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SAFETY | 8 out of 10
Five stars, frontal impact and side protection
Good," frontal offset impact
Stability control, traction control, and tire-pressure monitoring are standard
Car and Driver
The 2009 Nissan Maxima has tidied up its dimensions, and one of the more surprising results is that overall crash-test ratings have soared. Improved crash-test ratings, along with all the usual safety features offered as standard equipment, make the Nissan Maxima a responsible choice for those looking for a safe sedan.
Both the IIHS and the NHTSA, the crash-test authorities in the U.S., have shown quick turnarounds in testing the all-new 2009 Nissan Maxima. The Nissan Maxima excels in NHTSA tests, where it earns the highest possible rating of five stars in every impact category. That includes five-star ratings for front and side impacts, as well as a perfect five-star rollover protection rating. In IIHS tests, the Nissan 2009 Maxima performs equally well, earning the highest rating of "good" for the IIHS's frontal offset impact test. The IIHS test results show that "measures taken from the neck, chest, and both legs indicate low risk of injuries" during a frontal offset impact. Unfortunately, the IIHS has not yet conducted any side-impact tests with the 2009 Nissan Maxima.
In addition to a redesigned body structure that holds up well during crash tests, reviews read by TheCarConnection.com show that the Nissan 2009 Maxima boasts quite a few standard safety features. Car and Driver reviewers write that "stability control, traction control, and tire-pressure monitoring are standard, as they are with most cars these days." In addition to those electronic aids, Cars.com says "standard safety features include front and side-impact airbags for the front seats, side curtain airbags for both rows and active head restraints." The only other noteworthy safety features on the 2009 Nissan Maxima are "antilock four-wheel disc brakes" that include a "brake assist" feature, according to ConsumerGuide.
One of the characteristics of the 2009 Nissan Maxima helping to improve overall safety is that the driver's seat affords good visibility. Reviewers at Autoblog find that "outward visibility was good" during their time with the Nissan Maxima, but "the exterior mirrors with their massive plastic housings could offer a wider field of view." Further increasing driver awareness and visibility is an optional "rearview camera" that ConsumerGuide says is available as part of the Premium Package.
The 2009 Nissan Maxima is sure to be a favorite among those who require maximum crash-test scores.