2002 Nissan Maxima Overview


Looking for a Used Maxima in your area?

CarGurus has 24,268 nationwide Maxima listings starting at $800.

Average user score
4.5 5 stars
Based on 33 reviews

2002 Nissan Maxima Overview

You need enough room for your family, yet you don't want to sacrifice luxury. And the 20-year old youth in you craves a fun and sporty ride. The 2002 Nissan Maxima tries to fill all those roles by upping its horsepower this year and adding sportier exterior and interior trimmings. Available in base GXE, sports-oriented SE, and upscale GLE models, the 2002 Maxima gets a new 3.5-liter, 255-hp V6 engine this year. While a 4-speed auto tran is standard for the GXE and GLE, the V6 on the SE is matched to a new 6-speed manual gearbox, to enhance driving performance and feel.

Aside from some fiddling with the grille and light design, many of the additions in 2002 have to do with more standard features. All of the Maximas now feature xenon headlights, which improve visibility, but apparently are a target for thieves looking for aftermarket parts for earlier Maximas. All models get 8-way power seats, while the GLE gets dual power front seats with a driver's memory setting. The base GXE is much more loaded than in 2001, with new 16-inch wheels, steering wheel-mounted audio, cruise control, a garage opener, CD player, and auto-dimming mirror. For 2002, the GLE gets upgraded audio and an optional navigation system. A trip computer is also new for all models this year, and a sunroof is optional on both the SE and GLE.

A roomy interior seats five, and rear seats split-fold and feature a trunk pass-through. Seat comfort overall is more supportive. The SE remains the choice of driving enthusiasts, with a stiffer suspension, performance tires, a rear spoiler, leather-wrapped wheel, and chrome exhaust pipes. Though drivers love the extra power, more aggressive styling, and family-sized room in the 2002 Maxima, many opt for the cheaper Altima, which is similarly equipped and is actually the Maxima's chief competition. Drawbacks to Maxima ownership include a wide turning radius, poor customer service, low fuel economy, and a so-so sound system.


What's your take on the 2002 Nissan Maxima?

  • Report

2002 Nissan Maxima Top Comparisons

Users ranked 2002 Nissan Maxima against other cars which they drove/owned. Each ranking was based on 9 categories. Here is the summary of top rankings.

2002 Nissan Maxima vs:

    Have you driven a 2002 Nissan Maxima?  
    Rank This Car

    Cars compared to 2002 Nissan MaximaPeople researching a 2002 Nissan Maxima contacted a dealer about


    Looking for a Used Maxima in your area?

    CarGurus has 24,268 nationwide Maxima listings starting at $800.

    Have questions?   Ask a question

    Nissan Maxima Questions


    I Put A Valve Gasket Cover Set On My 2002 Nissan Maxima Then The Next Morn...

    6 views with 1 answer (last answer 5 days ago)

    What Would Cause The Brake And Battery Dummy Lights To Come On As Your Car ...

    The parking brake is not on, the battery is brand new and the car will start after a jump, it just dies if you slow down or stop. I just replaced the alternator w/the battery. It seems to not be get...

    7,241 views with 7 answers (last answer 5 days ago)

    When I Start My 2002 Nissan Maxima I Get A Yellow "at" Light Blinking On My...

    128 views with 2 answers (last answer 3 weeks ago)

    2002 Nissan Maxima Gle Turns Over But Wont Start

    My 2002 Nissan Maxima GLE turns over but will not start. Every light in the car is on. I tried to crank it but it wont start. There is a noise coming from the hood. And its also a whirring noise I c...

    4,228 views with 44 answers (last answer about a month ago)

    I Have A 2002 Nissan Maxima Se. My Car Lags Whenever I Pull Off Sometimes A...

    3 views with no answers yet