The Nissan Maxima is a midsize sedan with seating for five that doesn't quite live up to its sporty marketing pitch. On one hand, the Maxima benefits from a stout V6 engine and sharp handling for the class. Sadly, that power is squandered by a lifeless continuously variable automatic transmission and front-wheel drive.
We give the Maxima credit for its sturdy and sporty interior as well as many easy-to-use technology features. But we've deducted points for the small rear seats, limited trunk space and stiff ride quality. Other midsize sedans such as the top-ranked Honda Accord handle everyday duties with greater ease, and the Kia Stinger and Mazda 6, tied for second in our rankings, allow for more thrills behind the wheel.
In 2019, the Maxima received a significant refresh, with updated exterior styling, additional standard and optional features, and enhanced refinement in the top trim. A year later, the Safety Shield suite of advanced safety features was made standard and the suspension retuned. With this in mind, we don't expect many changes for the 2021 Maxima. That means if you're considering one, the 2020 Maxima probably won't be missing anything significant if you're shopping now. We'll know for sure when official information is shared sometime this summer, so keep checking back here for the latest updates.