The 1997 Nissan Maxima is a front-drive, four-door sedan that is offered in a variety of models that entice consumers with a luxurious ride at a reasonable price. It was designed to accommodate small families, rather than to be used as a show car. Drivers get the satisfaction of powerful acceleration without having to sacrifice fuel economy. Ride and Handling is satisfactory but lacks the sharpness of a BMW or the smoothness of an Infiniti. Passengers will enjoy comfortable seating and plenty of room to move around.
Body Styles: sedan
Engines: 3.0-liter six-cylinder
Transmissions: four-speed automatic, five-speed manual
Models: Nissan Maxima GXE, Nissan Maxima SE, Nissan Maxima GLE
The 1997 Nissan Maxima has enhanced exterior features, which include new bumpers, headlights, taillights, and front grille. The SE gets new fog lights and alloy wheels, while the GXE gets new wheel covers, and the GLE gets new aluminum wheels.
The 1997 Nissan Maxima is approximately 189 inches long, 70 inches wide, 56 inches tall with a 106-inch wheelbase. It has a conservative design that does not turn heads but is still modestly attractive. It features body-colored narrow body side molding, body-colored front and rear impact-absorbing bumpers, chrome trim around the side windows, power body-colored door mirrors, halogen bulb single headlights, a fixed rear window, and tinted glass. A power moon roof is optional. It has a curb weight of approximately 3000 pounds and sits on 15-inch wheels.
The interior of the 1997 Nissan Maxima is roomy enough to fit five passengers. In the front, there are cloth bucket seats with height-adjustable head restraints, divided by a console that includes a storage compartment and cup holders. There are pockets in the doors and bins on the seats for easy storage. The dash contains logically-arranged gauges for clear readability and conveniently-placed controls for easy use. In the rear, there is a cloth bench seat that fits three people, a coat hook, and a pass-through to the trunk. It features power locks, one-touch power windows, side window demisters, and an AM/FM stereo with a cassette player included. Optional amenities include a CD player, leather seating, and heated front seats.
Performance & Handling
All models of the 1997 Nissan Maxima are packed with a three-liter six-cylinder engine that produces 190 horsepower and 205 lb-ft of torque. It is mated with a five-speed manual or four-speed automatic transmission. The result is smooth, brisk acceleration. Zero to 60 mph can be accomplished in 7.5 seconds, and its top speed is 115 mph.
The 1997 Nissan Maxima is built with an independent strut front suspension with a stabilizer bar and coil springs teamed with an independent multi-link rear suspension with a stabilizer bar and coil springs. Ride and handling are both relatively pleasant with no major surprises. Under steer is easily noticeable, but only when driving at high speeds. Otherwise, steering has a good feel, allowing for precise control.
The 1997 Nissan Maxima has driver and front passenger front-impact airbags installed. Child safety locks are used on the rear doors, and a four-wheel ABS system is optional on all models.
EPA Fuel Economy
Nissan Maxima: 21/28 mpg city/highway
- Strong engine
- Comfortable ride
- Good gas mileage
You Won't Like
A solid combination of performance and luxurious comfort.
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