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:
20 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
20 / 0
Average Mileage:
14,912 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 seat belts / air bags problems

seat belts / air bags problem

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2013 Nissan Altima Owner Comments (Page 2 of 16)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #295

Aug 052016


  • 63,253 miles


Passenger air bag recall was completed by Nissan dealer as a "software" fix. End result leaves passenger air bag light in illuminated position when passenger seat empty. At night, this creates a serious distraction and causes driver to take eyes off road. Distraction could cause injury/death. Nissan factory rep refuses to remedy problem and will make no further repairs.

- Atlanta, GA, USA

problem #294

Jul 012016


  • 56,600 miles
The contact owns a 2013 Nissan Altima. While driving 50 mph, the air bag warning light illuminated. The failure recurred whenever the vehicle was operated. The vehicle was not diagnosed nor repaired. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 56,600.

- Austin, TX, USA

problem #293

Aug 052016


  • miles
Airbag off light will remain on for 5-10 minutes with an adult passenger seated in the passenger seat and car in drive. Issue is intermittent and continues to occur after fix recommended in the spring 2016 Nissan recall. Nissan reports they cannot address it unless they witness it and being an intermittent issue, have not been able to do so. Video proof of this has been documented.

- Marlton, NJ, USA

problem #292

Oct 202015


  • miles


Takata recall. The contact owns a 2013 Nissan Altima. The contact received notification of NHTSA campaign numbers: 16V244000 (air bags), 16V029000 (latches/locks/linkages), and 15V468000 (suspension). The part was not available within a reasonable time frame to schedule the recall repair. The dealer did not give a specific date for when the part would become available. The manufacturer could not provide an estimated date for when the vehicle would receive the recall repair. The contact was not experiencing a failure. Parts distribution disconnect.

- Needville, TX, USA

problem #291

Jul 202016


  • 18,000 miles
Passenger side airbag is off when a person is in the passenger seat at the start of the drive, then after about 10 miles the passenger airbag off lamp goes off. This vehicle had service for passenger airbag when new.

- Maricopa, AZ, USA

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problem #290

Jul 262016


  • 19,000 miles
Passenger air bag sensor indicates air bag is disabled when seat is occupied by an adult. This happens when vehicle is both stationary and in motion. This happens off and on but has not shown up when at the dealership. Last instance was today.

- Canal Winchesster, OH, USA

problem #289

Jun 012016


  • miles


I received two recall notices (airbag related and hood latch). I contacted the dealer as advised on the notice and was told that a recall specialist would have to call me me back to schedule. I did not hear from anyone for two weeks and then called the number listed on the notice for Nissan national Consumer Affairs, as this was recommended if the dealer is unresponsive. The representative gave me a case number (22894092) and transferred me to my local dealer again. I was again told that I would be contacted by the service department to schedule this maintenance, but I have not heard back. It has been over one month since I initially called to schedule.

- Decatur, GA, USA

problem #288

Jun 292016


  • 82,000 miles
The contact owns a 2013 Nissan Altima. The contact started the vehicle and the front passenger side air bag off warning indicator illuminated with an occupant present at the weight of 140 pounds. The failure occurred only after the vehicle was serviced per NHTSA campaign number: 16V244000 (air bags). The dealer stated that the vehicle functioned normally. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 82,000.

- Andover, MN, USA

problem #287

Jul 112016


  • miles
I recently had my car taken to the dealer for two recall items- passenger seat airbag indicator and hood latch replacement. Afterwards, the airbag off indicator now is illuminated when passenger front seat is not occupied. On two occasions over the last week, while someone was in the front passenger seat the passenger airbag indicator started was extinguished, like I would expect, but after about 5-7 miles of driving the indicator illuminated, indicating that passenger airbag was off, while person was still in the seat. After an additional 35 miles or so of non-stop driving, I exited the freeway and came to a stop, at that point the passenger airbag indicator then went out. The fellow I carpool with has been in the passenger seat both times that this has occurred is very concerned and is considering not carpooling any longer. Thank you

- Palmdale, CA, USA

problem #286

Feb 122015


  • 68,000 miles
I purchased a 2013 Nissan Altima in September of 2015 with less than 43,000 miles. The car was really good gas and I was really happy with the purchase. In February of 2016 while me and my husband was driving in traffic we came to a stop and the car shut off. We started the car up fine but as soon as we placed the car in drive it shut off again. We repeated these steps over and over again until he was able to keep the car running while in drive so we could pull on the side of the road. We were very close to the warranty expiring so we took the car to antioch, ca Nissan dealership. They said that they would have to "duplicate" the problem before moving forward. They kept our car for 3 days to no avail. They said that they could not "duplicate" the problem and to come pick up the car. 2 days later we started experiencing the same problem. We decided to take the car to a different Nissan dealership in concord, ca hoping that we would get a different outcome. Needless to say they couldn't "duplicate" the problem for 2 weeks!! the guy in services admitted that they have many cars coming in with the same exact problem and he knew how to get the car to act up so that they could move forward. How crazy is that"?" he called me 2 weeks later and told me that they had to "reset" the transmission system. He also told me that even though I was very close to my warranty expiring that if the problem occurs again that they would still honor the warranty because the problem pre-existed. Not even a whole 2 months passed when my husband and I were moving from California to Texas did my car started having the exact same problems it had before but this time I noticed that the transmission was slipping. I was going 80 miles per hour on the freeway when my car slowed all the way down to 40 miles per hour while driving in front and on the side of a big rig!!!!

- Lewsiville, TX, USA

problem #285

Jun 232016


  • miles


The contact owns a 2013 Nissan Altima. The contact received notification of NHTSA campaign number: 16V244000 (air bags); however, the contact was unable to schedule an appointment for the recall repair due to parts being unavailable. The manufacturer was not notified of the issue. The contact had not experienced a failure. Parts distribution disconnect.

- Pearland, TX, USA

problem #284

Jul 022016


  • miles
After latest recall, air bag light is always on even when no one is in seat which goes against owner manual. Disable light should only go out when a person a lower weight is sitting in the passenger seat per describe in owner manual. Now the constant light is distracting and brighter than the navigation system at night. Per the manual if the car is started and if some one at a lower weight sits in car after car is started then the car should be turn off then back on. I am stressing that the recall did not fix the problem but disables the air bag when not required to be disabled.

- Peterborough, NH, USA

problem #283

Jun 242016


  • 50,000 miles
The contact owns a 2013 Nissan Altima. The contact received notification of NHTSA campaign number: 15V286000 (air bags). The part to do the repair was unavailable. The contact stated that the manufacturer exceeded a reasonable amount of time for the recall repair. The manufacturer was made aware of the issue. The contact had not experienced a failure. The failure mileage was 50,000.

- Lincolnton, NC, USA

problem #282

May 022016


  • miles
The contact owns a 2013 Nissan Altima. The VIN was included in NHTSA campaign numbers: 16V244000 (air bags) and 16V029000 (latches/locks/linkages). The contact had not been notified of the recalls and was not notified by the dealer prior to purchasing the vehicle. The contact took the vehicle to the dealer over five times. While the vehicle was at the dealer for routine repairs, the contact was informed that the vehicle was included in two recalls that needed to be performed. The dealer would not release the vehicle to the contact until the parts and the repairs were available. The contact was unable to determine when the vehicle would be repaired and was waiting on instructions from the manufacturer. The contact had not experienced a failure. Parts distribution disconnect.

- Phoenix, AZ, USA

problem #281

Jan 252016


  • 29,000 miles
Driving at the rate of 45 miles per hour. My 2013 Nissan Altima 3.5 sl start surging going faster than the speed limit. I applied on brakes pushing them down to the floor my car hit a 2013 durango SUV on the driver side knocking the rear wheel completely off. My car still surging faster on a congested high-way to avoid causing any fatalities my car spend around three times. Before coming to a stop. No air bag deployed on my driver's side occupant seat was unoccupied. My Nissan Altima 3.5 sl was a total loss, A-frame severely damage beyond repair. The seat beast on the driver side turn my large intestine, several feature bilateral pelvic bone, whip lash, neurological disturbance, (L) torn rotator cuff, spinal cord injury where partial paralysis have start to set in my legs. Irreversible nerve damage, poor sight, broken teeth whereas; I have to get them all pulled out & go into the hospital to have a complete mouth of implants. The seat belt was so tight that it torn a muscle in my chest cavity (L) side causing my heart not to fill up completely. Seeing a psychiatrist after the aftermath of the incident, gastrointestinal doctor, pain specialist,

- Washington, DC, USA

problem #280

Jun 072016


  • 21,000 miles
The contact owns a 2013 Nissan Altima. The contact stated that the vehicle's air bag seat warning indicator remained illuminated even when there was no occupant in the seat. The vehicle was previously repaired under NHTSA campaign number: 16V244000 (air bags). The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The failure mileage was approximately 21,000.

- Florissant, MO, USA

problem #279

Jan 142016


  • 42,000 miles
The contact owns a 2013 Nissan Altima. While driving 25 mph, the passenger side air bag light remained illuminated. The vehicle was taken to be repaired, but the issue recurred. The manufacturer was not made aware of the issue. The failure mileage was 42,000.

- Groveland, FL, USA

problem #278

Dec 102013


  • 100 miles
The contact owns a 2013 Nissan Altima. When the vehicle was started, the passenger side air bag off warning light illuminated. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic, but the technician was unable to be duplicate the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure continued intermittently. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The VIN was included in NHTSA campaign number: 16V244000 (air bags). The failure mileage was 100.

- Teaneck, NJ, USA

problem #277

Jun 072016


  • 38,000 miles
I have had an issue with the passengers side airbag for 3 years now. You can have a 140 up to a 300 pound passenger in the seat and the air bag turns off. I have been jerked around by the dealer and Nissan America. They can't get it to turn the light on.. I have it on videos not working.. they have re-flashed it several times or I was told they have.the car is not safe for a passenger to be in. Per Nissan yesterday 8/8/2016 a new recall is coming. This has been 3 years now and the car is now past the warranty period.. I am sure they will try to charge me now... would you put a loved one in that seat knowing the air bag may not work"?" Nissan was to call me again today 6/9/2016 and still has not happened.. time to replace all the sensors and the controllers...

- Chillicothe, OH, USA

problem #276

Jun 072016


  • miles
After the 2016 recall, to correct the faulty passenger air bag off condition, when a passenger not meeting the minimum airbag deployment requirements is seated the the passenger seat, the drivers "air bag off" warning indicator is now always illuminated when the passenger's seat is unoccupied. This condition leads to incorrect operation of the warning indicator which now displays this warning during a normal operating condition of the vehicle. Under normal operating conditions when there is no passenger in the vehicle, the constant illumination of the warning light will over time be ignored because of its constant on condition. The operation of the this indicator makes about as much sense as having the "seat belt unfastened" warning light always illuminated for an unfastened seat belt for an unoccupied passenger seat.. the inappropriate and misleading operation of warning indication leads to the operator's disregard of the warning indicator's significance. Over time, the driver will accept the on condition of this warning light as a normal operating indication and may lead the driver not recognizing the significance if this warning light remaining "on" in the event that a front seat passenger, meeting the air bag deployment criteria, occupies the seat. The operation of this warning light must be returned to its per-recall operation of only illuminating when the passenger seat is occupied by a passenger not meeting the criteria for air bag deployment. Any other operation of this warning light yields erroneous misleading passenger safety information to the operator of the vehicle. This safety condition must be corrected.

- Agoura Hills, CA, USA

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