really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
2 / 0
Average Mileage:
63,046 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.

2011 Nissan Altima drivetrain problems

drivetrain problem

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2011 Nissan Altima Owner Comments

problem #10

Dec 152016


  • 39,400 miles


2011 Nissan Altima sr sedan 3.5 cvt. When driving, cvt goes into safe mode with reduced acceleration, indicating a transmission issue and would also trigger vehicle dynamic control system fault.. original engine code was P0175. Had mechanic replace 31935-1xf00 speed sensor assy. Problem was not corrected. Took to local dealer and was told needs new transmission control module unit $850 and new transmission $3,500. Only 39,400 miles on vehicle (60,000 mile powertrain) but past he 60 month warranty by 5 months. Nissan will not cover. Nissan na Consumer Affairs contacted, researched and also denied. Will not cover and will not provide any partial assistance. Car is in excellent condition, driven lightly and no way transmission should need to be replaced at 39,000 miles. Manufacture date of vehicle is Dec 2010. Nissan extended cvt warranties to 10 years / 120K miles for several years because of the same and other cvt issues. Stopped extended warranty for 2011 models. Don't know if car is safe to drive or if transmission is going to fully fail. Took vehicle back from dealer, can't afford to fix. Now trying to replace transmission control unit with used same year/model. When vehicle is completely disconnected, trouble codes cleared and all electrical drained, then reconnected, all issues disappear for 10 to 20 miles of perfectly normal driving, then issues recur with cvt fail safe mode and vdc fault. Nissan should be recalling this issue and correcting it!! again don't know if vehicle is safe to drive or if transmission is going to fail in the middle of getting onto highway in heavy traffic? dealer diagnostic showed a number of codes: P0175 input speed sensor a (even though it has been replaced and new), P1700 cvt C/U funct, P1715 in puly speed, U1000 can comm circuit and also told the tcm is not sending a signal.

- Coral Springs, FL, USA

problem #9

Dec 122016


  • 51,087 miles
My trouble began as I sat and fueled my car with the same type of gas that I have been using for years. I filled my tank, started my car and it started huffing and puffing as if it was about to shut off. After a few minutes it stopped. A few days later while I was driving down the road one day I heard this loud rattling noise as if a chain or something was dragging the ground or being rattled. I approached a red light and lowered my radio to listen and as I sat idle in drive I could hear this rattling noise coming from the the front end of my car. As I drove down the road further it continued then stopped. I then parked my car and as I was in reverse the sound came back. I went on about my day and returned to my car to start it up and as I started it I heard the rattling loud noise again. I backed out of my parking spot and it continued. As I driving around at a speed of about 30-40 I could hear the noise come and go. I took my car to Nissan and they told me they couldn't find anything wrong. They told me everything under the hood of my car was fine. A few days later I brought my car back to Nissan informing them the the noise is continuing and my car shakes and jerks. I left my car and they called and said my alternator needed to be replaced. Just a couple days prior they said everything was fine so now I'm confused. I took my car to 3 separate auto shops and had them test my alternator and all 3 said my alternator, battery and starter were working perfectly. I began to research online to see if anyone had the same issues I have and there it was. A recall for the transverse link bolt. I'm pissed that Nissan would try to rip of a customer like that.

- Marrero, LA, USA

problem #8

Oct 182016

Altima 4-cyl

  • 104,000 miles
At 45mph my vehicle lost power and when gas was pressed it did not respond. I continued to travel home. Everytime I stopped at stop sign or slow speed and try to accelerate the car would shake violently (all captured on video) and would not accelerate. This was very scary. No service light ever came on!!!! I continue the approximately 3-4 mile drive home and it would do the same every time I slowed or stopped. I had to drive up a very steep hill and I did not think my car was going to make it. The research I have done and the information shared to me by several mechanics state that the 2007-2010 Altima warranty for the cvt were extended from 60,000 to 120,000. This should have included the 2011 also, because the cvt problems continue. My car has only 104,000 miles on it and should not need a 4,000 transmission. I have owned a maxima and Sentra in past and they were really great cars. All of the research that I have done reveals to me that jatco which Nissan has 75% ownership of should be responsible and liable for these issues. The government should protect the public from this monopoly and help the little guy. It does not take much research to know that there is a major issue. The class action suit that individuals had to file due to the cvt in pathfinders being junk shows the government did not protect them. I will never own another Nissan! do the right thing Nissan and extend the warranty to all vehicles that are obviously having cvt problems due to poor product performance and if Nissan will not the government has enough evidence to make them do what they should have done on the own. Even the CEO of Nissan has had an article written about them holding jatco accountable for their inept product.

- Jacksonville, AL, USA

problem #7

May 082016

Altima 4-cyl

  • 70,000 miles


Please see attachment explaining my transmission issue and also my experience with Nissan. Thank you.

- Holden, MA, USA

problem #6

Apr 172016


  • 41,879 miles
P0101 powertrain/maf circuit issue keeps coming back with car. Even a technical service bulletin has been issued by the manufacturer for this issue. Dealer reprogrammed ECU/updated & - Ozone Park, NY, USA

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problem #5

Mar 142016


  • 110,000 miles
I have a 2011 Nissan Altima throwing cvt transmission codes. The car accelerates quickly to high RPM's and you have to take your foot off the gas to make the car drive properly. Nissan is fully aware of the cvt transmission issues as they have an extended manufacturer warranty up to 120K miles. However, it caps off at 2010 models. I was told my VIN is not covered. I called Nissan Consumer Affairs, but currently jumping hoops to see if this is covered. If Nissan wants to sell vehicles with cvt transmissions, their warranty should be extended for all models and years. This is a known issue and should be addressed. We should not have to bare costs of 3000-5500 to replace a faulty transmission. This should be a recall. Currently, Nissan just waits to see if a problem arises. They will most likely not cover this. I was never notified about problems with the cvt transmission. My car has 110K miles and should not need a new transmission. I have maintained my vehicle. This is unfair practice to consumers and find it appalling that you spend thousands of dollars on a brand new vehicle only to have a bad transmission that will break sooner rather than later. I have read numerous consumer complaints from Nissan owners having cvt transmission issues with different mileage counts and models. All Nissan owners should be made aware and all should have the extended manufacturer warranty. If the transmission is causing problems in so many Nissan vehicles, its not the owner. It is clearly the manufacturer. Nissan should take responsibility and replace bad cvt transmissions when problems arise. I am truly surprised nothing has been done yet after reading numerous complaints about the same problem from Nissan owners. If automobile companies want to continue selling cvt transmissions, they should have better warranties. I will never buy a vehicle with cvt transmission again.

- Alpharetta, GA, USA

problem #4

Oct 122014

Altima 4-cyl

  • 87,551 miles


I was traveling on the 60W in moreno valley. The temperature was about 90, it was pretty dry and hot. I was cruising along at 70 mph with my brother, infant niece and 10 year old son. When all of the sudden the speed just dropped to about 35 mph, due to there not being any warning at all (no error lights or brake lights), the car behind us nearly rear ended us. They had to swerve so suddenly it almost caused them to crash into the car next to us. I ended up pulling over for a few minutes, everything seemed to be fine, so we continued the drive home. About 8 miles down the road, the car's speed dropped again. This time I was already in the slow lane and was able to avoid any near crashes. I brought the car to Nissan in corona ca. After a couple days, they were able to diagnose the problem being the cvt. I feel there should be some sort of a recall on the Altima cvt. Nissan has been aware of the potential problem with the speed reducing while the cvt goes into safe mode without any warning to the driver or others on the road. Nissan has known about this issue for quite some time, but they do not seem to care about their customer's safety and well-being.

- Riverside, CA, USA

problem #3

Jun 262014

Altima 4-cyl

  • 105,000 miles
On June 26, 2014 around 8pm, the car began to abruptly lose acceleration. I was unable to accelerate past 25mph. I fortunately made it home that evening, but Friday, June 27, 2014; the vehicle would not accelerate at all. The engine would not rev in any gear and I was almost stranded in the middle of I95S during lunchtime rush hour. I unfortunately had to have the car towed to chapman Nissan, where I was told that they would attempt to look at my car on Monday, June 30. I called on Monday, June 30 and did not receive a response until 230pm, where I was told that the transmission on the car needed to be replaced. I immediately filed a complaint with Nissan the manufacturer as this was extremely unexpected on a 3 year old vehicle. I received a voice message from a regional complaint manager on July 1 who stated that she would call back on July 2. I have called every business day since July 2 with no adequate response from Nissan. In doing my research for Nissan Altima transmission issues, I discovered that this "was" a common issue from 2006-2010, where they extended the warranty on the transmission to 120K miles. In 2011, they reduced the warranty to 60K miles. However, what Nissan failed to do was alert owners, that they had issued "service bulletins" to their dealerships documenting the exact problem I had experienced on June 27. The service bulletin notices are: 336174, 361957, ntb10121, ntb1012057.

- Media, PA, USA

problem #2

Sep 252012


  • 20,000 miles
The contact owns a 2011 Nissan Altima. The contact stated that while exiting his vehicle it continued going forward. The contact hastily jumped back into the vehicle to stop it and broke his wrist in the process. The contact stated that due to the vehicle not needing a key to start or stop it caused him to get out of the vehicle while it was still in the drive position. The failure recurred numerous times. Neither the dealer nor the manufacturer was notified of the safety concern. The VIN was not available. The failure and current mileage was 20,000.

- Ellicott City, MD, USA

problem #1

Mar 092011


  • 1,545 miles
I have a new 2011 Nissan Altima sl which I parked in my church parking lot and went into church. At the end of mass, as I was leaving the church and walking toward the parking lot, I used my automatic start...the car started and was warming up. As I approached my running car, I walked in front of the car to get around to the driver's side. I opened the driver's side door and the car accelerated and took off moving forward with nobody in it. I was holding onto the door chasing after my car trying to jump in and put my foot on the brake to stop the car. I was unsuccessful as the car ran into another car in the parking lot and came to an abrupt stop. My car was damaged and still running. The parked car that it hit was damaged. Upon impact, I was thrown against the open door and then onto the pavement on my back/right side. Many people were exiting church and gathered around...it is fortunate that nobody was hit/run over by this "run-away" car. Someone in the crowd called the police and the ambulance...I was on the ground until both arrived. I was treated for muscle and soft tissue strain/trauma/ spasms. I missed a day of work. My insurance company investigated the incident but was unable to accurately pin blame on the responsible party...they say there is nothing else they can do. The manufacturer, Nissan, had a company called auto express install an automatic start mechanism in the new car before delivering the car to me. Right now, Nissan is blaming auto express for a faulty "autostart mechanism" or faulty installation. Auto express is blaming Nissan for a faulty "park-neutral switch." Bottom line: Something was defective...and nobody wants to accept blame. The park-neutral switch has been cleared by Nissan. The autostart has been removed by auto express. Auto express paid for my car repairs and rental car. Both companies are avoiding me...

- Doylestown, PA, USA

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