really awful
Crashes / Fires:
2 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
74,656 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 Altima engine problems

engine problem

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2008 Nissan Altima Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #29

Jun 292016


  • 99,000 miles


The contact owns a 2008 Nissan Altima. The contact stated that the vehicle experienced severe vibration after being started and while being operated. The failure occurred without warning. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic where it was diagnosed that the engine mount bolt was stripped and needed to be replaced. The vehicle was repaired, but the failure recurred. In addition, the sun roof detached from the vehicle independently. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where it was diagnosed as a bolt missing in the sun roof and, due to weather conditions, caused corrosion of the sun roof. The vehicle was repaired; however, the contact heard an abnormal sound from the sun roof area. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The failure mileage was approximately 99,000.

- Bloomfield, CT, USA

problem #28

Sep 142016


  • 158,000 miles
After replacing my transmission, the car continued to sputter anytime I was driving for more than a few miles. My mechanic figured out that the catalytic converter was overheating to about 600 degrees when it should have been no more than 250 degrees, causing parts of the engine to begin melting. The check engine light never came on to alert me of this issue, and I may now have permanent engine damage.

- Lilburn, GA, USA

problem #27

Jul 112016


  • 98,000 miles
Sticky substance on dash/ 2nd transmission is giving me problems

- Tuscaloosa, AL, USA

problem #26

Apr 182016


  • 38,500 miles


5 yrs ago the sound of my engine changed and upon inspection the welding on the exhaust manifold was cracked. I was informed by pembroke pines Nissan that since car is at 38,500 miles and out of warranty despite it being a manufacture failure it would set me back $975. I didn't have the repair done. For the past 3 yrs, my passenger airbag light will turn off and on even irregardless if someone is in the seat or not. Furthermore, the radio will go blank or have illegible characters on it. I too have the melting dash issue as well as a couple of times I slipped and my finger nail has gouged out pieces of dash board. It's amazing that Lexus has issued a recall on their melting dash board on the IS250 & IS350 issues but Nissan could care less about its brand or reputation; I guess that's what happens when the company isn't whole Japanese owned.

- Hollywood, FL, USA

problem #25

Dec 122015


  • 83,300 miles
While I was driving on the street my car completely powered down, I was so scared, because there was moving traffic behind me. I tried stepping on the brakes and then hitting the gas again but the car would not move. I had to quickly put my parking lights on and pray that no one would hit me. Then I turned the car off and on a couple of times and it started moving, only to power down two blocks later. I was able to pull over to the side this time and I waited a while and then turned the car back on. This time the service engine light came on. I took my car to auto zone and codes came up for the speed sensor and throttle sensor. This was so scary and hazardous, thank god I got off the highway beforehand because there was too much traffic!

- Bronx, NY, USA

problem #24

Oct 162015


  • miles
Manifold, I have taken it to the shop, they told me that it could be the manifold or gasket, is there a recall on that part, very unsafe car fills up with the smell of gasoline it also rusting on the back by the wheel it seems to me that its to early to be rusting poor paint

- Franklin, OH, USA

problem #23

Sep 012015


  • 126,000 miles


I need a new transmission at 126,000 miles! car began making noise as if it was stuck in a gear, it became sluggish as I was trying to accelerate, the car would not accelerate. Drove it to sheehy Nissan a few days later and was told that I would have to call Consumer Affairs because I was outside the extended warranty of 120,000. My mileage was 126,000. Received call from sheehy service specialist leo saying that it would be fixed free of charge. The next day received another call from service specialist and was told that it was not approved by Consumer Affairs for repair. I called Consumer Affairs and was told that I would receive a call on Friday, Sept. 18 from Nissan's regional specialist, quinashay, that more information was being gathered from sheehy Nissan. Received call from quinashay saying that there was nothing nisan could do for me because I was outside the extended warranty period! this is my third Nissan purchase from Nissan stanza to a couple of Nissan Altima, always upgrading. I've been a loyal Nissan customer and for what! never thought I would be treated this way.

- Glen Burnie, MD, USA

problem #22

Aug 152015


  • 150,000 miles
Speed went from 70 to 60 miles per hour, it just drop

- Aurora , IL, USA

problem #21

Nov 062014


  • 90,000 miles
My vehicle's transmission failed after only 90,000 miles. Nissan replaced the transmission for free under their extended cvt warranty program, however, less than a year later, the check engine light came on while making a long distance trip on the interstate. According to Nissan the cvt fluid required for the cvt transmission can become glue like and gunk up at high speeds or in hot weather, causing the engine to overheat and the car to stall. The solution for this problem is an external coolant system for the cvt fluid provided to the customer at their expense to keep the transmission fluid from becoming thick. I am extremely disgusted with my Nissan experience, they knowingly are making transmissions which fail after less than 100,000 miles and are requiring them to use Nissan cvt fluid which is a fail also.

- Longview, TX, USA

problem #20

Nov 202012


  • miles
Went in for an oil change at mossy Nissan, kearny mesa, ca. Was informed the headgasket(s) were leaking coolant. Not covered under warranty although mechanic informed me the leak(s) were a common and pre-existing condition. He went on to explain that Nissan used the incorrect head gaskets for this model of 3.5 V6 (front wheel drive vq35hr to be specific). Once Nissan realized their mistake, all subsequent engines received the correct head gaskets and the leakage problems went away. I am requesting that Nissan formally acknowledge the head gasket defect and extend the drivetrain warranty to cover the replacement expense. I am unsure whether the NHTSA can help me in this case, but perhaps if my complaint can be in the database, we can get more affected consumers to submit similar head gasket defect complaints in the hopes that Nissan will be forced to remedy the problem.

- Santee, CA, USA

problem #19

Apr 012015


  • 100,000 miles


The contact owns a 2008 Nissan Altima. The contact stated while driving at 55 mph, the vehicle stalled. As a result, another vehicle crashed into the rear of the contact and the air bags failed to deploy. No injuries were sustained. A police report was filed. The contact was able to restart the vehicle. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic who was unable to diagnose or repair the vehicle. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 100,000.

- Piketon, OH, USA

problem #18

Jan 082014


  • 87,000 miles
Upon driving the vehicle there was a strong smell of gasoline inside the cabin of the vehicle. The vehicle started smoking while driving immediately the car ran hot. Had the car towed to nearest dealer that then informed that the exhaust manifold/catalyst converter had failed and was leaking. Which they informed me was very dangerous but they where not responsible for repairs which led to cracked heads on the motor and eventually total engine failure. What a safe vehicle for a single mother of two children? not so much, .

- Birmingham, AL, USA

problem #17

Jan 162015


  • miles
Oil cap will not unscrew on 2008 Nissan Altima manual transmission that is leaking oil.

- Desoto, MO, USA

problem #16

Dec 132014

Altima 6-cyl

  • 97,245 miles
I went to accelerate and car, I guess you could say it just gave out. It was still running but as I hit gas it would not go any faster. The car immediately started running very rough so I pulled over and turned engine off. I took it to a Nissan dealership for diagnosis, and was told I need whole new motor due to the fact the camshaft broke. Now this is a part I am being told that should not break and it must be a manufacturing defect. I was told to check and see if any recalls have been put out on camshaft. I did and there have not been. I am filing complaint because I think there should be a recall. I now have to pay out of pocket (est. Is over $4,800!!!!) for repairs done to my car for something that should not have broke in the first place. And by the camshaft breaking it caused a list of other major damage to my engine, which is why I need to replace it!

- Bellmawr, NJ, USA

problem #15

Dec 152010

Altima 4-cyl

  • 130,000 miles
As I got off the interstate (driving 60 mph) then reduced my speed to 20 when I tried to accelerate it wouldn't go!! it would not accelerate and my RPM would climb up to 4 or 5! I had to drive all the way back home on interstate driving 20 mpg!!! it's happened only when I travel long distances!! I am highly dissatisfied with the Altima! everyone I encountered about the 2006-2008 Altima regrets getting one.

- Hammond, LA, USA

problem #14

Oct 072014


  • 121,000 miles
While my husband and children were driving through ely, nv on their way to the lake, 300+ miles from home the car began to smoke. Upon pulling the release to pop the hood, the car burst into flames. My family escaped the vehicle injury free. My car is now a pile of melted metal. Someone please explain to me how this happens" and who is responsible? I had a year left to pay on this vehicle and barely 120,000 miles. What is my recourse? how do I replace my vehicle" please help.

- Boulder City, NV, USA

problem #13

Aug 052014

Altima 4-cyl

  • 69,000 miles
I parked my 2008 Nissan Altima 3.5 SE in front of my house took groceries into the house I return to the car and it would not start. The key symbol was on. I can without pressing the brake change modes just wont start.

- College Park, GA, USA

problem #12

Jun 092014


  • miles
The contact owns a 2008 Nissan Altima. The contact stated while driving approximately 40 mph, a rattling noise emitted from the engine. There was decreased on engine rpms when the accelerator pedal was depressed. The vehicle was taken to a dealer. The technician indicated that the exhaust heat shield needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the problem who stated that they had trigger an unknown voluntary recall for the issue specified. The failure mileage was unknown.

- Temple, TX, USA

problem #11

Apr 052014

Altima 4-cyl

  • 146,311 miles
Had the oil changed at dealership. Upon driving back home the car would not start. I received the yellow key light on the dash and could not depress the brake pedal or start the car. I attempted to put in a new battery to the intelligent key and also jumpstart the vehicle. Still would not start. Nothing warns you of this issue and glad that I was not driving the vehicle when this happened or part failed. On the following date the vehicle was towed to the local dealership. On Monday the 7th the car was diagnosed with the electric steering lock assembly failure. Same day I contacted Nissan Consumer Affairs to find out there were no recalls nor would they offer any assistance or recall this part as they have on other similar models.

- Stafford, VA, USA

problem #10

Nov 262013

Altima 4-cyl

  • 72,000 miles
I was traveling on this date from cranberry township, Pennsylvania where I work as an engineer at westinghouse headquarter office to West chester, Ohio where my family reside for a family thanksgiving gathering. It was 6:30 am and it was snowing. The traffic ahead begin slowing down for some reason. The visibility was becoming quite poor. I was in the middle of the 3-lane I-79 heading South-West. Hence I wanted to put on my hazard signal to alert the traffic behind me of the danger ahead. In the process I pushed on the on/off start button. The engine died right away while I was traveling at 50 mph. All control was immediately lost in the process. Unable to steer my car either left or right I pushed on the hazard button to alert the vehicle behind od my distress. Luckily for me, the fellow behind slowed down and stayed behind me until I brought my car to a full and complete stop in the middle of the highway and put it in park to restart the engine and slowly continue my trip without further incident. I was extremely scared and surprise that it was possible at all to kill the engine while at speed on the road in this vehicle. I do believe this is a major flaw that could have been quite serious under different circumstances. Imagine it happened down the mountain in West Virginia where I was heading next..... thank you

- Cranberry Twp, PA, USA

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