Nissan Could Actually Build Maxima Nismo
Remember the goofy NISMO mashups that Nissan created last year? Well it turns out that while some of the creations like the Sentra/NISMO Z and the mashup of the Xterra and the Juke were pure Photoshop (or MS Paint) fantasy, it sounds like Nissan may have been onto something with the 2016 Nissan Maxima NISMO.
The Detroit Bureau is reporting that the product planner for the 2016 Nissan Maxima, Vishnu Jayamohan, hinted at the possibility of a NIMSO-tuned version of the sedan. Nissan has been marketing the Maxima as a “4-Door Sports Car” (or 4DSC) for some time, so adding more power and a tighter chassis would sure help back up this claim.
No details or timeline are given in the report, but the first order of business would be to pull a few extra ponies from the 3.5-liter V-6. In stock form, this engine produces 300 horsepower and 261 pound-feet of torque, and the Juke (NISMO RS), 370Z and GT-R all produce higher outputs with the NISMO model. This probably wouldn’t be too hard for Nissan as the Maxima’s VQ35DE has been in production since the early 2000s, including under the hood of the 2003-2006 350Z. It doesn’t sound like Nissan would be interested in investing the added engineering to installing a bigger engine – say the 370Z’s 3.7-liter V-6. And there’s no need.
With styling also a key element of NISMO cars, expect to see an even flashier exterior design if a Maxima NISMO does go into production. This would almost definitely include bigger, wider wheels, a special lower body kit and a sizable rear spoiler. It certainly won’t look anything like the mashup of the previous-gen Maxima and the GT-R that can be seen below.
If it does become a reality, the Maxima NISMO would be priced well above the 2016 Maxima’s $32,410 starting price.
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Why it matters
Nissan has already expanded its NISMO lineup in recent years, from just the tuned version of the Z car to now offering the same treatment on the GT-R and Juke. If the economy-minded Juke was able to land its own NISMO version, then it doesn’t seem too farfetched that Nissan would develop a performance version of the already-sporty Maxima sedan. Numerous concept versions of NISMO performance cars have also been released, such as the 2013 Nissan Sentra NISMO, 2015 Nissan Pulsar NISMO and the exciting 2013 Nissan IDx NISMO, but the Maxima might make the most sense for the next addition to the NISMO lineup.
You can check our speculative review of the Maxima Nismo here.