really awful
Crashes / Fires:
3 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
2 / 0
Average Mileage:
84,841 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.

2002 Nissan Xterra engine problems

engine problem

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2002 Nissan Xterra Owner Comments

problem #5

Sep 262015


  • 150,641 miles


After shifting into reverse, with one foot on the clutch, and one foot on the brake still, my Xterra begins accelerating in reverse though my feet were on the clutch and brake only. My Xterra's brakes only stopped my vehicle after shifting into neutral and then turning off the engine.

- Aberdeen, MD, USA

problem #4

Apr 062015


  • 96,000 miles
I purchased a used Xterra about 6 months ago. I was pulling into a parking spot in a shopping mall at a low speed when the engine suddenly went into a high whining rev and the vehicle lurched forward and took off out of control. Before coming to a stop it ran into four other parked cars. I was as it had a mind of its own. This has never happened to me in all my years of driving only american made cars. The Nissan is the only foreign car I have owned and will likely be the last after this episode.

- Baltimore, MD, USA

problem #3

Apr 062015


  • 101,000 miles
I was entering a parking spot at my normal slow speed when suddenly the engine went into an extremely high rev and the Xterra made a sudden lunge forward. In a matter of seconds it slammed into a number of other parked cars. It was as if it had a mind of its own. I can only guess it was a stuck gas pedal, stuck throttle or stuck accelerator. Over the years I have had nothing but american cars, the last several were Caravan with no issues of this type. This Nissan is the first foreign car that I have purchased.

- Baltimore, MD, USA

problem #2

Nov 022006


  • 50,000 miles
I was traveling on I-76 in Colorado and using my cruise control. I had noticed one time on the highway that when I put on the brake the cruise control did not disengage until multiple attempts. I was about to exit the highway at julesburg Colorado heading West, disengaged the cruise control by stepping on the brake and when I got on the exit ramp it re-engaged. I put in the clutch, stepped on the brake with no response. The exit ramp is short and a single lane. At the bottom of the ramp was a semi-truck and I had to steer the car into the area next to the ramp and I hit a culvert and the car flipped three times. My daughter and I were taken to the hospital and released that evening. I reported this to Nissan, they inspected the car at the junk yard and said nothing was wrong. I never believed that nothing was wrong but now believe it was an electronic failure. I have pictures of the car from the accident. The car was a total loss.

- Golden, CO, USA

problem #1

Mar 042007

Xterra 4WD 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 26,563 miles
- while driving the 2002 Nissan Xterra with a failure mileage of 26,000 miles. The contact noticed that the engine light intermittently turned on. Also, the vehicle would not accelerate properly, and made noises. The vehicle was taken to a dealer, who stated that the super charger was failing. The vehicle still had not been repaired. The current mileage was 30,000. A recall was issued regarding the supercharger. Updated 05/02/07

- Fresno, CA, USA

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