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2016 Nissan Maxima, The Maxima For The Minima, A Review By Michael Bernstein

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By Michael Bernstein
Sr. Editor
Michigan Bureau
The Auto Channel

The first thing you notice about the 2016 version of Nissan’s sporty mid-sized sedan is its aggressive, yet refined profile. No matter what direction you approach it from, this car radiates elegance.

From the side, the Maxima's 19 inch diamond cut aluminum wheels and its high curving beltline dominate the view and work in harmony to create a pleasant look that extends your gaze to the length of the vehicle.

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If approaching from the front, the Maxima’s grill and lighting package catch your eye. In a word this combination is sharp, tailored and just looks cool and that’s without illumination! When the lights are on the combination of LED headlamps and halogen fog lights create an almost sinister look that really lights the way forward.

Upon entering the Maxima, you are greeted by the rich materials used in the cabin, that include plush leather, deep ply carpet and a brushed steel metallic trim that is coordinated with the upholstery using a diamond pattern embossed into them. These high quality materials are blended together to create a rather opulent, yet sporty look and feel that will appeal to most buyers. Added to this mix are a host of features and amenities that seamlessly flow together starting with the padded, heated, leather wrapped steering wheel, center council, gear shift and dash.

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The center stack features a large easy to read color display that is not only beautiful, but more importantly easy to operate. The operation of the controls is redundant, whether its thru the touch screen, the center knob or the control panel on the steering wheel’s hub, most of the systems are just a touch, push or click away. This includes the Bose 11 speaker audio system, the navigation and your smart phone or every other device when paired with Nissan Connect. Nissan Connect also allows the user access to the suite of apps that are available as well as hands free operation of your connected device.

In addition to the 8” color display in the center stack, the 2016 Maxima SR also contains a 4” driver’s information control panel that offers the driver a choice of ten (10) options to display. The coolest of these is the digital compass that shows the direction you are traveling. The home option mixes a smaller compass with a display of the audio system and a digital speedometer.

This customizable display is centered on the driver’s side of the dash and is flanked on both sides of by two traditional gauges, one for the tachometer (RPM) and one for the speedometer (MPG). It is framed on top by a digital clock, thermometer and blind spot warning indicator and below by the odometer, gear position-P,R,D-and a DTE(distance to empty) display.

The 2016 Maxima SR features keyless entry and push button start/stop. In other words, just put the fob in your pocket or purse and approach the door. Then just push the button on the door and the driver’s side door unlocks, push the same button again and the rest of the three doors unlock. This is not only convenient, but also a great safety feature.

Once seated behind the wheel, adjust your zero gravity seat using the 8-way power control on the side that also features a power lumbar support and a manual thigh support and then just push the ignition button and the Maxima comes to life. The engine growls and the information panels and displays illuminate.

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Now the real fun begins because this beauty has plenty of brawn thanks to the 3.5 liter DOHC, 24 valve V6 engine that produces an impressive 300HP and 261 LB-FT of torque. All this power is handled and maintained by Nissan’s Xtronic transmission that seamlessly changes gears. Control on the road is assured by the sport-tuned suspension and the integrated dynamics control module that includes an alphabet soup of features-ARC, ATC & AEB. All I know is that this baby hugs the road tighter than any bear can.

The driver also has the choice of two (2) driver modes-Normal or Sport-and trust me there is a noticeable and pulse pounding difference. When the Sport mode is engaged the suspension is tightened and the engine’s shift points shortened to maximize power and road handling.

The 2016 Maxima SR contains driver and front passenger side impact and curtain air bags and another alphabet soup of features that includes-LATCH, PFCW, FEB, BSW w/RCTA, ABS, VDC, TCS, EBD and TPMS. All I know is that together they spell S-A-F-E-T-Y.

Other notable features include a roomy back seating area and a huge trunk. All this with an impressive 25 MPG combined fuel economy. Based on the 22 MPG city and 30 MPG highway this mid-sized sedan earned from the EPA.

The 2016 Nissan Maxima SR is the perfect balance of comfort, power, control, safety and styling. You get all this for $38,750. I’m sold and after a test drive I think you will be too!

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