The Nissan Maxima remains pushed as a four-door sports car, but it's best to simply forget about that, and consider it as a V-6 luxury sedan that has more style than other non-luxury-brand alternatives.
If you want a somewhat sporty driving feel and love the Maxima's styling, we'd give the nod to the Maxima over a base Acura TL, even though you do give up the Lexus dealership experience that's part of the price.
In more expensive SH-AWD guise, the TL is the sportier pick, however.
The Toyota Avalon gives you a roomy interior, but we think that even for 2013 its styling isn't as flamboyant as the Maxima's.
The Buick LaCrosse and Ford Taurus are both more sedate but very competent alternatives, but the Taurus has some of the same back-seat issues as the Maxima and the LaCrosse doesn't feel sporty at all unless you move to its upper trims.
The Volkswagen CC has been given a slight refresh for 2013, and its interesting packaging and nimble, lighter driving feel (in 2.0T form) could be an appealing alternative.
The Dodge Charger is sort of an alter-ego to the smooth, curvy Maxima; its crisp styling and rear-wheel-drive layout appeal to a completely different kind of shopper, but Charger V-6 models are appealing and sporty in some of the same ways to those who want an 'almost' sport sedan without too many compromises.
|2013 Nissan MaximaGet FREE Price Quote||2013 Buick LacrosseGet FREE Price Quote||2013 Dodge ChargerGet FREE Price Quote||2013 Toyota AvalonGet FREE Price Quote||2013 Volkswagen CCGet FREE Price Quote||2012 Acura TLGet FREE Price Quote|
|19 MPG City / 26 MPG Hwy||17 MPG City / 36 MPG Hwy||14 MPG City / 31 MPG Hwy||21 MPG City / 31 MPG Hwy||17 MPG City / 32 MPG Hwy||17 MPG City / 29 MPG Hwy|
|Gas V6||Gas/Electric I4||Gas V6||Gas V6||Turbocharged Gas I4||Gas V6|
|Midsize Cars||Midsize Cars||Large Car||Large||Compact||Mid-Size|
|4dr Sedan 3.5 S||4dr Sedan Base FWD||4dr Sedan SE RWD||4dr Sedan XLE (Natl)||4dr Sedan Man Sport||4dr Sedan Auto 2WD|
|Front Wheel Drive||Front Wheel Drive||Rear Wheel Drive||Front Wheel Drive||Front Wheel Drive||Front-Wheel Drive|
|Sedan||Sedan||Sedan||Sedan||Sedan||4 Door Sedan|
|Continuously Variable Ratio||Automatic w/manual shift||Automatic||Automatic||Manual||Automatic|