Notes: Here's a disturbing trend for the 2002 Nissan Altima: the engine starts burning oil like crazy, the catalytic converter goes bad, the head gasket blows and eventually the entire engine needs replacement. Sound familiar? Like a script from a horror film, these Altimas seem doomed to fail around 95k miles.


really awful
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
112,692 miles
Total Complaints:
21 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. brand new engine (17 reports)
  2. not sure (3 reports)
  3. timing chain replaced (1 reports)
2003 Nissan Altima engine problems

engine problem

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2003 Nissan Altima Owner Comments (Page 2 of 2)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #1

May 182007

(reported on)

Altima S

  • Automatic transmission
  • 71,000 miles


I brought my Nissan Altima 2003 brand new off the lot, in 2002. I've always had my car services by Nissan Dealerships. January 2007, I was driving my car and it shut-off completely on the highway. I had to have the car towed to a Nissan Dealerships, only to be told that I needed a brand new engine. I was completely shocked, I don't abuse my car in anyway, but nevertheless my car needs a new engine. When I brought my Altima in 2002, that car was extremely popular, but it also had a lot of recalls (I should have know that something was up). I am finding out that Nissan is a company that's not consumer friendly, and they don't take responsibility for the cars that they are selling. Presently (May 2007), my car has stopped again, called Nissan Acceptance Org. was told that I need to have a diagnostic done on the car to determine the cause of the car stopping, oh yeah, and by the way, I had to pay, not Nissan, me, pay for the Diagnostic Testing. I was told that if the problem was covered under warranty, then they would repair it, of course the results are one in the same, I need a brand new engine, and according to Nissan Dealership, they don't know the cause for the engine problem, nevertheless, they refuse any type of responsibility. This car has turn out to be one of the biggest mistakes I have ever made. How is it possible that a brand new car, purchased less than 5 years ago, with approximately 71,000 mileage need a new engine. I am one customer that will not take this sitting down, and I am going to fight this situation, tooth and nail. I suggest to any and everyone that has a problem with Nissan Altima cars to COMPLAIN! COMPLAIN!COMPLAIN!, because that is the only way Nissan will take notice. It's time for these big companies to understand that if it wasn't for the Nissan Altima buyers from the pass complain, they wouldn't know what to improve on in the new 2007 and future Nissan Altima.

- , Trenton, NJ, USA

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