Notes: The 2005-2007 Pathfinder appears to have a widespread defect where coolant leaks into the transmission, causing transmission failure around 90,000 miles. Repair costs are typically upwards of $3,500.

According to the New York Times & a class action lawsuit, the defect actually extends through 2010 model year. More info here.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
85,845 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 Pathfinder transmission problems

transmission problem

Find something helpful? Spread the word.
Get notified about new defects, investigations, recalls & lawsuits for the 2006 Nissan Pathfinder:

Unsubscribe any time. We don't sell/share your email.

2006 Nissan Pathfinder Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #37

Mar 042014


  • 114,000 miles


The contact owns a 2006 Nissan Pathfinder. While driving approximately 25 mph, the vehicle stalled. The dealer stated that the transmission failed. The manufacturer was notified. The failure mileage was 114,000.

- Marion, VA, USA

problem #36

Jun 032014


  • 124,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Nissan Pathfinder. The contact stated that while waiting at a traffic light, the vehicle started shaking violently and stalled. The contact mentioned that the check engine light was illuminated. The vehicle was inspected by a licensed mechanic, who diagnosed that the transmission fluid leaked into the radiator and water leaked into the transmission. The vehicle was not taken to the dealer. The contact referenced a recall under NHTSA campaign id 10V517000 (engine and engine cooling). The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 124,000.

- Crawford Ville, FL, USA

problem #35

Jul 232011

Pathfinder 6-cyl

  • 153,243 miles
I am filing a complaint about a defective transmission. I had purchased the vehicle for two weeks, when without any warning, the transmission just stopped while traveling on the highway. This vehicle has a history of liquids flowing into the transmission, thus causing it to need to be replaced. Hundreds of complaints from people that have experienced the same problem has been documented. I will never purchase a Nissan Pathfinder again in life. A transmission is a very, very expensive repair, that I can not afford.

- Uncasville, CT, USA

problem #34

Jun 132013

Pathfinder 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 98,897 miles


I was preparing to merge onto the highway, I slowed down to yield to oncoming traffic. When the gap between oncoming cars was large enough I accelerated and proceeded to merge. Instead of accelerating my car began to rumble and move slowly. Instead of properly merging onto the highway it just slowly rolled into oncoming traffic. I became horrified and I was afraid to drive on the highway, and I had to reverse to back out. I took back roads to Nissan dealer. The car would rumble and vibrate and drive slowly as if it was stuck in 1st gear. Dealer determined that "transmission oil mixed with antifreeze" due to "cooler hose cracked and ready to break" rendering transmission incapable of proper operation. Nissan dealer replaced transmission, radiator, and flushed cooling system.

- Brooklyn, NY, USA

problem #33

Mar 162012

Pathfinder 6-cyl

  • 101,000 miles
When I try to accelerate, my vehicle shakes and the speed does not increase. I had the vehicle looked at and I was told the transmission fluid is mixing with the radiator. There is a purple slime under the radiator cap and there is corrosion under the cap of the overflow. This will cost thousands of dollars to fix which I can't afford. Trying to merge in with traffic is dangerous since the vehicle doesn't always accelerate.

- Pasadena, MD, USA

problem #32

Feb 262012

Pathfinder 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 92,200 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Nissan Pathfinder. The contact stated that while driving approximately 70 mph, the vehicle was resistant to acceleration. The vehicle was towed to the dealer where they advised the contact that coolant leaked into transmission and the fluid from the transmission leaked into the radiator. The radiator and the transmission would both need replacing. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was contacted and they offered no assistance. The failure and the current mileages were approximately 92,200. Updated 04/27/12

- Conway, AR, USA

problem #31

Nov 152011

Pathfinder 6-cyl

  • 92,500 miles


Transmission and radiator fluids mixed and caused a major lock up and overheating in the car. The transmission was destroyed and the radiator needed to be replaced. Nissan is aware of the malfunction but failed to notify or do anything about the issue. This is not only a safety risk, but a mechanical risk to the owner and Nissan should at least notify the owners of this potential risk.

- Tulsa, OK, USA

problem #30

Oct 192011

Pathfinder 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 71,867 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Nissan Pathfinder. While driving approximately 40 mph, the vehicle began to vibrate with hesitation. The vehicle was able to remain in operation. The contact later inspected the vehicle and detected the transmission fluid was a brown color and the radiator coolant leaked into the transmission. The manufacturer was made aware of the problem. The approximate failure mileage was 71,867. The VIN was not available. Updated11/29/11 updated 12/14/11

- Syracuse , NY, USA

problem #29

Mar 252011

Pathfinder 6-cyl

  • 89,080 miles
Nissan issued an extended warranty to replace faulty radiators and transmissions affected by these faulty radiators yet did not increase the warranty by the normal 12mo 12,000 mile instead they increased it to 96months and only 80,000 miles not 96,000 miles simply because most failures happen over 80,000 miles. They also claimed this was not a safety recall. When the radiator affects the transmission and the vehicle can stall during driving. How is this not a safety issue. This is from their letter informing consumers: "in vehicles equipped with automatic transmissions, a crack in the radiator assembly might occur at higher mileages leading to internal leakage of engine coolant. While the majority of vehicles will not experience this issue, Nissan is extending the warranty as it applies to the radiator assembly to demonstrate our commitment to stand behind our products and our customers. Nissan is extending your vehicle's new vehicle limited warranty as it applies to the radiator assembly and its component parts from 36 months/36,000 miles to 96 months/80,000 miles, including damage, repairs, replacement, and related towing resulting from this issue."a crack in the radiator is caused from thermal schock. Which Nissan knew about before installing the original radiator in my vehicle. I know this because they applied for a patent on Jan 24,2006 which was published Sept 2006 therefore they knowingly installed radiators that would undergo thermal shock ie crack. See the entire publication where they are filing for a patent recognizing the existing problematic radiators: Vehicle cooling system, publication number US20060196634, application number us/11/337437, assignees Nissan motor co ltd calsonic kansei corporation, inventors sato yousuke ishikawa takayuki iwasaki mitsuru filing date 24 Jan 2006publication date 07 Sep 2006. Make Nissan replace all defects.

- Sammamish, WA, USA

problem #28

Aug 182011


  • 120,235 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Nissan Pathfinder. The contact stated that the vehicle would hesitate to accelerate while driving. The vehicle was taken to an authorized dealer, who diagnosed that the radiator fluid was leaking into the transmission. As a result, both the radiator and transmission needed to be replaced. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure, but offered no assistance. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure and current mileages were 120,235. Updated 09/30/11 updated 3/29/12

- Ontario , CA, USA

problem #27

Aug 132011

Pathfinder 6-cyl

  • 123,000 miles


Vehicle coming to a complete stop when the transmission control module failed due to an electronic short resulting from a radiator cooling line rupturing and flooding the transmission. This is a 2006 Nissan Pathfinder. I checked on line and was surprised (amazed) at the number of individuals who have had the same problem. There are even class action lawsuits pending related to Nissan knowingly aware of a defective radiator cooling line that breaks mixing into the transmission. My vehicle has been diagnosed by a Nissan dealership quoting $6,500 to replace the transmission and radiator. Nissan also extended the factory warranty to 80K miles when it was discovered that there was a defective part. Thank you. But, they never notified me that there was a problem. And, you don't know there is one until it fails and creates the problem. This is very dangerous. As the car will die if the module shorts out. It is the same module that tells the electronic ignition system that the vehicle is in park. My opinion, Nissan being aware of the defective part, in collusion with a vendor who provided the part. Is darn near not only fraud but conspiracy. I pinged several dealerships who openly advised of the defective part and the number of vehicles they have fixed. I asked the dealer how long to get a transmission. I was advised that the one required to fix the 2006 Nissan had 148 transmissions on back order. I should expect 4 to 6 weeks to get one. But, of course. My warranty is expired. I was also advised that the line that ruptures normally does between 90 and 110K miles. This is not only a safety issue. It is down right fraud and deceptive practices. Deceptive, because of not notifying owners. Fraud by knowingly having a defective part on a vehicle.

- Rockwall, TX, USA

problem #26

Jul 162011

Pathfinder 6-cyl

  • 70,000 miles
Transmission stutter during acceleration due to radiator fluid leaking into transmission. Fuel gauge gives false readings at all times to the actual amount of fuel in tank due to faulty sending unit.

- Farmington, MO, USA

problem #25

Jun 062011

Pathfinder 6-cyl

  • 150,500 miles
We need to look into the transmissions on 2005 and 2006 Nissan Pathfinders and frontiers. Finding several other people who have experienced the same issues. It seems to be a big problem to the tune of over $7000.

- New Braunfels, TX, USA

problem #24

Jun 262011

Pathfinder 6-cyl

  • 85,000 miles
Nissan knows they have an issue with radiator coolant leaking into transmissions. This causes the transmission to fail. Should the transmission fail while in traffic it could cause and accident. I own a 2006 Nissan Pathfinder that I bought through my local Nissan dealership brand new. It has 85000 miles on it and the transmission will no longer go in reverse. Nissan extended the warranty to 80000 knowing that most were failing after that mileage. They refuse to help with the problem. My vehicle has sat at the dealership for 2 weeks waiting for them to decide not to fix it. This vehicle also has a fuel system problem that was recalled for some 2006 models but not all. Mine was not covered under the recall and the warranty extension was useless also as the part failed just after the mileage given. In 2008 I was in a front end collision with this same vehicle and the air bag did not deploy. When I asked the Nissan dealership (same one) why it didn't deploy I was told that I didn't hit the car on center therefore I missed the sensor. After them having my vehicle for nearly a month to repair it I had it back 1 week when I received a recall notice for the airbag sensor. This car is extremely unsafe and Nissan knows it.

- Hudson, NH, USA

problem #23

Jun 202011

Pathfinder 6-cyl

  • 86,000 miles
Nissan 2006 Pathfinder needed a new battery. Changed the battery and took for a test drive. Very sluggish from zero to 30 miles per hour. Not able to accelerate at all. Was told I needed a new transmission but I was 6,000 miles over the warrenty, so Nissan said too bad. I do not understand why a car with 86,000 miles needs a new transmission. Why is Nissan not standing by their product" if this is a common problem why is Nissan not standing up for their customers"

- Powder Springs, GA, USA

problem #22

Jun 282011


  • 98,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Nissan Pathfinder. The contact stated that while attempting to accelerate from a stop, the vehicle violently jerked into gear. The check engine light also began to illuminate on the instrument panel. The vehicle was taken to an authorized dealer where the contact was informed that the radiator fluid was leaking into the transmission fluid, causing the failure. The contact was also advised to replace the transmission. The vehicle was then taken to an independent mechanic, who recommended the same repairs. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure and current mileages were 98,000.

- Daytona Beach, FL, USA

problem #21

May 072011


  • 147,156 miles
Radiator was leaking but did not cause any over heating issues with the car but it did cause the transmission to break and now needs to be replaced they say its a defect in the radiator.

- Bloomingdale, NJ, USA

problem #20

Apr 282011

Pathfinder 6-cyl

  • 100,000 miles
While operating the vehicle, moderate to heavy vibration occurred followed by an extreme loss of power. Thankfully I was not on an expressway. Took to dealer and was told transmission was contaminated with coolant, requiring a replacement of the radiator and transmission, approximately $5,000. While there, it was inferred that this has been a recurrent problem with this model. There were 2 other vehicles there that day with similar complaints. The dealer (first team Nissan) has submitted to Nissan North America a request for some relief. The vehicle currently has 100,000 miles on it, but I believe strongly, based on various web searches and some complaints on this site, that there is a manufacturing defect that needs to be addressed. I have not heard back from the dealer or the manufacturer about this. The dealership said they handle these on a 1st come 1st served basis and he believes they have a very large back-log of complaints. The problem was diagnosed by the dealer May 3, 2011.

- Roanoke, VA, USA

problem #19

Feb 102011

Pathfinder 6-cyl

  • 96,426 miles
I purchased a 2006 certified Nissan Pathfinder in 2008. I was guaranteed 100K engine and power train warranty. I currently have 96,426kmiles and the transmission gave out about 1 month ago in saline ks. I took the car to the Nissan dealer in Kansas and was told that it would be covered. However after waiting over a month for the part Nissan stated that the transmission gave out because of the transmission cooling system leaking therefore the transmission is not covered. I have contacted Nissan Corp directly and have received the same answer. This is hazardous because the transmission gave out without warning during a snow storm. Likely the car managed to coast to the side of the road. I had my car shipped back to my home in clarksville tn. And was informed by the delivery driver that the parts were in the back of my car. So now I have a car that was taken apart but not fixed with a bunch of parts in the cargo area and about $2000 in debt for a rental car and shipping the car back too clarksville. Since I have had this problem I have found out that the transmission and cooling systems have been malfunctioning since 2004.

- Clarksville, TN, USA

problem #18

Dec 262010


  • 71,000 miles
The contact owns a 2006 Nissan Pathfinder. The contact stated that while attempting to place the vehicle in gear the vehicle did not accelerated over 20 mph. The contact mechanic inspected the vehicle, the failure was located at the radiator water penetrated the transmission. The vehicle will be taken to the dealer. The vehicle had not been repaired. The failure and the current mileages were 71,000.

- Philadelphia , PA, USA

Read the next 17 complaints »

Not what you are looking for?