It’s a big week for Nissan. Tuesday, the automaker kicked off production of its all-new 2016 Nissan Maxima at its plant in Smyrna, Tennessee. The Smyrna Vehicle Assembly Plant is Nissan’s top-producing automotive plant in North America, and Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam along with U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander joined plant employees to celebrate the big occasion.
“When Nissan came to Tennessee more than 30 years ago, there were almost no auto jobs in the state,” said Senator Alexander. “Three decades later, about one-third of our manufacturing jobs are auto related, auto suppliers have located in 80 counties, and our family incomes are higher. I want to thank Nissan for providing opportunities for thousands of talented Tennesseans.”
Nissan completely redesigned the eighth-generation sedan which just debuted in New York. It gets a new 3.5-liter, VQ-series V6 engine which is built in Tennessee as well at Nissan’s Decherd Powertrain Plant. Nissan says more than 60% of the engine’s components were redesigned.
“With today’s launch, Nissan and Tennessee begin another chapter in their long and successful partnership defined by high quality vehicles and the innovation of its workforce,” said Governor Haslam. “We want to thank Nissan for continuing to invest here, helping build Tennessee’s reputation as a leading automotive manufacturing state.”
The first U.S.-assembled Maxima rolled off the assembly line in Smyrna in January 2003. Since then, Nissan has produced nearly 800,000 Maxima sedans at the plant. Maxima is one of six models currently built at the Smyrna plant and is assembled on the same line as the Altima midsize sedan and all-electric Nissan LEAF.
The eighth-generation of what Nissan calls its “4-Door Sports Car” combines 300-horsepower performance with a new exterior design and cockpit. In fact, Nissan says designers visited the U.S. Navy’s Blue Angels in efforts to add a little jet fighter feel to it. In terms of wheels, Maxima SR’s 19” aluminum-alloy wheels get their mirror-effect from a unique diamond-cut finish. That uniqueness is carried over to the tires—specially developed Goodyear Eagle F1 Asymmetric tires that help give you razor-sharp steering response and outstanding grip.
The Maxima will get a host of safety features including Predictive Forward Collision Warning, Forward Emergency Braking, Rear Cross Traffic Alert and Blind Spot Warning. Plus, there is a new Driver Attention Alert system, which monitors steering input patterns to help alert the driver when drowsy or inattentive driving is detected.
The new Maxima starts at around $32,000 and will be available at dealerships this summer.
Photo Credit: Nissan