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 2005-2007 Pathfinder appears to have a widespread defect where coolant leaks into the transmission, causing transmission failure around 90,000 miles. Repair costs are typically upwards of $3,500.

According to the New York Times & a class action lawsuit, the defect actually extends through 2010 model year. More info here.


hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
83,921 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 Pathfinder cooling system problems

cooling system problem

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2005 Nissan Pathfinder Owner Comments (Page 3 of 4)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #24

Oct 252009

Pathfinder 6-cyl

  • 101,000 miles


The contact owns a 2005 Nissan Pathfinder. The contact attempted to accelerate and noticed that the vehicle would not respond. The vehicle was towed to the dealer where the contact was informed that radiator coolant had leaked into the transmission. There were no prior warnings of the failure. The failure mileage was 101,000. Updated 07/30/10. Updated 08/24/10 updated 10/22/10 updated 10/26/10

- Cumming, GA, USA

problem #23

Mar 222010


  • 98,348 miles
After transmission flush, transmission failed shortly thereafter. Replaced transmission June 2009. March 2010 had vibration problem and returned for transmission repair again. Second torque converter replaced. Within 1 week vibration issue returned. Dealer review confirmed that coolant from radiator had leaked into transmission and that radiator and transmission need to be replaced. This would be my second transmission, and third torque converter in less than a year, due to a faulty radiator used by Nissan in '05 & '06 models.

- Mckinney, TX, USA

problem #22

Dec 312009


  • 39,000 miles
In Dec. '09, noticed rear end vibration and clinking sound. Thought it might be transmission problem. Pure coincidence-brought it to dealer for coolant flush was told that there was trans fluid in my radiator. Called my trans repair people (not Nissan). They were aware of problem. Told me that radiators in Pathfinder 2005's were defective. Coolant leaked through one of radiator trans coolers, into trans. And trans fluid leaked back into radiator, rendering both irreparable. Needed new trans and radiator. Told dealer and Nissan. Through several phone calls/negotiations, , Nissan agreed to do the $5,000-7000 repair for dealer labor charge of $450. Told me I would get money back if there was a recall. Dealer did repair. The problem is also a safety issue, because radiator and/or trans can fail while on the road. Countless Pathfinder owners have reported the problem to no avail. Nissan getting away with a major defect that could prove dangerous.

- Paramus, NJ, USA

problem #21

Mar 012010


  • 80,000 miles


Vehicle hesitates during overdrive at speed of @ 40-50mph. Vibration occurs and gears do not properly engage. Failure is due to defective radiator leaking fluids into transmission. Nissan installed defective radiator in 2005 Pathfinder. They refuse to correct the problem leading to damaged transmission!

- Signal Mountain, TN, USA

problem #20

Apr 282010

Pathfinder 4WD 6-cyl

  • 84,000 miles
It all started with the radiator and the only reason I even knew something was wrong was that my gears were switching weird. I took the car into the dealership, they told me that I needed to get a new radiator and transmission B/C my radiator fluid was leaking into my transmission. They quoted me at $6000. I then took my car to get a new radiator and transmission flush, it helped a little. My car finally gave out 2 weeks ago. While driving down a side street, thenall of a sudden the transmission wouldn't switch gears. I tried pressing the gas to go and the transmission would not go. The car was still running, however I couldn't grab any gears to go. I got it towed to a transmission shop, they told me that my radiator fluid is leaking into my transmission which made my transmission lock up. They took my transmission apart to look at parts and apparently everything is rusty together, not to mention the "computer" in the transmission is fried. You would think that Nissan would recognize an issue when they see that same part is on backorder B/C I am waiting on a part. While reading others with the same issue, some have been on the highway and the transmission went out. This is definitely a safety issue seeing as if driving at high speeds you could possibly get rear ended badly. I almost got rearended while only going 45mph.

- Lewisville, TX, USA

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problem #19

May 172010

Pathfinder 4WD 6-cyl

  • 85,290 miles
Had a vibration in my vehicle. Took it to the shop as it was getting worse. Long story short..a known defect with the radiator. Caused my antifreeze to enter into the transmission fluid and transmission fluid in my radiator. Mechanic said its a known issue with the vehicle, and we need to replace the radiator, and flush everything out. Total cost ~$1500. 2005 Nissan Pathfinder ~ 85,000 miles.

- Charlton, MA, USA

problem #18

May 132010

Pathfinder 4WD 6-cyl

  • 59,000 miles


Nissan Pathfinder 2005, 59K miles - experienced vibration and shuttering of the vehicle during acceleration, took it into Nissan dealership and they said that the coolant line cracked causing the fluid to mix with the transmission creating replacement of both radiator and transmission. This seems to be a common complaint by the consumer! hopefully Nissan will issue a recall before someone is injured or worse, it would be pretty sad if it had to come to that. Extended warranty covered the transmission but I have to pay for the radiator $950.

- Bristol, VT, USA

problem #17

May 042010


  • 78,000 miles
2005 Nissan Pathfinder with approximately 78,000 miles developed a vibration and shaking when driving at a constant speed on any road, however; when driving with overdrive off the vibration and shaking is no longer present. When vehicle was brought to Nissan dealership they discovered that the transmission fluid was mixing with the engine coolant and vice versa. Upon diagnosis of this problem the dealership said it would be about $6,000 to replace transmission and radiator and fluids. Luckily my extended warranty covered this. I am not the first person to have this problem. for proof of others with the same issue.

- Fort Carson, CO, USA

problem #16

Apr 282010

Pathfinder 4WD 6-cyl

  • 78,092 miles
I have taken my 2005 Nissan Pathfinder to my dealer, because of a rumbling sound;the mechanic said that the radiator has a internal damage and cause the antifreeze to leak to the transmission. I do have a extended warranty that the dealer also refuse to take because the radiator is not cover but the transmission it is, but they still will not repair the transmission.

- Brooklyn , NY, USA

problem #15

Feb 152010

Pathfinder 4WD 6-cyl

  • 74,500 miles
2005 Nissan Pathfinder with 74,500 miles needs transmission replacement and radiator due to leaking of radiator coolant into transmission, mixing up with transmission oil damaging transmission. Looking at customer complaints online, it looks as every Pathfinder with above 60,000 miles suffers the same problem.

- Irvine, CA, USA

problem #14

Mar 282010

Pathfinder 4WD 6-cyl

  • 80,000 miles


Vehicle shutters and shakes in overdrive at @ 40/45 mph and does not properly engage gears during operation of vehicle. The transmission fails during normal navigation through traffic. Confirmed factory defective radiator leaked coolant into transmission causing ruined transmission.

- Signal Mountain, TN, USA

problem #13

Mar 032010


  • 58,000 miles
My 2005 Nissan Pathfinder has a faulty radiator which leaks back into the transmission. The vehicle has less than 60,000 miles and the dealer says Nissan will not cover the transmission damage. On there are hundreds of complaints for the same exact complaint from other owners. The problem causes the vehicle to shake at highway speeds.

- Milton, WA, USA

problem #12

Jan 102010


  • 80,000 miles
I own a 2005 Nissan Pathfinder. I have come to find that the transmission is failing due to a defective radiator letting radiator fluid into the transmission. My car, which has 88K miles is now out of the 60K mi. Nissan warranty. From doing research online I see that this is a very, common problem and seems to affect all 2005 Pathfinders. As this has been a known problem for some time Nissan could have warned about the issue (replacing the radiator before it failed and failed the transmission) as well it most likely started failing before the warranty expired. Nissan will not fix the issue. I feel that Nissan should be compelled to fix this issue for all 2005 Pathfinder owners.

- Oakland, CA, USA

problem #11

Feb 062010


  • 62,000 miles
Faulty radiator leak antifreeze into transmission.

- Bowie, MD, USA

problem #10

Sep 142009

Pathfinder 4WD 6-cyl

  • 111,000 miles
I have a 2005 Nissan Pathfinder SE. I have had an issue with it and it could of been a safety issue. In June '09 the radiator had a cooling line that broke which has become a transmission problem. And anytime that a drivetrain is in issue it could cause a safety issue. I replaced the radiator for $600 and the transmission went out with violent stuttering and engaging in and out while in heavy traffic which could of caused a major accident especially at highway speeds. I have replaced the transmission with no help from Nissan. This is a major problem that has been documented by several hundred consumers all with the same problem. The total I spent was $3197.09 which should be reimbursed by Nissan Corp for this problem is well known by the yet no recall has been issued.

- Ceresco, MI, USA

problem #9

Feb 242010


  • 87,000 miles
2005 Nissan Pathfinder started having shifting problems, had 60K service done at dealer, started again, flushed again at 72 had problems again at 80 and at 87K the radiator core failed and leaked into the transmission causing the transmission to fail and seize total cost for repairs $4400 after hearing about this I did a little search and found this is a big problem with this car, as the shifting is a precurser to the failure, I wanted the dealer to cover since they assured me it was ok..

- Sherman, NN, USA

problem #8

Jan 152010


  • 95,000 miles
My 2005 Nissan Pathfinder is having the same transmission problems that so many others are having. It seems that Nissan had a defective batch of radiators that has let coolant leak into the transmission causing vibrations, hesitation and eventually failure.we have three foster children and one of them is an infant with a feeding tube and track I do not want to get a call from my wife saying she has broken down on the road on her way to visitation with the biological parents or to doctor appointments. Nissan is clearly avoiding this problem! I expect they will start taking action when lawsuits start rolling in on them. Mr. CEO of Nissan may find this thing parked in his living room if something happens to my foster children because of breaking down. Just kidding, but I will be pissed. Someone please do something about this!!!

- Narrows, VA, USA

problem #7

Feb 232010


  • 70,200 miles
2005 Nissan Pathfinder transmission slipping out of gear while driving. I called Nissan and they claims that they know nothing about, however there are several others with exactly the same problems online at car space automotive forums.

- Brooklyn, NY, USA

problem #6

Feb 222010

Pathfinder 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 78,000 miles
Regular driving minimal to hardly any towing. Transmission and coolant flushed religiously at 30K since taken ownership. Current mileage 80K. Failure of radiator cross contaminates atf and coolant, eventually destroying transmission costing $5000 to repair aside from disabling the vehicle. This is an issue on many 2005 Pathfinder, xterra and frontiers equipped with 4.0L V6 coupled with 5 speed automatic transmission. Vehicle is currently at the dealership. Nissan must take responsibility.

- Torrington, CT, USA

problem #5

Dec 272009

Pathfinder 4WD

  • 20,500 miles
2005 Nissan Pathfinder 4WD SUV suddenly down shifted out of 2wd driving mode with a sudden deceleration into 4WD mode. 4WD warning light and service engine lights came on. Diagnostic test found transmission cooler in radiator failed and leaked fluid into transmission damaging transmission control module..

- Staten Island, NY, USA

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