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:
2 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
126,398 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 Maxima drivetrain problems

drivetrain problem

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2006 Nissan Maxima Owner Comments (Page 12 of 12)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #19

Nov 282010

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 72,000 miles


After filing my first complaint with you for the transmission defect of my 2006 Nissan Maxima a year ago, I have discovered at least 1000 complaints for the same dangerous and very costly defect for that transmission. My original ODI number is 10367294. It is mind boggling to me and my fellow 2004-2006 Maxima owners that no defect investigation has been launched. Just because (maybe) no deaths or serious accidents have not been publicized does not mean that it is not a true safety concern. Please take the 1000 complaints that you have received seriously and at least launch an investigation.

- Riverdale, IL, USA

problem #18

Oct 012010


  • 95,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Nissan Maxima. The contact stated that the vehicle would violently jerk and he was unable to shift gears safely. The dealer had not been notified. The vehicle was taken to a private mechanic who diagnosed the vehicle with a faulty valve body in the transmission and advised that the contact should replace the transmission. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure nor was the vehicle repaired. The current mileage was 124,000 and the approximate failure mileage was 95,000.

- Vicksburg, MS, USA

problem #17

Sep 092011

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 94,000 miles
My 06 Maxima sl is jerking on the upshift from 1st to 2nd and 2nd to 3rd, sometimes even on the downshift. The jerking is so unpredictable and very dangerous. It's been going on for a few weeks now. I had my co workers in my car at my lunch break and the car was coming to a stop slowing down from 15 mph and the car jumped forward after downshifting from 2nd to 1st gear. My car jumped into the intersection and was almost hit by a Ford 150 truck. Luckily the truck swerved out of the way and it scared everyone in the car. I took it to the Nissan dealership and they said they did not know what the problem was after running a diagnostics. They recommended me changing my transmission fuel. I changed my transmission fuel and the problem is still happening. This problem should be a recall. After reading online of all the thousands of people who are having the same problem I feel it's only a matter of time before I end up in a terrible accident due to the jerking of the transmission hurting my self or other people.

- San Diego, CA, USA

problem #16

Jul 062011


  • 119,000 miles


The contact owns a 2006 Nissan Maxima. The contact stated that while driving 40 mph, the transmission skipped. The vehicle was taken to the dealer who replaced the transmission fluids but the failure persisted. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 119,000. The VIN was not available.

- Philadelphia, PA, USA

problem #15

Feb 012011


  • 80,000 miles
Transmission failed and needed to be replaced at 85,000 miles. Car was very jerky at low speeds both when accelerating and decelerating and often wouldn't accelerate from a stopped position (dangerous when anticipating time to make left turns across traffic). I often thought I would be rear ended (due to the car not accelerating) or would rear end someone because of the jumping of the car.

- Kennett Square, PA, USA

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problem #14

Jul 012011


  • miles
I have a 2006 Nissan Maxima, bought brand new fully loaded car in early 2006. After 80,000 miles on it, the car started jerking on me. Had transmission fluid changed but it didnt help. Recently came to know that transmission needs to be replaced, a $5000 expense. The car starts jerking when it is hot or have been driven in city for atleast 15-20 mins. The shifting of gears is difficult. It has stopped on me many times while driving, a high risk when I am on highways. When merging on highway, the increase in speed takes longer than usual, so makes it very difficult to merge. Pls recall this, because it is not safe to drive and lot of people are experiencing this.

- Ashburn, VA, USA

problem #13

May 152010


  • 85,000 miles


Automatic transmission seems to struggle from take off to shifting from 1st, 2nd and 3rd gear. When brake pedal is released the vehicle makes a violent forward thrusting motion accompanied by loud crashing noise similar to that of being hit in a rear end crash. When driving the vehicle at speeds of 50 mph and above the gears can be heard shifting around as if the car is in neutral. The RPM gauge goes up to 3 and beyond and the engine can be heard revving up. When this happens I release my foot from the gas pedal and let the car shift back down until the noises stop. The Nissan service team diagnosed the car as needing a transmission flush and fuel injection cleaning. These services were performed but the problems still remain.

- Tomball, TX, USA

problem #12

Jul 012010


  • 77,000 miles
I have a 2006, Nissan Maxima SE. I've been having severe problems with my transmission. The car jerks violently when its changes gears between 1st and 2nd, as well as between 2nd and 3rd gear. After doing research on this problem online, I've seen countless number of people who complain about the same problem. I re-built the transmission at my expense of $3,200 and it wasn't over yet, then currently my check engine light is on and my car wont start, I would have to turn the key on and off 4-6 times every time I need to drive for it to start. My speedometer stopped working, therefore I can't see how fast or slow I'm driving nor is the mileage calculation are working it has been stuck at 86,745. So many people have experienced this problem from 2004 to 2008. I don't see how this could go on. While driving on the highway the electrical fails and the lights on the dashboard dim to where I am not able to control the vehicle and unable to use my signals for safety concerns, especially while traveling at night time. The vehicle shakes and is unstable at times. This is my only transportation to and from work and I need a solution to this problem. The sad part is that I have taken it to the dealer four times now and every time I pay these high fees for diagnostics and they can not give me a solution to my problem.

- West Palm Beach, FL, USA

problem #11

Apr 152011


  • 73,390 miles
I would like to add my info to the case you have open concerning the Nissan Maxima line of cars and the transmission. I have less than 80,000 miles on my 2006 Maxima and have been experiencing transmission problems. It started with not being able to get into gear after a cold start early in the mornings, that would last about 2 minutes. After pulling out of the driveway and rolling down the hill the car would act fine. I was told a transmission flush would correct the problem from a Nissan tech over the phone. Now it is more serious, when placing it in gear it makes a loud "thump" sound. It sounds like I tearing up something and I know that will lead to more problems. The car is currently sitting in the carport making it difficult for me to get to work. I purchased the car in 08 so I am still making car notes on a vehicle that is not usable.

- Atlanta, GA, USA

problem #10

Jul 132009

Maxima 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 75,000 miles
There is a factory problem with the 04-06 Nissan Maxima automatic transmissions. Mine is a 06, it jerks whenever it goes from 3rd to 2nd, also from drive to reverse. It happens once the car warms up. Usually after the 50K miles, some after 85K miles. The problem is in the valve body, it has been redesigned by Nissan 3 times already, and they say there are no problems with the transmission. Once the valve body is not working as it should, it produces internal damage also inside the transmission, then it will brake motor (en gine) and transmission mounts, it is a serious problem. Also to go from second to third the engine will go need to go athigh revolutions, it may kill the engine. And an engine dead in middle of traffic is a receipt for a serious accident. I hope you can address this and make Nissan fix their problems. It is unbelievable that in a car that costs 30K+ new has a serious design flaw.

- Dunwoody, GA, USA

problem #9

Apr 222011


  • 76,000 miles


Hello my name is [xxx] and I have a 2006 Nissan Maxima sl with 76K. This car has seemed to be more of a headache than anything else. Here are a list of problems. 1.) transmission: Jerks bad, free rev's bad, jumps from park to drive and reverse baaad. 2.) ABS system: The system initiated itself and I took it to midas there scanner read that there were no problems but still (to this day) bad grinding when I brake and rubbing sound when I accelerate. (happening for 3 days now) 3.) car was making bad clicking noise while engine was on....diagnosis from dealership; timing chain $1200 noise is still sounding after replacement. Please I have read countless forums hoping that I wasn't the only one....the transmission especially is defective please! information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- St. Louis , MO, USA

problem #8

Dec 202010


  • 81,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Nissan Maxima. While attempting to shift gears, the engine exhibited an abnormal increase in rpms. Also, the gear would not engage and had to be shifted with abrupt force. The failure was experienced numerous times. The vehicle was taken to the local mechanic who performed a diagnostic and advised that the transmission failed and would either need to be rebuilt or replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was 81,000 and the current 90,221.

- Tucson , AZ, USA

problem #7

Aug 012010

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 86,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Nissan Maxima. The contact stated that while attempting to accelerate from a stop, there was an increase in engine rpms but the vehicle was extremely resistant to acceleration attempts. After a few moments the vehicle jerked and shifted into gear. The failure intermittently recurred while accelerating from complete stops. The contact also stated that the vehicle would intermittently jerk while braking from any speed. The vehicle was taken to an independent repair shop where they were unable to diagnose the failure. The failure continued and the vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was 86,000 and the current mileage was 87,000. Updated 05/04/11 the consumer stated the transmission began slipping the consumer took the vehicle to the dealer, and the transmission fluid was flushed. Updated 11/04/11

- Dublin, GA, USA

problem #6

Jun 012010


  • 70,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Nissan Maxima. The vehicle was experiencing recurring transmission failures in which it would jerk when shifted into reverse as well as hesitate while accelerating. The hesitations would occur when the vehicle was shifting from first to second gear. The vehicle was taken to an authorized dealer where the transmission was flushed. Approximately one month later, the failure began to recur. The failure mileage was 70,000 and the current mileage was 72,667.

- Coral Gables, FL, USA

problem #5

Jul 022010

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 75,000 miles
I purchased a 2006 Nissan Maxima in 2009 the vehicle with approx. 67,000 as fine for the first 2 months. Here is where my problems started to occur, when turning towards the highway I accelerated to speed the car hesitated and was putting then the check engine light went on. Once I returned from out of state I contacted the dealership empire Nissan in lakewood, Colorado and let them know what the situation was, the salesmen stated to disconnect the wire to the battery to reset the light, I did that and it went right back on after a couple of starts. I took the vehicle to a local mechanic where he said it was the oxygen sensor? it was replaced, then the vehicle was fine for awhile until the odometer read approx. 75,000 I noticed that if I was going down a hill at a fast pace then pushed the brakes to slow down the RPM's revved up to 5 and the engine would make a loud noise to accompany the RPM's at 5. vehicle has been worse ever since I noticed that, it then started to slip in gear, going from R to D or D to R once shifter is in place it would pause then jerk into gear. Took the vehicle to aamco they stated that it was the motor mounts and also the fluids to the transmission. $700 later the vehicle is worse! now the car while in motion will kick and jerk hard in gear while the RPM's go all the way up to 5. when car comes to a stop with foot on the break car will jump forward. My latest incident is when at a stop and move to accelerate the car starts off as if it was in 5th gear! got the car home and put the shifter in manual transmission and it reads the engine is in 5th gear. I am a single mother of 4 young children, the car is so unpredictable, whether it is going to jerk into gear or completely stall out. There has to be something done with the transmission before someone gets killed driving this same type of car, there are several pages of complaints on the same issue with the same car, please please do a recall on the transmission of the 2006 Nissan Maxima!!!!!!

- Lakewood, CO, USA

problem #4

Oct 202010

Maxima 6-cyl

  • 62,000 miles
My 06 Maxima transmission starts slipping around 62,000. When its going up shift around 20-30 mph it starts to jerk really hard. And also when im slowing down.

- Pembroke Pines , FL, USA

problem #3

Jul 072010


  • 103,000 miles
Transmission problems with 2006 Nissan Maxima. Transmission slipping.

- Rome, GA, USA

problem #2

Sep 162009


  • 28,000 miles
I have a 2006 Nissan Maxima SE that I bought new in Jan 2007. Several months ago I replaced the oem tires because I was old they were worn out and were the cause of steering wheel vibration above 60mph. I replaced the tires and front brakes/rotors at my Nissan dealership and the vibration was reduced but still noticeable. It gets worse with cold temperatures. They have inspected the struts and engine mounts and say there is nothing wrong with my car but the vibration is still there.

- Harvest, AL, USA

problem #1

Nov 042006


  • 88,000 miles
My transmission was rebuilt on my 06 Nissan Maxima.

- Abingdon, MD, USA

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