Huge win for car owners! All TSBs to be made public. The Center for Auto Safety just made the NHTSA (US Government) make public the full text of all TSBs from now on. They are the same organization that has petitioned the NHTSA & filed lawsuits to protect car owners over exploding gas tanks & other major safety issues. Whenever you drive in your car, you are safer thanks in part to a lot of work over the years by this small but very effective consumer advocacy group.

Please take a moment & say thank you by donating $5 or whatever you can to the Center for Auto Safety.

CarComplaints.com Notes: The 2013 Nissan Altima has multiple problem trends including the CVT transmission, and now that this model is out of warranty, it earns our "avoid like the plague" badge.

Owners complain about vibration and transmission failure related to the CVT (Continuously Variable Transmission), a whining noise from the power steering pump, and constant windshield problems that appear to be the result of poor design.

Be warned: the 2014 & 2015 Nissan Altima appears to share these same problems.

10.0

really awful
Crashes / Fires:
6 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
3 / 0
Average Mileage:
33,008 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.

2013 Nissan Altima drivetrain problems

drivetrain problem

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2013 Nissan Altima Owner Comments (Page 6 of 9)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #63

Jul 012014

Altima

  • 11,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

Vehicle has a shudder when decelerating from 65 to 60. Has progressively been happening more often. In addition to the shudder at higher speeds, it now has started to shudder and lack response at lower speeds at random. The gas mileage has dropped at least 5 mpg since all of these issues started. I have taken to Nissan service twice for the same issue. Both times the problem "couldn't be duplicated" and there isn't a code that shows anything wrong on computer diagnostics. All searches for these issues in relation to a 2013 Nissan Altima 3.5 sl, return numerous complaints about the same problems and no resolution. Current mileage IS15,000. I have been told to keep all reports from service so if there is a problem later I have documentation that it has been an ongoing issue. It appears Nissan should get in front of this problem quickly as it is not leaving a good mark on their name to have such new vehicles with this drastic of a problem.

- Necedah, WI, USA

problem #62

May 012014

Altima

  • 11,000 miles
Vehicle has a shudder when decelerating from 65 to 60. Has progressively been happening more often. In addition to the shudder at higher speeds, it now has started to shudder and lack response at lower speeds at random. The gas mileage has dropped at least 5 mpg since all of these issues started. I have taken to Nissan service twice for the same issue. Both times the problem "couldn't be duplicated" and there isn't a code that shows anything wrong on computer diagnostics. All searches for these issues in relation to a 2013 Nissan Altima 3.5 sl, return numerous complaints about the same problems and no resolution. Current mileage IS15,000. I have been told to keep all reports from service so if there is a problem later I have documentation that it has been an ongoing issue. It appears Nissan should get in front of this problem quickly as it is not leaving a good mark on their name to have such new vehicles with this drastic of a problem.

- Necedah, WI, USA

problem #61

Oct 102014

Altima

  • 63,500 miles
I was driving on the expressway doing about 40mph and then all of a sudden the care seemed as though it had problems shifting out. Then when I stop the car hesitated to take off and then when it did take off it jerk and the took off. When I got home I turned off the car and started it back up it drove fine, but later that day when I drove it started to do it again and then the check engine light came on.

- Chicago, IL, USA

problem #60

Aug 072014

Altima

  • 37,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

I purchased a 2013 Nissan Altima in July 2014 with 36,000 miles. About 3 weeks after purchasing this vehicle, the check engine light came on. I took it into the local Nissan dealer to determine the cause. I was told that they couldn't find the source and it would require further diagnostic testing for $80. I disagreed and left. Two days later, my daughter and I were traveling along interstate 10 when suddenly the car wouldn't accelerate. As I merged over to the left lane, every light on the dash came on and the engine went dead just as I made it to the shoulder. I put the car in park and waited 10 minutes before I attempted to start it up again. The following day, I took the car back to my local Nissan dealer. At that point, they told me there was an electrical malfunction that was covered under warranty but they would need to order a replacement part. I was without a vehicle for 3 days when I received a call that the car was ready. I sent my mother to pick up the car because I was at work. They didn't provide any repair summary to show what repairs were made. Fast forward three weeks...my family was traveling to mobile, Alabama to depart for our annual walt disney world trip, when you guessed it...the car wouldn't accelerate although my foot was literally on the ground. I pulled over once again and didn't try to start the engine again for about 20 minutes. The service engine light has been on every since. I have constantly fought with the seller (bob tyler Toyota) about returning this vehicle. I sold a 2006 Honda Accord ex-L with 176,000 miles to purchase this lemon. It is an absolute clunker. Will someone please suggest other options for me"?"

- Gulfport, MS, USA

problem #59

Aug 012014

Altima

  • miles
2013 Nissan Altima. Consumer writes in regards to defective transmissions. The consumer stated for at least two years, Nissan has been selling cars in the us with defective transmission. These defects caused the vehicle to hesitate, shudder or even stall when accelerating from low speeds, when entering or merging into traffic.

- Hampstead, MD, USA

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problem #58

Aug 012014

Altima 4-cyl

  • 28,000 miles
Occurrence has happened 8 times while driving. The vehicle shudders which leaves about 4 seconds of no throttle response. A loud noise is heard from the transmission area, the vehicle jerks hard and the rpms drop as well. Usually occurs when driving 25-35 mph while slowing down and/or turning.

- Bremerton , WA, USA

problem #57

Sep 252012

Altima

  • 328 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

I have had major issues with this vehicle since the third day after purchase. The brakes have malfunctioned. The brake light would intermittently come on and I had it in several times, but the dealership could never "duplicate" anything. Then the car started to misfire and emit a thick black smoke from exhaust. I contacted the dealership and at first they said it was normal because the car has a cvt transmission. Then they said bring it in for assessment. A service technician test drove with me and experienced this first hand. I was told they could not service it that day, but to bring it back in. When I took it back a week later, they "could not duplicate" the problem. There has been much back and forth. I asked them to buy the car back because the problems were life threatening. The car actually shut off on me, twice, in traffic. When I last contacted the dealership, on July 24th, 2014, about the major issues I've been experiencing; the earliest they said they could see me would be on August 11th, 2014. On yesterday, it finally shut off for good, in the middle of the interstate. As I was on a trip, I had to have the vehicle towed 125 miles to my hometown dealership at the cost of $230, out of pocket. The only reason I got it home that cheaply was because I have four roadside assistance coverage packages and luckily one of them covered towing up to 100 miles. The car is now sitting on the dealership's parking lot.

- Greenville, MS, USA

problem #56

Oct 022013

Altima

  • 1,500 miles
I bought a new 2013 Nissan Altima 2.5 S in August 2013 and the next month I noticed a shudder in the cvt transmission at approximately 20 mph. Since then it has occurred numerous times but at all speeds, ie 20 mph, 35 mph, 45 mph, it will happen at any speed. I've mentioned it to Nissan and they say its normal. Even the wife states that something is wrong with the transmission.

- Troutdale, OR, USA

problem #55

Jun 162014

Altima

  • 24,000 miles
While slowing down for an intersection all electronics on car stopped with no warning and motor shut down. No indicator lights on dash. Car became completely malfunctioning in an instant. No power breaks or steering, dash lights, console display or ignition on indicator. Got car to a stop. Put the car in park and restarted with no errors or indications that the car mechanically and electronically just died. Clock was set to the correct time but trip odometer and many other customized settings were reset. Acted as if the ECM did a reset while driving.

- Hudson Falls , NY, USA

problem #54

Jun 112014

Altima 4-cyl

  • 67,725 miles
I was driving my car on the highway when it started to shutter. It was first happening on inclines then all the time. It eventually just slowed down and I had to quickly exit to avoid getting stuck in the middle of the highway. I have brought the shuttering/jerking issue to the dealer previously and was told that no issue was found. Now I am told that I have to replace the transmission which is $3,500. After doing some internet searches I learned that several other drivers are having issues with the transmission on their "new" Nissan Altima (2013).

- Mahopac, NY, USA

problem #53

Aug 032013

Altima 6-cyl

  • 9,500 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

My cvt transmission problem was at 900-miles took to dealer wilkes Nissan in wilkesboro, nc like 8-times and 2-times to another.cvt would shudder at highway speeds.wilkes Nissan said that was normal in one sentence, then in the next say they could not get it to duplicate.after several attempts to get it fixed the service manager [xxx] was walking out in the service bay and was telling me as my girlfriend was hearing this that "Nissan knows that this is a problem, but doesn't have a fix for this and that they should have never let that out of the factory like that" while he was saying this a employee had walked by and overheard this.and he was shortly fired afterwards?they took my car in and had it for like 2-days and put a 124-miles on my car, I had explained that he didn't need to do that just take off get up to highway speeds and slow down then take off, it will start to shudder.I came down and got the service manager [xxx] and the tech rode with me and I got it to shudder inside of 15-minutes with them with me.we got back to the dealership and within 15-minutes [xxx] service manger said "we just got a technical service bulletin in October 2013 in which was a lie.I found out a technical service bulletin was issued on June 13th 2013 for a "cvt clutch engagement shudder" & [xxx] looked mad when we got back from the test drive.they decided to replace the torque converter and had my car for 16-days, when I returned to pick up the car, the wilkes Nissan dealership said that everything was fine and within 11-miles they car started shuddering again at slow speeds as well as highway speeds.I was got so sick from all the arguing that I went into the hospital in December 2013 for 5-days.I had the problem and was sick for months so when I started to feel better.I took the car down to wilkes and they said Nissan refused to work on my car even though under warranty. Information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Boone, NC, USA

problem #52

Apr 122014

Altima 4-cyl

  • 31,764 miles
Cvt transmission failure. This is an event in which the automobile transmission and throttle simply stops working while the car is being driven. I experienced this event this past Saturday on a trip into boston. It is quite terrifying to be driving along in the middle of traffic and have your car stop functioning with respect to having no power or gears such that you have no control or ability to make the car respond.

- Portsmouth, NH, USA

problem #51

Mar 032014

Altima 4-cyl

  • 22,170 miles
While leaving a stop, the vehicle was moving at about 5 mph and when I pressed down on the accelerator to move forward the engine RPM went to 5000rpm but the vehicle failed to accelerate. It maintained the constant speed of approximately 5 mph. After backing off on the accelerator and then pressing down on the accelerator again the car accelerated. This event has occurred three times in the past month. I have taken the vehicle to the dealership to determine the problem but they could not duplicate the problem. This is not an isolated incident and I consider the fact that the vehicle may fail to respond to a need for increased speed a safety issue.

- La Vernia , TX, USA

problem #50

Mar 042014

Altima

  • 22,000 miles
11 month old car. 22,000 miles. Transmission failure. Car would start - but stalls out when placed in gear.

- Hammonton, NJ, USA

problem #49

Jun 182013

Altima 4-cyl

  • 3,600 miles
Altima 2.5L eng. Engine vibrations/cvt shuttering started approx. 3600 miles but has continually gotten worse with more miles (7000 mi 12/31/13). Vibrations felt at 1500-2000 RPM (enough to shake the dash components), then vibration goes away. Slight acceleration under load at 1500-2000 RPM and at any speed (20-30, 40-55, 72 mph) will result in vibrations (everytime). Had Nissan service writer ride with me, then he drove the vehicle and confirmed the vibrations. Said to return next week Jan 2014 to further document. Guess what, he said they haven't had this problem"?" however, this problem has been reported to Nissan many times over this past year. I now believe this vibration is coming from the eng not from the cvt since I can feel the vibrations when the vehicle is stopped (in park or in neutral). Nissan has an engineering design problem they have been unable to resolve and fail to admit.

- Lebanon, OH, USA

problem #48

Nov 212012

Altima

  • 3,000 miles
Noticed car shaking violently while coasting at about 17 mph and then accelerating. Contacted dealership. Was told that it is a defect with the torque converter that causes it to shift between gears at about 28 mph. I told them that mine was happening at about 17 or 18 mph. Was told they were looking into it. Called again about a week later, was told that it was a design flaw and Nissan was not going to do anything about it.

- St. Augustine, FL, USA

problem #47

Jun 052013

Altima

  • 15,000 miles
The contact owns a 2013 Nissan Altima. The contact stated that while driving 25 mph, the vehicle failed to shift into gear and there was a sudden increase in engine rpms. The vehicle was taken to the dealer. The technician was unable to duplicate the failure. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was 15,000 and the current mileage was 36,000.

- Westfield, MA, USA

problem #46

Jun 142013

Altima 4-cyl

  • 3,600 miles
Altima 2.5L eng. Problem: Engine vibrations/cvt shuttering since approx. 3600 miles, but has continually gotten worse with more miles (7000 mi 12/31/13). Vibrations felt at 1500-2000 rpms (enough to shake and vibrate the dash components), then vibration goes away. Slight acceleration under load at 1500-2000 rpms and at any speed (20-30, 40-55, 72 mph) will result in droning/vibrations (everytime). Had Nissan service mgr. Ride with me, then he drove the vehicle and confirmed the vibrations. He said to return the vehicle in Jan 2014 to further document this problem that Nissan does not admit exists. However, this problem has been reported to Nissan many times over this past year (2013). I now believe this vibration is coming from the engine and not from the cvt since I can feel vibrations 1500-2000 RPM even when the vehicle is stopped (in park or in neutral). Update: 1/08/14 Nissan dealer replaced engine alternator, problem still exists, no change in vibrations. 1/10/14 Nissan replaced tensioner and engine serpentine belt, problem still exists, no change in vibrations. 1/13/14 filed complaint with Nissan Consumer Affairs.

- Lebanon, OH, USA

problem #45

Nov 302013

Altima 4-cyl

  • 13,657 miles
Car is vibrating when going 40 mph. Vibration also occurring after long drives and then coming to a stop. Car will shake. It is not happening all the time, but is nerve racking when it does. Intermittent issue with the key id not being recognized when entering the car when the doors are locked and you press the unlock button on the door handle. Or when getting into an unlocked car the key is not recognized. Lock the doors and auto start the car button on the key fob not starting the car. Happening on both key fobs. Headlights during long trip were dimming, then would brighten. This during a 6 hour drive. Gas mileage has dropped from 38.4 mpg to 33.1 mpg highway driving. Same issue with around town about 5 mpg drop. Mileage seems to differ when filling up car. Goes from over 600+ miles to around 580+ miles. Not sure why when you fill it all the way up the mileage is not the same. Tire pressure seems to differ. Not sure that is reliable reading.

- Holland, MI, USA

problem #44

Mar 172013

Altima

  • 10,000 miles
The contact owns a 2013 Nissan Altima. The contact stated that while driving approximately 60 mph, the vehicle abnormally swayed back and forth. The vehicle was easier to control once the speed decelerated to 50 mph and below. The vehicle was taken to the dealer who was unable to diagnose the failure. The technician stated that it was a manufacturing defect. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the problem. The approximate failure mileage was 10,000.

- Jacksonville, NC, USA

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