2020 Nissan Maxima vs. 2020 Cadillac CT4

Detailed Review, Specifications & Comparison

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Safety

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/06/04

For enhanced safety, the front seat shoulder belts of the Nissan Maxima are height-adjustable to accommodate a wide variety of driver and passenger heights. A better fit can prevent injuries and the increased comfort also encourages passengers to buckle up. The Cadillac CT4 doesn’t offer height-adjustable seat belts.

The Maxima SR/Platinum has a standard Around View® Monitor to allow the driver to see objects all around the vehicle on a screen. The CT4 only offers a rear monitor and front and rear parking sensors that beep or flash a light. That doesn’t help with obstacles to the sides.

The Maxima’s driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The CT4 doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.

Both the Maxima and the CT4 have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, driver and front passenger knee airbags, side-impact head airbags, front seatbelt pretensioners, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, daytime running lights and rearview cameras.

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 vehicle-to-vehicle front crash prevention system, its standard vehicle-to-pedestrian front crash prevention system, and its standard headlight’s “Acceptable” rating, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety grants the Maxima its highest rating: “Top Pick Plus” for 2020, a rating granted to only 30 vehicles tested by the IIHS. The CT4 has not been tested, yet.

Warranty

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There are over 21 percent more Nissan dealers than there are Cadillac dealers, which makes it easier should you ever need service under the Maxima’s warranty.

Reliability

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J.D. Power and Associates rated the Maxima first among large cars in their 2019 Initial Quality Study. The CT4 isn’t in the top three in its category.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Nissan vehicles are better in initial quality than Cadillac vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Nissan 7th in initial quality, above the industry average. With 14 more problems per 100 vehicles, Cadillac is ranked 17th, below the industry average.

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2019 survey of the owners of three-year-old vehicles provides the long-term dependability statistics that show that Nissan vehicles are more reliable than Cadillac vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Nissan 15th in reliability. With 29 more problems per 100 vehicles, Cadillac is ranked 23rd.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ December 2019 Auto Issue reports that Nissan vehicles are more reliable than Cadillac vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Nissan 19 places higher in reliability than Cadillac.

Engine

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The Maxima’s 3.5 DOHC V6 produces 63 more horsepower (300 vs. 237) and 3 lbs.-ft. more torque (261 vs. 258) than the CT4’s standard 2.0 turbo 4-cylinder.

Transmission

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The Maxima has a standard continuously variable transmission (CVT). With no “steps” between gears, it can keep the engine at the most efficient speed for fuel economy, or keep it at its peak horsepower indefinitely for maximum acceleration. The CT4 doesn’t offer a CVT.

Brakes and Stopping

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/06/04

For better stopping power the Maxima’s front brake rotors are larger than those on the CT4:

Maxima

CT4

Front Rotors

12.6 inches

11.8 inches

Tires and Wheels

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For better traction, the Maxima has larger tires than the CT4 (245/45R18 vs. 225/45R17). The Maxima’s tires are larger than the largest tires available on the CT4 (245/45R18 vs. 235/40R18).

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Maxima has standard 18-inch wheels. Smaller 17-inch wheels are standard on the CT4.

The Maxima has a standard easy tire fill system. When inflating the tires, the vehicle’s integrated tire pressure sensors keep track of the pressure as the tires fill and tell the driver when the tires are inflated to the proper pressure. The CT4 doesn’t offer vehicle monitored tire inflation.

The Maxima offers an optional full size spare tire so a flat doesn’t interrupt your trip. A full size spare isn’t available on the CT4; it requires you to depend on its run-flat tires, which limits mileage and speed before they are repaired. If a run-flat is damaged beyond repair by a road hazard your vehicle will have to be towed. Some tire options on the CT4 don’t have a run-flat feature, either.

Suspension and Handling

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For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the Maxima is 2.1 inches wider in the front and .7 inches wider in the rear than on the CT4.

Chassis

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The Maxima SL/SR/Platinum uses computer-generated active noise cancellation to help remove annoying noise and vibration from the passenger compartment, especially at low frequencies. The CT4 doesn’t offer active noise cancellation.

Passenger Space

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Because it has more passenger and cargo room, the EPA rates the Maxima a Mid-size car, while the CT4 is rated a Compact.

The Maxima has 8.5 cubic feet more passenger volume than the CT4 (98.5 vs. 90).

The Maxima has 1.1 inches more front headroom, 2.6 inches more front legroom, 1.2 inches more front hip room, 1.5 inches more front shoulder room, .2 inches more rear headroom, .8 inches more rear legroom, 1 inch more rear hip room and 1.8 inches more rear shoulder room than the CT4.

Cargo Capacity

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The Maxima has a much larger trunk than the CT4 (14.3 vs. 10.7 cubic feet).

With its sedan body style, valet key, locking rear seatbacks and remote trunk release lockout, the Maxima offers cargo security. The CT4’s non-lockable folding seat and non-lockable remote release defeat cargo security.

Servicing Ease

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The Maxima uses gas struts to support the hood for easier service access. The CT4 uses a prop rod to support its heavy hood. It takes two hands to open the hood and set the prop rod, the prop rod gets in the way during maintenance and service, and the prop rod could be knocked out, causing the heavy hood to fall on the person maintaining or servicing the car.

Ergonomics

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The Maxima’s instruments include an oil pressure gauge and a temperature gauge - which could save your engine! Often ‘idiot lights’ don’t warn you until damage has been done. The CT4 does not have an oil pressure gauge.

If the front windows are left open on the Maxima the driver can close them at the outside door handle. On a hot day the driver can lower the windows at the outside door handle or from a distance using the keyless remote. The driver of the CT4 can only close the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

The Maxima’s standard speed-sensitive wipers speed up when the vehicle does, so that the driver doesn’t have to continually adjust the speed of the wipers. The CT4’s standard manually variable intermittent wipers have to be constantly adjusted.

A power rear sunshade is standard in the Maxima Platinum to help block heat and glare for the rear passengers. The CT4 doesn’t offer a rear sunshade.

Both the Maxima and the CT4 offer available heated front seats. The Maxima Platinum Reserve also has standard heated rear seats to keep those passengers extremely comfortable in the winter. Heated rear seats aren’t available in the CT4.

Recommendations

© 1999 - 2020 Advanta-STAR Automotive Research. All rights reserved. This vehicle comparison and all of the content in it are provided only by license from Advanta-STAR Automotive Research Corporation of America. If you are not a legally licensed user of this vehicle comparison, it is against federal law to access it, copy it, forward it or use it in any manner whatsoever. Any unauthorized use of this vehicle comparison is a violation of U.S. and international law and is punishable criminally and civilly. 6IUEX-0KENZ 45.55.47.189 2020/06/04

Consumer Reports® recommends the Nissan Maxima, based on reliability, safety and performance.

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