The Nissan Maxima has a long history of success in AutoPacific’s research, scoring class-winning VSA wins in 2004, 2005, and 2007. This year’s Maxima took the segment crown back again, with the 2010 Maxima winning top honors in the Luxury Mid-Size Car segment. The Maxima was particularly highly rated with respect to driver’s seat comfort, exterior and interior styling, power/acceleration and being fun to drive.
While seemingly minor changes, Nissan moved Bluetooth and XM satellite radio to standard equipment for 2010MY, as well as upgrading from an aux jack to a USB port for MP3 players, the end result brought Maxima back to the top.
Once again, the Maxima shines!
For a complete list of winners and description of the Awards, click here.
It’s rare when two same class heavyweights are introduced concurrently. Both the 2009 Nissan Maxima and 2009 Acura TL were launched this summer and both are very nice entry luxury entries. The cars are very similar, but the positioning of each is very different.
2009 Nissan Maxima
2009 Acura TL
Side view of Acura TL and Nissan Maxima are spookily similar.
The Maxima, a derivative of the front wheel drive Nissan Altima and assembled at Nissan’s huge car/truck plant in Smyrna, Tennessee is the range topper for Nissan cars in the USA. The Acura TL is front wheel drive with optional SH-AWD – “Super Handling All Wheel Drive”. The TL is the middle of the Acura car lineup and Acura’s highest volume vehicle and is assembled alongside the Honda Accord in Marysville, Ohio.
You might think that a better comparison would be the Acura against Infiniti with the TL lining up against the Infiniti G37 sedan. But the G37 sedan is based on a rear wheel drive platform. The TL vs. the Maxima is a more real product-to-product comparison.
Announced Alongside All New 2007 Altima
Introduced at the 2006 New York auto show barely ahead of early summer 2006 sales was an update for the Nissan Maxima. The information on the update for the Maxima could be lost amid the much bigger news of the all new Nissan Altima premium mid-size car also introduced at New York. VehicleVoice and AutoPacific correspondents were among the first to get a look at the updated car in New York.
With the new Altima
shrinking in size a bit (on sale a couple of months after the Maxima), Nissan dealers may have an easier time separating the two products. Of course, the 2007 Altima launches with more horsepower (265HP plus) from an all-new version of Nissan’s VQ 3.5L V6, while Maxima continues with the current 255HP version.
Nissan Altima and Buick LaCrosse Tie for AutoPacific 2005 Premium Mid-Size Car Vehicle Satisfaction Award
“Altima achieves class-leading performance in 2005 with a substantial upgrade to its interior finally complementing its outstanding exterior styling and powertrains. Now built in two plants, Smyrna, Tennessee (alongside Maxima) and Canton, Mississippi, Altima provides its owners a combination of style, size and performance that others in its class do not match. Think of Altima as an American-designed, American-made, Japanese brand Premium Mid-Size Car. Altima caters to owners wanting distinctive styling and driving enthusiasm.”
“The all-new Buick LaCrosse has what it takes to satisfy Buick owners demanding efficiently sized, affordably priced transportation. LaCrosse has a combination of new styling, generous interior space, driving ease and brand image that Buick owners have come to expect. LaCrosse – clearly a Buick owners have embraced. LaCrosse is American through and through delivering size and comfort to discerning buyers of American Premium Mid-Size Cars.”