2019 Toyota Camry vs. 2019 Nissan Maxima

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

For enhanced safety, the front and rear seat shoulder belts of the Toyota Camry have pretensioners to tighten the seatbelts and eliminate dangerous slack in the event of a collision and force limiters to limit the pressure the belts will exert on the passengers. The Nissan Maxima doesn’t offer pretensioners for the rear seat belts.

The Camry has a standard Secondary Collision Brake, which automatically applies the brakes in the event of a crash to help prevent secondary collisions and prevent further injuries. The Maxima doesn’t offer a post collision braking system: in the event of a collision that triggers the airbags, more collisions are possible without the protection of airbags that may have already deployed.

Both the Camry and the Maxima have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front and rear side-impact airbags, driver and front passenger knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front wheel drive, height adjustable front shoulder belts, plastic fuel tanks, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, crash mitigating brakes, daytime running lights, rearview cameras, available blind spot warning systems, around view monitors and rear cross-path warning.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does 35 MPH front crash tests on new vehicles. In this test, results indicate that the Toyota Camry is safer than the Nissan Maxima:

 

Camry

Maxima

 

Driver

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

Neck Injury Risk

20%

38%

Neck Stress

262 lbs.

328 lbs.

Neck Compression

13 lbs.

20 lbs.

 

Passenger

STARS

5 Stars

4 Stars

Chest Compression

.7 inches

.7 inches

Neck Injury Risk

21%

29%

Neck Compression

45 lbs.

52 lbs.

Leg Forces (l/r)

266/310 lbs.

840/589 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration does side impact tests on new vehicles. In this test, which crashes the vehicle into a flat barrier at 38.5 MPH and into a post at 20 MPH, results indicate that the Toyota Camry is safer than the Nissan Maxima:

 

Camry

Maxima

 

Front Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

134

295

Chest Movement

.7 inches

.9 inches

Abdominal Force

136 G’s

188 G’s

 

Rear Seat

STARS

5 Stars

5 Stars

HIC

289

391

Spine Acceleration

48 G’s

57 G’s

 

Into Pole

STARS

5 Stars

4 Stars

Max Damage Depth

14 inches

16 inches

HIC

164

300

Spine Acceleration

35 G’s

53 G’s

Hip Force

622 lbs.

997 lbs.

New test not comparable to pre-2011 test results. More stars = Better. Lower test results = Better.

For its top level performance in IIHS driver and passenger-side small overlap frontal, moderate overlap frontal, side impact, roof strength and head restraint tests, its standard front crash prevention system, and its headlight’s “Good” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Camry its highest rating: “Top Pick Plus” for 2019, a rating granted to only 44 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The Maxima is only a standard “Top Pick” for 2019.

Warranty

Toyota pays for scheduled maintenance on the Camry for 2 years and 25000 miles. Toyota will pay for oil changes, lubrication and any other required maintenance. Nissan doesn’t pay scheduled maintenance for the Maxima.

There are over 13 percent more Toyota dealers than there are Nissan dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the Camry’s warranty.

Reliability

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Toyota vehicles are more reliable than Nissan vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Toyota second in reliability, above the industry average. With 29 more problems per 100 vehicles, Nissan is ranked 15th.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2018 Auto Issue reports that Toyota vehicles are more reliable than Nissan vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Toyota second in reliability. Nissan is ranked 14th.

Engine

The Camry XSE/XLE’s optional 3.5 DOHC V6 produces 1 more horsepower (301 vs. 300) and 6 lbs.-ft. more torque (267 vs. 261) than the Maxima’s 3.5 DOHC V6.

As tested in Motor Trend the Camry V6 is faster than the Nissan Maxima:

 

Camry

Maxima

Zero to 30 MPH

2.1 sec

2.4 sec

Zero to 60 MPH

5.8 sec

6 sec

Zero to 100 MPH

14.5 sec

14.7 sec

Quarter Mile

14.3 sec

14.5 sec

Speed in 1/4 Mile

99.6 MPH

99.3 MPH

Fuel Economy and Range

On the EPA test cycle the Camry gets better fuel mileage than the Maxima:

 

 

 

MPG

Camry

 

 

L 2.5 DOHC 4 cyl.

29 city/41 hwy

 

 

LE/SE/XLE/XSE 2.5 DOHC 4 cyl.

28 city/39 hwy

 

 

XLE 3.5 DOHC V6

22 city/33 hwy

 

 

XSE 3.5 DOHC V6

22 city/32 hwy

Maxima

 

 

3.5 DOHC V6

20 city/30 hwy

Brakes and Stopping

The Camry stops shorter than the Maxima:

 

Camry

Maxima

 

60 to 0 MPH

126 feet

132 feet

Consumer Reports

60 to 0 MPH (Wet)

133 feet

141 feet

Consumer Reports

Suspension and Handling

The Camry has standard front and rear gas-charged shocks for better control over choppy roads. The Maxima’s suspension doesn’t offer gas-charged shocks.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Camry’s wheelbase is 1.9 inches longer than on the Maxima (111.2 inches vs. 109.3 inches).

The Camry SE handles at .88 G’s, while the Maxima SR pulls only .87 G’s of cornering force in a Car and Driver skidpad test.

For better maneuverability, the Camry L/LE’s turning circle is .7 feet tighter than the Maxima’s (37.4 feet vs. 38.1 feet). The Camry SE/XLE/XSE’s turning circle is .1 feet tighter than the Maxima’s (38 feet vs. 38.1 feet).

Chassis

The Toyota Camry may be more efficient, handle and accelerate better because it weighs about 50 to 300 pounds less than the Nissan Maxima.

Passenger Space

The Camry has 1.2 inches more front hip room, 1 inch more front shoulder room, 1.3 inches more rear headroom, 3.8 inches more rear legroom and 1.2 inches more rear hip room than the Maxima.

Cargo Capacity

The Camry has a larger trunk than the Maxima (15.1 vs. 14.3 cubic feet).

A low lift-over trunk design makes loading and unloading the Camry easier. The Camry’s trunk lift-over height is 26.8 inches, while the Maxima’s liftover is 28.8 inches.

Ergonomics

The Camry XLE/XSE offers an optional heads-up display that projects speed and other key instrumentation readouts in front of the driver’s line of sight, allowing drivers to view information without diverting their eyes from the road. The Maxima doesn’t offer a heads-up display.

The power windows standard on both the Camry and the Maxima have locks to prevent small children from operating them. When the lock on the Camry is engaged the driver can still operate all of the windows, for instance to close one opened by a child. The Maxima prevents the driver from operating the other windows just as it does the other passengers.

The Camry’s front and rear power windows all open or close fully with one touch of the switches, making it more convenient at drive-up windows and toll booths, or when talking with someone outside the car. The Maxima’s rear power window switches have to be held the entire time to open or close them fully.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) conducts detailed tests on headlights for their range both straight ahead and in curves and to be certain they don’t exceed acceptable amounts of glare to oncoming drivers. The Camry’s headlights were rated “Good” to “Acceptable” by the IIHS, while the Maxima’s headlights are rated “Acceptable” to “Poor.”

Economic Advantages

Insurance will cost less for the Camry owner. The Complete Car Cost Guide estimates that insurance for the Camry will cost $1685 to $5645 less than the Maxima over a five-year period.

The Camry will cost the buyer less in the long run because of its superior resale value. The IntelliChoice estimates that the Camry will retain 35.88% to 48.63% of its original price after five years, while the Maxima only retains 36.9% to 38.7%.

According to The Car Book by Jack Gillis, the Camry is less expensive to operate than the Maxima because typical repairs cost much less on the Camry than the Maxima, including $268 less for a muffler.

IntelliChoice estimates that five-year ownership costs (depreciation, financing, insurance, fuel, fees, repairs and maintenance) for the Toyota Camry will be $13834 to $17417 less than for the Nissan Maxima.

Recommendations

The Toyota Camry has won recognition from these important consumer publications:

 

Camry

Maxima

Consumer Reports® Recommends

Top Pick

TRUE

Car Book “Best Bet”

TRUE

FALSE

The Toyota Camry outsold the Nissan Maxima by over 8 to one during 2018.

© 1991-2018 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved.

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