A sporty drive with a luxury feel.

Nissan Maxima Review | CarMax

The Nissan Maxima debuted in 1982 as the Datsun Maxima, a sedan that sported an inline-six engine. Before that, it was the Datsun 810 Deluxe and 810 Maxima, which had the distinction of being the first “talking car" by reminding drivers to turn off the lights when not in use. Since then, the Maxima has gone through seven generations of iterations, with the most current beginning in 2015.

Today, Nissan touts the 2019 Maxima as a four-door sports car, complete with 10 more hp in its eighth generation (2015–present) than in the previous generation (2009–2014) — that's 300 hp against 290 hp respectively. The 2019 Maxima is also 82 pounds lighter than the previous generation, giving the car more zip. This comfortable and powerful sedan has kept going strong through the last several decades. Want to know more? Here's what you'll learn in this 2019 Nissan Maxima review:

Key Specs & Features

  • Quilted leather or Alcantara® inserts are just one of the 2019 Maxima's premium interior features — these materials are usually only seen in high-end performance cars.
  • For the SL trim level and higher, Bose® audio systems are included with Active Noise Cancellation. It works by monitoring audio input from the engine and the cabin and creates a noise-canceling signal delivered through the speakers.
  • Acoustic Laminated Glass on both the windshield and front side windows comes standard across all trims. This feature lessens wind noise, keeping the cabin nice and quiet.
  • A track-inspired suspension and advanced dynamic technologies paired with a powerful V6 engine ensure that your ride in a Maxima is anything but boring.
  • Nissan Maxima Review: Engine | CarMax

5 Reasons to Buy

1. Rear Door Alert

Nissan Maxima Review: Backseat | CarMax

Originally developed by Nissan engineers who are also mothers, Rear Door Alert monitors when the rear door is opened and closed before and after the vehicle is in motion. Once the vehicle is in park and the ignition is turned off, the system will first display a notification in the instrument panel and progresses to subtle, distinctive chirps of the horn.

Nissan Maxima Review: Trunk | CarMax

2. Sharp colors

The 2019 Maxima includes seven beautiful and vibrant exterior paint colors, six of which carry over from the 2018 model. For 2019, Nissan added the Sunset Drift ChromaFlair, an eye-catching orange tint. Paired with the Maxima's interior accents, this sedan cuts a beautiful swath of color in a sea of neutrals. There are two new interior color options as well, including the Platinum Reserve-exclusive Rakuda Tan.

3. Nissan Intelligent Mobility

In 2016, Nissan unveiled its vision for performance and comfort that guides automobile design for every model — Nissan Intelligent Mobility. The brand created this initiative motivated by the idea that driving should be less stressful and more enjoyable. Nissan Intelligent Mobility connects your life to your car and seeks to give you more confidence as you drive.

4. Zero-Gravity Seats

Nissan Maxima Review: Frontseat | CarMax

When sitting for long periods of time, drivers tend to naturally slump forward, which causes spinal fatigue. Nissan engineers conducted research for ten years to come up with this proprietary seat design, and it's a noteworthy perk . Each seat is built with 14 pressure points to ensure you're more comfortable in your Maxima or other Nissan models as well.

5. NissanConnect®

Nissan Maxima Review: Dash | CarMax

This dash-mounted system that combines navigation, security, connectivity, and entertainment gives you a variety of technology options. You can stream music, remotely start your car with your smartphone, or unlock your doors with Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant. NissanConnect is a great way to stay focused on your driving and allowing the system to give you more hands-free options.

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What You Need To Know


The 2019 Nissan Maxima sedan comes in five trim levels: S, SV, SL, SR, and Platinum.

  • S: This base trim (and all trims, in fact) comes with a FWD 3.5L V6 engine and continuously variable automatic transmission. The S also includes these standard features: 18-inch wheels, a rearview camera, forward collision warning with automatic emergency braking, LED headlights, daytime running lights, remote engine start, keyless entry and ignition, auto-dimming rearview mirror, dual-zone automatic climate control, and adjustable driving modes. Inside, it also features a leather-wrapped steering wheel, power-adjustable front seats, 60/40-split rear seating, a navigation system, an eight-inch touchscreen, two USB ports, Apple CarPlay™ and Android Auto™, and an eight-speaker audio system.
  • SV: Adds navigation, adaptive cruise control, blind-spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert, heated mirrors and front seats, leather upholstery, and an upgraded driver seat.
  • SL: Includes a dual-panel sunroof, active noise reduction, front and rear parking sensors, a heated steering wheel, ambient interior lighting, and a Bose® premium audio system.
  • SR: 19-inch wheels come standard over the 18-inch, plus it adds a sport-tuned suspension, paddle shifters, active engine sound enhancement — meaning more VROOM, ventilated front seats, Alcantara® seat inserts, unique interior trim, and rear collision mitigation. A panoramic sunroof is optional.
  • Platinum: Keeps the ventilated front seats of the SR, but does not include the sport-tuned suspension and other performance features of the SR trim. However, Platinum does include automatic wipers, a surround-view parking camera, power-adjustable steering column and passenger seat, upgraded leather upholstery and interior trim, traffic sign recognition, a memory system for the driver's seat, steering wheel, and outside mirrors, rear power sunshade, and NissanConnect® services.
  • Platinum Reserve: This optional package adds premium leather upholstery, upgraded interior trim, and heated rear seats.

Interior options

  • Cashmere Leather (SV, SL trims)
  • Cashmere Premium Ascot Leather (Platinum trim)
  • Charcoal Cloth (S trim)
  • Charcoal Leather (SV, SL trims)
  • Charcoal Premium Ascot Leather (Platinum trim)
  • Charcoal Premium Ascot Leather with Alcantara Inserts (SR trim)
  • Rakuda Tan Semi-Aniline Leather (Platinum Reserve trim)

Exterior Colors

  • Brilliant Silver Metallic
  • Carnelian Red Tintcoat
  • Deep Blue Pearl
  • Gun Metallic
  • Pearl White TriCoat
  • Sunset Drift ChromaFlair
  • Super Black

Similar Vehicles

Nissan Altima

The newly-redesigned for 2019 Nissan Altima offers two engines: a 2.5L four-cylinder that outputs up to 188 hp and 180 lb.-ft. of torque, and a 2.0L VCT four-cylinder with 248 hp and 273 lb.-ft. of torque. The VCT engine is also shared with the Infiniti QX50 crossover, with unique adaptation abilities depending on driving conditions. For the 2019 model year, the Altima was offered with all-wheel drive for the first time. With a comfortable cabin and steering refinements, you'll find the 2019 Altima a sporty, fun ride. Seating five, this sedan is available in five trim levels: S, SR, SV, SL and Platinum. The base model includes automatic headlights, keyless entry, push-button ignition, remote engine start, rear view camera, forward collision warning, power-adjustable driver seat, 60/40 split-folding rear seat, eight-inch touchscreen display, Bluetooth phone and audio streaming, Apple CarPlay/Android Auto, and four USB ports, plus more.

Toyota Camry

Toyota's 2019 Camry includes a 203-hp inline-four or you could opt for a spirited 301-horsepower V6. An agile front-wheel drive sedan that seats five comfortably, the 2019 Camry is a continuation of the generation that started in 2018, and offers trim levels L, LE, SE, and XLE. Standard features start with a seven-inch touch screen, six-speaker audio system, a single USB port, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi hot spot, and Apple CarPlay. Siri® Eyes Free is also standard, which connects the voice-recognition technology of your paired iPhone® with the Camry. Other standard features in the 2019 Camry include forward collision warning, pedestrian detection, lane departure warning, lane keep assist, rear view camera, adaptive cruise control, and more. If you upgrade to the V6 engine on the XLE or XSE trims, you'll also get a nine-speaker JBL audio system, panoramic glass roof, and a crisp head-up display.


Have you noticed Mazda's unique, rich Soul Red Crystal Metallic exterior paint? You can't miss it - or any of the other five striking color options (Jet Black Mica, Deep Crystal Blue Mica, Snowflake White Pearl Mica, Sonic Silver Metallic, and Machine Grey Metallic) - on the redesigned 2019 Mazda3, which sports a sleek, streamlined body that shows off its curves. If you prefer a hatchback configuration, the Mazda3 is also available as such. All four trim levels of the 2019 Mazda3 come standard with a 186-hp, 2.5L inline-four engine. As for infotainment, an 8.8-inch screen is standard, along with Mazda's innovative rotary knob. For more tactile drivers, a number of buttons are also included in the dash.

Hyundai Sonata

The 2019 Hyundai Sonata is a five-passenger midsize sedan with a great deal to offer. All 2019 Sonatas include a folding rear seat, seven-inch touch screen, six-speaker audio system, heated side mirrors, blind-spot detection with rear cross-traffic alert, rear view camera, and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility. Choose the Sonata Limited model to get Hyundai's Tech Package as standard, which includes automatic emergency braking, lane-keep assist, smart cruise control, wireless phone charger, automatic high-beam assist, heated steering wheel, and sporty exterior touches. Speaking of sporty, the Sport trim also features a flat-bottom steering wheel and racing-style seats with contrast stitching and leather trim. A 2.4L, 185-hp inline-four engine is available on the SE, SEL, Sport and Limited trims; or you could choose a 2.0L turbocharged 245-hp inline-four on the Sport 2.0T, Limited 2.0T models.

The Bottom Line

The 2019 Nissan Maxima is an optimal choice for the buyer who wants a vehicle with sedan comfort and enough power to evoke excitement while driving. With a host of excellent standard features and luxury add-ons, the Maxima is a joy to drive. Looking to learn more about the Nissan Maxima? Check out these related resources:

1Fuel economy figures are based on EPA estimates when vehicles sold as new. Fuel economy may vary for reasons like driving conditions and vehicle history. Unless specified, figures are for vehicles equipped with an automatic transmission. See fueleconomy.gov for details.
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