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2020 Nissan Maxima Review

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Though the Maxima received a makeover for the 2019 model, the 2020 models have added even more standard features. All five trim levels now have Nissan Safety Shield 360, a suite of six advanced driver-assist systems, which we will discuss in detail later.

That means the 2020 Nissan Maxima is competitive with rival Toyota’s Avalon and Camry sedans, both with standard Safety Sense. But the 2020 Avalon and Camry have something the Maxima doesn’t: hybrid versions.

The 2020 Maxima does have a standard 300 horsepower, 3.5-liter V-6 engine that gets an Environmental Protection Agency-estimated combined 24 mpg. The Avalon and Camry each offer a base four-cylinder engine.

2020 Nissan Maxima pricing and trims

The 2020 Nissan Maxima has a manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP) of $34,250 for the base Maxima S model.

Higher-level trims add the features listed for that trim level, plus all the lower trim levels. In some cases, a feature is replaced with a more luxurious version. For example, the Nissan Maxima S comes with cloth seats, while all higher trim levels come with leather seats. Going further, the SR and Platinum trims come with premium leather seats. All trim levels offer seating for five.

The most expensive Maxima is the Platinum trim level, which starts at $41,540, though adding the Reserve package adds $1,140.

Trim S SV SL SR Platinum
Base MSRP $34,250 $36,300 $38,640 $41,450 $41,540
Standard Technology Auto On/Off LED Headlights, Nissan Voice Recognition, 8-Speaker Audio System with SiriusXM, Cloth Seats Nissan Door to Door Navigation with 8-inch Color Display and Touch Control, Leather Seats, Heated Front Seats Panoramic Moonroof, Bose Premium Audio with 11 Speakers, Front and Rear Parking Sensors Premium Leather Seats, Heated and Cooled Front Seats with Thigh Extension and 2-Position Memory for Driver Auto Entry/Exit Front Seats, Power Rear Window Sunshade, NissanConnect Services with Navigation

All MSRPs are the lowest price for each trim and does not include the destination fee.

Standard features: All models feature Nissan’s Zero Gravity seats, which have a three-layer foam design that is soft but also provides added support. The front-wheel-drive sedan includes traction control and vehicle dynamic control. Other standard features include illuminated switches on the steering wheel for audio, cruise control and Bluetooth, remote keyless entry and a 7-inch advanced drive-assist display.

Platinum Reserve: One package (Platinum Reserve) is offered, but only on the Platinum trim level. On top of all the features of the Platinum model, it adds 19-inch aluminum-alloy wheels and an upgraded interior, including Rakuda Tan semi-aniline leather front seats with diamond-quilted leather inserts and heated rear seats. With the Reserve package, the starting MSRP is $42,680.

What’s next? Once you’ve determined which 2020 Nissan Maxima trim you want, you may want to start researching auto loans. While you’ll want to research the financing offers through Nissan, also consider your credit union or bank, as well as online lenders.

If you submit your applications within the same 14- to 45-day window, applying to multiple lenders should only be considered as one inquiry on your credit report.

By completing an online form on LendingTree, you could potentially receive up to five car loan offers from lenders, depending on your creditworthiness.

2020 Nissan Maxima safety

Crash testing information is not available for the 2020 Nissan Maxima through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). The agency did give the sedan its top rating (5 stars) for rollover risk. Because data was not available for the Maxima on frontal or side crashes, no overall rating is provided.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) also has not conducted crash tests on the 2020 Nissan Maxima. For background, the 2019 model received the institute’s best rating (“Good”) on all of its crashworthiness tests, including its roof strength and head restraints and seats. The Maxima received the best rating (“Superior”) for its front crash prevention systems.

As mentioned earlier, all trim levels of the 2020 Nissan Maxima now come equipped with the Nissan Safety Shield 360 system, a suite of six advanced driver-assist systems:

  • Automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection
  • Blind spot warning
  • Rear cross traffic alert
  • Lane departure warning
  • High beam assist
  • Rear automatic braking

In addition to the Safety Shield 360 system, all five trim levels come with 10 air bags, Zone Body construction, Intelligent Forward Collision Warning and Intelligent Driver Alertness. Integrated Dynamics serve to smooth out bumps in the road using Active Ride Control and Intelligent Engine Braking.

All trim levels, except the base Maxima S, add Intelligent Cruise Control and Traffic Sign Recognition to the long list of safety features. Both SR and Platinum trim levels get an Intelligent Lane Intervention System to round out its package.

2020 Nissan Maxima competitor comparison

The Nissan Maxima has strong competitors. Its base model is noticeably lower grade when it comes to seating features, making it comparable to the Chevrolet Impala, which is priced substantially less, while both offerings from luxury brands Acura and BMW offer more luxurious seating, as well as a power moonroof.

The Acura TLX in particular is likely the strongest competitor, with a price point that is less than the Maxima and an extensive list of comfort and convenience features.

Nissan Maxima Toyota Avalon Chevrolet Impala Acura TLX BMW 3 Series
Base MSRP $34,250 $35,800 $31,620 $33,000 $40,750
Expert Scores (Out of 5) 3.9 N/A N/A 4.0 N/A
Standard Technology Auto On/Off LED Headlights, Nissan Voice Recognition, 8-Speaker Audio System with SiriusXM, Cloth Seats 3.5-Liter V-6 Engine with 301 Horsepower, Auto On/Off LED Headlights, Dual-Zone Climate Control 3.6-Liter V-6 Engine with 305 Horsepower, LED Daytime Running Lights, Heated Power Outside Mirrors, 8-Way Power Driver Seat 2.4-Liter, Inline 4-Cylinder Engine with 206 Horsepower, LED Headlights and Taillights, 10-Way Power Driver Seat, Heated Front Seats 2.0-Liter Inline 4-Cylinder Engine with 255 Horsepower, 14-way Power Front Seats, Power-Folding Heated Side Mirrors
Fuel Economy (Combined/City/ Highway) 24/20/30 mpg 25/22/31 mpg 22/19/28 mpg 27/23/33 mpg 30/26/36 mpg

All data references 2020 model years. N/A references data that was not available at the time of publishing. All MSRPs are the lowest price for each trim and does not include the destination fee. Expert scores average Edmunds and Kelley Blue Book (KBB) expert ratings when available. Standard technology refers to features available in the lowest trim level for each model at no extra cost. This is not an exhaustive list. Fuel economy data is as defined by the EPA.

The bottom line on the 2020 Nissan Maxima

With the redesign of the Nissan Maxima for the 2019 model, it was transformed into a strong contender in the sedan segment. In particular, all models come well-equipped from a passive and active safety standpoint, meaning you won’t have to pony up extra dollars for a higher trim level to feel safe.

But it offers a more performance-oriented V-6 that also means compromising fuel efficiency — a priority for many buyers. Other competitors offer more fuel-efficient, four-cylinder options in addition to a V-6, which may attract buyers to other brands.

If you have your heart set on a V-6, check out our Best 6-Cylinder Cars to learn about other performance-oriented options. Though, keep in mind that many of these cars are larger, which further compromises fuel economy and may be bigger than you need.

MSRPs are current as of publication. 


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