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2010 Nissan Maxima

Overview
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2010 Nissan Maxima Review

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Sliding into the narrow segment between the family-oriented Altima Sedan and the luxury-performance Infiniti G37 Sedan, the 2010 Nissan Maxima competes against, among others, the Volkswagen CC, Mazda MAZDA6, Ford Taurus SHO and Chrysler 300. Nissan built this front-drive four-door to please both performance and luxury-sedan fans alike, and it scores on both points. Although marginally smaller in size than the previous-generation model, the 2010 Maxima exudes a sporty coupe vibe from the outside while retaining its roominess on the inside. With its aggressive new look and increased power, Nissan is touting this latest incarnation of the Maxima as the return of the "four-door sports car."

You'll Like This Car If...

If you're looking for a sedan with aggressive styling and sports-car prowess, you may want to consider the Nissan Maxima. Although other sedans in its class give off a bold appeal, the Maxima's styling is a true attention grabber.

You May Not Like This Car If...

If interior space is important, you might not like the 2010 Nissan Maxima's smaller size, as its passenger volume is smaller than many of its competitors, including the Ford Taurus SHO, Chrysler 300 and Toyota's Avalon and Camry. Also, there is no manual transmission available.

What's New for 2010

New for the 2010 model year include standard Bluetooth hands-free phone connectivity and the choice of two new wheel finishes. Also, the available navigation system has been enhanced to include streaming audio, DVD playback and XM NavTraffic real-time traffic updates.

Driving the Maxima

Driving Impressions After a day of driving the 2010 Nissan Maxima on both curvy back roads and the highway, we can report that the Maxima's V6 engine delivers good low-end torque and...

smooth operation. Power for merging and passing is more than adequate, but overall the car feels somewhat heavier in the turns, especially when compared to some other sport sedans we've tested. The engine sounds sporty, but the lack of a proper six-speed manual detracts somewhat from the car's sporty nature. Overall, the Maxima does a great job in combining looks, power and practicality, but it might need a bit more power to really live up the "four-door sports car" claim.

Paddle Shift
The available paddle shifters add to the Maxima's "four-door sports car" image and can be used at a moment's notice without needing to shift into a "sport" mode. This feature comes in handy when passing, descending a steep hill or just doing some spirited driving.

iPod Interface
Better than a standard auxiliary input, and leaps and bounds beyond any form of standard radio, having complete control of an iPod through the car's audio system is much safer than driving with one hand while fumbling to control your iPod with the other.

2010 Nissan Maxima Details
2010 Nissan Maxima photo Interior

Nissan intended the Maxima's interior to feel like a cockpit and, when equipped with premium leather seating and steering wheel-mounted paddle shifters, we think the objective has been achieved. The aggressive dash design places all controls closer to the driver and raises the center console controls closer to the driver's line of sight. We did, however, find the driver's-side door-pull handle hinders lateral hand motion when using the power-window buttons, and is an annoyance at times. Nissan's nicely bolstered seats feature available thigh support and, in conjunction with the sporty three-spoke steering wheel, place the driver in a commanding position that encourages aggressive driving. Rear seats are given equal treatment, but some of us thought the hollowed-out seatbacks could offer more lower back support and noted that the sloping roofline brushed against the heads of taller occupants.

Exterior
2010 Nissan Maxima photo

Nissan calls the design theme for the 2010 Maxima "liquid motion," which incorporates a wave-like flow in everything from the bulging hood to the bold fenders. The design is quite seductive and, despite the Maxima's four doors, imparts an aggressive sports-car look. An interesting option is the giant dual-panel moonroof, which features a retractable glass front half that powers open over a fixed rear glass panel. Further aesthetic enhancements include a higher deck lid, L-shaped headlights and a wide grille. With a shorter wheelbase, and more width than its predecessor, the Maxima has more of an athletic stance, especially with its standard 18- or optional 19-inch wheels.

Notable Equipment
Standard Equipment

The 2010 Nissan Maxima has a 3.5-liter V6 engine, Xtronic Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT), power windows, power door locks, power moonroof, automatic halogen headlights, 18-inch aluminum wheels, eight-way power driver's seat, four-way power front passenger's seat and a leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob. Other standard features include dual-zone automatic climate control, keyless start and entry, AM/FM/CD6/MP3 audio system with eight speakers, Bluetooth, dual front and side-curtain airbags, Vehicle Dynamic Control (VDC) and Traction Control System (TCS).

Optional Equipment

Many options for the 2010 Nissan Maxima come standard with the higher SV trim, which includes leather-appointed seats, Bose audio system with nine speakers, HomeLink Universal Transceiver, fog lights and manual thigh support on the driver's seat. Other options can be found bundled in packages, including a dual-panel moonroof, a sport-tuned suspension, 19-inch wheels, a rear spoiler, premium leather seating, paddle shifters, heated steering wheel and seats, Nissan Hard Drive Navigation with voice recognition, iPod interface system, RearView monitor, metallic trim, one-touch rear windows and a power rear-window sunshade.

Under the Hood

Nissan's latest iteration of its already-brilliant 3.5-liter V6 engine turns out an impressive 290 horsepower and 261 foot-pounds of torque. Improvements included maximizing the air intake and exhaust flow to not only gain power and enhance performance, but also to create a sporty engine sound to evoke what Nissan calls an "exhilaration feeling."

3.5-liter V6
290 horsepower @ 6400 rpm
261 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4400 rpm
EPA city/highway fuel economy: 19/26

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2010 Nissan Maxima Consumer Reviews

Overall Rating
8.8
Out of 10

Based on 280 Ratings for the 2009 - 2014 models.

Review this car
  • Value
    8.7/10
    Quality
    8.9/10
  • Reliability
    9.2/10
    Performance
    9.2/10
  • Comfort
    9.1/10
    Styling
    9.2/10

So Much fun to drive. Corners like a champ

By on Wednesday, May 20, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 5,500

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
7/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
7/10
Comfort
9/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

"Great acceleration from 20-80 in a blink. Mostly all Pros than Cons. I just wish the interior felt more like a cockpit or at least wrapped around me, so I felt snug as a bug. That's just my opinion, I like that cockpit feeling."

I love this car.

By on Monday, March 30, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 113,600

10 10.0
overall rating 10 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
10/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
10/10
Performance
10/10
Styling
10/10
Comfort
10/10

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 10

"Driving this car compares to my 1969 GTO that I loved. It holds the road better and the gas mileage is much better, 25 to 29 on highway, 24 overall city and highway. THe acceleration feels almost as good but is actually better. THe motor lowering and positioning on the 2009 compared to the 2007 Maxima I had has removed the torque steer that the older car had. The 4 door sports car naming is very close to being an actual 4 door sport car!"

9 people out of 15 found this review helpful

Underrated vehicle in its class

By on Friday, March 27, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 23,000

10 8.0
overall rating 8 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
8/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Great value, stands out in its class"

Cons: "CVT a bit odd, gas mileage a little low"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 8

2014 Maxima SV

"A well put together car, but the CVT takes a little getting used to. It doesn't 'shift' like a normal transmission, so if you're thinking that this car is a racer, you might look elsewhere. Also, the car feels very heavy which is great if you're just cruising, but tough to handle if you're on a windy back road trying to have some fun. Interior is very cozy and the design in and out is very sporty. Overall, a very good car, but I will be looking again soon."

4 people out of 5 found this review helpful

2014 Maxima SV

Quick, Smooth, Comfortable and Good to Look At

By on Monday, March 09, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 27,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
10/10
Quality
9/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Fast, comfortable, and good value."

Cons: "Torque steer, looks too much like the Altima."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"Love the smooth powerful engine, comfortable seating, responsive handling. Car interior has higher end finishes and great leather. Only complaint is FWD torque steer at full acceleration. Will seriously consider buying another one."

9 people out of 13 found this review helpful

Nice car but loses value very quickly.

By on Thursday, March 05, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 39,000

10 7.0
overall rating 7 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
7/10
Value
5/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
8/10
Styling
6/10
Comfort
8/10

Pros: "fun to drive"

Cons: "does not hold value"

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 6

"Not the car to get if u plan on trading in. Within 1 year of owning the vehichle the trade in value had dropped to over $10,000. Better off getting a Honda which is a little cheaper anyway."

4 people out of 6 found this review helpful

Fun to drive!

By on Sunday, February 22, 2015

I own this car - My approximate mileage is 54,000

10 9.0
overall rating 9 of 10rating details

Reviewer Ratings

Overall Rating
9/10
Value
9/10
Reliability
9/10
Quality
8/10
Performance
9/10
Styling
9/10
Comfort
9/10

Pros: "Lots of fun to drive, especially on curvy roads."

Cons: "CVT transmission leaves a little to be desired."

Likely to recommend this car? (1-10): 9

"This Nissan Maxima is a blast to drive. My only complaint is with the CVT transmission. Once you're moving and want to accelerate, the CVT is great, but off the line it feels like the car bogs down and doesn't want to go. Keeping in mind this is a car that goes 0-60 in under 6 secs, it isn't exactly slow, but the "fun quotient" is lower due to the transmission. Also, the fact that NISMO doesn't offer any performance upgrades for the car is strange. You have to go outside of Nissan to find performance upgrades for their premier sedan??"

2 people out of 8 found this review helpful

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Trading in or Selling? Know where you stand with the most up-to-date Kelley Blue Book Value at your fingertips. See your car's value

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