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: In a very limited selection on small pickup trucks, the Frontier is one of the best options except -- and I cannot emphasize this enough -- for one problem that makes it an avoid-at-all-costs pain in you know what: the radiator ruptures and leaks coolant into the transmission, killing it. Such a buzzkill.

This problem affects most 2005-2008 (and maybe beyond) Frontiers.

1.8

hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
91,144 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.

2005 Nissan Frontier transmission problems

transmission problem

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2005 Nissan Frontier Owner Comments

problem #18

Apr 022012

Frontier 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles

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

2005 Nissan Frontier. Consumer writes in regards to malfunction in the radiator leaking, that resulted in completely damaging the vehicle's transmission

- Greenfield, NY, USA

problem #17

Aug 012011

Frontier 6-cyl

  • 103,000 miles
Gradual failure of transmission due to ruptured transmission cooler inside radiator allowing coolant into transmission fluid. Symptom started as small vibration and numerous service attempts could not identify problem. Had transmission flushed and service center did not mention any discoloration of fluid or other problem. Had radiator drained and flushed and thermostat replaced, service center did not cite any discoloration of fluid. Transmission now bucks heavily and web research uncovered the problem with similiar make and model vehicle.

- Kansas City, MO, USA

problem #16

Jun 012011

Frontier 6-cyl

  • 140,000 miles
My Nissan 2005 Frontier has a transmission problem where the radiator is leaking coolant in the transmission. This has caused the vehicle to not change gears properly and is a danger as it does not accelerate as it should.

- Columbia, SC, USA

problem #15

Aug 152011

Frontier 4WD

  • 91,000 miles

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

Dear sir or MA'am; I have a Nissan Frontier 2005 V^ 4.0L engine nismo 4X4 model. It has 91K miles in it and have recently been experiencing sluggishness and a "thud" while in low power (automatic transmission). So I have been reading forums and online sites to get an idea of what the source of the problem maybe. Mechanics and auto part stores have diagnosed it as an issue with the transmission brake control valve (internal). My trucks discrepancy might be isolated but what concerns me goes not only for my vehicle but also and more for all these consumers who have reported problems with their radiation+transmission. They have spent money and it seems from their comments Nissan dealerships and company have not been able to help or address a known issue (it sounds like a cover-up--hopefully the consumers are accurate in their description). What further concerns me is that they seem to be stuck with their situation and unable to go further. One consumer contacted a local tv stations Consumer Affairs section and got help. So it seems that what these consumers need is backing from a legitimate institution or Agency. If the dealership/company will not listen to their costumers and address the issue (which I believe is a safety issue), perhaps we can get your (NHTSA) help. I propose that NHTSA pls look into this mechanical safety concern and look into possibility of poor materials/manufacturing of some of the Nissan Frontier components. Appreciate your response on this matter. For the consumer concerns/problem descriptions, please reference: www.consumeraffairs.com/automotive/nissan_frontier.html.

- Huber Heights, OH, USA

problem #14

Jun 152011

Frontier 6-cyl

  • 110,000 miles
2005 Nissan Frontier. Transmission failure.. vehicle shutters around 40 mph and some loud clunking noises when the tranny shifts. Dealer tried to blame my brakes. Took to transmision shop and was told it would be $5000 to replace tranny because coolant contaminated the transmision.

- Muskegon, MI, USA

problem #13

Jul 152011

Frontier 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 94,600 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Nissan Frontier pickup truck. While driving 45 mph, the contact stated that the vehicle would vibrate into the next gear. The contact would release the accelerator pedal the vehicle speed would increase excessively. The contact was forced to shift into over drive in order to gain control of the vehicle. The dealer nor manufacturer were notified of the failure. The failure was not remedied. The failure mileage was 94,600. The current mileage was 95,000. Updated 08/15/11 the contact stated that the problem has since been diagnosed by a Nissan dealership as being an intermix of radiant coolant and transmission fluid. This mix ruined the radiator and transmission. Updated 06/07/12

- Clemson, SC, USA

problem #12

Jul 222011

Frontier 6-cyl

  • 111,007 miles

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

Took my truck to peltier in tyler for an ECM relay recall. Mechanic looked at truck and found that the radiator transmission cooler was leaking anti-freeze into my transmission. Was told to replace radiator immediately and flush transmission. Did this however transmission went into limp mode and progressively got worse. A mechanic replaced the valve body which cost over $1000 for the part alone and checked the clutch packs in the transmission. Clutch packs checked okay however the mechanic could not guarantee that the torque converter was okay. Vehicle seemed to drive okay after the repair. Now the torque converter seems to be going out and the vehicle will go into the limp mode. I have to disconnect the battery to reset the code and it will drive okay for about 10 miles and the service engine light goes on. When this happens the vehicle goes into the limp mode. My mechanic told me that he thinks the torque converter is shot and will have to be replaced. Update as of 07/192011 - mechanic replaced my torque converter and rebuilt transmission. The old torque converter came apart and after pulling the transmission, he saw a lot of metallic shavings on the screen on the valve body. While driving to work on 07/22/2011, I was driving around 70 mph with the cruise control on. All of a sudden my RPM gauge redlined and my transmission went into neutral. I immediately released the cruise control by tapping the brake pedal. With no shoulder on the road at my location, an 18 wheeler was quickly coming up on my rear. I put my flashers on and was able to coast to an exit. The 18 wheeler came within inches hitting my rear end. Now my Frontier is in dunn's transmission shop in tyler, tx to be repaired. As of this writing, the problem has not been diagnosed but I am sure the problem will be in the valve body since something caused the transmission to go into neutral. Probably some metallic material got inside something in the valve body which was replaced in March 2011.

- Lindale, TX, USA

problem #11

Jul 072011

Frontier 6-cyl

  • 79,500 miles
Defective transmissions and fuel sensors on Nissan trucks. Nissan is very aware of these problems but refuses to remedy or repair. My current vehicle is a Nissan Frontier 2005 but I had the fuel sensor problems on my 2006 Nissan xterra as well. Pleas see link to Consumer Affairs complaint page listing hundreds with the same problem; www.consumeraffairs.com/automotive/nissan_frontier.html

- Riverside,, CA, USA

problem #10

Jun 032011

Frontier 6-cyl

  • 110,000 miles
2005 Nissan Frontier le (transmission failure). Driving at interstate speed (70mph), transmission failed causing sudden deceleration. Failed once, transmission must be replaced. Nissan service department is not able to repair due to high demand for parts. Possible consequence high speed collision due to sudden deceleration.

- Calhoun, GA, USA

problem #9

Mar 102008

Frontier

  • 59,994 miles
3/10/08-transmission is slipping and clunking, took to dealer-turn away, 59994 miles. 4/21/08-62,597 miles returned to dealer and again was told no problem. That day took to local mechanic and he drained transmission fluid. Resembled a milk shake and he diagnosed the problem as a broken transmission line in the radiator. Returned to dealership and they once again turned me away refusing to acknowledge the problem. Local mechanic flushed transmission and repaired radiator. Transmission still slips and clunks and is presently parked.(not drivable) received a letter from Nissan admitting to this very problem and they still rejected my request for repairs. Believe engine may have been damaged as a result of this problem. Burns oil and stalls as well. Made many requests to national Consumer Affairs and totally rejected my concerns.

- Alliance, OH, USA

problem #8

Apr 152011

Frontier 6-cyl

  • 85,000 miles

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

Vibration occurred while shifting. Took to dealership pf which they stated problem related to engine coolant getting mixed with transmission oil due to failed cooler inside radiator. Costs for rebuilding transmission over $6,000this is obviously a manufacturing or design defect, nothing to do with normal wear and tear. Nissan will not reimburse the repair.

- Argyle, TX, USA

problem #7

Feb 252011

Frontier

  • 89,500 miles
Radiator & transmission failure.

- Cedar Rapids, IA, USA

problem #6

Feb 172009

Frontier

  • 150,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Nissan Frontier. The contact stated that there was an internal leak in the radiator while spilled onto the transmission and caused it to fail. The vehicle was taken to an authorized dealer who stated that the transmission and radiator needed to be replaced. The contact called the manufacturer who offered no assistance. The failure mileage was 150,000.

- Lawrenceburg, KY, USA

problem #5

Oct 012010

Frontier 6-cyl

  • 98,000 miles
Had been getting some noises from the transmission for a little while, but mechanic never caught the real issue. Transmission failed while driving 100km/H, overdrive and 4th gears no longer worked. Was able to make it home and do quick internet search where it became obvious that my problem was related to engine coolant getting mixed with transmission oil due to failed cooler inside radiator. Opened up radiator cap which confirmed this fact, tranny oil floating on top of the engine coolant. Costs for rebuilding transmission over $5,000, hooked up oil to external cooler already in the truck, therefore saved cost of replacing radiator (bypassed this cooler). This is obviously a manufacturing or design defect, nothing do with normal wear and tear. Nissan will not reimburse the repair.

- Edmundston, New Brunswick, Can, 00, USA

problem #4

Dec 092010

Frontier

  • 82,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Nissan Frontier SE. The contact stated that while driving 40 mph, the radiator ruptured. The transmission also began slipping. The vehicle was taken to an authorized dealer who stated that the radiator and transmission needed to E replaced as the antifreeze mixed with the transmission fluid. The contact called the manufacturer who offered no assistance. The failure mileage was 82,000.

- Fort Howard , MD, USA

problem #3

Nov 182009

Frontier

  • 96,000 miles
Why has there been no recall on Nissan Frontier pickup trucks? they have had thousands of complaints reported online about transmission failure due to cross contamination of transmission fluid and engine coolant due to a problem with the transmission cooler pipe design. This is a very common problem with these vehicles. Also I have a failed gas gauge sending unit. Again there are thousands of the same complaints online. There have been recalls on other vehicles for the same reason, yet not on the Nissan Frontier pickup. The recalls on others was issued because there would be false readings of fuel levels and a person could run out of gas in traffic and cause and accident. The same problem can occur with the Nissan Frontier because the gauge gives an inaccurate reading or shows empty yet there is fuel in the tank and the operator would have no idea if he is about to run out of gas or not. Back to the transmission, the transmission can go out completely without notice due to the cross contamination. There is no way to no if there is a problem until it was to late. The transmission will fail and there is no way of knowing there is a problem unless you check the radiator periodically. That is the only way to find the problem with out having an actual breakdown. I have had to replace a radiator, have my transmission completely cleaned out twice to remove any coolant, and now my transmission has completely failed. I am asking fro an investigation into the Nissan Frontier problems and the numbers of the same complaints. I am sure there would be a basis for a recall.

- Grethel, KY, USA

problem #2

Apr 212010

Frontier

  • 91,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Nissan Frontier. The contact stated when traveling at speeds of at least 45 mph, the vehicle would exhibit unusual shaking and hard vibrations. The dealer advised the coolant was leaking into the transmission and both the transmission and the coolant system would need to be replaced due to cross contamination. The vehicle was no longer being utilized. The VIN was not available. The failure and current mileages were 91,000.

- Clover, SC, USA

problem #1

Oct 242008

Frontier

  • 50,000 miles
I had to have emergency service to the U-joints. Strong vibration under driver seat, afraid to drive any further. Peruzzi Nissan refusing to reimburse a warranty part.

- Yardley, PA, USA

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