1993 Nissan Maxima SE V6 from North America


Great Car / performance and reliablilty


Transmission replaced at 125,000

Cost $1200

Bose System is awful. (problem prone)

Bought another Bose Radio from a junkyard

Bought another head unit from E-bay cost $40 bucks. It works so far.

The Bose systems seem to be problem prone.

General Comments:

Great Car!! Very Reliable.

I would buy another.

Powerful. Worth buying a well kept used one.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 7th February, 2005

1993 Nissan Maxima SE 3.0L 24v DOHC from North America


Very forgiving of my juvenile tendencies.


55K miles: Variable Timing Cam, common problem, fixed under warranty.

Passenger side CV boot at about 85K

Drivers side went at 130K. I dragged my heels about fixing so it also cost me a half-shaft replacement.

114K: Transmission rebuilt $1500. Could have lasted longer, were it not for my abuse of it.

Window are slow, need to be lubricated.

Power antenna mechanism fails to raise/lower the mast. I'm told it's an internal clutch.

Struts got really tired of my driving habits, so I put some fresh KYB's in last month. WooHoo! Fun again!

Power steering hose went out slowly starting at 100K or so. I eventually fixed it myself at a cost of about $70 for the parts/supplies.

Front Main seal started leaking around 120K miles. Again, might not have happened if I didn't love to drive this car at 9/10ths so very much!

General Comments:

A smart buy, even after 7 years! For my needs as a father of 3 and a residential Realtor, this car has been fabulous.

Roomy and elegant in leather, the interior has held up extremely well. I observe no rips or tears in the seats, and no discoloration or fading of the black leather, either. I am also very impressed with the lack of squeaks, rattles or loose parts inside.

Performance in both acceleration and handling is superb for what this car is: a 4dr family sedan. The VE30DE motor loves to rev and sings a beautiful song above 3500RPM's. Synthetic oil is best for preventing a repeat of the VTC breakdown. That mechanism has to be very will lubricated. The bottom end is pretty stout, though. I did a compression test at 140K and all six were above 170 lbs psi.

The 4-wheel disc brakes with ABS have saved me at least a dozen times from something bad happening. That over-confidence caused me to crash my wife's Taurus!

The only complaint I ever had was a poor cup holder design. This can be simply and cheaply remedied with a unit from an 89-95 Taurus, or Saab 900. Looks stock, too.

Later year Maxima's have a more powerful engine, but lack an independent rear suspension. I've driven them. They don't corner or respond anywhere near as well as the second gen with an IRS. When I crank the wheel over hard, I expect the vehicle to follow! The later Maxima's I've driven have under-steered so badly that I found them unsafe. I'm spoiled.

I think that another 100,000 miles is not out of the question.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 14th January, 2005

1993 Nissan Maxima SE 3.0 DOHC V6 from North America


A Japanese sports sedan of unparalleled design and durability


A/C was and is still non-operational. I haven't gotten around to fixing it yet.

Numerous minor ventilation problems on top of bad A/C: all the lights have burnt out in the ventilation controls, so it's hard to see at night (the indicator lights for vent position still work). Also, the fresh air flap mechanism is broken, so the lever on the left of the controls just flaps around (makes for cold driving in winter, as it is stuck open). Also came this way.

Every component of the brake system was shot except for master cylinder and lines. However, I attribute this to years of salty Chicago winters. The calipers, rotors, and such were just rusted and a mess. New brakes have been phenomenal, at relatively reasonable cost ($800 for 4 new rotors, calipers, and pads).

Front struts were completely destroyed at 139k, and appeared to be original (they were making extremely ominous noises over bumps). Car is 10 times better with new front struts. I'm sure the backs are bad, too, but I'm leaving them alone for a while, and they don't affect the handling that much.

Bose system was intermittent when I got it, and went completely dead a month later. Bought a reconditioned Cassette/CD Bose unit ($300), and am enjoying the look and feel of the stock unit, as well as the sound which is quite good for a factory radio. Also, got Bose to recondition the back speakers for $150 (for the pair).

Had some snow on the windshield (not very much), turned on the wipers, and the wiper mechanism broke. Motor works, but no motion. Getting that fixed soon for hopefully less than $100.

Numerous little bulbs seem to be hard to find at the local auto parts places around here (like map lights, 3rd brake lights).

Power locks have failed. The power lock timer is the culprit, and should be relatively cheap to fix (less than $50).

The harness connected to the left headlight is loose, and causes that headlight to stop functioning sometimes (the high beam light comes on to let me know it's out). A little wiggle and it's fine. I think it might be the result of an accident and subsequent splicing of the harness, so maybe not the car's fault.

It used to have serious valve train noise (the clacking usually associated with Nissan's VTC system unique to the SE engines from 1992-1994) at two times; when cold and when hot (like fully warmed up for a while). Changed to synthetic and now only have noise for a couple of minutes when cold. Purrs like a kitten otherwise.

Stupid odometer broke at 145k. Haven't owned a car over 10 years old with a working odometer yet. I'm not going to bother fixing this unless some angel came along and offered to fix it for $50. I suspect it wouldn't be that cheap and it would involve an instrument cluster from a junked car, which might only last until tomorrow anyway. Will do without.

Power windows are somewhat slow, but lubricant in the tracks should clear that up. Have not had the failed regulator problem that results in the window falling into the door, fortunately. The windows do seem a little loose in their tracks, though, so that may happen eventually. Car is still quiet, and windows still seal well.

Fog lights are out--one is smashed. Seems pretty common for owners to have rammed the driving lights into curbs and such.

The car has rust patches, but no perforation yet: one underneath the driver's side mirror, large patches underneath the mount points of the spoiler (which is coming loose at its edges), some rust on the rear fender lips, and tiny specks where stones have chipped the paint.

General Comments:

Despite the comprehensive problem list above, I am really quite pleased with the car. It has never failed to start or get me where I need to go. It is quiet and fast, although it doesn't seem quite as torquey as the 1989-1991 models--it is a little higher strung. There is no shortage of grunt, overall, however.

Factory system was one of the best of its kind back then, and it's still quite good. I think it will always be worth the money to get the system replaced. An aftermarket system at $500 cost will NEVER come close to the Bose system's sound quality and aesthetics. I have never seen any other radio look good in the dash.

Interior has held up very well--it looks almost new in most respects, with the exception being some cracked leather on the steering wheel and wear on the shift knob. Neatsfoot has done wonders with that.

Car gets GREAT fuel economy--had a MINI Cooper S for a while that got 25-26 mpg if you were gentle. The MINI was a gutless wimp off the line (not to say it didn't have its merits--it was a fabulous handler). The Max, on the other hand, soundly trounces MINIs in acceleration at any speed and gets the same fuel economy, to boot. I can get 29 mpg on the highway, and the big tank is a godsend.

Ventilation system is quiet and very effective--I am looking forward to fixing its little quirks.

Gages are better than anything on the market in my opinion--Nissan got it right on these models, and everything since is just toying with perfection.

Most comfortable seats short of a BMW 5-series. Can drive all day in this car.

Cruise control and minor accessories are great, including heated mirrors (a nice option up here).

Chicago is terribly punishing to cars. They call this the Rust Belt for a reason. All in all, I think a lesser car would have holes in it by now. Until very recently, this car lived on the street.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 26th September, 2004