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The Mercury Cars Guide : July 4th 2009
Saturday, July 4, 2009 Classifieds 62 300 400 • carsguide.com.au but plenty more to do Driving THE Nissan Maxima has al- wayspromised somuch,but never really delivered. It was a car bought by retirees and an older demographic who loved the hush-hush cabin, stan- dard features, Nissan reliability and that silky V6. However, it was never a stand- out against some of the sharper- handling Japanese competition. But Nissan is hoping to change that. Out is the softer, roly-poly mer- engue ride of the old Maxima. In its place is a sharper, crisper suspension with better control and less pitching. Don’t think that for onemoment that it has been transformed into a sports touring sedan. The ride remains supple and composed, but the changes to the suspension have delivered a more resolved ride and better rebound control from harsh bumps. The steering feels tighter and the extra body rigidity aids the whole car’s dynamics when you do start to push it harder. In sharp corners, the Maxima will wash off speed with some understeer but overall it is reas- suringly competent on a windy mountain road, which could not be said about the previous car. In our eyes, the design is crisper but Nissan has been too conserva- tive with its styling. The swept-back standard xenon headlights and LED tail-lights smarten things up but few people will notice it on the road. This is a pity because at the heart of the Maxima beats a beautiful V6 engine mated to a continuously variable transmis- sion. Nissan’s V6 has won acco- lades for years and it’s easy to understand why. It’s smooth, quiet and very responsive. It is also surprisingly frugal when you drive with economy in mind.Wemanagedhigh sevenson the highway and 10.5 litres/100km around town. The CVT works far better than we remember too. There’s a dis- tinct kick-down feel now when you prod the accelerator hard to overtake and the gearbox will mimic a conventional change- down when slowing down a hill. There is none of that slurring or slipping clutch feel in the new CVT. The Ti’s leather-trimmed cabin is well executed and has an appropriate quality feel. Equipment levels are appropri- ate for the price with sat-nav controls that are intuitive and easy to use, cushioning leather seats and a sunroof. But there are some minor nig- gles. The sat-nav and in-car informa- tion graphics provided by the system are a little low-rent when compared to some other local and European systems. There are other quirks around the cabin, evidence either of some cost-cutting or just a lack of design forethought. The foot-operated park brake might be okay in North America but it is a inadequate in a car with high-end aspirations in this com- petitive segment. The steering wheel is also not reach-adjustable, there are no rear door pockets while the ones at the front are impossibly narrow to be of any real use. The heated front seat switches small torque Nissan Maxima Ti $46,990 as tested Engine: 3.5-litre V6. Power: 185kW at 5600 revs, 326Nm at 4400 revs. Transmission: Continuously variable trans- mission with six-speed adaptive shift control. Dimensions: Length 4850mm, width 1795mm, height 1485mm, wheelbase 2775mm. Steering: Power-assisted rack and pinion. Suspension: Independent struts with stabilis- er bar front, multi-link independent rear. Fuel consumption: 10.2 litres/100km com- bined. Weight: 1563kg. Brakes: Four-wheel disc brakes. Wheels: 17-inch alloys. Tyres: 215/55 R17 Michelins. Spare wheel: Full-size steel. Safety: Dual front, side and curtain airbags, active front headrests, anti-skid brakes, brake force distribution, electronic stability control, traction control and brake assist. Warranty: Three years/100,000km. Features Airconditioning Alloy wheels Heated leather seats 65/100 How it compares Ford Falcon G6E 83/100 (from $48,490). Holden Calais 79/100 (from $48,290). Honda Accord V6 Luxury 68/100 (from $48,990). Toyota Aurion Presara 76/100 (from $49,990). in the Ti are hidden under the centre console lid. Why? MIGHTY HEART: Nissan Maxima Ti. you’re not careful. Someownersmayalso be put off by the narrow opening of the boot. Large objects will need to be juggled to fit. The Ti’s DVD and audio gear, which is positioned under the rear parcel shelf in the boot, may also foul luggage if Minor niggles aside, Nissan has addressed some of the dynamic flaws with the old car to deliver a better handling big sedan. But the Maxima Ti’s biggest problem are its rivals. There are still more engaging cars for the price. IT’S CHRISTMAS IN JULY AT PERFORMANCE AUTOMOBILES WE’RE GIFTING $500 WORTH OF FREE GENUINE ACCESSORIES WITH EVERY NEW CAR YULE LOVE THE VALUE No Comparison - Compare The Value Subaru Impreza R $23,490 plus dealer delivery and statutory charges FIAT 500 SELLOUT. 20% OFF MSRRP. IN STOCK CARS ONLY. BE QUICK. VOLVO FINDERS KEEPERS SALE C30 S Manual Hatch or Sedan or $26,490 Drive Away * Includes $500 worth of free accessories. Confi dence comes standard. Every current model Subaru comes with: • Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive • Horizontally opposed Boxer engine • VDC electronic stability control • Five-star ANCAP occupant safety rating PLUS DEALER DELIVERY & STATUT0RY CHARGES $33,476 DRIVEAWAY OR $29,990 A-Class •Automatic Transmission •Power Everything •5 Star Safety incl. 6 Airbags •Factory Backed Warranty •Alloy Wheels $26,790 Drive Away PERFORMANCE AUTOMOBILES CNR. ARGYLE & BURNETT STREETS www.performanceautomobiles.com.au PERFORMANCE SLEIGHS PRICES PRE-OWNED CLEARANCE $17,990 DriveAway 07 Ford Focus 5 speed, hatch, silver (A15VD) 06 Honda Jazz 7 speed auto, black (FH9241) $17,990 DriveAway 06 Honda CRV 5 speed, 40,000kms (FJ9873) $22,990 DriveAway 07 Subaru ForesterX Auto, white (FP3870) $22,990 DriveAway 07 Subaru Impreza WRX Hatch, 13,000kms, black (A26FK) $36,990 DriveAway UP TO 50% INVESTMENT ALLOWANCE vehicle purchases made before December 31st, 2009. Other businesses may be able toclaim a 10% tax credit on business vehicle purchases made after June 30th, 2009. Talk with your tax advisor before purcahse tosee if your business is eligible. Your business may be eligible for the Federal Government’s Investment Allowance. Eligible small businesses with less than $2 million turnover p.a may be able toclaim a 50% tax credit on business New A/H: Adrian Millington 0438 062 259 Pre-Owned A/H: Mike Nebbs 0417 089 631 6210 7000 Cruise control Climate control Automatic wipers —3 Limited Stock!
June 27th 2009
July 11th 2009