really awful
Crashes / Fires:
2 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
42,635 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.

2012 Nissan Altima engine problems

engine problem

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2012 Nissan Altima Owner Comments

problem #13

Jul 032016


  • 105,000 miles


While driving on the interstate to fl from ky at around 65-75 mph the vehicle would not accelorate past 3000 RPM's. going up hills was the worst, cars would pass and our vehicle would slowly decline in speed. Pulled over to check the car out and after if cooled down it when back to working okay but after another hour on the road it done the same thing.

- Elkton, KY, USA

problem #12

Apr 162016


  • 64,000 miles
After driving at 70 mph for several hours, the vehicle will no longer accelerate and slows down. The vehicle needs to sit for a period of time before it is able to accelerate again. This issue had occurred before 8K miles earlier and had the cvt cooler replaced under warranty.

- Oakland, CA, USA

problem #11

Jun 062015


  • 61,000 miles
Twice, I was driving at a speed of 75 mph on I25 headed North. As I arrived into Colorado springs, my vehicle decelerated to 30 mph in a 65 mph zone. I immediately pulled over. I waitied for about 15 min. Started my vehicle up & still it would only go 30 mph. I turned around & headed back for pueblo. Unsure & afraid that my vehicle would not make it home. Once my car was sitting for an hour, the transmission allowed the speed to rise above 30 mph. The same incident occurred on 6/27/2015. I am afraid to drive my vehicile out of town, in fear of getting stranded, the car overheating & the mechanical transmission malfunctioning. The Nissan dealer in order to resolve the problem, needs to install a "transmission cooling system". I purchased the extended warranty thru 1st extended, over $2600. They refuse to honor the warranty, claiming the cooler was ot in the car to begin with. I spoke with Nissan & southwest motors (where I purchased the car around 1 1/2 yrs. Ago. They've both confirmed that this exact problem has occurred in many Nissan vehicles. If the warranter is unwilling to warrant the problem, which is a major mechanical malfunction, then my 2012 Nissan Altima needs to be recalled! please help me for I fear this problem is a safety hazard driving on the hwy at a reduced speed & becoming stranded.

- Pueblo West, CO, USA

problem #10

Sep 132014


  • 60,000 miles


Alright so today I noticed a whining noise coming from the transmission. On my way home from work, just after leaving my car kept slipping out of gear. I get on the highway and the engine light comes on. Then im stuck in 5th gear for the rest of the way home. I got the flash codes and did a bit of research, here is what I found. 2012 Nissan Altima sedan - torque converter clutch circuit intermittent pausible causes: - faulty torque converter clutch solenoid valve - torque converter clutch solenoid valve harness is open or shorted - torque converter clutch solenoid valve circuit poor electrical connection - low transmission fluid level - dirty transmission fluid I have to pull over for about 5 minutes then start my care for the sensor to reset so that I can drive my desired speed limit. Once it gets hot the transmission will not allow me to drive more than 60-65mph. The dealer says I need to new transmission. I have 95,000 miles on my 2012 Nissan Altima 2.5 S and is already having problems. It's difficult for me to travel as much because of these issues. After an hour of driving, my transmission whines and my speed limit drops when driving this is extremely dangerous and deadly. I fear that because of the decrease in speed could be potentially dangerous.

- Austell, GA, USA

problem #9

Jul 072015


  • 68,000 miles
Today was the second time I've experienced this dangerous issue while driving on the freeway for about an hour and a half long. My car began to lose speed and would not accelerate above 60 mph. While I had the gas pedal down completely all the way to the floor, as the car could not gain speed. I could have been in a serious accident with all the traffic on the freeway, I had to merge over to the far right for safety. I drove my car immediately after to Nissan so they could verify this issue. They failed to help me in any way recommending I invest in a cvt cooler, due to not being covered under warranty anymore. A couple months back when the car was still under warranty I took it to Nissan with the same issue, at that time they stated they could not detect an issue. But now my warranty is up they're suggesting what the car needs. I'm very upset with how dangerous this can be and how careless Nissan is. It's like they are just waiting for someone to seriously be hurt in an accident to then do something about it.

- Fresno, CA, USA

problem #8

Aug 182014

Altima 4-cyl

  • 71,000 miles
Traveling on interstate 70 mph, trying to maneuver around semi trucks and car decides to slow down to 60 mph causing several semis to slam on brakes, near accident. It was scary scary scary!!!!!! gas pedal to the floor it would not respond for several miles until it was safe to get off the interstate. Once we turned the car off and got back on the road it was ok, but it happened again 2 hours later.

- West Palm Beach, FL, USA

problem #7

Jul 062014

Altima 4-cyl

  • 48,500 miles


We were driving on the interstate at about 70 mph and were unable to accelerate. Accelerator peddle all the way to the floor and the most we could go was 45 mph. Had the car towed to a Nissan dealership and found out it was the shift select assembly that had broken/malfunctioned and the car had gone in to failure mode. There was not warning light at all and this could have been very dangerous on the interstate. First I feel that this part of the car should never have broken in a 2-year old car and I have to wonder if there is a defect in the part for this model year of the Altima. Second, if and when this piece does break or malfunction, there should be some sort of warning light on the dash to make the driver aware and pull over. Nissan is aware of my concerns as I have shared them with their Consumer Affairs department.

- Maiden, NC, USA

problem #6

Jul 142014


  • 47,000 miles
On Monday night at 12:00am I was driving from California to las vegas Nevada. I was going 75 miles an hour when the car started to loose speed. The excel-orator would not move and had locked.the car speed had dropped to 40mph and would not move. There was a semi in front of me and two other vehicles to the side of me. I almost got into a big accident. I was able to pull over to the side. Terrified, I began to panic so I shut the car off. I drove the next 60 miles to vegas going 30mph the car would not go to a higher speed. When I took the car to the dealer they said it was a safety feature. I do not understand how a safety feature would deliberately jeopardize the safety of the driver. It is driving on the highway for fear that this may happen again.

- Las Vegas, NV, USA

problem #5

Feb 012014


  • miles
Driving long distances my car overheats, looses power going from 70 mph down to 40 mph in high speed traffic. I am forced to get off the highway and let it reset itself. It has always made a whining noise during acceleration, and the brakes have squeaked from day one. I have complained to Nissan several times and am always been given lame excuses. Now that my warranty is up they have a solution to my problems. New transmission or overheat converter to the tune of $1600. How convenient they have a solution not that my car is out of warranty!! they refuse to help me or fix my car unless I fork over the money. My car has had problems since I purchased it and there was never any resolve. I purchased an extended warranty as I do a lot of driving. My car was out of warranty 2,000 miles when they miraculously found a cause and solution for my problem.

- Desert Hot Springs, CA, USA

problem #4

Jul 242013

Altima 4-cyl

  • 20,400 miles
I had pulled into a parking lot at a local gym, as I placed the car in park, the vehicle continued to stay in drive and surged forward into the building. Once the vehicle hit the building, I once again tried to place the car in park, and it once again surged forward and hit the building. The only way I could stop the car was to hit the power button to turn the car off. Once the officer arrived on scene, he asked me to place the car in neutral so that he could move the car off the curb, however, the car continued to move forward. As a result the car was once again powered down to avoid any further incident.

- Bowie, MD, USA

problem #3

Nov 112012


  • 7,800 miles


As driver was braking upon entering a parking spot at a local store, car surged forward and jumped a curb hitting a red box video display.

- Shallotte, NC, USA

problem #2

Jul 162012


  • 1,550 miles
The pedals are positioned too close together. My husband complained of this a few weeks ago when he drove my car because his shoe got caught on the brake pedal as he was lifting his foot off the gas pedal. Then, yesterday, the same thing happened to me. I nearly drove my car through the front of the daycare where I was dropping off my son. I am now aware of how extra-cautious I have to be when driving my car so this doesn't happen again. This has never happened to me with any other car. I've been driving for 25 years!

- Lafayette, LA, USA

problem #1

Aug 082011


  • 5 miles
The contact owns a 2012 Nissan Altima. The contact stated that the brake and accelerator pedal were positioned too close together. As a result, the contact inadvertantly depressed both pedals simultaneously. Neither the dealer nor the manufacturer were notified of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was 5 and the current mileage was 12,000. The VIN was unavailable.

- Sabina, OH, USA

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