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. 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.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
4 / 2
Injuries / Deaths:
9 / 0
Average Mileage:
86,569 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 Maxima drivetrain problems

drivetrain problem

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2005 Nissan Maxima Owner Comments (Page 15 of 23)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #162

May 062012


  • 92,000 miles


The contact owns 2005 Nissan Maxima. The contact stated that while driving 45 mph, the vehicle unexpectedly shifted in and out of gear, especially third gear. The vehicle was taken to the dealer, who stated that the transmission needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was not notified. The failure mileage was 92,000.

- Mint Hill, NC, USA

problem #161

Feb 012012

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 74,300 miles
Transmission is slipping, especially at low speeds and when putting car into or out of reverse. When the transmission slips out of drive the engine revs and there is a sudden jerk. The car also jerks whenever switching from reverse to drive. The transmission failures are becoming more frequent. The car has 70K+ miles and research shows that transmission failure is a common problem with this car at this mileage.

- Burbank, CA, USA

problem #160

Mar 252012


  • 119,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Nissan Maxima. The contact was driving 30 mph when the vehicle jerked while changing gears. The vehicle was taken to a private mechanic. The mechanic stated that there was a problem with the transmission. The manufacturer was contacted. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was 119,000 and the current mileage was 120,200.

- Garden Grove, CA, USA

problem #159

Mar 012012


  • 130,000 miles


Vehicle started shaking/jerking when pressing breaks for a red light, continued shaking/jerking as I was pressing on the break. Shaking and loud noise when car is turned on, jerking of gears as I am driving on freeway, seems to jump gears and takes a long time to catch itself on automatic gear changes. Have had this car since brand new and has given all kids of problems. For the last few years I've invested too much on repairs and replacement of parts that had no reason to fail. I expected this car to be a dependable and reliable vehicle based on the reputation of the maker. Love the internal features of comfort and luxury but this car fails where it counts....the transmission and under the hood workings. ---I read other complaints about a foul odor in the car... I have recently experienced that strange/stinky odor in my car and thought it was milk or food my kids left in the car...I tend to have my car very clean and after a thorough inspection haven't been able to identify the source of the odor...after reading the other entries I can say it comes from the car itself as other's are experiencing the same thing.

- Lancaster, CA, USA

problem #158

Jun 152012


  • 79,000 miles
My 2005 Nissan Maxima's automatic transmission is jerking when shifting into reverse. The transmission also is not switching to the proper gear when going from a stopped to an accelerated movement.

- Baton Rouge , LA, USA

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problem #157

Jun 162012


  • 108,000 miles
While entering highway from side road, transmission halted as though stuck in overdrive. I accelerated, but the engine just would not go. A truck had to brake hard to avoid collision. After a few seconds the car started to accelerate like a standard transmission had bee started in 4th or 5th gear. I have gone online to forums to see that Nissan has been having this same problem for sometime. These cars need to be recalled to check for this latent defect that can result in someone getting killed.

- Longwood, FL, USA

problem #156

Oct 262010

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 120,000 miles


I bought this 2005 Maxima used and not long after I bought it, the transmission would lag in the shifting then when it shifted into gear it would lurch. (feels like being kicked by a mule.) it happens on & off but has become more frequent especially in bumper to bumper traffic. There's also a foul smell noted when this happens like rotten eggs. I read reviews that confirmed my suspicions about the transmission. Of course every time it has been checked out it wouldn't do it, and no computer check showed anything. Nissan is aware of this problem, there really needs to be a recall on these transmission never buy another Nissan again, and that's just sad because that's all I have ever owned.

- Macon, GA, USA

problem #155

May 122012


  • 100,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Nissan Maxima. The contact stated the transmission failed in second gear. Whenever the vehicle was shifted from second to first gear, there was a loud noise before shifting. The vehicle was taken to the dealer who inspected the failure and advised that the transmission needed to be replaced. The manufacturer was also contacted who advised that a regional representative would be contacted for further assistance. The vehicle was not repaired.the failure mileage was 100,000.

- English Town, NJ, USA

problem #154

Jun 012011

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 78,000 miles
Slam shifting into reverse and drive, intermittent rev limitations, high revs with no transmission engagement, stall & rough idle, feels like someone slams into the back of me when I come to a stop, car revs up and then hard jerks forward very dangerous to drive, Nissan refuses to acknowledge there is a problem with the cvt transmission and someone is going to be killed.

- Lakeside, CA, USA

problem #153

Jun 102012


  • 68,000 miles
Transmission jerked hard and car turned off. The tranny no longer engages into drive and literally jumps into reverse.

- San Francisco, CA, USA

problem #152

May 152012


  • miles


I bought a 2005 Nissan Maxima about a year ago and the past couple of months (just right over 100K miles), I have noticed major jerking and pulling while driving or shifting gears. It is an automatic, but when I start to go, it takes it a few seconds to get in gear and jerks. I have heard many others have the same issue with 2004-2005 models. Are there any recalls as of yet? I have always heard great things about Maximas and do not want to have to replace my transmission, especially this early on! please help! thank you!

- Kingston, TN, USA

problem #151

May 212012


  • 113,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Nissan Maxima. The contact stated that the shifter gear would not shift out of neutral. The contact had to shut the engine off for a moment to be able to shift the gear selector into drive. The vehicle was taken to the dealer but a diagnostic was not performed. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure and suggesting they buy the vehicle back. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure and the current mileage was 113,000.

- Montgomery , AL, USA

problem #150

Apr 162012


  • 87,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Nissan Maxima. While driving approximately 30 mph, the vehicle would not accelerate. The vehicle would jerk when the gear shift was moved. The vehicle was taken to the dealer for diagnostic testing and the technician stated the valve cover body had to be replaced. The vehicle was repaired; however, the failure continued. There were no further repairs performed. The approximate failure mileage was 87,000.

- Loris, SC, USA

problem #149

Jan 012009

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 70,000 miles
My car has a shifting problem. It shifts very hard between 1 and 2 gear. It will also rev to high RPM when going down hills. This has been going on for years. Last year I took it to a Nissan mechanic and had the motor mounts replaced and that helped some, but the car still shifts very hard and bucks like a Bronco. I only have 123000 miles on it and it should not be acting like this. I've read many complaints on this year model and all the issues people are having with their transmissions. I thought maybe I just got a lemon, but it seems there was a lot of lemons in this model and year car.

- Powder Springs, GA, USA

problem #148

Apr 292011

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 90,000 miles
1. takes about 5 seconds to click into gear after the shift lever is put in "D" 2. very hard jerky shifts between 1st to 2nd and 2nd to 1st and accompanied by loud clunking noise. 3. transmission slips out of gear during regular driving allowing the engine to rev freely then jerking back into gear with a loud clunk. The is followed by a burnt oil / electrical type smell that gets inside the car and evident outside after stopping.

- Westbury, NY, USA

problem #147

Feb 022009

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 73,000 miles
I have had my 2005 Nissan Maxima for almost 3 years. Purchased it from used car dealership. The first year I had it, I had to get a transmission. I purchased a transmission for about 3000, and still having the same problem as before. The car is really nice except for the transmission. I found out I am not the only one complaining. I had taken it to several transmission places for them to look at it, but they all say these cars have that problem, and they think it should be a recall on these vehicle for that reason. Please help. I do not want to purchase another car, but I have to have transportation.

- Quincy, FL, USA

problem #146

May 142012


  • miles
Transmission problems started around 98K. I have been told by a transmission shop that it needs to be replaced or rebuilt.

- Durham, NC, USA

problem #145

Oct 012011


  • 71,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Nissan Maxima. The contact stated that the vehicle began to jerk when shifting gears. The failure occurred while driving at various speeds. The failure was not diagnosed nor was the vehicle repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure and offered no assistance. The failure mileage was 71,000.

- Hillburn, NY, USA

problem #144

Mar 092012

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 144,258 miles
When accelerating the car jerks/shifts very hard and when slowing down the shifting is very harsh to the point that it will shut off in the middle of traffic. The transmission specialist says that we need a new transmission, however, there seems to be a manufacturer defect. Any transmission that comes from the Nissan dealership will eventually result in the same safety hazard. When I researched the problem, there are numerous complaints filed with the Nissan corporation, yet they refuse to recall or take responsibility for this problem that can lead to serious injury/accident or even death.

- Savannah, GA, USA

problem #143

Apr 142010

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 60,000 miles
Transmission started to fell slipping at 60,000 miles. Slipping and shifting hard progressing from bad to worse until the transmission stop completely. I called Nissan they said there were no recalls on this issue. Even though there are hundreds if not thousands of complaints of peoples who are having very similar issues with this year and model car. This has been a nightmare for me ( a person on disability) I need help!

- Aurora, CO, USA

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