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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.

9.0

pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
$3,692.00
Average Mileage:
99,377 miles
Total Complaints:
136 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. replace radiator and transmission (98 reports)
  2. not sure (16 reports)
  3. replace transmission (6 reports)
  4. fix it and compensate owners for full expense (5 reports)
  5. extended warranty announced by Nissan on 10/15/10 (4 reports)
  6. replaced the radiator (3 reports)
2005 Nissan Frontier transmission problems

transmission problem

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2005 Nissan Frontier Owner Comments (Page 1 of 7)

problem #136

Jun 292015

Frontier Nismo

  • Automatic transmission
  • 49,562 miles

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

Nissan North America did not send me information regarding the extended warranty. I took the truck to a shop where the fixed half of the transmission for $1800.00 and $120.00 for a computer scan. When I found out of the extended warranty I called Nissan NA, they told me to submit the invoices to them and to take it to a Nissan Dealership. Minutes after I paid $3000.00 for the extended warranty Nissan NA send me this email:

Thank you for taking the time to contact Nissan North America and allowing us the opportunity to be of assistance.

Please be advised that Nissan does not reimburse independent facility repairs and/or service. If you have any future vehicle concerns, please take your vehicle to your nearest authorized Nissan Dealer who is best positioned to diagnose and repair your vehicle. Your Nissan Dealer will be more than willing to assist.

Case # XXXXXX has been created to document this concern. Please feel free to e-mail or contact us directly at 1-615-725-7562 with any questions or comments.

Sincerely,

Nissan

_______ Amberly Consumer Affairs Representative Nissan North America, Inc.

- , La, CA, USA

problem #135

Jun 062015

Frontier Nismo 4.0L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 130,000 miles

click to see larger images

transmission cooler ruptured & ruined transmission

When I bought this truck 3 years ago from King Nissan (now Wilson Nissan) in Bellingham, WA I asked if there were any known issues with the truck. I was told that the 2005 Nissan Frontier NISMO was great truck with no issues. Now, in looking at the Nissan customer complaint website the 2005 Frontier is by far the worst of any model year with at least 2-10 times as many as complaints as any other model year!!!!

I was lied to big time! Part of it is probably my fault for trusting a used car dealer.

- , Stanwood, WA, USA

problem #134

Jun 062015

Frontier V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 101,000 miles

I have read several complaints from other Nissan truck owners regarding the same problem that I'm having and makes me furious that there has not been a recall regarding this issue!!! My mechanic spoke to someone at our local Nissan dealer and he told my mechanic that this problem with the radiator leaking fluid into transmission and ruining it is a frequent and well know problem! Yet Nissan offers less then nothing about it! If there is ever a lawsuit against them regarding this I want in!! Nissan needs to take accountability for their negligence.

- , Saint Charles, MO, USA

problem #133

Mar 182015

Frontier XE V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 132,000 miles

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

Transmission cooler failed, transmission failed. Replaced transmission and radiator. Added external transmission cooler. Had to rent car. Nissan won't take responsibility. Called Av Nissan. Bakersfield Nissan. Nissan USA. No compensation, recourse, nothing. Will tell my 150 High School seniors per year in my economics class "about" Nissan. For the next 20 years.

- , Tehachapi, CA, USA

problem #132

Mar 302015

Frontier

  • Automatic transmission
  • 130,000 miles

It's a documented Nissan problem. Class action lawsuit settlement was a joke. We purchased used from the Nissan dealer without mention of this problem.

- , Pawleys Island, SC, USA

problem #131

Mar 042015

Frontier LX 3.2lV6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 121,000 miles

I own a 2005 Nissan frontier. About two years ago I had a problem with my transmission where the coolant had mixed with the trans fluid. went to Nissan dealer wanted 6800.00 to fix. Even though I had purshured a extended warranty. Needless to say I was very upset did not know what to do. So my husband and a friend, which are both very good mechanics replaced the radiater and flushed the transmission. That worked just fine until March 2,2015,the same thing happened again,because of the radiator. So I had no choice but to have it fixed,that cost me over 4700.00. The shop I took it to had 6 either frontier or pathfinders years 2005 -2006 within two weeks with the same problem.This should never have happened and I feel that Nissan should have too pay for all repairs,because it is there fault.I hope that something can be done about this. I could say a lot more but I am sure it would be deleted if you know what I mean.

- , Custer, Wash, USA

problem #130

Feb 262015

Frontier Nissmo V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 72,000 miles

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

VEHICLE MADE A NOISE WHAT SOUNDED LIKE DRIVING OVER A RUMBLE STRIP. IT THEN FAILED TO ACCELERATE AND I WAS FORCED INTO THE BREAKDOWN LANE ON THE HIGHWAY. I HAD VEHICLE TOWED TO SHOP AND WAS INFORMED OF THE RADIATOR AND TRANSMISSION ISSUE WITH THESE VEHICLES. RADIATOR FLUID LEAKED INTO THE TRANSMISSION AND NOW ITS JUNK. IT WILL NOW COST ME $3400 TO REPLACE THE TRANSMISSION AND RADIATOR. I CAN'T BELIEVE THERE ISN'T A RECALL OUT FOR THIS ISSUE. THIS IS A COMPLETE DISREGARD FOR CONSUMER PROTECTION.

Update from Mar 19, 2015: VEHICLE MADE A NOISE WHAT SOUNDED LIKE DRIVING OVER A RUMBLE STRIP. IT THEN FAILED TO ACCELERATE AND I WAS FORCED INTO THE BREAKDOWN LANE ON THE HIGHWAY. I HAD VEHICLE TOWED TO SHOP AND WAS INFORMED OF THE RADIATOR AND TRANSMISSION ISSUE WITH THESE VEHICLES. RADIATOR FLUID LEAKED INTO THE TRANSMISSION AND NOW ITS JUNK.The total cost for this repair was $3992.73 and had to replace the transmission and radiator. Nissan will not reimburse any money for the this issue even though this vehicle has on 71,200 miles on it.

- , Lowell, MA, USA

problem #129

Jan 202015

Frontier Nismo 4.0L V6

  • Manual transmission
  • 96,000 miles

Same old story, engine coolant leaked into transmission fluid through crack in radiator tube weld at 96000 miles. My truck started shuddering in fifth gear and clunking in and out of 5th gear. Drove with O/D off for a few months and now up shifting rough between 1&2 @ 2&3 and a hard down shift clunk between 1&2. Took it in to the dealership for diagnosis, transmission ruined and also new radiator needed. Since I am under 100,000 miles and 9 years, dealer is covering 2,236.34 and I am left paying the remaining $3,000 under the recall settlement.

- , Meridian, ID, USA

problem #128

Nov 042014

Frontier LE 4.0L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 117,003 miles

2005 NISSAN FRONTIER TRANSMISSION / RADIATOR CROSS CONTAMINATION HAPPENED AT 117,003 MILES. NISSAN SHOULD HAVE REPLACED RADIATORS. I WAS AWARE OF THIS POSSIBLE PROBLEM. I WAS GOING TO REPLACE RADIATOR MYSELF. BUT I NEVER DID. DON'T LET THIS HAPPEN TO YOU. TAKE YOURS TO ANY AUTO OR RADIATOR SHOP AND SIMPLY REPLACE RADIATOR BEFORE IT FAILS! ! !

- , Max, MN, USA

problem #127

Nov 072014

Frontier SE/LE 4.0L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 98,000 miles

THIS TRUCK CAUSED MY FRUSTRATION, UNRELIABLE, RUINED MY VACATION. IT MIGHT BE MY FIRST AND LAST NISSAN THAT I HAVE TO DEAL WITH. BESIDE THIS PROBLEMS, IT IS TERRIBLE ON GAS SINCE THE GAS PRICE IS EXPENSIVE. I WILL TRY TO GET THE DEALER TO FIX IT AND HOPEFULLY IT WILL LAST FOR A WHILE.

- , Windsor Locks, CT, USA

problem #126

Nov 012012

Frontier 4.0L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 120,000 miles

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

CALLED NISSAN TRIED TO TO GET SOME HELP AND GUESS WHAT? ALL I GOT WAS SORRY. I HAVE OWNED 5 NISSAN CARS AND TRUCKS - THOUGHT THEY WOULD STAND BEHIND THEIR PRODUCT. GUESS I WAS WRONG. I WILL NOT BE BUYING A NISSAN AGAIN.

- , McHenry, MS, USA

problem #125

Jun 242014

Frontier SE 4.0L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 99,843 miles

BOUGHT A NISSAN FOR THEIR GOOD REPUTATION. I DON'T THINK ANYONE WOULD BUY A CAR IF THEY'RE TOLD THAT THE TRANSMISSION WILL NEED A REPAIR BEFORE 100,000 MILES. NISSAN DOESN'T GIVE A $#!^ ABOUT THEIR CUSTOMERS.

- , El Centro, CA, USA

problem #124

Dec 202013

Frontier Nismo 3.2L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 102,000 miles

Nissan knew about this problem, failed to do a recall to fix. This could have caused a serious injury, death, crash - I had my 2 children in the truck with me when the problem started. It cost me $3100 (diagnostics and repair) plus a major headache because it was near the holidays and we were getting ready to move. I had to take to get fixed in the city I was living and then my husband flew back down when it was done (from where we moved) - STRESS from that, moving, unpacking, etc.... WTH!!

- , Clemmons, NC, USA

problem #123

Sep 162014

Frontier V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 98,500 miles

Paid $3000 for a problem that Nissan knew about and is not fixing before it happens, 1st and last Nissan.

- , Hubert, NC, USA

problem #122

Oct 022014

Frontier LE 4.0L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 144,000 miles

I am either going to have to pay 3 to 4000 dollars to repair my truck and it is a manufacturing problem from Nissan.

- , Rolla, MO, USA

problem #121

Feb 012014

Frontier

  • Automatic transmission
  • 140,000 miles

Had transmission problems a year ago, flushed.

Now complete transmission AND radiator bad!

I will tell all my friends that own these vehicles to GET RID OF THEM IMMEDIATELY!

- , Ashland, OR, USA

problem #120

May 102007

Frontier LE V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 111,435 miles

We purchased a new 2005 Frontier from a dealer. This was our 4th vehicle purchased from this dealer. Soon after, we noticed a noise and difficulty shifting and assumed it was a transmission problem. We mentioned this each time the truck went in for scheduled maintenance. I was told this was typical of this model and not to worry. At another service, I specifically asked to look at my transmission as it appeared to be getting worse. They again said not to worry.

While driving shortly after, the transmission failed, resulting in a near accident, towing and repair bill of $2840.44. I was unable to have the truck towed to Nissan but the nearest transmission place. They told me water had leaked into the transmission coolant resulting in the failure. I needed my truck for work but first had to have the transmission replaced. I called Nissan and asked how this could happen when I just had them inspect the transmission. I was told there was no way they could have seen this problem unless they had taken the transmission apart. Why didn't they see the problem when they inspected the fluid? I have since researched this and realize how many complaints of the same water leak problem exist.

About 20,000 miles later, we needed to have a solenoid replaced. Recently, while on vacation, our transmission slipped twice, it was all we could do to drive home. We took our truck to the transmission place that had made the repair. We were told that the valve body needs to be replaced, however, Nissan no longer sells the individual solenoid and the cost for just the part is $1300. I contacted NissanUSA.com and was told I needed to have the truck towed to the Nissan dealer. Currently, our truck is being diagnosed for a fee of $180. We are now retired and on a limited income. This is a considerable hardship for us. I will post an update when we hear from Nissan as to the repair needed.

- , Magalia, CA, USA

problem #119

Aug 142014

Frontier SE V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 100,600 miles

November 29th 2013, I purchased a used 2005 Nissan Frontier SE Crew Cab with 86k miles for $13,300 from a Nissan Dealership.

August 6th 2014 I brought the Vehicle into an ase certified mechanic because of a shuddering in my transmission. Upon inspection and diagnostic they found the o2 sensor was dirty. At this time there was 99,978 miles on the vehicle. One week later i brought the truck back in because the problem continued to occur. Now mileage indicates 100,600 miles. They found the the radiator ruptured into the transmission and both were ruined. I submitted a claim to the Nissan Consumer Affairs department. Tuesday August 19th I was informed that they would not offer the $3,000 co-pay that they were required to offer per the class-action lawsuit. They said it was not Nissan's responsibility to inform me of the lawsuit or problems with the radiator cooled transmission. They said it was my fault for not taking it to a Nissan Service department.

Shortly after purchasing the truck I noticed it would not warm up in park. Which was thought to be attributed to a thermostat issue and would be fixed later. After searching for this particular problem it was noticed that the warming up symptom was an early warning sign for this transmission/radiator issue.

This started happening one month after purchasing the truck!

Its August 20th 2014. My truck is at the ASE certified mechanic for the next 8 days. The bill is $5,100. Which is much less than the $6,700 the Nissan Service department quoted. I have 28 more payments of $400 on the truck.

When you buy a vehicle you never expect the transmission to fail at 100k. I will never purchase another nissan ever. I advise everyone the same.

- , Rochester, MN, USA

problem #118

Jul 212014

Frontier LE 4.0L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 120,000 miles

My transmission on my 2005 Nissan Frontier completely failed and left me stranded on the interstate highway. After towing it and a little research I found out that this was a problem that Nissan was well aware of and neglected to notify me or do anything about. The transmission cooler had cracked leaking engine coolant into the transmission. I learned that the extended the warranty to 90,000 miles with a $3000 dollar deductible which is laughable, considering that this was a problem that is going to cost about that to fix on my own. Nissan states on their website that they extended the warranty for customer satisfaction, in reality they got sued and that was the settlement. Nissan should have recalled these trucks years ago like a morally responsible company would have and I would not have to be running up Credit card debt to fix it now.

- , Arlington, TN, USA

problem #117

Feb 122014

Frontier SE/LE 6 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 118,000 miles

HAD A LEAK IN FRONT CENTER OF TRUCK could not determine the source. Could be oil because it left a spot on the drive way. after reading about this trucks track record on trans problems and coolant I thought maybe an external trans oil cooler in front of the radiator might mitigate the problem. Has anyone done this?

- , Houston, TX, USA

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