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CarComplaints.com Notes: The 2004-2006 Nissan Maxima has widespread transmission problems. It starts with the vehicle jerking when shifting, & progresses to full-blown transmission failure.

Maxima owners report spending $3,000 to replace the transmission, typically around when the odometer hits 100,000 miles.

There's a class action lawsuit filed in late 2011, & it is still in the "discovery" stage. Apparently, these things take time ... far too much time.

9.1

really awful
Typical Repair Cost:
$2,646.00
Average Mileage:
105,054 miles
Total Complaints:
18 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (7 reports)
  2. new transmission (6 reports)
  3. rebuild transmission (5 reports)
2004 Nissan Maxima transmission problems

transmission problem

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2004 Nissan Maxima Owner Comments

problem #18

Sep 092013

Maxima SE 3.5L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 120,000 miles

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

I have owned my maxima since 05. I have had numerous problems with it since then and believe Nissan should definitely recall this vehicle. I had to replace the transmission once already at 60k and at 120k it seems I need to replace it again. I am so fed up with Nissan and at the moment will never buy another one. How could they sell a vehicle when so many ppl are having the same issue with the transmission and not recall. Something or someone needs to do something about this as Nissan seems to be "ripping off the consumers". Very disappointed

- , Bristol, CT, USA

problem #17

Jul 282013

Maxima 3.5L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 198,000 miles

This car should have never been sold, it have a few things that should be recall and all of them is very costly to the owners. This is my problem with it as of right now not to mention the thousands of dollars that i have spent on this car before this and is not even related to this. It first started out when you get to a stop and go to pull off it act as if it don't want to move, but when it do move the transmission want change gears and it's like you have no gas pedal at all, but when you stop somewhere and turn the car off and wait a few minute it's like something is resetting and it's ok for a while. So i go and have the strainer and fluid change and have the transmission flush it did no good at all but yet it did do this everyday. So now i can be driving down the road and the car will jerk and and the check engine light will come on and the code will be345 witch is high timing on bank one or two and when it jerk like that i have no gas pedal at all, i would have to stop and turn the car off for a few minutes. But now with the check engine light on even if i drive it and don't get up to speed for the transmission to shift in to 5th gear i can turn the car off and get back in it and it don't want to move, and when i put the gear shift level over to see what gear it's in, it alway's say that it's in 5th gear, it don't show no other gear but 5th gear and then if you move the shift up or down the transmission will have a popping noise just sitting still. Now all the repair shops are saying that the Transmission need to be rebuild and the cost will be from $2.800 to $3.000 this is crazy to have to put this kind of money in this type of car so soon, and if people like myself can't get any help with this type of problems are so kind of recall on this type of car, i want be buying another Nissan my next car will be a Honda.

- , Concord, North Carolina, USA

problem #16

Jul 292013

Maxima SE 3.5L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 43,368 miles

I am very disappointed with my Maxima the car has been verily driven. It has 43,368miles. I have a 1994 Toyota and it has over three hundred thousand mile on it. I must say it is a very dependable car. I will not buy another Nissan. My husband bought that car for my Anniversary.When he went back to the dealer they told him there was nothing wrong with the 2004st here are to many complaints on these cars.If you know anything that we can do as consumers to take further action let me know. There should have been a recall on these cars transmission.

- , Warnerrobins, GA, USA

problem #15

Aug 182012

Maxima 3.5se

  • Automatic transmission
  • 118,000 miles

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

I've had my 2004 Nissan Maxima for a year and love it, however the transmission is a piece of crap. Before it completely went on me today it slipped going from first to second gear and sometimes even reverse. Being from a family who only drives Nissans, I am livid and very disappointed with the company. They need to fix their transmission problems ASAP. And just to think I was soon considering a 2011 Maxima upgrade... I THINK NOT!!!!!!!!

- , Columbus, OH, Austria

problem #14

May 032012

Maxima SE 3.5L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 89,000 miles

Nissan Motors need to recall their 2004 Nissan Maxima. This car has a transmission issue that needs an immediate recall. It is a shame to build a vehicle that would run so good and have the trans go out on us averaging 80K miles. Nissan needs to step-up to the plate and fix this problem and own it since they gave it to a third party to build their transmissions for all of their 2004 Maximas.

- , Hercules, CA, USA

problem #13

May 072010

Maxima

  • Automatic transmission
  • 100,000 miles

I purchased my 2004 Nissan Maxima two years ago. About nine months after i purchased my vehicle from a nissan dealership in Georgia the transmission started jerking and slamming into gear when ever you put it into any gear. The vehicle would go into reverse with no problems. I then took my car to a transmission shop and they informed me the transmission was going out. I had my transmission rebuilt because at the time that was all i could afford. I received a repair bill for 1,900.00. Once again two years later and now my car is sitting under my garage and it barely wants to move. Probably the transmission again and i am highly pissed. I will never by another nissan automobile again.. Something needs to be did because these Nissan Maxima's looks good but is a terrible vehicle to own. The quality of Nissan Maxima cars are terrible and i advise any and every one to stay away from a Nissan dealership.

- , Valdosta, GA, USA

problem #12

May 082012

Maxima SE V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 130,000 miles

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

My transmission gave out on 4/08/2012.

The car was bought in 11/2003 brand new. Great car, drove well, until two years ago when I hit 100k. I started to hear a rattling sound coming from the engine. Took the car to my mechanic, he checked the engine and found nothing wrong. Shortly after, the car began to jerk when I changed gears. I told my mechanic, what was happening. He told me Nissan Maxima's were known to have transmission problems and that it would need a new soon. Two years later, it finally gave out. I was driving,when I completely lost power. The brake and gas pedals began to lock up. I pulled off the road into a empty lot. I turned off the car, then restarted it. It started. I was so happy but when I pulled off the car had no power. It barely moved but out of no where the speed kicked in. Great, I was on the go. Come to a stop light. Again, when I had to move NO speed, just creeping. Then again The speed kicked in. This took place until I got to my mechanic shop. He did a diagnostic, that told him the position sensor was bad. He changed it. During his test drive, he realized it was the tranny cause the car did not change gears and there was a burning order coming from the engine. However, there was no problem when reversing the car. Unless I was going to drive backwards all the time. I had no choice to fix it with a high price tag. I needed my car.

Nissan should either recall the transmission issues for 2004 maximas or compensate the owner with these problems. We are loyal customers that should be treated fairly.

- , Atlanta, GA, USA

problem #11

Jan 042012

Maxima SE 3.5L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 177,500 miles

Transmission has been rattling for awhile. Gears started slipping and now the transmission is out. A dealership did an inspection, and basically said the repair would be $4500. I went to ta transmission repair site, and they "fixed it" but last night the transmission stopped working in forward gears, and there was a burning smell. I contacted Nissan, and will see if they have any thoughts or suggestions - the $4500 repair is a lot of money for a vehicle that has a history of transmission problems and with the milage that I have on it-

- , Geneva, IL, USA

problem #10

Jun 112008

Maxima SE 3.5L

  • CVT transmission
  • 125,000 miles

When I brought My 2004 Nissan maxima I was told that it was a very reliable car . But I have come to grips that the vehicle was built poorly ,an tested in unrealistic environment I had the the worse experiences with the car . The transmission went crazy just as the summer came in to season .I had to pay 2000 .00 to get the transmission rebuilt an on top of that I had to continue to make car payments on then the head gaskets went right after.This car as ruined my credit

- , Charlotte, NC, USA

problem #9

Mar 012011

Maxima SE 3.5L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 93,000 miles

I bought this car new in February of 2004. I've NEVER had a single issue with this car until now. The transmission problems that all the other people are experiencing and have elaborated on with this particular model year are starting to happen to me now. At 94000 miles now, and i am struggling with what to do with it. Trade it in, spend $5000 to fix?? I've taken VERY good care of this vehicle since I bought it, practically babied it, and have it serviced regularly. The thought of parting with it over the transmission issue has me furious, but it is almost undrivable now. Talk about a shot from out of the blue.

- , Cincinnati, OH, USA

problem #8

Feb 202011

Maxima SL 3.5L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 87,000 miles

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

The transmission failed when I took my foot off the gas and caused sudden deceleration. Nissan took 4 days to review the situation and then told me that there would be NO financial assistance and I would have to pay the entire amount myself. This is my second Nissan Maxima and I am completely shocked that Nissan would treat a loyal customer so poorly and not care about goodwill and repeat buyers. I have reported this to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration as the number of transmission failures on Nissans grows everyday as people are able to report them on the internet.

- , Lutz, FL, mexico

problem #7

Feb 032011

Maxima SE 3.5L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 79,385 miles

Bought car new in 2004; kept up with maintenance schedule with Nissan Dealer and with reputable mechanic for standard oil changes and inspections. Check Engine light came on Wed. 2/2/11 and barely got the car home. Now 3 days later the car is completely down. All the fluid levels are good. The xmission shifts in reverse no problem, but in drive does not move at all. Engine just revs up. Also, a high pitch whining sound is present in idle, and more apparent in drive. This should not happen with a car with so low miles and well maintained. There's got to be something we owners can do about this...I'm obviously not the only one!

- , Powder Springs, GA, USA

problem #6

Nov 202010

Maxima SE 3.5SE

  • Automatic transmission
  • 47,000 miles

Nissan really needs to step up to the stage and declare their inferior product. We already know it is not a Nissan tranny, its from one of their vendors, forgot the name, have to go to the forum to find out. Besides the slipping and changing of gears, when I come to a stop and completely stopped, the vehicle plunges forward. Sounds like a safety issue to me. We are dealing with inappropriate auto manufacturers out there.

- , Whittier, California, USA

problem #5

Jun 032009

Maxima SL 3.5L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 70,000 miles

2004 Nissan Maxima Transmission.

I purchased this beautiful car back in 2005 with 9,000 miles on it. It cost me around 27K.

I feel in love with this car at first site. It rode smoothly, was sporty, fast, and also accommodated my 2 children at the time. My love affair was starting to fade about 33k miles in. The rotors failed and had to be replaced and the front shocks failed and also needed replaced. At this point I was feeling a little uneasy but still enjoyed the car. It thought hey, cars have problems. I had considered trading in but quickly decided against it because I really liked the car. Then the real nightmare started at about 70,000 miles. The transmission started jerking when shifting 2-3 gear and 3-4 gear. I took it to a tranny shop and the diagnosis was "you need a new one" The estimated repair was going to be around 3,000. At that point it was not an option for me. So I continued to drive with jerking. The tranny held up to about 135k but still shifting hard and jerking frequently. It finally failed by sticking in 5th gear every time I drove it. I knew at this point that it needed replaced. While all the transmission problems was occurring I took another slap to the face. A terrible clicking noise started to come from the engine. I thought my engine was going to the grave with the transmission. Luck had it, it was only timing chain tensioner guides that broke. My "luck" still cost me around 1,400.(The clicking started at about 85k) Come to find out the timing chain tensioner guides were constructed from plastic. Yeah Nissan puts plastic in their motors! The dealership admitted they keep fixing this problem. There is a product bulletin about the plastic guides. So basically Nissan acknowledges there is an issue with the plastic guides but I am still required to pay 100% of the job to fix. They were nice enough to replace the plastic guides with the new and improved metal guides. A little late for that in my opinion. I don't understand if they realize there is a problem and have new improved parts, why do I have to pay for it. So my Nissan is in the shop with a 4,892.00 repair bill. The main thing that bugs me is that there are so many online complaints about the same exact issues on the same exact model as mine. Why can't Nissan step up take responsibility. I have treated my car with respect by taking very good care of and I get this. I am positive that I will never ever purchase a Nissan again. And further more I have tried to reach a regional specialist that will not return my call after about 6 days.

- , Ashford, WV, USA

problem #4

Aug 152008

Maxima SL 3.5

  • Automatic transmission
  • 68,456 miles

SECOND OWNER 20K MILES IN AND THE TRANSMISSION FAILS ON A NICE SUMMER DAY CRUISE. TAKE IT TO NISSAN ON POST RD IN WARWICK AND 12 DAYS LATER I GET MY CAR BACK IT WAS COVERED UNDER EXTENDED WARRANTY BUT THEN THE NISSAN DEALERSHIP TRIED TO BE SLICK AND CHARGE ME $320.00 SAYING THAT MY WARRANTY COMPANY DIDN'T PAY THEM ALL THERE MONEY AFTER ARGUING WITH THIS GUY WITH GLASSES I DEMANDED TO SPEAK WITH THE SERVICE MANAGER AND HE FIXED EVERYTHING BUT THEY ARE STILL SNEAKY.

- , Providence, RI, USA

problem #3

Oct 292010

Maxima 3.5

  • Automatic transmission
  • 130,000 miles

what the hell is wrong with nissan, they claim to be one of the best but don't take care of this ongoing issue with these transmission problems.how many failures do they need to see the have designed a sh*tty transmission.

- , Tucson, AZ, USA

problem #2

Sep 032010

Maxima SE 3.5L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 143,000 miles

2004 Maxima- Second owner. transmission serviced at 100k, now 143k on the trans. No skipping or anything that would make you think there was an issue. Now locked in 5th gear and will not come out. Engine light came on, now shift really hard between P, R, and D. Not driving the car until I can talk to someone that knows whats going on- surely not the dealer. Reported the problem to NHTSA. Everyone else please report to them.

http://www.nhtsa.gov/

OR

Office of Defects Investigations/CRD NVS-216 1200 New Jersey Ave SE Washington, DC 20590

Update from Oct 20, 2010: Took the car to the transmission shop- computer reads 2 problems- 1>) crankshaft position sensor and 2>) camshaft position sensor. changed both for $540.00 but the car still has a jerk in second.

- , Columbia, SC, USA

problem #1

Aug 022010

Maxima SE 3.5L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 72,258 miles

My transmission went only at 72K. I was pissed as hell. I take care of that car with all the changes it needed. So one day i start it up and I no power in drive what so ever. Felt as if i was in neutral, but i had full reverse power. Took it to mechanic because my warranty was up so it cost me $3,484 to rebuild that tranny.

- , Elmont, NY, USA

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