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This is another option for buying O2 Simulator. They have been testing and fully working on 2002-2003 5thgen Maximas. Should also work on 2004-2008 6thgen Maximas as well.

Price: $199.98

The iO2 was originally developed as tool to aid in the diagnosis of catalytic converter and oxygen sensor fault codes.We believe this is the most intelligent oxygen sensor simulator available, that’s why we named it the iO2. The iO2 uses the vehicles live oxygen sensor signal to emulate and output a signal that closely resembles that of  a good  functioning catalyst.

The desire to simulate an o2 sensor begins with the desire to remove the catalytic converters to allow free’er exhaust flow. The trouble is, the rear o2 monitors the exhaust content and the PCM can determine if the catalyst if performing or not. If the catalyst is removed, the PCM usually starts reporting P0420,p0430 faults for catalyst efficiency.

Simulation approaches in our research showed two basic idea’s, an electronic and a exhaust spacer approach (defoulers)

Electronic Simulators 


Let’s start with electronic, the 555 timer. Developed years ago the 555 timer was and still is the electronics hobbyist dream.The 555 timer was setup in such a fashion to simply output 450 mv to keep the PCM thinking the rear o2 was present.
However as PCM’s grew in software function, tests were added to check if the rear o2 was actually able to produce a voltage range of 0-1 volt.Of course, this made the original 555 design obsolete, so the output of the 555 was changed to pulse from 0-1 volt at a fixed or even adjustable rate, this is the most current use of the 555 that we know of.
This does work for older technology, however it is hit or miss or will not work for newer PCM’s. It is a unreliable approach that will more than likely lead to an catalyst efficiency fault at some point.


The resistor capacitor fix….cap

An very common electronic filter circuit, but does it work?
About as well as the 555, yes and no, its once again hit or miss dependent on the vehicle. It will pass the PCM’s test for o2 sensor activity, just like the 555 timer will, but when it comes time to test for catalyst efficiency (p0420,p0430) that’s when they fall short.



The direct approach, this seems to be very popular maybe      because electronic approaches haven’t been very reliable, and its  cheap. Do they work? once again yes, and no. First they are far  from from stealthy, secondly they require routine maintenance.

They are not a guarantee for every vehicle, difficult to get just right  and require cleaning from time to time

At any rate, we just wanted to provide some insight based on our research.

The io2 IS different.

The io2 itself, is actually a programmed device that reads an actual o2 sensor voltage, then cleans it up.
The software within the io2 will force the output to act as though a catalytic converter is present in the exhaust. So the PCM will see the signal, pass the o2 function test and when it comes time for the dreaded p0420,p0430 the software takes care of that too.

scantool2The io2 during testing. The io2 was installed on a 2007 Chrysler product to field test the software. This test vehicle was driven in excess of 850 km’s in all driving conditions, with no P0420 or catalyst efficiency codes generated.
the io2 was installed on bank1, input was taken from the bank1 primary O2, the rear o2 sense wire was cut and spliced to the io2 output.


Question and Answers

Question; What about some other devices on the market for simulating o2 sensors?

Answer; Many devices currently on the market are based on a 555 timer, or a simple low pass filter circuit. Yes they do work, sometimes, sometimes they don’t, they are hit or miss. The iO2 is a programmed microcontroller with software that creates the simulated output voltage, we feel the most reliable approach.

Question; How many iO2’s will I need? some devices can be wired to two o2 sensors at the same time.

Answer; you will need as many io2’s as you have rear oxygen sensors (please see our support page). You cannot reliably  use a single simulator for two rear o2 sensors, eventually the engine computer on many vehicles will try to test the function of the rear o2 sensors, it may not test each one at the same time, unlike other simulators,the io2’s software is designed to recognize these tests,so simply put, this will not and cannot work.

Question; Will the iO2 work on my “whatever” vehicle?

Answer, YES! as long as you are using a low band O2 sensor as the input (every vehicle uses a low band for the rear O2 sensor) and the output is simulating a low band O2. This includes all vehicles, even Chrysler,Jeep and Dodge products.

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Low Beam Headlight Bulb Size: HID-D2R or HID-D2R HID Upgrade Kit
High Beam Headlamp Bulb Size: 9005 or 9005 HID Upgrade Kit or 9005 LED Upgrade Kit
Parking Light Bulb Size: 168
Front Turn Signal Light Bulb Size: 7440
Rear Turn Signal Light Bulb Size: 7440
Tail Light Bulb Size: 7443
Stop Light Bulb Size: 7443
High Mount Stop Light Bulb Size: 7440
License Plate Light Bulb Size: 168
Back Up Light Bulb Size: 921
Front Side Marker Light Bulb Size: 194
Rear Side Marker Light Bulb Size: 194
Dome Light Bulb Size: DE3175
Step/Courtesy Light Bulb Size: 161
Trunk/Cargo Area Light Bulb Size: 158

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The following directions can be utilized in the replacement of HID bulbs in the 2002-2003 Maxima. These instructions cannot be utilized with other years of the Nissan Maxima. One person can accomplish this task with no no problems. Please view pictures with steps for additional detailed information.

Tools needed: 10mm deep socket or wrench

The 2002 and 2003 Maxima utilize D2R HID bulbs. These bulbs fit into the headlight housings in a certain direction based off the key as seen in the picture. Bulb orientation has the bulbs power wire in the “down” position, thus this “bar” will be on the bottom when installed.

When handling the bulbs, DO NOT touch the bulb as oil from your fingers will shorten their life.

Step 1. Disconnect the battery. I chose to disconnect the negative battery terminal. Due to the tight confines within the engine bay, the drivers side is tight and will require the battery to be moved unless you have hands the size of a child. Using the 10mm socket or wrench, loosen the two nuts from the battery tie-down. One loose enough, you can disconnect the hooks and move the battery out of the way. This will give enough space to work. On the passenger side, there is nothing to move. You simply have to work around the windshield washer tube.

Step 2. The HID bulb has a sealed cover (utilizing a rubber O-ring). To remove this cover, twist counter clockwise to release and you will be able to remove it. Cover Removed

Step 3. Once the HID cover is removed, you will have access to the socket. To remove the socket from the HID bulb, twist counter clockwise and pull backward. You may need to wiggle it somewhat but it will disengage.

Step 4. The most difficult part of the installation seems to be figuring out how to disengage the retaining ring from the HID bulbs. Per the diagram, you will need to depress each “hooked” end of the ring inward (toward the front) and slide inward to toward the bulb. Once each side is done, the bulb will loosen up and you will be able to remove it. Do not touch the bulbs. Picture of retaining clips

Step 5. Time to install the new bulbs. Remove the bulbs from their packaging without touching the glass section. To install the bulbs, use one hand to hold the retaining clip out of the way (it is hinged from the top) and slide the bulb in. It is easiest to insert the bulb with the “power wire” on the bottom as this should align the bulbs key. Once inserted, twist the bulb slightly left and right to ensure it is in. Move the retaining clip over the bulb and re-engage each end of the clip.

Step 6. Reinstall the socket but leave the cover off. Once both new bulbs are installed, temporarily reconnect the negative battery post and turn on the headlights to make sure both bulbs are functioning appropriately. If all is well, reinstall the HID covers and Remount the battery (remember to tighten down the negative battery post).

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High and Low Beam Headlamp Light Bulb Size: 9003 or 9003 HID Upgrade Kit
Parking Light Bulb Size: 1157A
Front Turn Signal Light Bulb Size: 1157A
Rear Turn Signal Light Bulb Size: 1156A or 7507
Tail Light Bulb Size: 7443
Stop Light Bulb Size: 7443
High mount stop Light Bulb Size: 7440
Fog/Driving Light Bulb Size: H3 or H3 HID Upgrade Kit
License Plate Light Bulb Size: 168
Back Up Light Bulb Size: 921
Front Sidemarker Light Bulb Size: 194
Rear Sidemarker Light Bulb Size: 194
Dome Light Bulb Size: DE3175
Step/Courtesy Light Bulb Size: 161
Trunk/Cargo Area Light Bulb Size: 158

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Owner: Marvin Ramos

Year: 2002
Model: Maxima
Color: Beige  (EV0)
Trim: SE

My Maxima started out as a daily until I completed my 4th. Wheels and suspension was the plan. Ordered Coilovers same night that I got the car. Ordered wheels next day.

After installing I started doing other little things; rewired fogs, installed HIDs, installed tint, purchased short throw and so forth. By this time I already knew I was in trouble. I could already see how much potential they have, and I was hooked.

Over a year and a half of owning my Maxima, it had gone from completely stock to my pride and joy.

Full Mod List / Specs:

– Full black interior swap including pillars, headliner and carpet
– Full LED interior by Albert Jandura
– Nardi Steering wheel with NRG quick release
– Shortened shifter
– AE pedals

– 10 Rockford Fosgate Punch for Highs & Mids
– Single 10″ Rockford Fosgate Punch Subwoofer
– Rockford Fosgate T400-4 & T600-4 for Highs & Mids
– Rockford Fosgate T1500-1bd for Subwoofer
– Dynamat on doors, rear deck, trunk and roof
– Optima Yellowtops relocated to trunk

– All rust removed and repaired
– Custom rear quarter panels widened by Ultimate Auto Salon
– Full HID front conversion
– Fogs rewired to run independently
– Full rear LED & Side markers
– White underglow. On when unlocked or driver door is opened. Off when locked or ignition is turned on. Independent switch to run at all times also.
– Tint all around including windshield and sunroof by Precision Window Tinting
– Stillen front lip
– Weathertech visors
– Black and clear taillights
– Rear badges replaced with anniversary badges.

Wheels & Tires
– Nismo 370z OEM wheels.
19×9.5 et40 225/35R19
19×10.5 et23 245/35R19
– Replaced by ADV.1 ADV10 wheels
19×9.5 et5 225/35R19
19×10.5 et0 245/35R19

– Ksport air struts
– D2 Front camber plates
– Accuair Switchspeed management
– Bagriders Digigauge
– All new front suspension components
– Cattman front strut bar
– Stillen rear strut bar
– Rear QT link

Under Hood
– CGR 4in intake powdercoated candy teal
– CGR upper and lower intake manifold powdercoated candy teal
– NWP Intake and Throttle body spacers
– NWP Big bore throttle body
– GTR Injectors
– Ralco Lightweight pulley
– More to come!

– CGR Front brackets with Evo front calipers painted candy teal
– Custom Rear brackets with SRT8 rear calipers painted candy teal
– Stainless steel brake lines

– SE-R headers made to fit by Thomas Perdue
– Thomas Perdue stainless steel y-pipe
– Cattman 3in catback
– Innovate Motorsports DLG-1

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Member Credit: Lincoln Mitch

He may not have the fastest or the prettiest Maxima in New York City, but Mitch is a die-hard Nissan Maxima enthusiast. He’s a Brooklyn native who has been riding and representing the 5th Gen Maxima community for many years. Mitch helps the Maxima community by offering to assist in the pickup of any parts needed from Harry’s-u-pull-it. in PA. Always willing to lend a helping hand. One of his most popular requests is installing automatic rear window shades from Infiniti I30’s on Maxima’s.

Between his catchy windshield banners and 7 TV screens in his car, you definitely can’t miss him on the road. If you are in Brooklyn, there is without a doubt that you will see Mitch rolling around bumping some music tunes or washing his car.




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Member Credit: NISformance

This article shows how to swap a 2007+ Altima 3.5L VQ35 engine, or 2009+ Maxima 3.5L engine into older Nissan Maxima’s. Including the 2002-2006 Altima (3.5L) and 2002-2008 Maximas. This motor swap is referred to as the 2nd Generation (Gen2) VQ35DE swap.


FWD HR Engine Swap Kit – Version 2 ($220.00)

This kit allows you to swap a 2nd generation VQ35DE motor in a 2002-2008 Maxima or 2002-2006 Altima (3.5 V6) The NISformance 2nd Generation VQ35DE swap kit consist of five main components. The Cam sensor signal inverters, PNP throttle body adapter harness, Belt tensioner bracket, and Alternator bracket. Each component and its intended use is detailed below.

The camshaft sensor signal inverter allows the stock harness to be attached to a newer 2nd generation motor and intercept the camshaft signal wires. This is an essential part of the swap kit and has been designed with ease of install in mind. Each inverter with have a camshaft sensor plug pre-installed. Only wiring necessary are three wires consisting of ground, power, and signal.

The plug and play throttle body harness is necessary in order to utilize the 70 or 75 millimeter throttle body that is equipped on 2nd generation motors.

Sept 2018 Update: We have made several changes to our swap kit in order to improve function and ease of installation. Our V2 swap kit features new cam sensor signal inverters that use a 12V power source. This makes wiring much quicker and easier. Each inverter includes a camshaft sensor plug pre-installed. Both the alternator and belt tensioner brackets have been updated for better fit, brackets are now Zinc coated for higher corrosion resistance.

Ordering Link:

EPS Tuning Oil Gallery Gasket/Hardware Kit VQ35 FWD HR Head engine ($60.00)

Ordering Link:

VIAS Vacuum Hose Kit 2nd Gen VQ35DE ($9.00)

This Kit allows you to properly connect VIAS hassle free. Each kit includes high quality 5/32 Vacuum hose pre cut to the correct lengths for the 2nd Generation VQ35DE intake manifold.Outside port on VIAS solenoid goes to the manifold. Inner port goes to the Y splitter, then each VIAS control solenoid.

Ordering Link:

Other Optional Parts to Replace:

There are a few things to keep in mind before beginning your swap:

  • It’s easier to do this swap if you have a 3.5 DE motor laying around, especially if you just pulled it out of the car. You will need to take some things off of the old motor to use on the HR. Without this, there are a few parts that you will have to buy in order to complete the swap.
  • There are some specific tools needed: An ‘E8’ torx socket, 5/16 Allen key, Loctite

VQ35DE Motor Options

There are two generations of the front wheel drive VQ35DE. First generation motor 2002-2008 Maxima , 2002-2006 3.5L Altima. Second generation motor 2009+ Maxima , 2007+ 3.5L Altima. The second generation VQ35DE is equipped with an improved head and manifold design allowing for increased air flow and improved performance. Oil consumption and other flaws commonly found in first generation motors have also been eliminated.

There are two variations of the second generation VQ35DE. A Maxima motor is equipped with “EVT” ( Exhaust Valve Timing ) and has slightly higher compression when compared to an Altima motor, which is not equipped with “EVT”. In most swap applications that use a Maxima motor “EVT” is not used. In order to use “EVT” a different engine management system is necessary. However “EVT” is not necessary and does not negatively affect performance or reliability if left unused.

Step 1: Stripping the motor

Depending on where your motor came from, there may be a lot of ‘extra’ pieces still attached to it. Some of these will just get in your way while you prep your motor, some can’t be used for this swap.

  • Remove all accessories, which includes the alternator, power steering pump.
  • Remove any harnesses and brackets that are still connected to the motor.
  • Remove upper intake manifold (removing lower manifold is not necessary, but sometimes desirable. If removed, a new gasket should be used to reinstall).
  • Remove oil temperature sender:

  • Remove idler pulley/tensioner ‘spacer’ (seen below in red):

** The injector rail may also be removed, but that isn’t necessary.

Step 2: Cover any openings

There will be A LOT of metal shavings and dust around the motor, depending on how you do the cutting and grinding that comes later. These absolutely CANNOT be allowed to get into the motor.

  • Intake ports in the top:

  • Exhaust ports on the sides of motor:

  • Fuel injector ports if fuel rail was removed:

  • The open ends of any coolant hoses/pipes:

Step 3: Modifying the motor 

Some parts of the motor will need to be cut somehow (tools, methods and results will vary) to allow for proper fitment and function once it’s re-installed.

** Because of some concerns about the integrity of the stock oil gallery gasket, we at NISformance strongly recommend replacing it in this step. **

  • When changing the oil gallery gasket, this is a good time to grind away the center portion of the power steering bracket before reassembling the front of the motor.
  • Grind/cut away the center portion of the power steering bracket. This requires some aggressive cutting, but also needs some attention to detail (cutting too DEEPLY can weaken the integrity of the timing cover. Cutting too WIDE can weaken the remaining brackets that will be needed to hold the alternator):

  • Grind/cut away a portion of the metal where the idler pulley/tensioner spacer was:

  • Remove exhaust manifold studs at the rearmost exhaust port (close to the trans). This requires an ‘E8‘ torx socket:

  • Clean out the threads in the opposite holes using a ‘10 x 1.25‘ tap.
  • Replace the removed studs into the newly cleaned holes:

  • Remove lower oil pan
  • Remove upper oil pan
  • Use the oil pan from a 3.5 DE motor…but remove the windage tray. Add your o-rings and seals, and install upper oil pan onto the HR motor.
  • Remove the HR water pump access cover, and replace it with the one from the DE motor

Step 4: Adjusting the cam signal wheel

This is a VERY important step and it must be done very carefully for your car to run properly. You have to be accurate.

Apart from the wiring, adjusting the signal wheel is the most detailed work you need to do on the swap. It is important to be very accurate when cutting or grinding, and it’s also extremely important to assemble everything correctly at the end of this step. Pay close attention to the pictures and make sure that your work looks EXACTLY the same!

*You will need to modify your 5/16 Allen key by cutting the arm down so that it is approximately 3/8″ long. This is your ‘special tool’ that you will need to use in this part of the swap.

  • Open one of the valve covers.
  • Using the ‘special tool’, loosen the signal wheel lock nut and remove the signal wheel from the intake cam:
  • Completely remove the inner nubs from the signal wheel without damaging the rest of the inner surface:

  • At the crank, turn the motor until two notches are visible at the top of the cam:

  • Add Loctite to the flat inner surface of the signal wheel:

  • Reconnect the modified signal wheel to the intake cam…be sure to place it at the proper angle (as shown below) and re-secure the lock nut:

  • Close and bolt down the valve cover
  • Open the other valve cover, and repeat these same steps.

Step 5: Cam Sensor Wiring

Now that all of the heavy wrenching is out of the way, we get to the really important part of your swap.

Version 2 Kit –  Cam Sensor Signal Inverter Wiring

V2 inverters are single channel. One inverter is required for each camshaft position sensor.

Wiring for cam sensor signal inverter:

Red wire – 12 volt power supply (power going into the board)
Black wire – Ground
Orange wire – Signal out (connects to existing wire on ecu side)

Picture below demonstrates the older style DE cam sensor plug that is cut off when wiring in inverter with required wiring:

Version 1 Kit –  Cam Sensor Signal Inverter Wiring

The wiring harness in your car needs to be connected to the newer motor, and it’s not just a ‘plug-and-play’ situation. These diagrams show you the changes that need to be made to make your DE harness control your HR motor:


The stock cam signal wire will be intercepted (cut) by the cam signal inverter supplied with the swap kit. There are six wires on the cam signal inverter…here’s how you connect them:

  • The RED wire goes to a 5v source from your car’s harness (to supply power to the sensor)
  • The BLACK wire is ground

For Cam #1…cut the existing wire:

  • The YELLOW inverter wire connects to the existing wire on the CAM side
  • the ORANGE inverter wire connects to the existing wire on the ECU side

For Cam #2…cut the existing wire:

  • The BLUE inverter wire connects to the existing wire on the CAM side
  • The GREEN inverter wire connects to the existing wire on the ECU side

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Member Credit: Matt Riney

For all you hardcore Nissan/Infiniti enthusiasts, there is finally an open-source solution that allows you to modify and flash ECUs! With a $10 VAG-KKL cable, you can basically flash your own ECU and tune it your to personal comfortable without breaking your wallet. The average tune costs roughly $600+ these days. Since you’re modifying the ROM yourself, there’s no vendor lock-in and you are free to do what you need and want. Great for those who have knowledge of tuning and want to tune their own vehicles!

Applicable Vehicles: 

  • 2000-2001 5thgen Nissan Maxima
  • 2003-2003 5.5gen Nissan Maxima
  • 2004-2008 6thgen Maxima
  • 2009 7thgen Maxima
  • 2002-2004 Nissan Altima
  • 2005-2006 Nissan Altima SE-R
  • 2003 Infiniti G35
  • And various others……

Links to Tool/Software that you will need (Click links to Download):

Below are helpful videos on installing and running Rom Raider, along with dumping a Nissan SH7055 ECU with the Nisprog/Npkern software.

  • Kernel 7055_35 is used by the early ecus 2002 & 2003 Maxima (and 2004 in most cases).
  • Kernel 7058 is used for 05+ Maxima
  • It’s all based on the ROM size. If the ROM size is 512K then  you should use the 7055_35 kernel. If the ROM size is 1024K then you use the 7058 kernel.

Cars Tuned on ROMRaider / Nisprog

5.5 Gen Maxima Tuned by AdminTuning VQ35 Bolt Ons

Shaquille Jenkins 5.5 Gen Maxima Gen2 VQ35DE

Trevon Walters 4thgen Maxima Hits 11.77 (All Motor) Gen2 VQ35DE

Which ECUs Will This Work On?

Most gasoline Nissan / Infiniti ECUs from ~ 2002 onwards share very similar ECU hardware, based on SuperH microcontrollers manufactured by Renesas (previously Hitachi). This project supports ECUs that use the OBD-II “K line” signal for diagnostics communications.

How Does the Reflash Process Work?

The process is carried out entirely over the OBD-II “K Line” serial communications link through an undocumented set of manufacturer-defined extensions to the standard ISO14230 protocol. Recently, the necessary commands have been reverse-engineered revealing the required steps:

  1. Establish connection to the ECU.
  2. Send the first stage data payload: this is the “kernel”, a simple program that will receive commands and data for the reflash.
  3. Make the ECU run the kernel. From this point on, the kernel runs from RAM and effectively takes control of the whole ECU.
  4. Send the reflash commands and new firmware data to the kernel.
  5. Reset the ECU: the new firmware will now be executed, and the kernel will be completely removed.

Kernel Features

The basic kernel is an implementation of an ISO14230-compliant protocol with extensions. It implements the following requests:

  • Fast ROM dump (tested up to 5.4 kB/s; typical speed is ~100 B/s without a kernel)
  • Read ROM/RAM/external EEPROM
  • Write to RAM
  • Erase flash ROM block
  • Write flash ROM block


The basic reflashing kernel will support gasoline ECUs with:

  • SH7055 or SH7058, 0.18um microcontrollers (the most common types)
  • K line wired to the OBD-II connector pin 7
  • Unfortunately CAN-only ECUs are not currently supported.

Host computer:

  • OS: Linux and Windows are known to work; Nisprog is based on freediag source code which is cross-platform and should run on most Linux/UNIX flavors.
  • Connectivity: a simple USB-OBD adapter is required. These are the “Generic dumb serial adaptors” described in the freediag docs.

OBD2 KKL VAG-COM 409.1 USB Cable


There are several important points to be aware of when using Nisprog:

  • The ECU is a safety-critical system in a car. Reflashing an ECU can void warranties, reduce the vehicle’s reliability, and cause a whole variety of undesirable consequences. Use of this project and any associated tools (freediag, Nisprog, etc) is of course entirely at the user’s risk. Standard disclaimers apply.
  • Reflashing an ECU may be illegal in some areas. Responsibility in this matter lies again with the user.
  • Diesel ECUs are not supported, they are entirely different.
  • Tuning and modifying ROMs are complex skills that can only be acquired through significant investments of time and effort!

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