Nissan Max­ima pro­to­type

The Washington Post Sunday - - CARS -

Bot­tom line: Nissan has a clear win­ner with its re­worked Max­ima. Iron­i­cally, some things Nissan — those mar­keted un­der the com­pany’s more ex­pen­sive lux­ury la­bel, In­finiti — could suf­fer as a re­sult. I sim­ply see no rea­son to pay more for an In­finiti when I can get so much at a lower cost in the Nissan Max­ima.

Ride, ac­cel­er­a­tion and han­dling: This gets ex­cel­lent marks in all three.

Head-turn­ing quo­tient: Its sleek styling snapped necks. Please, Nissan, don’t mess with this one in pro­duc­tion.

Body/style lay­out: It is a front-en­gine, front-wheel-drive, full-size fam­ily sedan with four side doors and a notch­back trunk. It is avail­able in five it­er­a­tions — S, SV. SL, SR and Plat­inum — at base prices rang­ing from $32,410 to $39,860.

En­gine/trans­mis­sion: It comes stan­dard with a 3.5-liter, dou­ble-over­head-cam, 24valve ga­so­line en­gine with vari­able valve tim­ing (300 horse­power, 261 pound-feet of torque). The en­gine is linked to an elec­tron­i­cally en­hanced con­tin­u­ously vari­able trans­mis­sion that feels like a sixspeed au­to­matic and can be op­er­ated man­u­ally.

Ca­pac­i­ties: Seat­ing is for five peo­ple. Cargo ca­pac­ity is 14.3 cu­bic feet. The fuel tank holds 18 gal­lons (pre­mium-grade ga­so­line is rec­om­mended for “best per­for­mance”).

Ac­tual mileage: In real-world driv­ing, it closely matched its ad­ver­tised per­for­mance of 22 miles per gallon in the city and 30 mpg on the high­way.

Safety: Stan­dard equip­ment in­cludes front and rear ven­ti­lated disc brakes, four­wheel anti-lock brake pro­tec­tion, emer­gency brak­ing prepa­ra­tion and as­sis­tance, sta­bil­ity and trac­tion con­trol, pre-col­li­sion safety sys­tem, post-col­li­sion safety sys­tem, front fog lights, LED head­lamps, and side and head air bags.

Pric­ing: The base price of the 2016 Nissan Max­ima SV sedan is $34,390, with a dealer’s in­voice price of $32,410. Price as tested is $35,215, in­clud­ing $1,705 in op­tions (“pearl white” ex­te­rior paint, floor mats, in­te­rior light­ing pack­age, 18-inch­di­am­e­ter alu­minum wheels) and an $825 fac­tory-to-dealer ship­ment charge. Es­ti­mated dealer’s price as tested is $33,000.

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