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: While there are fewer "radiator leaked into transmission" complaints for the 2008 model year, they are starting to pile up. Buyer beware.

Nissan has extended their radiator warranty on 2005-2010 Pathfinders to 8 years/80,000 miles. However the average mileage for transmission failure for earlier model years is 95,000 miles, which conveniently (for Nissan) is just past the limit of their extended warranty. Owners beware.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
106,754 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.

2008 Nissan Pathfinder drivetrain problems

drivetrain problem

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2008 Nissan Pathfinder Owner Comments (Page 1 of 5)

problem #95

Aug 122016


  • 113,000 miles


Failed transmission fluid cooler located in the radiator assembly that allowed coolant to mix with and contaminate the automatic transmission fluid, resulting in damaged internal transmission components and a damaged internal transmission computer. The 2008 Nissan Pathfinder had to be towed to the repair shop since it would not start. The Pathfinder had 113K miles. It cost me $2841.27 to repair.

- Carmel, NY, USA

problem #94

Aug 242016


  • 177,000 miles
In the middle of a heavy storm from the wake of an F3 tornado that swepted through, my wife and I were stuck in heavy wind and rain in an open area unable to start our 2008 Pathfinder after pulling over. Just prior, our transmission started shifting hard and slamming into gear. I got out in the wind and rain and after looking over the vehicle after it cooled down, thats when I noticed oil and water were mixed in the radiator.the Pathfinder now sits because the vehicle will not start. It went from parked and running to dead on thie side of the road.

- Yoder, IN, USA

problem #93

Aug 052016


  • 123,000 miles
Wow, I am amazed that my story is so similar to the ones I'm reading here. I also purchased a 2008 Pathfinder brand new. And I experienced the same issue with the radiator leaking into my transmission. And Nissan has turned their back on me as well. After doing some digging, I found out that Nissan knew about this issue in 2007. And yet when I bought my vehicle that had 13 miles on it from the dealership, never was this issue brought to my attention. I believe they issued extended warranties in 2010 and 2012. But never contacted us. If I had known it was a possibility of an issue, I would have had the correct repair done in advance to prevent this. But now I find myself with a destroyed transmission and nowhere to go. I can not currently pay out for this repair. I also am leading with Nissan to fix this problem. But they keep telling me " Nissan is not in a position to help me right now". the funny thing is that my family has bought 5 Nissan vehicles in the last 17 years. Some loyalty to a member of their family. I urge you people to do what I did. Issue a formal complaint with the better business bureau and most important the attorney generals office. Eventually we will have to be heard. I have also made it my mission to print out all the documents I have read regarding this issue and hand it to every person I I see driving a Nissan. And if it's parked, I leave it under the wiper. I drive everyday and go from manhattan to montauk. So far I have spoken with or left information for over 200 Nissan vehicles. And I'm not going to stop until there is enough complaints that we can get this thing fixed. Frank O

- Centereach, NY, USA

problem #92

Aug 162016


  • miles


My transmission and radiator seeped into each other and apparently caused internal irreparable failure. My buyer's shield warranty is refusing to cover it. I purchased the 5 year/100000 mile power and train warranty as well. Nissan's factory warranty will not cover it neither will my extended.

- San Diego, CA, USA

problem #91

Jul 152016


  • 148,000 miles
As a single father of three teenagers, I needed two vehicles with enough room and safety features to handle high school and college needs. I bought two Pathfinders, a 2007 SE and 2008 le, one for myself and one for my son (which would be passed on, etc). My decision was based on my previous experience with Nissan products and my loyalty to the brand. However, I now have both Pathfinders needing major repairs to their automatic transmissions. The 2008 Pathfinder's transmission failed in very heavy houston traffic while driving with my younger son, which caused other vehicles to slam on their brakes and almost created a large pile-up on a major highway. While we avoided being killed by oncoming vehicles, we were also in danger as we moved the car to the side of the highway. After towing the vehicle to a reputable transmission shop, he found the issue to be a known problem with the coolant fluid leaking into the automatic transmission, causing total failure. Estimates are over $6,000 for rebuilding or replacing the transmission with parts and labor, including the required addition of a "cooler" instead of the radiator. I attempted to file this with my car insurance but was denied coverage. Now, the 2007 Pathfinder is having the same symptoms with slippage and inability to use overdrive, which almost cause another multi-car pile-up in houston traffic until I was able to downshift and move aside. It's only a matter of time before the 2007 Pathfinder transmission also fails completely, and I still owe $12,000 to the credit union on both loans combined. I attempted a loan for repairs through the transmission shop, but was denied due to bad credit from a lay-off last year. Nissan, please issue a recall for those of us without hope and unable to buy a new vehicle. This is your chance to save lives and boost your brand to a higher level, through integrity.

- Tomball, TX, USA

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problem #90

Jul 292016


  • 155,000 miles
2008 Nissan Pathfinder. Transmission failed due to radiator failure which caused contamination of the cooling and transmission fluids. Engine overheated due to contamination. Entire cooling system had to be flushed several times after repairs. Repairs were over $4000. Nissan refused to address issue because of pending class action suit. I wish to be added to class action process to recoup expenses.

- Frankfort, IL, USA

problem #89

Aug 012014


  • 95,000 miles


Coolant leaked into the engine compartment causing significant transmission issues. The problem was supposed to resolved as we had it cleaned up...the vehicle worked ok for a couple of days and the problem reappeared getting worse and worse...the vehicle is undrivable at this point. This is not the first time I've heard of this issue with this make and model.

- Fitchburg, MA, USA

problem #88

Jul 252016


  • 131,000 miles
The SUV began shuddering when shifting into gear, and hard shifting in low gears. Brought to dealership, and they said coolant had contaminated the transmission case by leaking from the radiator. Repair needed: Replace radiator and transmission. SUV has 131,000 miles, and was other wise in good condition. Repair center said to replace both, cost would be $5800

- Springfield, MA, USA

problem #87

Jun 202016


  • 92,600 miles
While driving my 2008 Nissan Pathfinder there was a hard shift when I put it in reverse, then noticed the check engine light was lit and steady, I then switched gears into drive which had a violent jerking motion & slight hesitation to accelerate. As I proceeded to drive on the county road the check engine light began flashing constantly & the vehicle had little power to accelerate & constantly hesitating causing me to immediately pull over. I believe the problem was created due to the entermix coolant in transmission as stated by the techician in the report I provided. This was a safety risk because at the time of incident I was driving across the road.

- Middle Island, NY, USA

problem #86

Nov 252015


  • 100,000 miles
Contamination from radiator into transmission.

- Prichard, AL, USA

problem #85

Jun 012016


  • 88,000 miles


The contact owns a 2008 Nissan Pathfinder. The contact stated that the transmission failed and the vehicle would not operate in reverse. There were no warning lights or sensors illuminated. The cause of the failure was not diagnosed. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 88,000.

- Brownsburg, IN, USA

problem #84

May 032016


  • 156,000 miles
Transmission went out. I've been without a vehicle for over a month as parts are on back order. This is a known issue. Why is Nissan not prepared with replacement parts. Why was warranty only extended for certain time period as they were aware of the problem. Vehicle stopped running in my driveway. Could have been hazardous had it stopped running on the highway.

- Ruffs Dale, PA, USA

problem #83

Jun 052016


  • 115,000 miles
Engine coolant leaked into transmission destroying transmission and radiator requiring replacement of transmission and cooling system. Vehicle odometer is at 115,000. Estimated repair is $3000-4800+

- Wheeling, WV, USA

problem #82

Jun 112016


  • miles
I was driving around 35 to 40mph when I felt a vibration under vehicle backed off gas pedal went away after that it would come back now and then around the same speed just like you where driving on a rumble strip. Took to Nissan for diagnosis told me vehicle shifted erratically and found anti freeze in transmission, they gave a quote of more than $7,000 to fix.when I asked what could cause this they said a bushing could have been worn to let coolant into tranny, now they get info on problems that occur I just got a phony answer. Any way Nissan dosen't give their customers heads up on notifications of problems and complaints all get lost or buried. Nice support from Nissan. No more business from me........ 103,345miles on Pathfinder 2008 all happened on a flat smooth road driving straight

- Forked River, NJ, USA

problem #81

Nov 012015


  • 100,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Nissan Pathfinder. While driving 60 mph, the vehicle stalled without warning. The failure occurred on numerous occasions. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where the failure was diagnosed, but the vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The VIN was unknown. The approximate failure mileage was 100,000.

- Chester Springs, PA, USA

problem #80

May 192016


  • 129,000 miles
May, 2016 - started noticing my Pathfinder would slip when I hit the gas. The vehicle hesitated. I took into a Nissan dealer which diagnosed that the radiator had leaked coolant into the transmission, resulting in the need to replace the transmission, radiator and do a full flush. The transmission needed for my truck is not available from Nissan until July 3, 2016. Nissan dealer can get aftermarket transmission with 3-year warranty and install for $5,600. Mileage at 130,000. Nissan had an extended warranty until 100,000 miles. This isn't right. Issue is known by Nissan and they have not yet instituted a full recall.

- Fairport, NY, USA

problem #79

Apr 192016


  • 103,000 miles
My wife was driving Pathfinder with my children in it on interstate highway. Few minutes after she was on the highway, the vehicle (Pathfinder) was not responding to her when she pressed on gas pedal. It accelerated slowly, while she was on highway & driving at 50+ mph. Sensing danger, she took an exit and came off interstate highway and the engine stopped on her completely - as she exited from highway. Before stopping, the car slowed down and when my wife gave gas, it wasn't getting required speed on the interstate highway. Luckily for her car stopped on the middle of the road as she entered a small lane after exiting the interstate. We got it towed to aaa service center. The Nissan dealer is now saying that coolant got mixed with the transmission fluid and thus spoiled the computer that connects to engine. And it requires a complete overhaul of transmission, radiator etc and costing me $5,600. As this car is regularly serviced by Nissan dealer, and this damage is not caused by driving. Appears to have been caused by manufacturing design/deficiencies. When I researched on web, noticed many people having suffered with the same problem. Hence wanted to report this issue so that necessary action could be taken. My fear is if the vehicle suddenly stops on an interstate - it would've certainly led to an accident.

- Wayne, PA, USA

problem #78

Apr 052016


  • 115,000 miles
My daughter was pulling out on to a busy road on her way to school and the transmission seized causing a near collision with a oncoming semi-truck. The semi-truck driver had to skid to avoid a tragic accident. In my opinion would have been fatal for my daughter! the mechanic told us the radiator transmission cooler leaked radiator fluid into the transmission and ruined it. I have contacted Nissan about this issue and they refuse to offer any assistance. We have had the vehicle less than a year and nothing from a maintenance standpoint could have prevented this. Nissan concealed the fact that the radiator had a defect straight from the manufacturing plant. They should not only be held responsible for the replacement of the radiator but also the thousands of dollars it costs for the transmission.we cannot afford to have it fixed and are out a vehicle. As far as I'm concerned they need to be reprimanded before someone dies!

- Lino Lakes, MN, USA

problem #77

Mar 312016


  • 178,000 miles
I own a 2008 Nissan Pathfinder and the transmission went out due to a default in the radiator. It's going to cost me $3000 to fix a problem that Nissan new about. I was on my way to lunch and it just stopped in the middle of the highway. No warning or anything.

- Warrenton, NC, USA

problem #76

Mar 032016


  • 113,000 miles
Recall investigation #DP12004 : transmission control module failed during motion, causing my Nissan Pathfinder to stall and completely turn off in the middle of the road while driving in heavy traffic.

- Haiku, HI, USA

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