Notes: The 2003 Nissan Xterra doesn't seem to have any problem trends. The only thing prospective owners should be aware of are the less-than-perfect (but acceptable) crash test ratings.

There are a very few transmission complaints, but nothing like the huge defect that shows up starting in with the 2005 model year.


definitely annoying
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
39,000 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.

2003 Nissan Xterra fuel system problems

fuel system problem

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2003 Nissan Xterra Owner Comments

problem #2

Sep 072013


  • miles


I was pumping gas and it backed up and splashed all over my exposed skin and clothing. Because the fuel pump fuel level sender is malfunctioning gas spills when I attempt to fill my tank.

- Saginaw , MI, USA

problem #1

Aug 262009


  • 78,000 miles
Engine light came on in 09. Vehicle failed emissions due to problem with evac system. Gasket at fuel tank was replaced. Within a year, engine light came back on. There was another problem with the evac system. After $ $862 dollars that were spent on vehicle for O ring and gasket repairs, vehicle passed emissions. Within 8 months, engine light was back on due to evac system. Mechanic states that there is major corrosion of the fuel tank and that he has seen the same thing on many Nissan vehicles of this age due to the material used to construct the fuel tank and believes that it is a widespread problem that should have been recalled and that Nissan started using a different material once the problem was known. The entire interior of the vehicle smells of gasoline and mechanic states that anyone in close proximity of vehicle could cause an explosion if a spark was created.

- Oakdale, CT, USA

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