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Nissan Maxima Wins NBR Car of the Year 2004

Nissan Maxima Wins NBR Car of the Year 2004


New Zealand's National Business Review Car of the Year is the Nissan Maxima.

This announcement is another accolade to add to what is becoming a legend in the motor industry * Nissan's successful global turnaround in design, technology and brand perception.

Nissan won the overall Car of the Year Award from some tough competition which included Audi A6, BMW 645 and Ford Territory.

Judge for the NBR Awards, Peter Gill was completely unequivocal in his praise.

This comment sums it up: "Ride comfort simply outclasses everything in this price range. Massive seats and an eerily pliant ride provide a lesson to all the competition, yet handling is not compromised in any way be softness of ride****..bold new body styling too, which in my eyes rates as the most aesthetic piece of sculpture of all the cars in this class." (Full review below)

Recently returned from Japan, Nevil Gibson Editor of National Business Review commented that: "Nissan is the sexy story of the motor industry combining French flair with Japanese technology." "The strong design focus that has been brought to the Nissan brand is very noticeable in Japan where a lot of domestic brands are not changed for years," said Nevil Gibson.

''Nissan has recently dominated the auto news with the launch of six distinctive and stylish domestic brands simultaneously which has never been done before by any other car manufacturer." There is a very distinct mantra that accompanies the new Nissan direction 'Everything we touch we SHIFT_.And everything we SHIFT_ we try to make better' Recently Nissan launched the Micra which is a small stylish 'around town' car with all the trimmings.

It is wrapped up in a very smart package with remarkable attitude for its size and has rapidly growing fashionable following.

The Nissan Patrol will be releasing new models in a month and there are a number of exciting developments over the year.

Judges comment NBR Friday 10th September.

Gorgeous package sets Maxima apart Car of the Year Nissan Maxima

"One of the most hotly contested segments in the marketplace is the one our winner normally comes from: the medium to large business sedan.

We have always said the NBR Car of the Year will be one that sells in reasonable volume to businesses, executives and user-choosers and will have a start price of (in today's terms) under $50k.

The standout car in that arena that has arrived in the marketplace in the 12 months since our last award is the new Nissan Maxima.

It came on the market last December to replace the rather tired previous model.

With it came a bump up from three litres to 3.5 litres, the new engine being a returned version of the one in the fiery 350Z sports car.

There came a bold new body styling too, which in my eyes rates as the most aesthetic piece of sculpture of all the cars in this class.

Ride comfort simply outclasses everything in this price range.

Massive seats and an eerily pliant ride -provide a lesson to all the competition, yet handling is not compromised in any way by softness of ride.

The entry level car comes in at $39,995 complete with ABS, traction control, electronic brake force distribution, climate air, six stacker CD player and a convincing almost opulent timber-look to the fascia and console.

Go up the range to the ST model, and you get side air bags, better audio, cruise control and electric seat adjustment.

Further up still, there's a leather trimmed interior to be had.

The engine is magic in its pulling power, offering peak torque of 333Nm at a low and highly useful 2800rpm.

And at 7.23 seconds for the 0-100kph dash, it's faster than a Falcon XR6 or any comparable Commodore.

Weaknesses? The auto should be five speed rather than four because that's the way the world is moving.

But that brawny engine covers for this shortfall.

We don't suggest the new Maxima is dramatically better equipped with features than the competing Camry, Vectra or Diamante, just that is has an engine, a ride, looks and an interior ambience that set it completely apart from all of them.

It brings so many desires to reality in one gorgeous package. It makes you feel you've paid top-end Lexus money." Peter Gill.

- Judge NBR Car of the Year 2004

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