Notes: Radiators are still cracking, leaking coolant and destroying transmissions. Which is a shame when you consider that otherwise, this would be a great small pickup truck.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
116,340 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.

2006 Nissan Frontier drivetrain problems

drivetrain problem

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2006 Nissan Frontier Owner Comments (Page 6 of 8)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #57

Mar 272013


  • 112,000 miles


While driving at 40-45 mph I would get a very loud harsh vibration that felt similar to driving over one of the warning strips on side of highways warning you you're going off road. It also eventual would barely move from a stop at a traffic light. Took it to local transmission repair shop that informed me the coolant from radiator leaked into trans causing the failure. Looks like I'm getting a new trans and radiator. Nissan needs to recall and reimburse all these ppl spending thousands on what is obviously a factory defect. I see complaint after complaint of the exact problem I am having. Thanks a good luck to everyone. Hopefully Nissan does the right thing.

- Pleasantville, NJ, USA

problem #56

May 202013

Frontier 6-cyl

  • 82,156 miles
I bought a used 2006 Frontier 2 years ago and only put 20,000 miles on it and now the coolant is mixing with the transmission fluid and they want to pay 2500 dollars to help fix it. And this bull crap. Nissan needs to man up and stand behind there vehicles. Dissatisfied customers can spread the word. Never buy a Nissan.

- Fort Valley, GA, USA

problem #55

Oct 152012


  • 91,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Nissan Frontier. The contact stated that while stopped at a traffic stop, the contact depressed the accelerator pedal but the vehicle would not respond. The vehicle was taken to the dealer for diagnosis. The technician stated the transmission would have to be replaced because radiator fluid was leaking into the transmission. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The VIN was not available. The approximate failure mileage was 91,000.

- Tamarac, FL, USA

problem #54

Feb 012013


  • 75,000 miles


Coolant has entered transmission fluid, this can cause the vehicle to become immobile in traffic, intersections, etc.

- Brooksville, FL, USA

problem #53

May 072013

Frontier 6-cyl

  • 97,731 miles
Hello, I have a 2006 Frontier on it's way to the dealership right now having the radiator & transmission replaced. That is caused from the coolant mixing with the transmission. I don't know how Nissan can say this isn't a safety issue when your vehicle can stop in the middle of highway traffic due to your transmission dying. Recall needed! thank you!

- Willmar, MN, USA

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problem #52

Apr 242013

Frontier 6-cyl

  • 114,231 miles
Last time I changed my oil about a month ago, they were confused at why I had oil in my radiator. They said it was not a good sign! yesterday when I was driving to work, my truck had no power and it eventually stopped moving in the road. The truck was running, but would not engage in a gear and move forward. I had it taken to a local shop to look it over and after a test drive and looking at the transmission and radiator fluids, they said I had a cross contamination of the two systems and it caused the problem. They called the Nissan dealer and they said this is a common problem and they have a law suit I can join to get reimbursed for the expense of replacing the cvt. (continuously variable transmission) it will cost about $4,200. I looked online and it looks like Nissan also has at cvt replacement program. I wish I would have known about this so I could have had it replaced and not put in danger.

- Wenatchee, WA, USA

problem #51

Feb 102013

Frontier 6-cyl

  • 101,000 miles


Transmission had begun to bump when changing gears. At times it was hard shifting. On 2-10-13 while driving on the interstate, the truck started to run hot. I stopped and had to put water in the overflow tank. Continued on the interstate and truck did not run hot anymore. Since then, the transmission has gotten worse. Some times the transmission vibrates when changing gears. Many people on the internet are having the same problem.

- Cumming, GA, USA

problem #50

Jun 302012


  • 102,000 miles
I was driving on the highway when I feel some vibration, did not pay attention until I got off the highway when the transmission slipped, I thought that fluid may be low, but when I checked I found that fluid was discolored. I took it to the mechanic and he told me that this was a problem with the radiator leaking in transmission, and that he had some other Nissan trucks same year with same problem. He suggested to replaced radiator and flush transmission, it cost me $600, but now my transmission is getting worse everyday and worse of all is that I am still paying for this truck that probably is going to break down any moment. I read some of the complaints about this particular vehicle and scared me just to know that I will have to pay for a transmission repair plus continue to pay for the loan of this truck. And Nissan seems like is doing nothing about this problem. Please send me any notification about a recall, I would really appreciate it.

- Powder Springs, GA, USA

problem #49

Apr 082013

Frontier 6-cyl

  • 99,800 miles
When driving, a "rumbling" noise would come and go and a "whining" noise while accelerating. The rumbling noise was not consistent but would sound like a was driving on the side of the round. It would usually appear around 40-60 mph when I would let off the gas and "coast" and try to press the gas again. I did not know there was a "warranty extension". I was not notified. Took the truck into the shop only to find out my transmission was going out due to the fact I have radiator coolant (antifreeze) in my transmission fluid; (over a gallon) cause by a factory defect. Something to do with a transmission piece going through the radiator and leaking. Mileage for my truck is right at 99,800. Barely made the 100,000 miles 3000 dollar so-called Nissan warranty extension..

- Lexington, KY, USA

problem #48

Sep 152010

Frontier 6-cyl

  • 60,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Nissan Frontier. The contact stated that while driving 30 mph, the transmission failed and the check coolant level warning light illuminated. The vehicle was taken to a dealer for diagnosis where the contact was advised that coolant was leaking into the transmission. As a result, the transmission and the radiator would need to be replaced. The manufacturer was made aware for the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 60,000 and the current mileage 99,700.

- Bancover, WA, USA

problem #47

Apr 132012

Frontier 6-cyl

  • 97,000 miles


I have a Nissan Frontier that has had failed in a number of things which are not wear and tear. They are design flaws. The fuel gauge module. The radiator/transmission leak flaw. Because of the design of the radiator, now a perfectly working tranny needs rebuilt. I also hear the tensioner for the timing chain is a defective design. My Frontier began falling apart before the 100.000 miles with design flaws. Nissan never again. A simple warning letter that my radiator needed a $300 repair would have saved me $4,000 later and not leave me stranded in traffic.

- Winter Park, FL, USA

problem #46

Mar 292013


  • 135,000 miles
Transmission failed completely while my daughter was driving leaving her stranded in a busy intersection. Vehicle was towed. Transmission was found to have radiator fluid in it as well as transmission fluid in the cooling system. After investigating this issue on the internet it is obvious that Nissan has been aware of the issue with faulty radiators for a long time. (when I was still under my extended warranty.) had Nissan informed owners this could have resolved with a radiator change that I would have gladly done at my expense. Now I'm looking at over $4000 in repair costs. Shame on Nissan!

- Mather, CA, USA

problem #45

Feb 012013

Frontier 6-cyl

  • 190,000 miles
While driving vehicle and accelerating, the transmission hesitated to shift and then jumped into gear causing a lurch in the vehicle.

- Howell, NJ, USA

problem #44

Dec 242012


  • 130,000 miles
On my 2006 Nissan Frontier my radiator coolant mixed in with my transmission oil and it caused my tranny to blow out and also for my timing belt to get messed up and so I had to replace my tranny and radiator and timing belts at a total of over 4 thousand dollars. I really think Nissan should make this a recall regardless of your mileage because if they don't hundreds and thousand of people will stop buying Nissan. Please inform me of anything with the investigation with Nissan.

- San Diego, CA, USA

problem #43

Jul 202012

Frontier 6-cyl

  • 42,000 miles
The clutch to the 2006 Nissan Frontier failed while driving. An odor was detected prior to the event. When I tried to change gears, the vehicle would no longer move and the gear stick moved freely throughout all six forward propelling gears as well as reverse. The writer was on a rural road when this happened and no other cars were involved. The clutch was replaced. The event repeated approx 200 miles later in near the same location by this writer's home. The clutch was replaced. Roughly 150 miles later, the smell persisted (in the third clutch). This writer filed a complaint with Nissan and was told to bring the vehicle into the dealer in order to diagnose the cause for the premature failure of the clutch. The dealer was unable to find anything during a "visual inspection" in which the transmission was removed to reveal the parts involved. This writer was informed that there was clutch material on the flywheel which indicates that the third clutch is indeed beginning to fail. This writer has driven manual transmission for 16 years and has another vehicle with 115,000 miles on it. It has the original clutch in it and this writer along with my spouse drove this vehicle for 90,000. My fear is that the clutch will fail on one of the railroad crossings and I will not have much time to remove my children from their car seats. The clutch in the Frontier is the same clutch that is used in the Nissan xterra of the same year and make. [xxx] information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Annandale, MN, USA

problem #42

Nov 272012

Frontier 6-cyl

  • 93,000 miles
I purchased the vehicle used with roughly 92,700 miles from a reputable, local, high volume dealer. Within a week of owning the vehicle I felt a "shudder, " as if driving over a rumble strip on the side of the road, while cruising at approximately 55 mph in top gear on the highway. Felt the same sensation one week later and again approximately one month ago. These "shudders" were few and far between but consistent in feeling and duration, only lasting a second or so. While doing an oil change and fluid check on 2-7-2013 and approximately 94,700 miles, I found the coolant in my radiator and overflow tank to be a pink, even bordering on purple, in color and about the same consistency as heavy whipping cream you would purchase from the grocery store. I immediately arranged for the vehicle to be diagnosed at the dealership of purchase the next morning and the three year extended power train warranty dictated such. The service shop's diagnosis confirmed the research I had found linking the discrepant coolant in my radiator to be from a defective transmission cooler line/coil inside the bottom of the radiator that was leaking transmission fluid into my radiator. Thus, not recirculating the proper amount of transmission fluid, if at all, back into my transmission causing it to fail and was "shuddering" as a side effect. The service department has told me that because my vehicle was past the 80,000 mile mark at the time of the incident, Nissan would require a $3,000 deductible to replace the transmission, transmission cooler lines, and the radiator. As I research further I see this problem is not isolated but quite common. It is also painfully apparent that Nissan is very much aware of this issue as well. As a proud owner of a 1985 Nissan 720 pickup truck and staunch supporter of Nissan products, this situation is disappointing at best and unethical at worst.

- Wichita, KS, USA

problem #41

Feb 042013


  • 115,000 miles
Transmission began stuttering and shifting poorly at about 114,000 miles. This is a typical symptom for a problem Nissan has known about for some time. A failure in the radiator allows engine coolant to mix with transmission fluid - destroying the transmission. So far it has cost me $1000 to have the radiator replaced and the transmission drained and refilled. $11/quart for special Nissan tranny fluid. I expect I may have caught the problem early enough to avoid major transmission damage, but will only use the truck for local trips now. This issue should be a recall issue and Nissan held accountable for repairs.

- Abbeville, MS, USA

problem #40

Dec 192012

Frontier 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 110,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Nissan Frontier. The contact stated that the transmission cooling system failed and allowed radiator fluid to leak into the transmission causing it to fail. The manufacturer was contacted about the failure. The transmission was replaced at owner's expensive. The failure mileage was 110,000 and the current mileage was 111,500. Updated 5/15/13 updated 05/31/2013

- New Smyrna Beach, FL, USA

problem #39

Jan 182012

Frontier 6-cyl

  • 76,000 miles
The seal between the engine coolant and transmission fluid portions of the radiator fails, contaminating the transmission fluid with coolant water. Causing my engine to slip when changing 1st and 2nd gear. I just found out about this problem when I received a letter that there was a class action lawsuit about this problem. Nissan knew about this problem and fail to notify owner of the this problem in a timely matter. If I had known this problem then I would have replace the radiator instead of having to replace my whole transmission causing me thousands of dollars.

- Houston, TX, USA

problem #38

Jan 172013


  • 111,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Nissan Frontier. The contact stated that while driving 5 mph, the vehicle stopped accelerating. The contact stated that she turned the vehicle off and smoke emitted from under the hood area. The vehicle was towed to transmission specialist for inspection where they advised the contact that liquid from the radiator leaked into the transmission. As a result, both the radiator and the transmission needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was notified and advised that the vehicle was not under recall. The VIN was not available. The failure mileage was 111,000.

- Sherwood , AR, USA

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