Notes: Be aware the 2007-2011 Nissan Versa was recalled in the US in May 2016 & July 2017 for defective Takata airbags that are potentially deadly. Many Versa owners have reported problems getting Nissan dealers to complete the recall repair, due to scheduling problems & parts shortages.

If you are considering purchasing a 2007-2011 Nissan Versa, call your local Nissan dealer with the VIN# & ask if the airbag recall has been done.


pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
42,800 miles
Total Complaints:
3 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (3 reports)
2007 Nissan Versa engine problems

engine problem

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2007 Nissan Versa Owner Comments

problem #3

Sep 062012


  • CVT transmission
  • 58,000 miles


Bought the 2007 Versa pre-owned about 17 months ago. Had no problems at all. Drove it 2 and a half hours from home when it started making a knocking/ ticking noise. Took it to get an oil change, even though it wasn't due for one yet. The guy who changed the oil said that the oil was low, but the car seemed ok. I drove it another 10 miles before it started knocking and shaking. I took it to the Nissan Dealership in Durham, NC. They "diagnosed" it as "Engine Failure due to sludge build up", and quoted me $5,600 to replace the engine. Which wouldn't be covered under the warranty as I had supposedly "improperly maintained" the car.

Seeing as how I was 2 and a half hours away from home, and very upset at their estimate, the service department IMMEDIATELY put me on the phone with a SALESPERSON. Who tried to pressure me into leaving my car there and just buying a new one. What the H___????

I had to get a U-haul and tow it home. I spoke to the regional warranty person for Durham. She told me that the warranty was expired. There was nothing they could do and she said "Well, when you bought it, it already had 44,000... that's about all you can expect out of an engine." Ummm... What? So Nissan's stance is 44,000 miles is all that their engine can take. Good to know for future car purchases. She also told me that she couldn't help me because I had never owned a nissan before and she couldn't prove customer loyalty. Well, I can assure Nissan that THIS is NOT how you build loyalty. I will NEVER buy a Nissan again. And with the benefit of Facebook, and twitter.. I can tell at least 300 people my story. About how "helpful" Nissan was when I was stranded hours from home, and what a horrible product they make.

Also- I will be taking my car to my normal mechanic for a second opinion now that I am home. There are no particles in my oil. I'm fairly sure at this point the dealership is full of it. But if I do end up having to replace the engine, I will be selling this car very soon after and going back to a Honda. My last Honda Accord had 170,000 miles and NO problems.

- honeybee80, Madison Heights, VA, US

problem #2

Nov 192009

Versa SL 1.8

  • CVT transmission
  • 35,604 miles

My story is very similar to the previous post...although I have not had to be towed (YET).

Last week I took my 07 Versa into a Jiffy Lube to have the oil changed -- I normally DO NOT go anywhere except to the dealer to get my car serviced, but at this time I am really strapped and having a hard time financially and I thought I could save a little $$ by having them do it. They opened the hood and noticed there was oil spewed about the engine. NOT GOOD...then the dipstick also had sludge on it. I knew this wasn't good but they said they could still change the oil and do an engine flush...assuring me it wouldn't clear all the sludge out but most. They put in 4.5qrts of oil and I drove it approx. 60 miles going to work and then taking it to the dealership to be checked out.

When the service dept. at the dealership checked it, they said there was sludge on the dipstick and the dipstick wasn't in the tube all the way nor was it registering oil. I am just beside myself with worry over the fact that the dealer service advisor said I need a new engine. Then talking with the service manager at the same dealership, he said if it were his car, he'd drive it. Just have the oil changed every 1000 miles and MAYBE, JUST MAYBE the sludge will eventually clear up and the clanking noise will stop when the oil is of better quality running through the engine. I just spent $198 at the dealership and it seems all they did was reset the codes for the Service Engine Soon light that was on. I too was getting multiple misfire codes. I would have thought they would change the oil and run a flush thru and possibly steam clean the engine.

So I picked the car up today after having it at the Nissan dealership for the past 4 days, also having to rent a car at $30/day, I drove it 22.1 miles -- the service engine soon light came back on, checked that the dipstick was still properly seated and it was, drove another mile to my house and I checked the oil level on the dipstick and NOTHING registered. NO OIL....where the heck is it going??

I'm also being blamed for "lack of maintenance" therefore not covered under warranty because 2 year old engines with 35,600 miles "just don't do this." Even though I have receipts from the 4-5 services I had done at the dealerships, I'm missing receipts from the 1 oil change in question that I had done by a friend earlier this year. So it's my word against theirs that I really did have my car serviced routinely.

I am currently borrowing another friend's car because although the service manager said it was drivable, I don't trust driving it without seeing some oil registering on the dipstick. Hearing that clanking noise upon acceleration and at low idle just kills's an awful sound! But I will be stopping in to talk to the service dept. at a different Nissan dealership tomorrow and see if they will tell me anything different. Then I'll be calling the dealership where my car just was in for service to find out exactly what they did that cost me $198. Is that just labor cost to look at the car and confirm what I told them -- there is a leak, there is clanking/knocking??

I'm curious Sharita W. if you got any resolution for your issue and/or how your Versa is doing now. I have owned 7 Nissan vehicles over many years and NEVER had any problems with them nor have I had any problems with the dealerships not being willing to put the customer first and providing real service.

Update from Jan 7, 2010: This is basically an update to Post #2 my original complaint -- I received a comment from an individual with the same story, the same reason I had posted too because someone else had posted. There are 3 other posts in the Engine Failure category and ALL our stories are very similar.

I have just had the 1st (of how many I still don't know) oil changes at the 1000 mile interval as suggested by the Service Manager at the Nissan dealer where I bought my car. After having to return the borrowed car I was using...I added 1qt of 5w/30 oil and an engine/oil additive called Rizlone (not sure of spelling) as suggested by a few mechanic friends. This seemed to help with the knocking/ticking noises up till almost the 1000 mile point and the oil levels stayed in the high range on dipstick and there is no more noticeable oil spewing/leaking on the engine.

Again I took my car to Jiffy Lube -- I'm not feeling too comfortable with the dealer where I bought my car, I feel they are treating me like my car has the plague or something and they just don't even want to touch it. I still think that when I took it in a month ago and they charged me $198 for WHAT I DON'T KNOW...clearing the Service Engine Soon Light is all I can see -- I think I GOT RIPPED OFF...charging me for service when they didn't do squat!!

So as far as I can tell the car is NOT burning oil or leaking oil from anywhere -- there is still knocking/ticking noises at low idle/acceleration and it runs great at freeway speeds. It does, however, run at a rough idle while at stop lights or when cold and I've seen the RPM gauge jump around 2500 back to 1800 or so when traveling about 40mph while keeping steady pressure on accelerator.

The questions that still have yet to be answered for me are:

1: How long do I have to keep changing the oil at 1000k intervals?

2: What needs to be done to have the Multiple Misfire codes stop re-occurring?

3: Will the engine/car EVER run smoothly again?

I just tried calling Nissan Corporate Warranty department, the line rang about 50 times and NO ANSWER. I HAVE to drive my car's the only car I have. I WILL NOT let this go -- it's a constant reminder every day I use my car that NISSAN has done ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to help resolve this matter for me to this point.

Getting close to regretting that I didn't buy the Dodge Caliber instead of this Versa.

Update from Jun 21, 2010: UPDATE #2

My car is, THANK GOD, running great these days!!! There is still an issue with rough idle at times and the Service Engine Soon light has been coming on and going off. I still hear a very faint clanking/ticking noise. I'm still getting perfect gas mileage so I'm just keeping my fingers crossed. I've never had the engine stop running or have had to be towed as others did -- so I have just taken the path the Dealer Service Manager suggested to me when he said "if it were my car, I would just run it and have the engine oil changed every 1000 miles (did that 4 times) and see if that will take care of it." So far, so good!! At the latest oil change service, the mechanic said there are NO signs of leaking, sludge buildup, or anything that would signal any trouble. I think I did dodge a bullet and I also didn't just pay Nissan their $5000 for a new engine just because they said so.
I still have NOT taken my car back to an actual Nissan dealer to be serviced -- but feel I need to resolve the engine service light and rough idle issues soon so I may have to. So we'll see.

- Brenda S., Everett, WA, US

problem #1

Mar 262009

Versa SL

  • Manual transmission
  • 34,690 miles

I was driving home from work one afternoon and the engine shut off. While waiting for the tow truck I checked all the fluid levels to determine if the problem was something simple that I could fix myself. all fluid levels checked out. Had the vehicle towed to the Nissan dealership. Got a call the next day informing me that there was "no oil in the engine" that there were "multiple misfires", that it was "very bad", and that the only solution was to replace the engine which they would do for $5000. Told the service tech that I had checked the oil prior to bringing it in and asked where had the oil gone. They said that it must be leaking "from somewhere". The next day when I went to pick up my car I checked the oil again. There was oil in the car. Price for this? $60. I was furious. They had not tried anything to fix the problem or even offered. They just blamed it on "lack of maintenance" and asked for money. Had the car towed to my house, performed a motor flush and an oil change. Drove the car and noticed a "ticking noise", but the car did not cut off.

A week later I took the car to an independent dealer for a diagnostic. They gave me two bulletins related to the following codes: P0011, P0014, P0021, P0024, P1110, and P1135. All these codes were related to timing issues. There was also a code P0300 for multiple misfires. Told to take the car back to the dealer so they could investigate further.

Two weeks later I took the car back to a different Nissan dealership. Got a call that afternoon telling me there was sludge buildup in the engine, the oil was black and "barely registered on the dipstick." They offered to do a motor flush, oil change, and oil compression test. Then I could come back in 500 - 1000 mi and they would test again. Price? $236. Told him I had done the motor flush and oil change three weeks' prior and had not driven 500 miles in that time and that when I had done it, several quarts of oil had come out. Was told that it was leaking from the exhaust. Once gain the problem was blamed on "lack of maintenance" which voids the warranty (I even paid for an extended warranty!) I will never buy a new car again. What a rip-off.

- Sharita W., League City, TX, US

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