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.


pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
No data
Average Mileage:
118,750 miles
Total Complaints:
3 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (3 reports)
2006 Nissan Pathfinder transmission problems

transmission problem

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2006 Nissan Pathfinder Owner Comments

problem #3

Jun 242016

Pathfinder SE, Off-Road 3.8L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 123,000 miles


Wife complained of transmission slipping last summer (2016). I drove and confirmed the issue. I checked the tranny dipstick (which Nissan keeps screwed down for only service techs to check) at engine operating temp and found no fluid on stick. It took 2 qts to correctly fill tranny. Shudder and slipping returned a few days later. I was upset because Roseville and Yuba City dealers both inspected tranny fluid within the past 15 months. We took the Pathfinder to Future Nissan of Roseville where we purchased it new (2006) and used them for regular maintenance. Advisor claimed to know the cause without it being inspected. He claimed cross contamination with coolant and tranny fluid. I checked the overflow tank before leaving vehicle for inspection and saw murky looking water.

Nissan dealer quoted $4000 to fix and also said my timing chain had issues which would cost and additional $1500 to repair. I will write a separate complaint about that interesting story. Anyway, I took vehicle home rather than fork out repair costs equal to the truck's value. I began researching the internet to see if anyone else had this problem and discovered a class-action lawsuit against Nissan for failed plastic radiator end tanks. Nissan provided a warranty type settlement where they paid up to $3000 but reimbursement was capped at vehicles less than 10 yrs/100k mi. I contacted Nissan North America consumer affairs and received a case number. Their final response (was that my car was past the time/mileage limits.

You might ask why I am still upset. Here is why... I was serving overseas (Korea, Germany) from 2009-2013 and finishing up a 24-yr career in the Air Force. The lawsuit was completely unknown to me. I retired in March 2013 and the lawsuit was over and done with. Since my return to the States in early 2013 till June 2016... NOBODY from NISSAN bothered to tell me that my vehicle was at risk. I could have replaced my radiator for a few hundred bucks vs. a few thousand. I'm not asking for something special because I served in the military. I just feel that it is not right to make an exception in this case and put value in a loyal Nissan customer. I took my Pathfinder overseas with my family and Nissan doesn't care that I was not around to partake in their lackluster response of a settlement. Nissan didn't care that I was planning to buy another one of their cars. Heck, I even got my sister to buy a 2013 Altima.

The wife and I loved our Pathfinder and up until that point... it was relatively maintenance free. Now I have a paperweight of a SUV sitting on my driveway for the past year. Trust me... I will never buy another Nissan. I will stick to German metal like my wife and I currently drive. Good example, bought a BMW in Germany and the dealer damaged interior pieces while repairing faulty widows on a first model year convertible. This went unnoticed before I shipped the car to the States. BMW of North America repaired the car and gave me an even better loaner car with no questions asked. Summary, I feel like Nissan left me hanging and my only recourse at this point is to contact my local news channel about how Nissan hides issues. See my complaint on the timing belt and pending lawsuit.

- Evan W., Yuba City, US

problem #2

Feb 022016

Pathfinder SE V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 118,000 miles

Should have read the reviews before I bought a Nissan. Thought they were good cars. Will never buy another Nissan again

- Jan B., Ballwin, MO, US

problem #1

Aug 042015

Pathfinder SE 4.0L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 115,200 miles

I have a Nissan Pathfinder 2006. I took it to a mechanic after I noticed a heavy vibration and shuddering sounds while accelerating the car. At the mechanic we noticed that the radiator is broken or about to be broken. I don't know what to do. The mileage of my car is around 115,000 and I don't want my transmission to crash down.

- Julio M., Teaneck, NJ, US

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