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QUALITY | 8 out of 10
Attractive but not posh materials
Passenger space is generous up front
Kelley Blue Book
Well-cushioned seats and high-quality leather
The 2008 Nissan Maxima is differentiated from the similar 2008 Nissan Altima largely by the higher-quality interior, though some reviews read by TheCarConnection.com indicate that Nissan still has some work to do.
The 2008 Nissan Maxima seats five in what Car and Driver calls a "very roomy cabin," though that largely depends on whether you're in the front or backseats. Kelley Blue Book considers the occupant space "generous up front, even with the optional power moonroof," although Cars.com says "tall drivers may find the Maxima cramped." In order to aid driver comfort, "the steering wheel tilts and telescopes" on the 2008 Nissan Maxima, notes Cars.com, "so drivers of all sizes can position themselves a safe distance away." In the rear, "two adults is the practical limit," advises ConsumerGuide, commenting that "legroom and headroom are good, but not grand," and "entry and exit are hampered by the sloping roofline and narrow floor-level passages."
The interior of the Nissan Maxima scores well for overall usability and cargo storage space. ConsumerGuide finds "ample cabin storage," and in the trunk, "the compact strut-type trunklid hinges don't steal space or endanger luggage." Kelley Blue Book adds that the rear of the Nissan Maxima features "a 60/40 split-folding rear bench that enables increasing the usable cargo capacity." With those seats up, Edmunds writes that you still have "a 15.5-cubic-foot trunk" in which to store cargo.
While reviewers praise the interior of the 2008 Nissan Maxima for comfort and space, many find that materials quality is a letdown. Edmunds in particular slams this 2008 Nissan for its "mediocre materials quality," epitomized by "too many low-grade plastics and fit and finish miscues." ConsumerGuide reviewers are less harsh, declaring that the interior "strikes an acceptable balance of hard plastics and padded surfaces." AutoWeek aptly summarizes reviewer impressions with the interior, saying that "thirty-five grand is Audi territory, and this Maxima isn't in that league."
Despite some build quality complaints, ambient noise in the Nissan Maxima is comfortably controlled. ConsumerGuide says that although the "V6 emits a constant snarl at full throttle," other sounds such as wind noise are "well-tamed, but tire thrum intrudes on some coarse pavement."
Even though you'll sit in comfort inside the 2008 Nissan Maxima, the experience is marred by low-quality materials.