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:
4 / 2
Injuries / Deaths:
9 / 0
Average Mileage:
86,567 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.

2005 Nissan Maxima drivetrain problems

drivetrain problem

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2005 Nissan Maxima Owner Comments (Page 5 of 23)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #372

Aug 012014

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 75,000 miles


Transmission clunks when shifting, engine timing chain guides worn out making loud noises at idle.

- Yuba City, CA, USA

problem #371

Apr 082013


  • 50,000 miles
I am the original owner of a 2005 Nissan Maxima. Car only has 56,000 miles on it. At 50,000 miles I started experiencing problems when I put the car in reverse it would jerk really bad, then put into drive and again a very bad jerk. It is very scary and I know that it is a transmission problem with the gears. When I drive between 20-30 miles it just starts jerking again and the gears on the transmission change. I need 2 motor mounts due to this problem. I would hope with all of these complaints, there will be a safety recall on this issue.

- Pompano Beach, FL, USA

problem #370

Aug 062014


  • 98,000 miles
We purchased this car in 08/13 after we bought the car it needed a transmission then ended up putting 2 transmissions in the car, also a new throttle body with all this and the purchase of the car it is over $8,000 in this useless car, that now is totaled due to faulty brakes and traction control, these cars are dangerous it was only goin 20 mph the brakes were applied, and the brakes locked and the throttle was hung open, then it hit a bank and flipped over now it is totaled and we have nothing these cars are junk.

- Washington, VA, USA

problem #369

Aug 082014

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 154,008 miles


Automatic transmission:1) when you shift from park to drive the car does not engage at first then suddenly engages and accelerates very quickly. 2) hard jerking shifting from 1st to 2nd and from 2nd to 1st. 3) when de-accelerating from a higher gear transmission disengages then engages hard. 4) the car intermittently does this going a day or two performing normally.

- Hickory Flat, MS, USA

problem #368

May 182011


  • 105,768 miles
Okay, I am like almost everybody on here! my car several years ago starting slipping in between 1st and 2nd gear. Jerking forward and I have nearly gotten into several wrecks because of it. Took to the dealership and they said it was my transmission valve body. I paid over a $1000 bucks and the told me my transmission would eventually go. Which is a $3200 fix. What the crap. It's not my fault they made a faulty part. Own up to it and fix it. Well this past Friday 08/08/2014, the transmission finally went. Now I have lost my only vehicle and don't have the money to fix it. There should be a recall!!

- Bladenboro, NC, USA

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problem #367

Jul 172014

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 108,000 miles
Car kept jerking between gears, engine rev'd to 5000 rpms car lunged forward - hitting trailer hitch and rear end of an SUV stopped in road construction.

- Hubbard, NE, USA

problem #366

May 082014


  • 90,000 miles


I took my car to Nissan to have my car totally checked over. The ABS light came on and I had sharp jerks from the transmission and hesitation around 40 mph. The timing chain also had a rattle when the car was started. My ABS system had failed due to water shorting out the ABS sensor which destroyed the ABS control module repair cost $1200. When I told the service advisor my ABS light was on, he had a service bulletin at his station with exactly what he thought was wrong with my car and he told me it was a common issue with my car. The transmission needs a valve body due to premature wear cost $3500 to rebuild and install new valve body design. The timing chain has guides that wear and chain rubs against plastic then down to metal repair cost $1500. Nissan needs to fix all of these defective cars and pay the people who have made these costly repairs.

- Somerville , TN, USA

problem #365

Jun 012009


  • 50,000 miles
After the car runs for about 15 minutes the transmission slips or comes out of gear at 5-45 mph. When you pull out in traffic and are trying to get up to speed its like it goes from in gear to neutral with your foot on the gas. I have seen hundreds of complaints on 2005 Nissan Maxima with the same problem that I have that will get people killed god only knows how many already have!!! Nissan is well aware of the problems and refused to cooperate with a recall on a poor product. Please help all of the 2005 Maxima owners.

- Selmer, TN, USA

problem #364

Jul 042014


  • 159,120 miles
After coming to a stop the car does not want to accelerate. Going from 1st to 2nd is the biggest challenge but the car is not shifting well into any gear. The transmission already failed at 48,000 miles and was replaced under warranty. It is sad to know that Nissan would not correct the true problem, simply mask it for the time being and put a single mother right back into the same difficult situation. This is my only means of transportation. 2 out of the 4 cars that I have owned have been Nissan's. I purchased this car for reliability. Sure, problems will come about with any car over 100,000 miles, but you don't expect the transmission to go out on your Nissan. Nissan needs to correct the problem with these prematurely failing transmissions!

- Las Vegas, NV, USA

problem #363

Feb 142014

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 100,000 miles
My 2005 Nissan Maxima experiences shifting problems from 1st to 2nd gear, it slams into gear, revs the RPM up past 5, downshifts on its own. Delays when changing gears and them slammed itself into gear causing car to jerk forward or slamm to a stop. I have taken my car into shop several times was told that it is a defect in the transmission valve body, took car to dealer without them even testing car they said it was the motor mounts. This is the 4th Nissan I've owned never experienced this type of issue. After review of other complaints thousands of other owners are having the exact same problem some with as few as $30,000 miles this is obviously a manufacturing issue with this model of Nissan.

- Las Vegas, NV, USA

problem #362

Jun 162014


  • 89,000 miles


This vehicle along with many 2004-2006 Nissan maxims have a lot of transmission issues, my car has switched gets so hard I hd a minor whiplash, the rpms raise so high this needs to be addressed asap. This is a bad issue that happens it causes my vehicle to jump forward after pressing on the gas, and I have a 2 yr old daughter this is unacceptable and someone needs to do something about this, help the people, someone get off their assess and help us.

- Manville, RI, USA

problem #361

Jun 152014

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 131,440 miles
I bought a 2005 Nissan Maxima from private owner less than a week ago. The car had a hard shift when put into drive. The lady I bought from, told me that at the Nissan dealership they said the transmission is working properly and it needs the transmission mounts thats all. She replaced one side but did not have money to do the other side. I was able to drive about 1000 miles before the transmission stopped working. I have read so many complains online about the same exact issue and Nissan will not take any responsibility.

- Tucson, AZ, USA

problem #360

Jun 152014

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 105,342 miles
For about six months, I've been experiencing my transmission slipping/jerking from 2nd to 3rd gear when I either accelerate or decelerate and also when I move from park to drive, and reverse. I, like countless others who have had this issue was told it was my motor mounts at first. Got those fixed and the problem still persisted. Took it to a Nissan dealership and they said I need to replace my transmission ($4300). I am shocked to see so many people complaining about the same issue. The jerking is very abrupt and startling. There is a serious delay in changing gears and sometimes, the car won?T catch into drive/rhythm which causes the rpms to rev higher than normal. This is draining my gas mileage as well. I was told by another mechanic that it is the transmission selinoid and valve that need to be replaced which would cost $1,500. This is a known problem for these models and there are hundreds of valued Nissan owners who have to drive their car with uneasiness and fear that their transmission will fail them while on the road, endangering themselves and others. There needs to be a recall on the transmissions. This is not fair to people who have invested into these cars for reliability and safety.

- Herndon, VA, USA

problem #359

Jun 092014

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 87,000 miles
My 2005 Nissan Maxima started slippin gears between 2 and 3rd during moderate acceleration and when slowing down, took it the Nissan dealer, for them to tell me it needs a new transmission, I told them its a known problem, however they do not want to help me out, $4400 for repair.

- Chicago, IL, USA

problem #358

Jul 252013

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 65,000 miles
My 2005 Nissan Maxima SE gives delayed gear shifts and as a result a significant jerk while driving. It is mainly when driving at lower speeds. I am reporting as this shift issue is a known issue with 2005 Nissan Maxima and has been reported by several other owners. I hope Nissan fixes this known issue with my car.

- Miamisburg, OH, USA

problem #357

May 292014

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 107,142 miles
I drive the car and it is hard to shift gears. When I put the car in drive it jerks very hard. Called the dealership and it was said by the dealership that it is not the transmission but instead it was the motor mounts that were the problem. Once the motor mount was fixed, the problem still persist. I call the dealer back and they have yet to give me a response. When driving, in between 1st and 2nd gear it shift to the 4th or 5th gear causing the car to jerk forward if suddenly accelerated. Complicated situation.

- Newark, NJ, USA

problem #356

May 052014

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 95,000 miles
Like so many other people, my 2005 Nissan began shifting roughly between reverse and drive, then between lower gears. It would slip out of gear when driving, and the engine would rev up to ~3500rpm before slamming back into gear. Clearly, I have the same bad Maxima transmission as everyone else. There really should be a recall.

- Atlanta, GA, USA

problem #355

Jun 102011


  • 95,000 miles
The transmission jerked while exiting the freeway and coming to a stop at the end of the off ramp. It downshifted improperly and will not come out of 5th gear. It jumps from 2nd gear to 4th or 5th when taking off.

- Overland Park, KS, USA

problem #354

May 062014

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 100,000 miles
Two years ago, my 2005 Maxima started having a hard jerk when it shifts from 1st-2nd gear, and from 2nd-1st. It is not safe to drive it on the roads. This Maxima had many problems and lots of headaches. A piece of junk, no more Nissan cars.

- Livingston, NJ, USA

problem #353

May 192014


  • 76,000 miles
The transmission is doing hard shifts and I fear it is going to fail. Also the throttle position sensor is giving me problems too.

- Ann Arbor, MI, USA

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