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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
50,990 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.

2002 Nissan Pathfinder drivetrain problems

drivetrain problem

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2002 Nissan Pathfinder Owner Comments

problem #5

May 052012

Pathfinder 6-cyl

  • 109,000 miles


We were driving North bound on 395 about 30 miles South of ritzville, at 3:30 on Saturday, May 5th. Clear skies, clear road conditions. Sparse traffic, we were in the outer most lane. Kids were quietly watching dvd in backseat, wife and I were casually talking. No music on, no cellphones, no distractions. All of a sudden, we herd a thunk and the rear tires locked up. I immediately took my foot off the gas and dropped the clutch (manual transmission), however the car was unresponsive. Essentially it was as if I had slammed on the breaks. After a second of skidding, we started a slow spin to the left, crossing the 'fast' lane. We ended up doing a 360, then hit the shoulder and the car immediately rolled, finally landing driver side down. Something on the Pathfinder malfunctioned and caused this problem. I am hoping this is an isolated incident, but would like to report it in case this is a much bigger issue.

- Helena, MT, USA

problem #4

Nov 192009

Pathfinder 4WD 6-cyl

  • 120,000 miles
Over 40 mph, I get a rear end sway or wobble when accelerating in my '02 Nissan Pathfinder. Sway reverses when I let up on the gas. Feels like I'm losing control of the vehicle. I was told by an online mechanic that it was most likely the rear suspension links for the rear differential, the bushings are torn or broken. When broken will cause the back end of the truck to feel loose. Inspect all 4 rear links and replace which ever links you find bad.

- Atlanta, GA, USA

problem #3

Oct 212008


  • 70 miles
Details: We have been loyal Nissan customers since 1987 and my 2002 Pathfinder started making a loud rattling noise. We had it towed to the dealership and the technician checked it out and told us that 2 screws had fallen out of the power valve and were bouncing around in the cylinder, and there was nothing we had done wrong. It is a design flaw that Nissan refuse to correct. I am told it could have been corrected for $150. The cost of repair the Pathfinder is $7,899.99 which Nissan North american has refuse to pay. We have talked to their Consumer Affairs specialist and she refuse to authorize the dealership to fix this problem. After being a loyal Nissan customer since 1987, I do not understand why they refuses to help us. I have a 1994 with over 100,000 miles on it and never had any engine problems. I went on line and find out that many Nissan Pathfinder customers are having the same problem. We kept the oil changed every 2,000-2,500 miles. I need help.

- Portsmouth, VA, USA

problem #2

Mar 252005

Pathfinder 4WD 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 25,580 miles
Car had viration during test drive before purchase. Dealer said minor problem and would be fixed. 8 trips and many repairs and parts by dealer over 3 month period, same vibration problem still exists. Car is impossible to drive over 55 mph due to constant viration that I fear may develope into a larger problem and could cause loss of control on hwy. Dealer now calims he drove same make, model vehicle and it has same viration therefore he claims vibration is normal for that year vehicle.

- Plymouth, MA, USA

problem #1

Jan 232003

Pathfinder 4WD 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 300 miles
My Pathfinder has many problems.first the vechle virbrates at all speeds, wind noise from both front windows and roof rack, there is also a jerk when you shut vechle off this does not happen all the time and happens mostly when in 4 wheel auto this is not 4 wheel floor shift, the dealer has tried to fix 4 times and now states there is a bulleten stated this is normal to get a jerk problem relate to all Pathfinder and infinty Q-4 from 1998-2002.the vibration is still present too the dealer has balanced all for tires but vibration is still there although is is not as bad, as for wind noise they suggested I buy wind delfector for both windows and roof

- Downingtown, PA, USA

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