Member Credit: DeusExMaxima

There comes a time in a man’s life when you sometimes have to just say . . .what the f<>k. The Maxima steering wheel is a nice but conservative item, which is styled towards the luxury side of its split personality (sport and luxury). My car explores the performance aspect of this 4DSC. In conformance with the performance aspect, I have changed a number of things in my car to reflect that performance aspect. For example, I replaced the mundane lip spoiler with a more muscular WRX spoiler. Inside the car, I replaced the shift knob and e brake handle with the knob and handle from a 2006 Mitsubishi Evo MR. The pedals gave way to Alitma SE-R units, and so forth. But every time i got in the car, I would grab the Maxima steering wheel, and think “There has got to be a better one than this.” Sure it has cruise buttons, and radio buttons and it HEATS UP. Im not sure my friend’s Bentley GTC steering wheel heats up.

And then by chance in a 350Z forum, I came across this:

Momo made two wheels as Nissan factory options for the JDM Fairlady Z (350Z in Japan). I found a guy who would import this steering wheel for me for around $700, including airbag! If you think that costs a lot, go ahead and price an OEM Maxima wheel. I think the OEM airbag alone costs that.

Here is how to install one:

Prelims: DISCONNECT the battery completely and wait 3 minutes. Get your tools ready. Wear gloves if you can to prevent static electricity from building up. I did but took them off in the pics.

1. Remove the dime size bolt covers on the side of the wheel and remove the bolts – 10mm.

2. Remove the airbag cover and assembly in one unit.
3. Look at the back of the airbag. Two connectors – orange and yellow are there.

The connectors are locked by these little black locking devises. Raise them like this:

Then unplug them. The whole unit is free from the car. DO NOT DROP IT. Set it aside carefully. Its an airbag – it could explode. Keep it away from extreme heat.

4. Remove the center nut-19mm. I used a lug nut remover.

Note the marks to make sure its straight.

5. Use a steering wheel puller – Pep boys, 12 bucks, or rent one if ur a cheap skate or starving college student.

6. Undo the remaining connectors. Plug in the sole red wire to the matching plug. I haven’t figured out what to do with the airbag plugs since the OEM bag had two connectors and the JDM wheel has only one.

Here is what it looks like on the car:

I took the 1/2 watt 2 ohm resistor and bent it in such a way that it stuck through the orange connector like so:

Then I wrapped the connector in tape to hold it all in place:

I buttoned it back up, hooked up the battery, said a short prayer that the airbags wouldn’t all go off AND that there wouldn’t be an airbag light, and started it up.

YEAH!!! No airbags went off, no air bag light. Car ran great. Drove it around. I feel more connected with the car. The wheel has a much higher quality feel. I really love it.