2021 Nissan Maxima Close-up Preview
2021 Nissan Maxima celebrates four decades of success in North America with exclusive 40th Anniversary Edition
In 1981, a new nameplate appeared on the trunk of the Datsun 810 – Maxima. The 810, often described as a larger interpretation of the legendary Datsun 510, set the stage as for future authentic, affordable Nissan sport sedans. The Maxima name went on to become the longest continuous running Nissan nameplate in the U.S.
Now in its eighth-generation, Nissan commemorates four decades of "the 4-Door Sports Car" with a special, limited-production 40th Anniversary Edition. Built on the fully equipped Maxima Platinum grade, the 40th Anniversary grade adds:
- Unique two-tone Ruby Slate Gray Pearl exterior color with black roof
- Exclusive 19-inch gloss black aluminum-alloy wheels
- Black exterior finishers and trim badges, including 40th Anniversary badge
- Black exhaust finishers
- Red semi-aniline leather-appointed seating with 40th Anniversary embossing
- Red contrast interior stitching
- Satin Dark Chrome interior faceted finishers
- White speedometer and tachometer faces reminiscent of past Maxima models
- Heated rear seats
In addition to the new 40th Anniversary Edition, the 2021 Maxima offers a revised grade level lineup – Maxima SV, SR and Platinum – making a high level of luxury content such as leather-appointed seats, Nissan Door-to-Door Navigation and NissanConnect® Services powered by SiriusXM® (SiriusXM® subscription required, sold separately) standard on all models.
Every 2021 Maxima comes equipped with a 300-horsepower 3.5-liter DOHC 24-valve V6 engine and Xtronic transmission.
And, as the flagship of Nissan's vibrant sedan lineup, which includes the trio of recently redesigned Altima, Sentra and Versa models, Maxima continues to garner prestigious industry awards.
Maxima has been named the top vehicle in the Large Car segment of 2020 J.D. Power Initial Quality Study for the third consecutive year. Maxima also led J.D. Power's 2020 APEAL Study Large Car category, again for the third year in a row and 30 points ahead of the segment average. It has also achieved a 2020 Top Safety Pick rating from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety for five straight years (2020 – 2016)1.
A Bold Exterior Appearance, Refined Interior
Maxima's aggressive, updated exterior features a voluminous front grille with a deep V-motion flow that carries into the hood and down the body to the rear tail lamps and rear fascia. The standard jewel-like LED headlights and Nissan Signature Daytime Running Lights, along with the deep fascia design, add to the Maxima's premium, high performance appearance.
The distinctive Maxima body is low, sculpted and streamlined to achieve a sweeping aerodynamic profile that has more than a little jet fighter look to it. The highly distinctive Maxima profile comes from its "floating" roof appearance with blacked-out A-pillars similar to the Nissan GT-R. Combined with the same blackout treatment applied to the B- and C-pillars, it creates a wraparound canopy appearance.
The upper canopy look is accented with an available Dual Panel Panoramic Moonroof (standard on SR and Platinum), which gives front and rear occupants an uninhibited view of the sky. In the rear, the fascia includes integrated quad-tip exhaust finishers, while a sport rear spoiler is also added to the Maxima SR grade.
Seven exterior colors are available: Super Black, Brilliant Silver Metallic, Gun Metallic, Deep Blue Pearl, Pearl White TriCoat (premium color), Carnelian Red Tintcoat (premium color) and Sunset Drift (premium color). Also available is the 40th Anniversary Edition's exclusive two-tone Ruby Slate Gray Pearl exterior color with black roof.
Inside the dramatic Maxima body is a driver-oriented cockpit and comfortable seating for all five occupants. Enhancing the Maxima's already high level of quality and premium luxury appointments is a seat insert pattern and charcoal color headliner and pillars for SR grade and 40th Anniversary Edition.
The 40th Anniversary Edition adds red semi-aniline leather-appointed seating with 40th Anniversary embossing, red contrast interior stitching, Satin Dark Chrome interior faceted finisher, white speedometer and tachometer faces reminiscent of past Maxima models and heated rear seats.
The interior features the Maxima's "Gliding Wing" layout that emphasizes horizontal movement and easy access to all controls. Rear Door Alert is standard for all grade levels, along with SiriusXM® Radio with Advanced Auto Features (SiriusXM® subscription required, sold separately). The Nissan Door to Door Navigation system is standard on all grades, along with standard Wi-Fi hotspot.
The performance luxury-style interior is again anchored by a "command central" driver's cockpit and a premium bespoke style crafted execution. The focus on the driver begins with a center stack angled seven degrees toward the driver (a lesson learned from the legendary GT-R) and a "floating" console that puts key controls within easy reach. The Display Commander control on the console allows fingertip control of the center display as befitting a premium sport sedan.
Nissan's unique Zero Gravity front seats with sport bolstering are standard (8-way power-adjustable driver's seat and 4-way power-adjustable front passenger's seat) and offer indulgent softness provided by a three-layer foam design. They are offered in leather-appointed or premium Ascot leather-appointed seating surfaces. Heated and Climate-Controlled front seats and steering wheel are standard on SR and Platinum grades. The rear seat features a 60/40 split fold-down design.
In addition, luxury-level interior quietness is enabled by an available Active Noise Cancellation system that works much like noise cancelling headphones, helping reduce unpleasant low-frequency sounds. An Active Sound Enhancement system, which works by enhancing existing engine sound from the 3.5-liter V6 into the cabin (Bose® audio-equipped models only), is standard on the SR grade. Engaging "Sport" mode takes the stirring engine note a step further with the system allowing even higher engine note amplitude in the cabin.
The premium-level Maxima technology features include NissanConnect® featuring Apple CarPlay® and Android Auto™ on all trim levels. The system includes Nissan Door to Door Navigation. The navigation system also includes an 8.0-inch color display with multi-touch control, two front illuminated USB connection ports for iPod® interface and other compatible devices (one Type-A, one Type-C), Nissan Voice Recognition for navigation and audio, SiriusXM® Traffic and Travel Link™ (SiriusXM® subscription required, sold separately), Bluetooth® Hands-free Phone System, Streaming Audio via Bluetooth® and Hands-free Text Messaging Assistant.
All 2021 Maxima models include standard NissanConnect Services powered by SiriusXM®, which provides compatible smartphone and smartwatch access to features such as Remote Engine Start/Stop2, Remote Door Lock/Unlock, Valet Alert, and more. Additionally, certain remote features are accessible through the NissanConnect Services Amazon Alexa Skill and Action for the Google Assistant3.
Additional NissanConnect Services security features include Automatic Collision Notification, Emergency Call, Stolen Vehicle Locator and more. Convenience services range from Connected Search, destination directions downloaded right to the navigation system and even journey planning – with routing of up to four waypoints and destination (NissanConnect Services subscription required, sold separately). A Wi-Fi hotspot is added as standard on all grades for 2021.
Maxima entertainment systems include an available 11-speaker Bose® audio system, which was created to deliver the ultimate premium audio experience befitting Nissan's flagship sedan. The system includes Bose® Center Point® Surround Stage technology, which can deliver a surround sound experience from even a two-channel audio source, and a driver's seat optimization mode that allows for a driver-centric audio stage.
Other available convenience features include a power tilt/telescoping steering wheel with an "Easy Entry" system, heated steering wheel, Intelligent Around View® Monitor4, Remote Start2 via Key Fob and a power rear sunshade.
The heart and soul of Maxima remains its 300-horsepower 3.5-liter VQ-series V6 engine and performance-oriented Xtronic transmission. The engine applies lessons learned from the Nissan GT-R, such as sodium filled valves, to achieve a high specific output of 85.7 horsepower/liter. Torque is rated at 261 lb-ft.
Well-matched to the engine is an advanced Xtronic transmission, which, with its lack of fixed ratios, affords the specific advantage of always being in the right gear at the right time. A wide gear ratio range allows for strong acceleration from a standing start and the D-Step shifting logic allows rapid shifts at high throttle openings. The shift logic holds rpm when it detects high-G cornering, allowing for smooth re-acceleration on corner exits.
Maxima also features a Drive Mode Selector (Sport and Normal modes) that adjusts throttle response, transmission tuning and steering feel. Active Sound Enhancement tuning is standard on SR grade. In Sport mode, the engine throttle response increases, the Xtronic transmission programming changes for more aggressive shifting under braking and gear holding, the steering weight increases and the Active Sound Enhancement system further amplifies the engine note in the cabin.
The Maxima suspension is an independent subframe-mounted strut/coil spring design in front. In the rear is an independent multi-link double wishbone design with ZF Sachs dampers. The rear dampers feature a monotube design, often found in performance applications, for enhanced performance and fade resistance. Large stabilizer bars are found in the front (26.0 mm) and rear (26.5 mm).
Responsive braking is provided by 4-wheel power-assisted vented disc brakes, standard 4-wheel Anti-lock Braking System, Electronic Brake force Distribution and Brake Assist. Steering is provided by a vehicle speed-sensitive hydro-electric power-assisted steering system. Maxima comes with standard 18-inch machined finish aluminum-alloy wheels and 245/45R18 all-season tires.
All Maxima grades also include Nissan's Integrated Dynamic-control Module (IDM) system – which adds an extra element of electronic chassis management. For example, Intelligent Ride Control, a feature within the IDM system, uses targeted brake applications after the vehicle encounters a bump or undulation to immediately improve the level of the body, allowing Maxima to offer a ride quality that defies its sports sedan intentions. Maxima SR also adds unique suspension damper tuning and a larger front stabilizer bar.
Nissan Intelligent Mobility and Nissan Safety Shield®360
Every 2021 Maxima offers standard Nissan Safety Shield® 360, a suite of six advanced driver-assist systems that supports the Nissan Intelligent Mobility vision to redefine how cars are driven, powered and integrated into society. Safety Shield® 360 includes Automatic Emergency Braking with Pedestrian Detection, Blind Spot Warning, Rear Cross Traffic Alert, Lane Departure Warning, High Beam Assist and Rear Automatic Braking.
In addition to Safety Shield® 360, the 2021 Maxima offers standard Intelligent Cruise Control, Traffic Sign Recognition and Intelligent Driver Alertness5. The I-DA system provides an audible and visual warning if the system judges that the driver may be drowsy (using analysis of steering inputs to detect changes in the driving behavior). Intelligent Around View® Monitor4, which provides a 360-degree "surround view" of the vehicle, is standard on SR and Platinum grades.
Maxima comes equipped with standard Nissan Advanced Air Bag System (AABS) for the driver and front passenger seats, which includes supplemental front air bags, seat belt sensors and an occupant classification sensor. Also standard are front seat-mounted side-impact supplemental air bags and roof-mounted curtain side-impact supplemental air bags with rollover sensor for front and rear outboard occupant head protection. Maxima also has standard rear seat-mounted side-impact supplemental air bags and driver and front passenger knee supplemental air bags, bringing the total to 10 supplemental air bags.
Also standard are 3-point rear seat belts for all seating positions, front seat belts with dual pretensioners, load limiters and adjustable upper anchors, emergency inside trunk release, Zone Body construction with front and rear crumple zones, LATCH (Lower Anchors and Tethers for CHildren) and Tire Pressure Monitoring System with Easy-Fill Tire Alert. Maxima also features standard Vehicle Dynamic Control with Traction Control System.
The 2021 Maxima is available in three well-equipped models: Maxima SV, SR and Platinum. Just one option package is offered – the 40th Anniversary Edition (Platinum grade).
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- Award applies only to vehicles with optional front crash prevention and specific headlights. For more information, see www.iihs.org.
- State laws may apply; review local laws before using.
- Amazon, Alexa and all related logos are trademarks of Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates. Google is a trademark of Google LLC. NissanConnect Services subscription required, sold separately.)
- Intelligent Around View Monitor cannot eliminate blind spots and may not detect every object. Driver should always turn and check surroundings before driving. See Owner's Manual for safety information. I-AVM includes Moving Object Detection
- It is the driver's responsibility to remain alert at all times. I-DA is only a warning to inform the driver of a potential lack of driver attention or drowsiness. It does not detect and provide an alert in every situation. See Owner's Manual for details.