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 9 of 23)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #282

Nov 092012


  • 74,000 miles


The contact owns a 2005 Nissan Maxima. The contact stated that while driving at various speeds, the vehicle began to jerk and lunge independently. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic for diagnosis and the contact was informed that the transmission would need to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was notified but offered no assistance. The failure and current mileage was 74,000.

- Madison, WI, USA

problem #281

May 012013


  • 96,000 miles
My 2005 Nissan Maxima has 96000 miles and does this jerk shift between 20-30 mph. It started a about a year ago and every time I take in to service they tell me nothing is wrong. I just took it again for transmission check and they told me that everything is okay. I welcome any feedback as to the best course of action to correct these intermittent and random symptoms that include: 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. Sometimes I go for days with no symptoms at all and other times it may happen a dozen times in a day. I drive mainly on the freeways in southern California and have maintained and babied this car since it was new. This is my first Nissan and I have loved this card until these symptoms.

- Los Angeles, CA, USA

problem #280

May 012012


  • 68,000 miles
Bought our Nissan Maxima new of the dealership lot in June 2005. I have had minor issues with this car. But started having major issues around $68,00 miles. Transmission would feel like it would slip out then engine revs up and jerks forward. Would happen every once in awhile. Now it is happening more. Now it lunges forward when I am stopping gears are responding. I have two young kids. I don't want them or anybody else getting injured over this. Nissan needs to recall. These cars cost so much these days they need to last a lot longer then $70,00 miles. I have a Toyota 95 that has never had any issues and is still going strong. Step it up Nissan and take care of these issue. There are complaints everywhere on the 2004- and 2005 models. I will never own another Nissan again. Please recall...there is a lot of us out there these days trying to make a living and spend so so much on these vehicles and Nissan is doing nothing about. Shame on you Nissan for not caring..

- Las Cruces, NM, USA

problem #279

Apr 012013


  • 150,000 miles


I, too, have had a problem with the transmission of this vehicle. The car would jerk when shifting everytime I would drive it. I took it to have it looked at and they said they saw no problems. I continued to drive with the jerking until finally, the car stopped shifting gears all together. I took it to the dealership where I bought it and had to get the transmission completely replaced. After easing other complaints, it looks like this is an issue with almost every 2005 Nissan Maxima. Time for a recall yet Nissan!?!

- Greenwood, IN, USA

problem #278

Nov 082011


  • 64,000 miles
I have a 2005 Nissan Maxima which has transmission problems. About 2 years ago I began experiencing jerking. I took car the dealer no codes came up at time and when they drove it at that time it drove fine. Continue to have issues and went back now to find out I need a new valve body. Unfortunately the valve body has cause extensive damage to the transmission so I now need to have transmission replaced. Per parts specialist and service advisor at Nissan they are aware of the issue with the valve body with the 2005 Nissan Maxima however Nissan corporate has not yet recalled it yet. Shame on you Nissan 3,800 to replace the transmission, I don't think so. No more Nissan for me. Nissan really need to own up to this issue. Its all over the internet. Please recall issue. Signed dissatisfied Nissan owner

- Miami, FL, USA

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problem #277

Apr 012013

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 98,000 miles
While decelerating car under 20miles, the car will jerk when gas pedal is pressed for acceleration(I.e.,slowing down for red light or changes in traffic speed.

- Mount Pleasant, SC, USA

problem #276

May 302012

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 85,000 miles


We bought a 2005 Maxima in June 2008 with approximately 30K[+/-] miles. On or about spring 2012 the transmission began to have shifting problems[65K miles], with hard & jerking shifts when traveling at 25mph and then sudden high rev's with sudden down shifts when slowing down. Have gone on line to see if there has been a recall and found hundreds of like complaints for 2005 Maxima transmission problems exactly like ours. Had the transmission fluid changed at a Nissan dealer, yet the "check engine" light did not go out. After driving a few miles light went out. However, the shifting problems returned after further driving a few months later.. had the code state "shift malfunction". as there are others, hundreds of other Maxima owners experiencing the same problem, it is time for a major recall on the 2004 -2006 Maxima for defective transmissions: "transmission problems" continued and we can not drive the car for more than a few miles locally and once it is warmed up the transmission begins to shift rough & hard, jerky in to and out of gears. If driven more than 15 minutes will freeze in 5th gear. This is a major safety issue and may cause serious harm to others while on the roads of America.

- Plainfield, NJ, USA

problem #275

Mar 152013

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 97,980 miles
When I put car in reverse from park.. it took about 3-5 seconds to catch and go. Then when I put it drive it did the same. It will do this some days and not do it some days. Major flaw in 05 maxims transmissions from all the complaints I've read. Need to recall and fix this ongoing problem. This is my 3rd Nissan maximaand my first one with these problems. Big dissapointment Nissan. Recall 05 maxims and fixtransmission.

- Prince George, VA, USA

problem #274

Apr 162013

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 89,379 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Nissan Maxima. The contact stated that the transmission was flushed by a dealer and then the transmission slipped. The vehicle was returned to the dealer who stated that the transmission needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure and current mileages were 89,379.

- Bradenton, FL, USA

problem #273

Mar 052013


  • 116,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Nissan Maxima. The contact stated that while driving at various speeds, the vehicle shifted erratically. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where it was found that the valve body had failed and needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was contacted about the failure. The failure mileage was 116,000. The VIN was not available.

- Bowden, GA, USA

problem #272

Mar 082013


  • 70,000 miles


The contact owns a 2005 Nissan Maxima. The contact stated that while driving 20 mph, the transmission slipped. The vehicle was taken to a transmission shop for inspection where they stated that the solenoids in the valve body needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was notified but provided no assistance. The failure mileage was 70,000.

- Livingstion, NJ, USA

problem #271

Feb 252013


  • 165,000 miles
Driving on a busy highway downhill going about 25 miles an hour, car hard shifted abruptly causing the car to decelerate very fast. Car hit me from behind. At the slow speed it scratched the bumper of the car and caused my neck to whip. Transmission design failure.

- La, CA, USA

problem #270

Oct 012012

Maxima 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 60,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Nissan Maxima. The contact stated that while accelerating from a stop sign, the vehicle shifted erratically. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was contacted. The failure mileage was 60,000. Updated 06/18/13 the consumer stated the Nissan service rep advised that the vehicle does not shift because it has a cvt transmission. When the vehicle would lunge foward a loud thud could be heard. The consumer stated after some researching the failure was found to be in the shift solenoid. The vehicles goes into limp mode. Updated 06/24/2013

- Fort Pierce, FL, USA

problem #269

Feb 212013


  • 70,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Nissan Maxima. The contact stated that while driving 30 mph, the vehicle would jerk abnormally. The vehicle was taken to the dealer for inspection and they stated that the transmission needed to be replaced. The manufacturer was notified but provided no assistance. The failure mileage was 70,000.

- Hempstead, NY, USA

problem #268

Jan 042013


  • 109,108 miles
I bought my car brand new via special order in 2005. The car cost me $33K and another almost $5K for an extended warranty for up to 7 years and up to 100K miles. Needless to say the seven years was up in July of 2012. The car has almost 110K miles on it currently. For the past few months I have been experiencing severe jerking when up shifting and downshifting. My mechanic notified me that it is my transmission, the price of the fix is between $3800-4500. This car has never been beat up and is in immaculate condition. It has always been housed in a garage since I bought it. After doing a significant amount of research I found that technically this really should be a recall due to the amount of people effected by the same problem with the 2004-2006 Nissan Maxima. The jerking has recently began to get alot bad that my husband hit his head on the windshield and thought we were rear ended. I also have discovered that there is a class action lawsuit regarding the problem and I will be contacting them too.

- Swansea, MA, USA

problem #267

Mar 112010

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 65,000 miles
I purchased my 2005 Nissan Maxima brand new in April of 2005. I paid cold hard earned cash ($35,000) for this car. We refinanced our home too buy an reliable, sturdy, dependable, stylish, road car (instead we got a lemon). I have had many issues with the car. The headliner constantly falling down over my head while driving with the sunroof open, the sunroof not opening and closing properly, the O2 sensors going out constantly, , the brackets being replaced, the leather seats look as if I have razor blades attached to my bottom side, and the transmission is awful!!! at 65,000 miles it started going out. The local dealer replaced the tranny without admitting any fault on Nissan behalf. At the time we did not know about the troubling problems with the 2004-2005 transmissions. They only charged us for the labor cost. We actually thought "wow, they are cool"!! here we are at 157,000 miles (about 70,000 later and the tranny is:jerking extremely hard ( it feels like I am being rammed from the rear by a 18 ton semi-trailer) between going into 1st and second gear and again back in reverse from 2nd into 1st gear. The problem has gotten so bad that is now hesitating in shifting and I have had enough!! I have done my research, and this is an epidemic. Nissan has too step up and fix this problem. This country has hit a recession. Us hardworking americans deserve better than this. Please help us consumers. Thank [xxx] information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Moreno Valley, CA, USA

problem #266

Feb 212013

Maxima 6-cyl

  • miles
I purchased my vehicle on February 2 2012 at 86,000 miles car was fine. A year later I had to get it inspected the mechanic told me I had to replace my front motor and this was probably the reason for the jerking I had my motor mount replaced. And guess what still jerking. This problem needs a recall. I have spoken to different people with the same vehicle year make and model and they have the same problem. Not every knows to come to make a complaint. Nissan should voluntarily recall this make and model to make the repairs. This can also be a safety hazard to any non experience driver.

- Fairfax, VA, USA

problem #265

Mar 162013


  • 59,000 miles
When in low gears 1-2, 2-3 gears jerks. High rev then strong jerk. Felt like gears slipped. Car then became sluggish and would not power of 5mph. Check engine light came on. Had car checked code P0780 showed. Shift malfunction. This seems to be on going with Maxima 04-06. Recall must be called!!!!

- Tucson, AZ, USA

problem #264

Jul 022012


  • 121,000 miles
Transmission started to shift rough, slip and make the engine rev high between shifts, this is known problem with this type of auto, mainly involving the transmission valve body and solenoids.

- Folsom, CA, USA

problem #263

Mar 122013

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 69,750 miles
While accelerating from a stoplight to approximately 45mph on northwest expressway in Oklahoma city, the automatic transmission began shifting hard instead of the normal smooth shifting. It seemed as though it stuck momentarily or was even shifting down instead of up to the next gear. When I got on a residential street going at a slower speed, the transmission again shifted hard. The strange shifting happened again 2 days later while driving at a slow rate of speed. My husband looked at the transmission fluid on 3/12/13 and thought it appeared to be burnt looking. I took my car to fenton Nissan West in Oklahoma city on Friday, March 15, 2012 and explained the problem I was having. After keeping the car most of the day, we were informed they did not find anything wrong, but the transmission fluid is burnt, but did not change it as this could cause transmission problems. We were not charged anything & were told to wait on doing anything else as there may be recalls. This seemed strange since they originally told us they had not heard from other customers about the transmission problems I had described.

- Oklahoma City, OK, USA

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