming rearview mirror, push-button start, and an 8-speaker sound system with an auxiliary input jack. The 5-passenger cabin also includes aluminum trim, power front seats with 8-way adjustment for the driver and 4-way adjustment for the passenger, 60/40 split-folding rear seat with a fold-down center armrest, and a leather-wrapped tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel with integrated audio controls.

In addition to those items, the 2013 Nissan Maxima SV adds a universal garage door opener, digital compass, driver's seat with power lumbar and extra thigh support, and leather upholstery.

Optional Features

Several factory options are available for the 2013 Nissan Maxima, including such individual items as HID headlights and a premium sound system offering satellite radio service. Buyers also have their choice of bundled upgrades, among which are a Tech package that features a voice-activated navigation system with a 7-inch touch-screen display, and a Cold package boasting heated front seats, heated mirrors, and a heated steering wheel.

An SV Value package--new for 2013--includes the Cold package and upgraded audio system. For the most upscale Maxima experience, a Premium package grants buyers access to the contents of the SV Value package plus a heated and cooled driver's seat with memory, dual-pane moonroof, HID headlights, premium leather upholstery, tilt-down outside mirrors that are activated when the car is shifted into reverse, power tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, rear bucket seats with a center pass-through, and a rearview camera. Enthusiasts considering the 2013 Maxima may be interested in an available Sport package that includes most of the items within the Premium package, 19-inch alloy wheels, rear spoiler, tinted HID headlights, and unique suspension tuning.

Under the Hood

Nissan equips the 2013 Maxima with a direct-injection, 3.5-liter V-6 engine that delivers 290 horsepower and 261 lb.-ft. of torque, all sent to the front wheels via a continuously variable transmission (CVT). SV models add standard paddle shifters.

The Maxima's fully independent suspension consists of front struts, a rear multi-link setup, and stabilizer bars. With the Premium package, Nissan installs retuned shocks, stiffer springs and larger stabilizer bars, while the Sport package's rear chassis reinforcement demonstrates an even stronger focus on handling dynamics.

Fuel Economy

EPA-estimated fuel economy for the 2013 Nissan Maxima is 19/26/22 mpg (city/highway/combined).

Safety

The 2013 Nissan Maxima's standard safety features include 6 air bags, traction control, front active head restraints, 4-wheel anti-lock disc brakes, brake assist, and electronic brake-force distribution.

In government crash tests, the 2013 Nissan Maxima received an overall rating of 4 (out of 5) stars, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). In tests conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), the Maxima received a "Good" rating--the Institute's highest--for moderate frontal-offset crash protection.
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