Notes: While there are fewer "radiator leaked into transmission" complaints for the 2008 model year, they are starting to pile up. Buyer beware.

Nissan has extended their radiator warranty on 2005-2010 Pathfinders to 8 years/80,000 miles. However the average mileage for transmission failure for earlier model years is 95,000 miles, which conveniently (for Nissan) is just past the limit of their extended warranty. Owners beware.


hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
97,028 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.

2008 Nissan Pathfinder engine problems

engine problem

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2008 Nissan Pathfinder Owner Comments (Page 2 of 2)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #11

Feb 112014

Pathfinder 6-cyl

  • 103,000 miles


I started feeling my car slip gears when it reached certain speeds, as well as the vdc, slip and engine lights came on. Within the next few days, as I was driving, my car overheated and the antifreeze poured out of it. The radiator was cracked and had leaked into the transmission. When my husband called Nissan and told them our issue, and that our mileage was 103,000, they said we were no longer under warranty and it would cost approximately $6,000 (obviously knowing what the issue was from all the other transmissions that were ruined from their error). My husband's friend, who is mechanic, replaced the radiator and flushed the transmission fluid. It seemed to run fine for the next few months, with the occasional flush of the transmission fluid. Within the last week, the car began slipping again. By yesterday, it would not come out of second gear. My transmission is shot and needs to be replaced. I am extremely disappointed with Nissan, as we have been loyal customers for the last 14 years. I loved my Pathfinder, and would think that after spending $36,000 on a car, it would hold up longer than 6 years. It is absolutely unacceptable that Nissan will not take responsibility for their manufacturing error and that they do not stand behind their product. I am so disappointed and disgusted, I will never buy another Nissan.

- Mount Laurel, NJ, USA

problem #10

Jan 142014

Pathfinder 6-cyl

  • 102,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Nissan Pathfinder. The contact stated that the vehicle was jerking. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic, who diagnosed that the radiator fluid leaked into the transmission. The mechanic informed the contact that the way the radiator was built allowed the fluids to leak into the transmission as a result the radiator and the transmission needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 102,000. The VIN was not available. Updated 9/12/14 the consumer stated there was a class action suit for the radiator/transmission defect. The consumer would like the vehicle repaired free of charge. Updated 02/05/2015

- Rancho Cucanonga, CA, USA

problem #9

Jul 082014

Pathfinder 6-cyl

  • 124,000 miles
I was traveling at highway speeds going about 60mph and the car suddenly jerked nearly giving me whiplash. I then looked down at the gauge cluster and no lights were on and everything seemed normal, and in about 5 seconds it did it again... I slowed down as fast as I could to merge over and get out of traffic and as I went to pull off the car shut down and I could not get it restarted. I had to have it towed to my house and parked it for a few days. The battery went dead from trying to start it so much so I took it to a O'reily and found the battery to be bad so it was replaced. The car then started up and I drove slowly around my nieghborhood and it seemed ok. The next day my wife took it back to O'reliy to have the alternator tested and it was fine. I thought maybe it was something wrong to cause it to shut down like that and as she was driving home it did the same thing again. After much research it seems that this is a known issue with Nissan Pathfinders and that they did not let the owners know about the issue with the radiator fluid mixing with the tranny fluid and rendering the vehicle useless. I called Nissan today and was told that I am out of luck since the vehicle is out of warranty.

- Lakeland, FL, USA

problem #8

May 122014

Pathfinder 6-cyl

  • 112,000 miles


Upon driving at 25mph the RPM's increased without any power. No matter how much gas I gave it O would only crawl and could barely exit the intersection. I was able to pull over and shut the car off. I tried to turn it back on and it would not. I brought it back to the dealer and was informed the radiator and transmission are bad. I then learned that this is a problem with many Nissan SUV's.

- Bronx, NY, USA

problem #7

Feb 032014

Pathfinder 6-cyl

  • 118,500 miles
There was a leak in the radiator that contaminated the transmission fluid. The radiator and the transmission both need to be replaced or rebuilt. Nissan will not cover warranty since the vehicle is over 90K miles.

- Narvon, PA, USA

problem #6

Feb 072014

Pathfinder 6-cyl

  • 81,700 miles
Radiator fluid leaked into transmission fluid causing vehicle to violently shimmy at about 40 mph. The repairs came to $1,334.55. They had to replace the battery ($119.21), radiator ($266.95), radiator hose ($14.35), serpentine belt ($29.95). They used a transmission flush kit ($29.95), a cooling system flush kit ($29.99) and a global extended life coolant ($29.92). They used $50 in shop supplies and labor was $587. Tax was $87.31.

- Chardon, OH, USA

problem #5

Nov 192013

Pathfinder 6-cyl

  • 88,000 miles


I was informed by the Nissan dealer that I need a new timing chain. This repair will cost me $2300. I then did research about my vehicle, and saw this is a common problem. Also there is an issue with radiator/transmission.

- Lansdale, PA, USA

problem #4

Sep 012013


  • 44,400 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Nissan Pathfinder. The contact stated that the vehicle was consuming excessive coolant and the engine was exhibiting a loud rumbling sound. The vehicle was taken to the dealer however, the technician was unable to diagnose the failure. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was 44,400 and the current mileage was 45,162.

- North Smithfield , RI, USA

problem #3

Apr 042012

Pathfinder 6-cyl

  • 77,691 miles
Your website would not allow me to put in the transmission and radiator as affected parts. My vehicle with 77,000 miles on it had a slipping issue with my transmission and was brought to the dealership, along with the warranty upgrade notice provided by Nissan, for service. I notified the dealership of the transmission slipping and of the warranty notice, and that I wanted it looked at. They came back to me and verbally stated that there was no issue with my transmission. Dealer did not note it on the work order that they test drove and said there was no issue. Nissan is known to have radiator problems that lead to transmission failure for my type of vehicle. There is a class action lawsuit out right now about the issue. Nissan refused to do the work unless I paid for the $3000 co-pay, and paid for the timing chain shoes, another Nissan known issue, another $1800. My vehicle is a 2008 Pathfinder with 92000 miles on it now. Just want Nissan to stand behind their product properly and replace the items required at no charge to me. Both of the issues could lead to a failure and cause a major accident.

- Sutton, MA, USA

problem #2

Dec 292012


  • 85,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 Nissan Pathfinder. The contact stated that while driving 30 mph, the vehicle stalled and the check engine warning lamp illuminated. The vehicle was taken to the dealer. The technician diagnosed that the coolant and transmission fluids were mixing and as a result, the transmission and radiator needed to be replaced. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The VIN was not available. The failure mileage was 85,000 and the current mileage was 91,000.

- E Pittsburgh, PA, USA

problem #1

Aug 302011

Pathfinder 8-cyl

  • 107,270 miles
Thought I was having a problem with my transmission. Took it to get checked. My radiator leaked causing fluid to leak into my transmission. As a result have to get my transmission & radiator replaced. Come to find out from the repair shop. They were seeing alot of Nissan trucks with this issue. I was told there was a class action lawsuit against Nissan fro this issue. I think Nissan should issue a recall & reimburse people who have this issue.

- Baltimore, MD, USA

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