Notes: The 2012 Nissan Maxima is a very good reliable vehicle, continuing a stretch of good model years from 2010. Beware of Maximas from 2009, and 2004-2006 though.

The 2009 Maxima has an expensive problem where the steering lock prevents the car from starting, & costs upwards of $1,000 to fix.

Nissan Maximas from 2004-2006 have a widespread transmission defect, but judging from our complaint data, Nissan fixed the transmission problem starting with the 2007 model.

For the 2012 Maxima, so far so good!


hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
53,222 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2012 Nissan Maxima electrical problems

electrical problem

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2012 Nissan Maxima Owner Comments

problem #9

May 022016


  • 66,000 miles


I have replaced the mass air flow sensor five times since Oct 2105, the 1st time was able to get several months before any warning light would appear on the dash board, now I don't a week before the warning light appears and car stalls out, I have cleaned the components around the sensor as well as bought the dealer sensor for over $200 still no difference, no one I have it to can locate the issue

- Laurelton, NY, USA

problem #8

Apr 012016


  • 90,000 miles
The contact owns a 2012 Nissan Maxima. The contact stated that while attempting to enter the vehicle or when inside the vehicle, the ┐ no key┐ warning indicator illuminated. As a result, the contact was unable to start the vehicle. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 90,000.

- Lytle, TN, USA

problem #7

Jan 052016


  • 82,000 miles
The door lock actuators do not work and this requires me to ensure my doors are locked manually. The cost to repair is expensive and should be the responsibility of Nissan because it is apparently a defect. This defect is a security risk for potential theft and personal injury to the Nissan owner.

- Euless, TX, USA

problem #6

Jan 152016


  • 57,000 miles


2012 Maxima S with door lock/unlock problem. Noticed it about a month ago. Key fob wouldn't lock/unlock the doors. Then about a week later the door lock/unlock button started working sporadically. A few days ago when dropping my daughter off for school she had trouble opening the back door to get out. Not only is this frustrating but now it's a safety hazard as well. As of right now my doors would not lock this morning. This is very frustrating and unsafe especially since there has been car breakins in my neighborhood. I have not taken the car in yet to officially see what the problem is.

- Hampton, VA, USA

problem #5

Aug 012015


  • 65,000 miles
All 4 door lock actuators fail at the same time. Door lock switch and remote fail to lock or unlock the doors and the issue started on all 4 doors on the same day with no reason as to why.

- Spring, TX, USA

problem #4

Mar 312015

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 25,000 miles
The ignition locks up, stranding me. The push button start will not engage the started, or will occasionally make a clicking noise without starting. Usually, after a few moments, the car will start. This sometimes takes more than 10 minutes.

- Dayton, OH, USA

problem #3

Dec 022013

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 40,000 miles


When vehicle was approximately 1 1/2 years old the positive battery connector connecting the power cable from the automobile electrical system to the battery corroded and came apart. The Nissan part description and part number is "battery terminal 243 - part # 24340-7F003). This was replaced with a factory part. Approximately 1 1/2 years later it corroded and came apart again. This failure causes the engine to loose any electricity from the battery, which would cause the engine to stop, causing a loss of power steering, power brakes and air bag protection or prevents the engine from starting due to no electricity feeding the starter and vehicle electrical system. Fortunately, the vehicle was not moving when this failure occurred on either occasion or serious injury or death could have occurred. I do not believe that the design of this connector or the type of material from which it S made is adequate. I have replaced the connector with a lead battery connector used for connecting rv batteries and do not believe that the vehicle will ever suffer this problem again with the aftermarket replacement connector. Fortunately for me the vehicle was stopped when these failures occurred. Other than the obvious danger, I believe this problem would cause most people to incur significant expense in towing and repair charges, just to replace the connector. Although I was able to repair the problems myself, I doubt that most people would be able to do so on their own. The parts sales person at the Nissan dealership where I had bought a second connector (although it was not used) seemed to indicate that they sold an awful lot of these connectors, which suggests that a better design or material would be advisable and make it much less likely that a failure of this nature would occur.

- Phoenix, AZ, USA

problem #2

Nov 042013


  • 22,995 miles
The contact owns a 2012 Nissan Maxima. The contact stated while driving approximately 35 mph the open door warning indicator remained illuminated even though all four doors were closed securely. The vehicle was maneuvered to the side of the road. When the push button ignition switch was engaged it failed to shut off the engine and the interior automatic doors would only unlock manually. In addition, the interior lights illuminated continuously. The failure was not diagnosed nor was the vehicle repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 22,995.

- Virginia Beach, VA, USA

problem #1

Oct 212013

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 31,000 miles
I was driving South of the NJ turnpike I heard a loud boom sound and vibrations on the accelerator I looked in the rearview mirror and saw debris and a cloud of smoke. Smells of something burning also there was a tremendous amount of smoke coming from underneath the hood of my car. I immediately started pulling over from the middle lane as I'm pulling over almost causing a major accident the car went dead everything just blew out coast off to the shoulder almost killing myself and others. I immediately rushed out of the car and started running on the shoulder because I thought my car was going to blow up. I called roadside assistance and they called puleios tow truck of North brunswick NJ which was a horrible experience they towed me off the turnpike I had to pay $150 out of pocket for third party towing that I had no knowledge of no control of and no money! Nissan roadside supervisor[xxx]told me "that's your bill to pay and soon as you pay we will dispatch our tow tuck to take you to Nissan dealership. Where I had the car serviced." After the money was paid I still had to wait another 2 1/2hr. After being stranded from quarter to 9am. Just heartless for a customer who was almost killed on the NJ turnpike all from there manufacturer defect in the battery which exploded and blew two big holes in the engine. Diagnostic done by North plainfield engine is completely blown and the car is only 14 months old. Now how do you explain that! information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Elizabeth , NJ, USA

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