Notes: The 2005-2007 Xterra 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.

The same defect exists in the Pathfinder & Frontier as well. And according to the New York Times & a class action lawsuit, the defect actually extends through 2010 model year. More info here.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
104,495 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.

2007 Nissan Xterra drivetrain problems

drivetrain problem

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2007 Nissan Xterra Owner Comments (Page 4 of 9)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #110

Feb 282015


  • 123,000 miles


According to garage, same complaint with other second generation Nissan Xterra owners. Radiator fluid mixed with transmission fluid and caused catastrophic failure. Driving downtown in heavy traffic with my 8 month old daughter and her mother in the car and losing power completely at an intersection due to a known problem was unnerving to say the least.

- Columbia, SC, USA

problem #109

Mar 282015

Xterra 6-cyl

  • 126,000 miles
On 3/28/15, parking my 2007 Nissan Xterra (126,0000 miles) in tampa, fl. Before I had the car in "park", there was a loud noise, the engine started smoking and a lot of purple/green/gray fluid leaked out from the bottom of my car. Afraid to move the car, aaa towed it to the Nissan dealership in tampa. When the tow truck driver arrived and saw the color of the fluids, he quickly determined that my car had leaked both transmission and radiator fluid. He said he heard that this was a problem with Nissan Xterras. I was shocked! since purchasing new in December 2006, I have always taken my car to Nissan for all service. Other than a few oil changes, all service has been performed by Nissan dealerships and their certified technicians. Just prior to this incident, my car had been shaking. I had been to Nissan with this complaint in the past, but after repairs were made it seemed to go away. At no time was a transmission problem mentioned as a possibility. I have lived in different areas in Florida and used only Nissan dealerships for service and repair, willing to pay more for repairs than an independent repair shops, that Nissan dealerships and service would know my vehicle best & be proactive, alerting to any potential future problems, I felt protected. The last major repair was in July 2014, at 113,000 miles at autonation Nissan, delray, fl. Complaint was severe shaking, and stumbling when accelerating. Repairs were over $1,000; a transmission issue was never mentioned, even after further repairs were needed. I was never informed of transmission problems with Xterras until Saturday at the dealer in tampa, who said he alerts all Xterra owners to be proactive with radiator replacement. After the comment I did research online. I was unaware of the class action suit settled with Nissan; I was never notified of a problem history with Nissan Xterra transmissions and radiators.

- Sarasota, FL, USA

problem #108

Mar 222015

Xterra 6-cyl

  • 151,000 miles
Transmission control unit fried by defected radiator failure. I am now one of the many 2007 Xterra owners taken by the Nissan motor corporation who put out a defective product and now refuse to stand behind it. Me and the wife were stopping to get a bite to eat, ended up being a final stop. After picking up the food the truck would not crank, gauges worked, horn and lights but still would not crank. Had it towed to the house and then contacted the dealership. Then it gets worst, the dealership "technician" replied with the exact same description of problem over the phone that I gave to him when I called to have it towed to the dealer. The symptoms are no crank, milky looking radiator fluid and the automatic transmission fuses keeps blowing. Now I contacted the Nissan motor corporation and got no "joy" when I found out that the were offering a big fat nothing!!!!!! I guess this is what you get for buying a Nissan :(

- New Orleans, LA, USA

problem #107

Mar 112015

Xterra 6-cyl

  • 109,200 miles


I was driving my Xterra on the freeway at 5:30 am and suddenly my car quit accelerating, it was as if it went into neutral. I had to immediately pull over onto the side of the highway so that I wouldn't get hit from behind. I turned the engine off and back on and the car got me to my destination. I have since found out that this dangerous issue is common in Xterra's and I am very disappointed that Nissan has not made this issue known to owners. It may well cause a bad accident. Additionally, it is a very costly repair for which Nissan takes little to no responsibility though the defect is theirs.

- Centennial, CO, USA

problem #106

Sep 042013


  • 98,000 miles
My 2007 Nissan Xterra started having both transmission and cooling system issues back in September 2014. After a few trips to our mechanic it was discovered that the vehicle had a cracked radiator and was allowing both coolant into the transmission and transmission fluid into the cooling the system. Apparently this is a well known issue and there was a class action lawsuit against Nissan, however the terms of the settlement only cover vehicles under 100K miles. By the time we found out the vehicle had just passed 100K (106K) and now Nissan refused to cover it! I'm now looking at a $5K - $6K repair bill and Nissan refused to budge.

- Grass Valley, CA, USA

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problem #105

Feb 272015

Xterra 6-cyl

  • 114,300 miles
Vehicle vibrates at 40 mph- making it unsafe - turns out it's transmission issue.. was informed this is not a new issue after reading online..... Nissan has never recalled these vehicles and instead was sued due to this transmission issue many other Nissan have had...I was never informed regarding such an issue. This is unsafe due to the shaking shudder this problem causes especially in a high traffic area and it isn't fsir that the customer stays stuck with a faulty vehicle... this issue should be fixed at any mileage since it is Nissan faulty design at fault! shame on you Nissan.

- Corpus Christi , TX, USA

problem #104

Mar 062015


  • 131,000 miles


Contamination of the transmission with anti freeze due to leak in cooling system, resulting in transmission failure.

- London, KY, USA

problem #103

Feb 232015

Xterra 6-cyl

  • 109,000 miles
Transmission and radiator defect-internal leakage between the 2 engine parts -Nissan did not notify me, the original owner, of the defect or of the successful lawsuit against them for this problem.

- Mountain Home, AR, USA

problem #102

Feb 192015


  • 134,000 miles
The contact owns a 2007 Nissan Xterra, the contact stated that the vehicle failed to start. The vehicle was towed to an independent mechanic, who informed that the transmission needed to be repaired but the specifics were not available. The contact referenced NHTSA action number: DP12004 (power train). The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 134,000.

- Adamsville, TN, USA

problem #101

Feb 022015


  • miles
2007 Nissan Xterra. Consumer was told to pay a $2500 copay because his vehicle was over 80,000 miles. Consumer doesn't comply because he inquired about vehicle problems before the 80,000 mile mark. The consumer stated while his was driving, she noticed the vehicle began smoking and the check engine light illuminated. The vehicle was taken to the dealer, where a diagnostic test revealer the radiator and transmission needed to be replaced due to coolant and oil mixing.

- Hamilton, NJ, USA

problem #100

Feb 282014

Xterra 6-cyl

  • 85,123 miles


My transmission stopped shifting, I took it to a transmission shop an was told my atf line that runs through an engine coolant chamber in the radiator failed and get radiator fluid in my transmission and that my transmission needs to be replaced/rebuilt. Now I am stranded with out a vehicle when my vehicle only has 85000 miles on it and has had regular maintenance work on it. I am extremely disappointed and I would like to see Nissan step up and be held responsible for an issue that is accruing because of faulty factory parts.

- Eagle Point, OR, USA

problem #99

Oct 012013


  • 95,000 miles
I took my Nissan Xterra 2007 into boulder Nissan in October 2013. At the time, it had under 100,000 miles. Upon examination of the car for lack of heat, they said they flushed it and eventually I would have to replace the radiator. They did not tell me that there was a class action lawsuit against Nissan for defective parts leaking coolant into the transmission. I returned to Nissan in Jan. 2015 for the same problem and was hit with a bill for $5,200 to replace the radiator, transmission, timing chain and thermostat.

- Lafayette, CO, USA

problem #98

Nov 222014

Xterra 6-cyl

  • 118,543 miles
I bought my 07 Xterra 6 months ago from transitowne amherst and the dealership told me nothing was wrong with the vehicle. Now 6 months down the road the transmission has gone terminal due to the known problem where coolant leaks into the transmission and causes it to fail. I believe any dealership should have checked to make sure that a vehicle they were selling would not have this issue before they sell it.

- Cheektowaga, NY, USA

problem #97

Dec 012014

Xterra 6-cyl

  • 110,000 miles
My Xterra would not accelerate from stop to start, then one late evening it would not start at all. I had it towed to my mechanic who said it was the transmission that needed to be replaced and the transmission was shorting out the fuse to start the car. I took it to another mechanic for a second opinion, he stated the same and this was a known defect in Xterra, he also said that it will cost thousand of dollars to fix and even with a new transmission it will likely happen again because the electricity will burn out because of the defect. I called Nissan dealership, who stated that they knew about the problem, but was going to help fix it or reimburse me anything. I was stranded with a small toddler at 10pm in the rain and no means of getting home thanks to Nissan's known defect.

- Pleasant Hill, CA, USA

problem #96

Dec 082014


  • miles
It has same problems as all the 02-08 Xterras but you wont issue recalls on fuel sensor, radiator leaking into tranny, air bag sensors, control arm. Thanks for letting loyal Nissan owners down!!!!

- Mulberry, IN, USA

problem #95

Oct 012014


  • 95,000 miles
This is one of the many transmission issues with 2007 Xterras where the coolant leaks into the transmission and destroys it. The repair cost is 8500 dollars if the 100000 mile extended warranty has been passed. I contacted Nissan and they told me that this is my responsibility despite the hundred of complaints regarding the exact same issue. When driving at any speed, when the Xterra changes gears there is a rough vibration that keeps getting worse the longer it goes for. Had I not learned about this on my own Accord this could have resulted in a very bad accident.

- Seattle, WA, USA

problem #94

Nov 112014

Xterra 6-cyl

  • 111,000 miles
Was told by dealer that a known problem with radiator caused radiator fluid to seep into transmission causing transmission to fail. Neither dealer nor Nissan would accept responsibility for this known defect.

- Trabuco Canyon, CA, USA

problem #93

Nov 032014

Xterra 6-cyl

  • 90,400 miles
Sitting at light in the left lane, waiting for it to turn green and all of a sudden the car started making a loud racing sound. Not sure if it was transmission or engine making the noise. I looked at my gauges and saw the temperature gauge was on H. I had to wait for the light to turn green, because I was at an intersection, in the left lane, to get on the highway and there were cars on my right and cars going in the other direction. As soon as I could move, I pulled over to a safe spot, but before I could, the car started overheating and smoke started coming out of the hood. It was towed to my garage and after my mechanic looked at it, he said this is a known issue for Nissan Xterras 2007, because the radiator is defective. The coolant mixes with the transmission and the car stops running! apparently, Nissan knows that the part is defective so they extended warranty to 80,000 mile and anything past that I have to pay. Well, I have 90,400 miles and can't believe that Nissan can get away with knowing a part is defective and not recalling all trucks affected. They certainly changed the radiator design for the newer vehicles, admitting that it is a problem. They should recall the cars and replace the defective part. It is all over the internet, because the problem is so widespread and Nissan will not take ownership of it!!!!!!. please look into this and look on the internet to see how common this issue is for Xterras and all the people that got screwed by Nissan. Thank you.

- Monroe, CT, USA

problem #92

Oct 242014


  • 102,000 miles
While driving at a highway speed of 70 mph in the left lane of an interstate, the transmission completely failed. There was traffic in the right lane. I was unable to move to the outside shoulder until I was traveling at 30 mph. This was very dangerous, especially due to trying to merge between semis that were in the right lane. After towing the vehicle 75 miles to get close to home and at a trusted repair shop, I was told that the coolant leaked into the transmission system (like so many others). This caused the complete failure of the transmission and contamination of all of the lines and gaskets. The vehicle would not travel forward or backward. This appears to be a known issue, based on the large number of complaints on the web and the class action lawsuit. The repairs are estimated at 5,000 to 5,500 dollars, plus the towing. Most of the problems, including mine, occur after the extended period. Due to the rapid failure, this is an extremely unsafe condition.

- Porter, IN, USA

problem #91

Oct 032014

Xterra 6-cyl

  • 125,000 miles
The radiator fluid leaked into the transmission and ruined the transmission and valve body assembly. The car will not run and stalled out in an intersection.

- Austin, TX, USA

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