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.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
11 / 2
Injuries / Deaths:
4 / 0
Average Mileage:
76,963 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 transmission problems

transmission problem

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2004 Nissan Maxima Owner Comments (Page 28 of 30)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #60

Jan 012008


  • miles


Hard jerks in transmission while going up from 2nd to 3rd gear or coming down from 3rd to 2nd. Occurs almost everyday when the car has warmed up.

- Mississauga, 00, USA

problem #59

Jun 202008


  • 100,000 miles
Car jerks. Nissan dealer states I need a new transmission and motor mounts. $4,000.

- Trussvile, AL, USA

problem #58

Jun 152008


  • 76,000 miles
I would like to place a complaint on the 2004 Nissan Maxima SE. This car like many other 2004 Maximas, has a transmission problem.. it jerks from 1st to 2nd and from 3rd to 4th gear. Also when not making a complete stop, I.e. turning a corner, this problem will also occur. Usually, as I have read on other peoples complaints, and also my own experience, this happens after reaching the 75K mark. I would like for you to please take this in consideration, and take a look in to what's going on with Nissan's transmission problem, as they already know that there is a problem... they have not agreed to state that there is a problem, but they do have transmissions in stock at several dealers for this make, model and year. So I beg you please help us resolve this problem... thank you kindly.

- Niland, CA, USA

problem #57

May 132008


  • 78,900 miles


Transmission slips between gear 1 & 2. mfg said I need new transmission. Only had 78000 when problem first started. Could never duplicate problem at service shop. Checked online and saw this is a common problem with 2004 Maxima SE.

- Massapequa, NY, USA

problem #56

Jun 232008


  • 62,000 miles
The contact owns a 2004 Nissan Maxima. While driving 30 mph uphill, the vehicle suddenly failed to shift into gear. The RPM's increased into the red zone on the instrument panel gauge. The gear final changed and the vehicle began to jerk badly. The vehicle eventually settled back into gear and proceeded up the hill. The failure was intermittent. The vehicle was taken to the dealer and they stated that the motor mounts were the cause of the failure. The dealer replaced the motor mounts. Currently, the transmission is causing the same failure. The VIN was unknown. The failure mileage was 62,000.

- Los Angeles, CA, USA

problem #55

Jun 202008


  • 59,500 miles
2004 Nissan Maxima SE automatic transmissions buckles and bumps when switching from reverse to drive. The warmer the engine the harder the bump. On occasion it is so bad it feels like the car was rear ended at about 10-15 mph. It has been in the dealer's shop for a week and they can't eliminate the problem but have already billed me $1400.

- Los Angeles, CA, USA

problem #54

Jan 302008


  • 115,000 miles


I have a 2004 Nissan Maxima and recently had automatic transmission trouble. The car would not accelerate with the normal power and it jerks when up/down shifting in low gears. The check engine light came on. There seems to be a problem with the valve body on the transmission which is common to this vehicle from viewing similar type complaints. Nissan refuses to handle the situation since the vehicle is out of warranty. I believe this to be a known defect on the part of the dealer. The violent unpredictable behavior of the transmission may cause a serious accident when occurring while driving on major roads.

- Ashburn, VA, USA

problem #53

Jun 112008


  • 106,100 miles
Driving in my Nissan 2004 Maxima SE the transmission started jerking every time hate this car now.

- Toronto, 00, USA

problem #52

Apr 102008


  • 55,000 miles
I never drive my 2004 Nissan Maxima SE hard, and I am having transmission problems when the car is shifting from 1st to 2nd. It tends to slip 40% of the time. I have had the transmission flushed, as well as being told me transmission was fine by the Nissan dealership. This is a disappointment knowing I spent this much money on the car and having problems. The car only has 55K miles on it.

- Republic, MO, USA

problem #51

Jan 042008


  • 80,000 miles
My 2004 Nissan Maxima has been having transmission problems ( jerking motion when car shifts from 1st to 2nd gear. This has been going on for about 6 months. I have changed transmission oil, but have been suggested that it might need a new transmission at 82,000 miles.

- La Quinta, CA, USA

problem #50

Sep 012007

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 89,000 miles


Transmission jerking. This car was purchased with 64,000 on it. The engine light came on after about one month. Took it in to dealer and they fix that problem. Nine months later the car starts jerking at different times when I am driving now it has started doing it every time I brake. Everyone is having the same problem with this year car. I think there should be a recall on this model car.

- Waldorf, MD, USA

problem #49

Nov 012007

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 111,000 miles
2004 Nissan Maxima transmission problems: I have a 2004 Nissan Maxima, that I truly love, but is jerking very heavily when changing from 1st to 2nd gear and something when you apply the brakes. I have been told I need a $4,000 transmission by the dealer. Has anyone been able to correct there problem without replacing the transmission.

- Braselton, GA, USA

problem #48

Mar 062008


  • miles
There seems to be a problem with the transmissions on the 2004 Maxima's. on a website, many people are complaining of the same thing. When I accelerate and go between 2nd and 3rd gear the car stalls and slams making a loud noise it does it when decelerating also. I think these transmissions should be recalled. I will take it to the dealer on Tuesday.

- Secane, PA, USA

problem #47

Nov 182007

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 65,000 miles
2004 Nissan Maxima transmission upshifts and downshifts too hard between 1st and 2nd. Also normal accelerating after making turns, causes an unbearable jerk.

- Frisco, TX, USA

problem #46

Apr 012008

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 70,000 miles
I bought a 2004 Nissan Maxima. And after a few week it began to jerk anytime I switched gears. I tried changing the transmission oil but still no success.

- Staten Island, NY, USA

problem #45

Jul 062006

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 65,000 miles
In 2005 I purchased a 2004 Nissan Maxima. At around 60K miles the transmission started acting up. Everytime I reverse and put the car into drive there is a delay and the car all of a sudden jerks into drive. The car also jerks/slips into gears as you accelerate and when you apply the brakes. Nothing has worked to fix this problem. There are hundreds of complaints regarding this same issue all over the internet. Please help, this is no way that this is simply coincidence that every Maxima is having the same issue.

- Orlando, FL, USA

problem #44

Apr 212008


  • miles
There is constant jerking in the automatic transmission when shifting from 1st to 2nd gear and when downshifting from 3rd to 2nd and from 2nd to 1st.

- Arlington, VA, USA

problem #43

Jan 012008

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 80,000 miles
Transmission started slipping and then jerking constantly in first gear at 80K miles and needed to be replaced by a new transmission= $3500. Defective strut/strut mounts aprox. Every 40K miles. Replaced and covered by Nissan the first incident, is now hundreds to fix the second time. Ac hose cracked and caused a leak at 40K miles and was $275 to replace. Cracked again at 80K miles, leaking. Replaced :$300.

- Kennesaw, GA, USA

problem #42

Jan 132008

Maxima 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 80,000 miles
2004 Nissan Maxima faulty transmission.

- New Port Richey, FL, USA

problem #41

Dec 152007

Maxima 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 76,500 miles
While driving my 2004 Nissan Maxima on highway 92 leading to fort huachuca AZ, the car came to a complete stop from the speed of 45mph. Jerking me forward. Prior to this the car had been in and out of the dealership at least twice because of a metallic noise coming from the engine compartment. None of the repairs fixed the problem all of which I had to pay for. The transmission went out while driving at speeds of 45mph and the car jerk violently when switching from 1st to 2nd gear before coming stuck in 5th gear.

- Sierra Vista, AZ, USA

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