Notes: The 2004-2006 Nissan Maxima has widespread transmission problems. It starts with the vehicle jerking when shifting, & progresses to full-blown transmission failure.

Maxima owners report spending $3,000 to replace the transmission, typically around when the odometer hits 100,000 miles.

There's a class action lawsuit filed in late 2011, & it is still in the "discovery" stage. Apparently, these things take time ... far too much time.


hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 3
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
87,000 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.

2004 Nissan Maxima accessories - interior problems

accessories - interior problem

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2004 Nissan Maxima Owner Comments

problem #7

Mar 122015


  • 240,000 miles


The contact owns a 2004 Nissan Maxima. While driving at an unknown speed, the gauges started flickering erratically and smoke started to emit under the front driver seat. The contact was able to merge to the side of the road and safely exit the vehicle. The fire department was contacted to extinguish the fire and the vehicle was towed to the dealer. The technician stated that the power lumbar support switched failed and that the vehicle was not included in NHTSA campaign number: 05V512000 (seats). The manufacturer was contacted and refused to provide any assistance. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was 240,000.

- Snellville, GA, USA

problem #6

Aug 192014

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 84,000 miles
The underside of the car is rusting away, a hole about 12 by 12 inches and increasing beneath the passenger seat. It may fall through one day.

- Carlisle, PA, USA

problem #5

Jul 032013

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 172,000 miles
I was driving to work July 3rd, 2013 around 7:00am. I smelled smoke in my car so I pulled over, opened my hood and I didn't see anything. I got back in my car and continued to drive to work. I smelled smoke again, only this time to realize that my bottom was getting hot. I looked down to the right to see if my seat warmer was on and it wasn't. then my seat began to move forward & backward by itself about 3 times. I turned back around to the front and there was a cloud of smoke in my face & flames at my feet. I quickly grabbed my phone and my ipad, released my seat belt, pulled up my emergency brake, opened the door and jumped out of my car falling onto the ground, jump up, and called 911. While waiting on the fire department & the police I stood there crying hysterically, terrified and watched my car go up in flames.

- Durham, NC, USA

problem #4

Sep 032012

Maxima 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles


The contact owns a 2004 Nissan Maxima. The contact stated that the space under the front driver and passenger seats had become rusted and was rotting completely. The contact spoke with the manufacturer and was advised that the body of the vehicle was not covered under warranty. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was unknown, but the current mileage was 80,000.... updated 12/26/12

- Newington, CT, USA

problem #3

Dec 152011


  • 87,000 miles
While in for routine maintenance, mechanic noticed extensive corrosion on both the passenger and driver side of the metal underneath both front seats. First layer was rotted through on both side and on the passenger side there is also a small hole rotted through the second layer. Vehicle was not taken to a Nissan dealer as of yet.

- Lawrence, MA, USA

problem #2

Jun 162008


  • miles
The contact owns a 2004 Nissan Maxima. While driving 45 mph, the front driver's seat began smoking and then caught fire. There were no warning indicators prior to the failure. The fire department stated that the cause of the fire was electrical. The vehicle has been inspected by an adjuster, but not by the dealer or a mechanic at this time. The failure mileage was unknown.

- Franklin, VA, USA

problem #1

May 012007

Maxima 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 26,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Nissan Maxima. While driving 10 mph, the bolts on the driver's seat failed. There was nothing holding the seat down and it rolled all the way to the backseat. The contact could not reach the brake pedal, therefore, she had to apply the emergency brake to stop the vehicle. She pulled the vehicle over and her husband drove it to the dealer. The dealer had never seen this type of failure before and stated that the bolts had fallen out of the seat. The dealer replaced the bolts and repaired the seat. The current mileage was 29,000 and failure mileage was 26,000. Updated 09/18/07

- Manassa, VA, USA

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