Interior

When a car gets to be a few years old it usually looks dated next to competitors that have been more recently redesigned. At roughly three model years of age, the Maxima's cabin still seems up-to-date compared with the newer Taurus. I think the Avalon is a bit more upscale, but it's also more expensive.

The dash and cockpit design is more sports carlike than those two as well, and that's Nissan's aim. I liked my test car's leather seats, too; the base version has cloth seats. The leather ones are extremely comfortable but still offer lots of support and thick bolstering.

The dashboard and controls are well-laid-out, with Nissan's usual high-quality materials providing both pleasant tactile interactions and sturdy feedback when using buttons and knobs.

In a large sedan like this, the backseat is extremely important. While not as big on paper as the Taurus, I found the rear accommodations airier than the Ford. There's plenty of headroom and legroom in the two outboard seats for full-size adults, and my kids' child-safety seats fit more easily in the Nissan than they did in the Ford.

Due to the car's relatively short length, there isn't much trunk space, totaling 14.2 cubic feet. The Taurus offers a massive 20.1 cubic feet, and even Nissan's midsize sedan, the Altima, has a bigger, 15.3-cubic-foot boot. The Avalon's trunk is similarly small, at 14.4 cubic feet.

    See also:

    Rear-facing child restraint installation using the seat belts
    The three-point seat belt with Automatic Locking Retractor (ALR) must be used when installing a child restraint. Failure to use the ALR mode will result in the child restraint not being p ...

    Console box
    Console box To open the console box, press in on the lever 1 and raise the lid 2 . To close, push the lid down until the lock latches. ...

    Sonar system (if so equipped)
    - The sonar system is a convenience but it is not a substitute for proper parking. Always look around and check that it is safe to do so before parking. Always move slowly. - Read and u ...