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 1 of 23)

problem #452

Jan 012017


  • 170,000 miles


Vehicle is shifting extremely hard in lower gear and at stopping

- Southaven, MS, USA

problem #451

Jan 012012


  • miles
The transmission on my 2005 Nissan/Maxima is hard shifting when engine/transmissionis is hot, delaying take off and kicking extremely bad when picking up speed and the automatic transmission shifts gears. Two motor mount are already broken as a result of this problem. Nissan dealer recommended replace transmission. A transmission specialized shop inspected and tested the transmission for second opinion and did no find problem in the transmission, other than 2 bad sensors. Sensors was replaced and 6 months later the problem started again. *interior sunvisor lightning cover broken in both sides, driver's and passenger. Player not working, not playing. *original chrome wheels are corroded, breaking the seal on two of the tires causing pressure to lower and makes tire go flat in less than a week, if not attended soon.

- Albuquerque, NM, USA

problem #450

May 172013


  • miles
Transmission failure on the highway..

- Goodyear, AZ, USA

problem #449

Dec 312016


  • 97,000 miles


The car is over winding and sounds like the transmission is slipping. There is a significant spike in the rpms before it shifts between gear to gear. It's only got 98K and it's meticulously maintained. It's been happening for about a thousand miles.

- Vero Beach, FL, USA

problem #448

Dec 212016


  • 169,000 miles
My transmission just failed for the second time after being replaced the first time by Nissan as it was under warranty. It was regularly flushed/ serviced. There is a major issue with the transmission itself and Nissan must do something about it.

- Upper Marlboro, MD, USA

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problem #447

Apr 082015


  • 68,000 miles
Hard shifting transmission, stalling at cruising speeds, flashing dash lights. Transmission slippage.

- Holbrook, MA, USA

problem #446

Dec 132016


  • 85,000 miles


Transmission bangs into gear. Winds up then slams into gear and accelerates up immediately. I almost hit another car. This happened while going 40 mph.

- Orange Park, FL, USA

problem #445

Jul 052013


  • 90,000 miles
When I would shift it would bang, but then it would drive fine, and when it idles it would go rev between 1000 and 2000 RPM. Once you drive it like it heats up tho it won't do it, like it will do it if you are shifting when you are first starting the car it's hit and miss.

- Pittsburgh, PA, USA

problem #444

Aug 152015

Maxima 6-cyl

  • miles
Transmission started slipping gears right around 58,000 miles. I would drive it and it would get stuck in 5th gear. I would have to switch over to manual to try and switch gears and when I would do that I would experience very hard shifting and jerking. If I'm switching from park to drive while stationary, extremely hard jerking and it would stall for 5 seconds before going into drive. Nissan refuses to fix the issue. I guess they want a certain amount of people to die before issuing a recall! this is extremely dangerous to drive when the car does this. I will never buy another crappy Nissan ever again! not to mention the sensors that has constantly been replaced over and over thinking it will fix the jerking issues, but it doesn't. imagine having a car full of kids while it does this. Thanks Nissan for being so concerned about safety!

- Hawthorne, CA, USA

problem #443

Oct 222016


  • 186,000 miles
Hard shifting from transmission when coming to a stop. Slippage of gears when in a stationary position in park going into drive (takes about 5 seconds)

- Brighton, CO, USA

problem #442

Aug 132016


  • 101,000 miles


While driving my 2005 Nissan Maxima the gears slip and jump into gear with a violent jerk that is affecting my driving and may cause me to lose control of the car and possible injury myself or others. There is a transmission issue with the valve body that is causing this violent shifting and it seems that I am not the only one that has this issue. It is disgrace that the NHTSA had done nothing to address this wide spread issue, must people die first so it does get addressed. I will also contact my state representative to report the issue. I opened up a case with Nissan Consumer Affairs with no luck or admittance of their failed component. Nissan dealership diagnosed transmission with a P0726 code and had an open technical bulletin ntb11035 which is acknowledgement of Nissan failed design of the transmission valve body. Nissan has quoted me over $2500 to repair their failed design component.

- Milford Ct, CT, USA

problem #441

Sep 082016


  • 206,000 miles
My car has given me trouble since about a month after I bought it. I bought it used, but have been told Nissan are very reliable vehicles even with high mileage. It will not excel forward at any speed until it gets up to 40mph after stopping at a light or stop sign. It is a disaster in waiting. I drive early in the morning and at night for work. I am afraid someone is going to plow into me because I am not moving fast enough. The transmission jerks bad enough to jerk my head back whenever I put it in reverse. I am afraid to drive it anymore! this has been ongoing for more than a year. I quit driving it a few weeks ago due to the jerking of the transmission when I put it into reverse. The date below is the last day I drove it.

- Bay Saint Louis, MS, USA

problem #440

Aug 242016


  • 124,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Nissan Maxima. While driving 30 mph, the vehicle hesitated, jerked, and made a loud abnormal noise. The vehicle felt as if it would stall without warning. The dealer diagnosed that the transmission was slipping and needed to be rebuilt. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was approximately 124,000.

- Jacksonville, FL, USA

problem #439

Apr 082016


  • miles
Transmission problems

- Virginia Beach, VA, USA

problem #438

Sep 072014


  • 98,000 miles
Transmission started failing at around 98K miles. Jerks and slips while driving. Doesn't perform properly while operating vehicle. Happens while driving on any type road, any conditions, any time and at any speed.

- Anna, TX, USA

problem #437

Aug 262016


  • 225,000 miles
At a red light, car stalled, took a few seconds to restart. When trying to accelerate, it revs like it has a strain; not going anywhere fast, until it gets to 40 mph. This has happened several times. We have changed the fuel pump, alternator, and battery. Each time we changed a part, the car would be fine for a few months. I am afraid when this happens that someone is going to plow into me because they can't stop in time as my car is going too slow. My husband seems to think it's not as much the transmission as maybe something electrical. Nissan should be responsible for this seeing as there are so many complaints about the same thing. Someone is going to be killed or probably already has, but no one can tell what the cause of the accident if the driver is dead! I love the car and would buy another Nissan, but I will research them first! I am glad to see it is not my imagination about the car jumping while accelerating. It seems to only do it when I am driving, but it stops jumping when I take my foot off the accelerator.

- Bay Saint Louis, MS, USA

problem #436

Jan 012014


  • 90,000 miles
The transmission on my 2005 Nissan Maxima 3.5 SE is jerking and slipping/spinning severely. It started around 90,000 miles. This happens when down shifting or slowing down and when taking off. It's so bad when taking off, you can see the car jerk. When taking off, the car hesitates until jerking into low gear.

- Lee's Summit, MO, USA

problem #435

Jun 012015

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 96,000 miles
Transmission slips shifting from 2nd to 3rd gear. Engine rpms rev to approx. 5000-6000. When the car finally shifts, there is a loud clunking noise that comes in the rear end of the car.

- Boca Raton, FL, USA

problem #434

Dec 072015


  • 100,000 miles
The car turned 100000 miles and the transmission began to shift hard when accelerating and decelerating. The transmission would also slip when going down the road at travel speed,

- Helena, MT, USA

problem #433

Feb 122016

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 175,000 miles
"tamara inflators" seat belts didn't lock or light did not come on. Smashed body all the way to back seat bottom to ground. Engine was idling very high felt/sound as if we were going 60 but only was going 40. No air bags came on. Brakes grinding. Back window blew out and tires flat in back.. windows slow on drivers side. When the sheriff Tahoe hit us at 80mph on U.S. 40 greenfield in was in the shop at J&M truck an trailer on the West side of indianapolis having the oil leaked fixed and tires all fixed and rotors and lights by [xxx] a couple months prior. I had my little girl in the back seat as well where sheriff hit and ran. I uploaded a before and after picture. VIN#[xxx] information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Greenfield, IN, USA

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