Notes: The 2013 Nissan Altima has multiple problem trends including the CVT transmission, and now that this model is out of warranty, it earns our "avoid like the plague" badge.

Owners complain about vibration and transmission failure related to the CVT (Continuously Variable Transmission), a whining noise from the power steering pump, and constant windshield problems that appear to be the result of poor design.

Be warned: the 2014 & 2015 Nissan Altima appears to share these same problems.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
2 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 1
Average Mileage:
23,754 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.

2013 Nissan Altima fuel system problems

fuel system problem

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2013 Nissan Altima Owner Comments

problem #17

Aug 052016


  • 80,000 miles


I was in a accident where I hyroplanned and the back end hit a ditch and my car went onto the median on the freeway and I totaled my car and the airbags did not deploy

- Junction City, KS, USA

problem #16

Sep 212015


  • 58,000 miles
While driving, the vehicle stalls when the accelerator is depressed and does not respond no matter how much the pedal is depressed. The accelerator must be depressed a second or third time for the engine and the car to respond. I have had several near miss accidents due to sluggish or nonresponsive acceleration. The sluggish and nonresponsive acceleration occurs without warning and can be on a flat or incline surface.

- Woodstock, GA, USA

problem #15

Jan 062015


  • 27,000 miles
While I was driving it just stop and forcing to start when have it check they say said its gas pump with other several problem, I recently bought the car not even after three months it start gave those problem, now it have been sitting for almost a year now without driving, I still makes my payment every month, I can't have you guys a exact date when it really happened but I really need a investigation for the car as soon as possible my cell number [xxx]. thank you information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Miami, FL, USA

problem #14

Jan 012015


  • 25,000 miles


After refueling car studders and shuts down. You have to restart it couple of times. It seems like the car is not getting fuel.

- Tamarac, FL, USA

problem #13

Jul 192015


  • 57,072 miles
If I'm driving, when I try to stop the car, I press the brakes the brakes do not activate. The car does not stop it keep rolling on. I have to pat the brakes to stop the car or press the brake a second time for the brakes to catch. It feels as though it slips pass the brakes! I also took my car to Nissan for the latch recall every since I got the recall "fixed" the pass air bag light pops on when no is in the passenger seat and my car will state that I have 100 miles (more or less) of fuel but my fuel gage will read empty and I will need gas as the gauge states!

- Chicago, IL, USA

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problem #12

Aug 082015


  • 45,339 miles
Engine light comes on again after service, warrantee expires and same condition requires $400 service to replace air/fuel sensor. During warrantee it only required reprogramming the ECM

- New Durham, NH, USA

problem #11

Nov 282014


  • miles


Vehicle struck tree, engulfed in flames. Driver, sole occupant, also engulfed in flames inside car. Vehicle was on city street, no other vehicles involved in crash.

- Boca Raton, FL, USA

problem #10

Aug 122012


  • 7,996 miles
When turning my car cut off a few different times and you can hear a pop noise when turning coming from the right tire, I took may car to Nissan I was advised that they couldn't find a code and didn't no why it cut off, and didn't hear the noise, or feel the slack in the steering wheel, my car was there at 7996 miles and out at 7996 miles which means no one test drove the car to even try to see what was going on they did a so called diagnostic which the check engine light didn't even come on. And I was told they drove my car to see what I was talking about. 4 months later it do the same thing but being that they didn't do what they said the first time I didn't take it back. In 12/14 it did it again while getting on and off the freeway and coming to a stop took it to Nissan and was told I needed a air filter which was changed 2 oil changes before this happened. Took it home and it cut off many more times, now 4/15 it did it again but worse sitting in traffic it cut off and everytime I start it and put in drive it cut of but will go in reverse and it jerk really bad, and when it do go its hesitate and when smashing on the gas it takes a long time to go then takes off when it decides to. I contacted Nissan Consumer Affairs and was advised they were going to call to where I take my car to 3 days later I get a call back and was advised to call Nissan and go have a diagnostic, like it was set up. When I asked for the name I was giving that Consumer Affairs was talking to she didn't have a clue to what I was talking about, when I called the lady I been talking to at Consumer Affairs I didn't get a answer nor a call back. But im sure they will not find anything wrong with my car due to no one will drive it to see what it do. Im scared to drive my car due to it may stop and someone can hit me or being that when smashing on the gas it take off when it want to and I can hit someone.

- Phoenix , AZ, USA

problem #9

Oct 102014


  • 63,500 miles
I was driving on the expressway doing about 40mph and then all of a sudden the care seemed as though it had problems shifting out. Then when I stop the car hesitated to take off and then when it did take off it jerk and the took off. When I got home I turned off the car and started it back up it drove fine, but later that day when I drove it started to do it again and then the check engine light came on.

- Chicago, IL, USA

problem #8

Apr 122014

Altima 4-cyl

  • 31,764 miles
Cvt transmission failure. This is an event in which the automobile transmission and throttle simply stops working while the car is being driven. I experienced this event this past Saturday on a trip into boston. It is quite terrifying to be driving along in the middle of traffic and have your car stop functioning with respect to having no power or gears such that you have no control or ability to make the car respond.

- Portsmouth, NH, USA

problem #7

Sep 122012

Altima 4-cyl

  • 2,000 miles


When coasting from a low speed (45-55) to near stop the transmission "locks up" while nowshifting. The vehicle violently locks up, so bad that it feels like you've hit something. The steering wheel is also affected to the brute force. Nissan issued a mandatory recall transmission reprogram which I promptly had done to the vehicle. However, just this Friday, 5/3/13, the transmission again did this. Both times I was lucky that I was on back roads with little to no traffic and that I was able to maintain control. This is a serious problem that in the wrong conditions (ice/snow/rain) or when oncoming traffic is coming could get someone killed. I can't explain just how violent the downshift is, other than to say the first time my 6 year old began crying in the rear seat because he thought we wrecked, and that the 2nd time my cell phone was jarred from a very rugged cradle.

- Dry Ridge, KY, USA

problem #6

Nov 212012

Altima 4-cyl

  • 0 miles
When you have gas in the car and slow down/stop you can hear the gas sloshing back and forth in the tank. Especially if the tank is close to full.

- South Yarmouth, MA, USA

problem #5

Nov 232012


  • 20 miles
The advertised miles per gallon on the highway is 38. I get 27 mpg on the highway. I drive almost exclusively highway miles and my mileage has never been over 27 mpg. This car is a rip off and not well made.

- Cottonwood Heights, UT, USA

problem #4

Apr 052013


  • 3,500 miles
The brake light comes on randomly and stays on until the vehicle is turned off; the brake pedal has a "hitch" in it when letting up on it (as does the gas pedal); you can hear gas sloshing around in the gas tank. Piece of crap car.

- Cottonwood Heights, UT, USA

problem #3

Aug 012012


  • 1,300 miles
1. when you fill the gas tank up you can hear fuel sloshing around and knocking against the tank. 2. brakes squeal and grind 3. engine is noisy and growls car shakes 4. air bag recall 5. gas mileage is not as advertised 6. console has been repaired multiple times.

- Silver Spring , MD, USA

problem #2

Oct 192012

Altima 4-cyl

  • 20 miles
I purchased my Nissan Altima 2013 S car on 17 October 2012 with 12 miles. Approximately two days later after buying this vehicle, I began hearing a constant whining noise coming from the engine compartment at a very low speed, a drumming slapping noise when I abruptly brake, a rather disturbing metal clunking sound that seems to generate from the fuel tank and finally intermittently clicking sound from the engine compartment at a high rate of speed. These sounds ar extremely nerve wrecking for a brand new car. I brought my car to three different Nissan dealerships for inspection at least seven times only to be told that these concerning sounds are normal conditions for this model. The car has also hesitated multiple times on start up. Filed a complaint that led to nowhere because Nissan North America, Inc insists that these are "normal" conditions for this vehicle.

- Brookeville, MD, USA

problem #1

Aug 012012


  • 1,300 miles
Purchased a Nissan 2013 in July of 2012 in 8/2012 the car had to have a total brake job on the front and rear brakes at 1300 miles. Nissan has yet to tell me why the car was manufactured with bad brakes and rotors and if there is an underlying issue that created the issue at 1300miles. Faulty powersteering pump causes the car to growl and make a winding noise. You can hear the fuel in the tank sloshing around in the tank of the car. This car is horrible.

- Silver Sping, MD, USA

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