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.

CarComplaints.com Notes: The 2005-2007 Xterra 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.

The same defect exists in the Pathfinder & Frontier as well. And according to the New York Times & a class action lawsuit, the defect actually extends through 2010 model year. More info here.

10.0

really awful
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 2
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
103,997 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 Xterra drivetrain problems

drivetrain problem

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2005 Nissan Xterra Owner Comments (Page 14 of 17)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #68

Jul 312012

Xterra 6-cyl

  • 90,833 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

Brought a used 2005 Nissan Xterra from a dealer in eugene Oregon on October 13, 2011. On July 31, 2012 the radiator leaked fluid into the transmission disabling the vehicle. Took it to the deals where I have an extended warranty ( 12 months or 12,000 miles) only to be told that the radiator caused the problem to the transmission, which meant both are not covered by the warranty.

- Eugene, OR, USA

problem #67

Jul 052012

Xterra 6-cyl

  • 115,000 miles
My 2005 Nissan Xterra started having some problems early in July. On or about July 5 I was pulling onto highway 30 in montgomery Illinois. There was oncoming traffic. I pushed the gas and proceeded to merge on to the highway. The car moved very slowly almost causing an accident. I pulled over out of traffic and rested car for approx 5min. When I began to accelerate again the car performed normally. I took to a mechanic who stated that the radiator fluids had mixed with the transmission fluids causing the transmission to slip and fail. After hearing this I went online and observed that over 500 people have also experienced the same problem and that it is a defect in the manufacturing of all 2005-2010 trucks and SUV's. I have asked Nissan to repair my car at their expense since it is a problem they knew about. They first stated they did not send me the original info on this problem because they did not know I owned the car. This is not true. They had previously sent me information about a tow bar issue/recall and a Nissan dealer in san jose ca fixed that problem. I believe that Nissan intentionally did not inform owners because they wanted the mileage to exceed what they were offering (80,000). Had I known I would have had my truck looked at long before the mileage expired. What happened to me could happen to a family and if they were to pull into ongoing traffic an accident would certainly occur. This is very dangerous and Nissan needs to do the right thing. I appreciate you opening an investigation on this and hope you get results before someone dies.

- Montgomery, IL, USA

problem #66

Jul 242012

Xterra 6-cyl

  • 86,000 miles
Traveling at 65 mph, transmission started to shack terribly and was almost uncontrollable. This was a direct failure of a leak in the radiator that allowed radiator fluid to leak into the transmission and cause the transmission to fail.

- Puyallup, WA, USA

problem #65

Jul 022012

Xterra 6-cyl

  • 177,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

Transmission damage attributed to contamination by engine coolant. The source of the contamination is a cracked atf line that runs through an engine coolant chamber in the radiator.

- Westlake, CA, USA

problem #64

Jul 092012

Xterra 6-cyl

  • 94,000 miles
Failure of radiator causes engine coolant to mix with transmission fluid causing transmission destruction. While driving on the highway, vehicle shakes violently and shifts hard during slower driving. Happens to be a very common problem I was un aware of, until it was too late. Dealer service dept advised me it was a $8,000 "known issue" and instructed me to contact Nissan about helping with repairs.

- Long Beach, CA, USA

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problem #63

Jul 022012

Xterra 6-cyl

  • 86,000 miles
Daughter coming to intersection at 20 mph. Failed in intersection and was able to coast out of intersection. Later found failure due to water in transmission. Nissan has a class action suit on this issue- which I joined.

- Redlands, CA, USA

problem #62

Mar 242011

Xterra 6-cyl

  • 119,810 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

After proceeding from a traffic light at about 25-30mph, the vehicle's transmission suddenly just disengaged. I managed to pull the vehicle on the side of the road, stop and placed it in park. Then I placed it in drive and stepped on the gas but it would not go forward. I then placed it in reverse, backed up a few feet and again placed it in drive. It did engage and I proceeded towards home at a speed of no more then 10-15mph. I had to do the pull over, reverse to drive exchange numerous times before I made it to my destination. Once there, I placed the vehicle in park, waited a few minutes, placed it in drive and it would not engage.

- Baltimore, MD, USA

problem #61

Jul 122012

Xterra

  • 112,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Nissan Xterra. The contact stated that while driving 75, he noticed that the transmission failred and the vehicle stopped accelerating. The contact was able to successfully coast to the shoulder of the road. The vehicle fucntioned as normal upon restart. The vehicle was then taken to a dealer for a diagnosis. They stated that they needed to replace the transmission. The manufacturer was contacted and offered no assistance. The failure and the current mileages were 112,000.

- Saratoga Springs , UT, USA

problem #60

Nov 262011

Xterra 6-cyl

  • 115,000 miles
The automatic transmission cooling line that runs through the radiator failed and allowed engine coolant to mix with the transmission fluid, destroying the transmission. The estimated cost to repair was $6800, greatly exceeding the value of the vehicle. Nissan declined to offer any assistance despite the wide spread knowledge that this is a design flaw and not a normal "wear and tear" failure.

- Crofton, MD, USA

problem #59

Jul 102012

Xterra 6-cyl

  • 109,000 miles
Transmission cooler leaked into radiator, fouled cooling system with transmission fluid, also fouled transmission with coolant. This caused vibration in the transmission, loss of acceleration, check engine light was activated for a clutch solenoid switch, and unknown possible damage to the transmission.

- Joliet, IL, USA

problem #58

Jun 012011

Xterra 6-cyl

  • 100,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

Radiator failure causes transmission and engine coolant to mix causing catastrophic transmission failure. Nissan knows about this problem but has decided to turn their backs on their responsibilities and hope fending off class action lawsuits will be less expensive than fixing the issues they have caused. This is ignorant and arrogant on their part. Not only will this hurt those of us who are scraping by, but it will hurt Nissan in the long run, as nobody who is experiencing what I and many others are going through currently through will ever, ever but their products again. I submit that the president of Nissan usa be forced to attempt to drive my Xterra to and from work or school with his family. When he about causes a wreck or endangers his family, maybe he will see then the fatal errors of his faulty money hungry calculations. This is absolutely ridiculous that our great country hasn't forced these people to do the right thing, since they obviously cannot do it on their own.

- Tulsa, OK, USA

problem #57

Apr 112012

Xterra

  • 124,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Nissan Xterra. The contact was driving approximately 35 mph and approaching a stop sign at an intersection. After stopping, the contact accelerated from a complete stop and there was severe hesitation and the gears began to slip. The failure progressed over a period of time. The vehicle was taken to an independent auto shop for diagnosis. The technician stated that the transmission and radiator would need to be replaced. The vehicle had not been repaired. There was currently an open investigation under NHTSA action number DP12004 (power train:automatic transmission:control module tcm, PCM). The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 124,000. The VIN was unavailable.

- North St. Paul , MN, USA

problem #56

Mar 072012

Xterra 6-cyl

  • 93,000 miles
Transmission failed to shift and made loud noises while driving. Caused the car to shake but did not lose control. Failed part in radiator allowed antifreeze into transmission and transmission fluid into radiator. Complete failure of radiator and transmission could have occurred on highway at speed. Know issue from Nissan who did nothing to communicate to vehicle owners on risks or precautions to take as well as no ownership for fixing this.

- Lawrence, KS, USA

problem #55

Aug 152010

Xterra

  • 130,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Nissan Xterra. The contact stated that the vehicle would not start. The vehicle was towed to the dealer for diagnostics where the technician advised that the valve body would have to be replaced because the radiator was cracked and flooded the valve body. The vehicle was repaired but the failure recurred afterward. The vehicle was not further repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 130,000.

- Sun City, CA, USA

problem #54

Jun 152012

Xterra 6-cyl

  • 128,345 miles
First incident occurred in April 2011 - while driving the transmission began to fail and would not shift. I had to have the vehicle towed because it would not drive faster than about 15-20 mph. The Nissan dealership diagnosed the problem as "internal fault in valve body" and replaced the valve body. This incident cost me $1568 and a week without a vehicle; went in to dealership on 4/20 and I picked it up on 4/27. Second incident occurred in June 2012 - while driving with my kids in the vehicle, on a busy street, the transmission began to fail again and would not shift. Once again, the vehicle would not drive faster than about 20 mph. This time I had the vehicle towed to a local transmission repair shop. The diagnosis was "fluid is full, but is black and burnt, dipstick for the trans is crusty looking..." the transmission shop rebuilt the transmission and replaced all faulty parts, including the valve body. This incident cost me $3865 and eleven days without a vehicle; went in to transmission shop on 6/15 and I picked it up on 6/26. In fourteen months, I have had transmission failure and have had to replace the valve body each time, a very expensive part. It is simply unacceptable that the manufacturer patches the vehicle, instead of fixing it, not to mention charges the owner for their defect.

- Whitehouse, TX, USA

problem #53

Apr 202012

Xterra 6-cyl

  • 114,423 miles
First incident occurred in April 2011 - while driving the transmission began to fail and would not shift. I had to have the vehicle towed because it would not drive faster than about 15-20 mph. The Nissan dealership diagnosed the problem as "internal fault in valve body" and replaced the valve body. This incident cost me $1568 and a week without a vehicle; went in to dealership on 4/20 and I picked it up on 4/27. Second incident occurred in June 2012 - while driving with my kids in the vehicle, on a busy street, the transmission began to fail again and would not shift. Once again, the vehicle would not drive faster than about 20 mph. This time I had the vehicle towed to a local transmission repair shop. The diagnosis was "fluid is full, but is black and burnt, dipstick for the trans is crusty looking..." the transmission shop rebuilt the transmission and replaced all faulty parts, including the valve body. This incident cost me $3865 and eleven days without a vehicle; went in to transmission shop on 6/15 and I picked it up on 6/26. In fourteen months, I have had transmission failure and have had to replace the valve body each time, a very expensive part. It is simply unacceptable that the manufacturer patches the vehicle, instead of fixing it, not to mention charges the owner for their defect.

- Whitehouse, TX, USA

problem #52

Mar 152011

Xterra 6-cyl

  • 97,000 miles
Radiator failed leaking coolant into transmission. Radiator had to be replaced and transmission rebuilt at an out of pocket cost of $3,800.

- Portola Valley , CA, USA

problem #51

Jun 082012

Xterra 6-cyl

  • 98,800 miles
A Nissan faulty radiator (original equipment) caused antifreeze to mix with transmission fluid slowly deteriorating the components of the powertrain/transmission of the vehicle. Nissan has acknowledged and agree to replacement costs or repair to the faulty radiator and to its potential harm to the transmission but refuses to acknowledge or warranty the eroded transmission caused by the defective radiator.

- Manalapan, NJ, USA

problem #50

May 292012

Xterra 6-cyl

  • 105,543 miles
I am the original owner of a 2005 Nissan Xterra. I have had all repairs and services done at dealership and had an extended warranty until approx 94K miles. I brought Xterra to dealership in August 2011 for service and was advised at that time that I had complete transmission failure but not to worry because it was under warranty. The transmission was replaced and they were never able to tell me why the transmission failed in the first place. I had a warranty on the new transmission for 12K miles to approx 104K miles. I brought my Xterra to dealership in May 2012 for jerking at approx 105K miles, just past the new transmission warranty. I was advised that I had an inter cooler leak where coolant was mixing with my transmission fluid and that the problem could not be repaired that I would have to "junk" my Xterra. I was assured however that I did not have anything wrong with the new transmission. Nissan flushed all my fluids at a cost of $254, told me to drive the Xterra as much as I could for the next three weeks and bring it back to them and then they would confirm if that in fact was the problem. I talked to several mechanics including two Nissan mechanics and was told that I would not have to "junk" the Xterra that I would have to replace the radiator and transmission and not to drive the truck until it was repaired. I was also advised to contact Nissan North America. I contacted Nissan and they told me after there investigation that I was too far out of warranty and there was nothing they could or would do to assist me financially in repairing the damage. I am also aware that Nissan knew about there defective radiators and there is a class action lawsuit against them for this exact problem.

- North Las Vegas, NV, USA

problem #49

Mar 012012

Xterra 6-cyl

  • 90,000 miles
Vehicle vibrates around 40 mph, vibrates at certain rpms.

- Houston, TX, USA

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