Nissan Truck Owners Upset Over Transmission Failures, Warranty

By Dave Lee

Some Nissan truck owners are experiencing failures in their vehicles’ automatic transmissions because radiator coolant is leaking into the systems, and even though the automaker extended the warranty on the radiators, many affected owners are upset over the coverage terms, according to a blog post in the New York Times’ Wheels blog.

In October, Nissan extended the warranty on the radiators — from three years or 36,000 miles to eight years or 80,000 miles — on the Frontier, Pathfinder and Xterra from the 2005-10 model years. However, the notification letter sent to affected owners in November did not mention that coolant could leak into the transmission system.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has received at least 200 complaints from owners alleging they had to spend thousands of dollars to fix their trucks' transmissions because Nissan did not cover their replacement if the failure happened after 80,000 miles.

NHTSA’s website does not say if the complaints are being investigated. Nissan said only "a small percentage" of vehicles could be affected.

A Nissan spokesman told the New York Times that coverage would include the transmission if damage is caused by the coolant.

It’s important to note that since Nissan extended the warranty instead of issuing a recall, the automaker is not required to notify all owners and fix all the affected vehicles. A recall indicates that a threat to safety exists, and Nissan says such a threat is not present.

You can read more information about the extended warranty here.


that is pretty harsh of Nissan to do with a known problem in their trucks.

I owned a frontier before the tundra I think Nissan will do the right thing but I think it will take time like most auto companies.

This is an old and documented problem--I know someone that had this exact issue with their Xterra.

sounds like this would suck lol

Are you 10 years old?? First off what are you posting that comment here for? Second, so what if the gm is faster than the ford. I bet the gm is faster than a semi with a full trailer too. If I where you I would be more impressed about the GM's exhaust brake performance. But i guess 10 year old's are entitled to their opinions to.


Just goes to show,the Japanese dont cover faults with their vehicles any better than the Americans.They dont want a scared public,or lost dollars just as every other carmaker would.

First Ford fan to respond will get this thread shutdown. I think too many people sleep on Nissan and I wouldnt be surprised if it does well in the light duty shootout. I think I could trade the tundra in for a titan if they put the new 5.6L in.

"The only real Texas Edition truck is the Tundra them other trucks come from Mexico"

Stay on topic. We want to hear your opinions and thoughts, but please only comment about the specified topic in the blog post.------?
It's a shame that most people can't enjoy this "Awesome" web site because of a few ----- cause it to get shutdown.

@Mike Levine.

Outta curiosoty is there no way you can ban Bob? His comments are always the same, and its getting old for the rest of us.


@ nate- Now now, bob isnt an idiot. He is just socially deprived and this is the only way he knows how to interact with other humans. We shouldnt bash Bob, but rather try to teach him how to fit into society. Too much of a man to live under a bridge, too much a troll to live in town... must be tough. On topic, that sucks.

You guys see where Danika Patrick is gonna race NASCAR? Lawdy Mercy she's a stunner.

This is why I will never buy a Foreign truck!

No response needed bob; not even close to on topic.

Used to own a frontier, thankfully got rid of it before ever encountering this problem but I would say it would be more responsible of nissan to address it rather than 'cover the problem for longer'.

Not suprised Nissan's customer service is horrible IMHO. The CVT tranny in my altima went out at 26,000. They had my car for over 1 month, before they finally concluded my tranny could not be fixed, and would need to be replaced. They made the dealer pull the tranny 3 times to try jerry-rigged fixes, before installing a whole new tranny. dealership lost money and had to eat my rent a car. I feel lucky that at least the dealership was on my side.

I owned an 06 Frontier. It was my third Nissan and my last. Nissan is useless when it comes to warranty work. These trucks also blow up front diffs and Nissan refuses to fix them. This is the reason I am back in a Ford for good.

@UncleBud - Danica Patrick in NASCAR? She'd be as warmly welcomed as Toyota ;)

I can't see NHTSA getting involved unless the transmission failures are a crash risk.

Too bad for Nissan owners.


Sounds resonable. :)

@Benchimus - do you mean deprived or depraved?

@Nate M -
Bob doesn't meet the medical definition:
A person of profound mental retardation having a mental age below three years and generally being unable to learn connected speech or guard against common dangers.

He can sort of string a sentence together, sounds like he has a driver's licence, but I'm not sure that he can guard against common dangers since he has a thing for cheep plastic interiors with sharp misaligned edges.

Them Japanese sure do make better vehicles than these dang Yankees. Great example on why not buy American, huh?

The radiators are sourced from an American part supplier. ALL the foreign manufacturers have suffered quality issues when they started making them in America, using the same part sup-pliers who made parts for Ford, GM and Chrysler. It isn't limited to Nissan. Toyota had parts issues as well with gas pedals, badly welded half-shafts on 4X4s, rusting frames, rusting spare tire straps, etc. Long-time Mercedes and BMW buyers insist on buying German-made, even if it is assembled by Turks and other immigrants in Germany. Only Hyundai and Kia seem to have fewer quality issues with their made in America cars, but that is because they were so bad at one time that they had no place to go but up.


Mr. Ditlow contends that an investigation is warranted because owners are reporting safety-related problems, like rapid slowing or the inability to safely cross an intersection.

Colin Price, a Nissan spokesman, said in an e-mail that coverage would include the transmission if it was damaged by coolant. But the letter sent by Nissan to owners in November, which notified them of the radiator assembly warranty extension, DID NOT MENTION THE TRANSMISSION. Mr. Ditlow said Nissan should have made clear that the radiator problem could affect the transmission.

“They don’t tell the consumer the more important fact,” he said.

“The issue here is that Nissan knew that they had a faulty radiator and instead of recalling the radiator they extended the warranty knowing that the majority of the cars would surpass 80,000 miles before they started having problems with the transmission,” wrote Eva Saldivar of Porterville, Calif., in her complaint to the Center for Auto Safety. Her 2005 Pathfinder had 115,000 miles when she had to pay about $6,000 for repairs.

@UncleBud, yup, Danica is going to try and save NASCAR, it's a shame that a beautiful woman has more balls than damn near every driver in NASCAR, who are scared shitless to run in a real race like the Indy 500. I guess when you are going 70mph slower in a tank you feel safe in the slow lane at the track.

@Buy American Or Say Bye To America!,

The Nissan Frontiere is made by Americans!

Quick solution:


Only LAZY people buy them if you are not handicapped in some way...


The Standerd transmission is part of a dying breed. I wouldn't be suprised if in the next 10 years or so Stick shifts weren't availible on ANY new vehicles.

@5.3 LOL- the VVT 5.6L might make a lot of power, but the rest of the parts in the Titan just arent that stout. The AB60 trans in the Tundra has some serious beef and the rear axle aren't even comparable.
@Uncle Bud- sure she's better to look at than an old Wallace (Rusty, Darrel, Mikey), but that doesn't make her hot. You want hot racers, check out this: can you say Milka
... now back on topic
@P.Daddy- no, that really has nothing to do with it. Then again, they just happen to have 100k powertrain warranties at GM, Ford, and Chrysler, don't they...
@Oxi- read up on recent Nissan MT's. Not much beter. A friend had 2 transmissions replaced on a leased Z.
@highdesertcat- AMEN!

I wonder if they had gone to plastic radiator ends and that is where the failures are?

I should have mentioned that along with the new 5.6L V8 comes the new 7 speed auto that comes with it. I would think if they made their way from the QX56 to the titan this would clean up the 2 big problems which are the transmission and underpowered V8.

"The only real Texas or Lone Star Edition truck is the Tundra with the only Texas badge that matters"

I have had my share of problems with my Titan, including a leaky radiator at around 45k. This is not mention the brake problems that went on and on, and the weeks in the shop because of a locked caliper, and I could rant on (fuel gauge, relays, and 5 or 6 recalls, etc). In fact I have had more more problems with it than with all my family cars put together in the past 30 years, since the day I got my DL in fact. This was my first Nissan and it will be my last, this until the day I die.

This happened to me on my 2006 LE. First trans was replaced at 96k covered under extended warranty. They didn't connect that it was the radiator so it happened again at 105k so a 2nd transmission and now radiator later it's fixed. I had to pony up for the radiator but Nissan covered both trans. 122k now and no more problem.

I dont know if this also happened to my 06 Frontier Nismo. At around 75-95k, everything went. Specifically in the engine, 1st the belt, then one of the cylinders. After endless fixes, lots green and the last diagnostic of "you need a new engine", I quit and traded it in.

Right now there are a bunch of worried businessmen in Japan. Worried about how much (yen=after being converted from dollars) this is going to cut into their profits.

When things like this happen (to foreign companies) makes me wonder why people think that, "Japanese quality is so great". Clearly they are NOT better than American companies/quality.

People, that choose to buy foreign brands, should cut out the middle-man (Japan) and just buy from American companies. The U.S. economy would go a lot further if more of our money was kept here.

@ Buy American: Nissan Frontiers are built in the U.S. with many U.S. sourced parts. It supports the local economoy here in the South and elsewhere in the U.S.

Does anyone know if it is metal corrosion, improper coolant maintenance, or materials that are causing this? Was it the V-6 or I-4 that is affected? It seems a simple fix would be a recall for new radiators on these trucks.

@ Buy American: Nissan Frontiers are built in the U.S. with many U.S. sourced parts. It supports the local economoy here in the South and elsewhere in the U.S.

so the USA is making bad products maybe Toyota and Nissan should start buying from Mexico


The Frontier is only built here in the U.S. Datsun, or Renault-Nissan (whatever you want to call it), is still a Japanese company.

Are the; B.M.W.s, Mercedes-Benzs, etc., built in the U.S.A., considered American? No, they are still considered German cars.

I am just trying to understand the hypocrisy:

Consumers have abandoned American car companies, by flocking to import brands, because of "perceived quality differences. "America produces junk." or "The Japanese make better quality"...

Here is where I am lost...Now, people (import fans) are proud to say; "My Toyota (Nissan) was built in America by Americans", blah-blah-blah. Do these people want the perceived "Japanese quality" or the obvious American quality/pride?

What is the reasoning here?

Those who are implying the problem lies with American outsourced parts are not well informed. If there truly is top notch quality control, problems like this would be caught regardless of the point of origin. The truth is, perceived quality is what the Asian manufacturers are relying on, and unfortunately many Americans fall right into their hands. I will not take away the fact that many of the Asian products seem to be reliable, they are. But to suggest that all American products are inferior is bull crap. As Toyota and Nissan are finding out, it's one thing to design and manufacture a lightweight low horsepower vehicle and make it reliable.

0ne of my best freinds has been dealing with this very issue for some time now, the dealer at first said the tranny was abused buy driving on the beach! he was having problems before he got any notice. Buy American: they just don't get it, never will, won't untill there actions finaly come back to them, (lay offs 401 gone ), not all but most. No logic whatsoever! were is the login in " all parts in foreign cars with problems are American sorced"? and then there are not the same failures in American autos? and what is the reason for the terrible service from the dealers? is it because they are Americans?, NO it is the companies that have no love for us at all, could care less, would like to see or country fail! they stive to take the U.S Auto makes down, with the help of the people they hae duoped.


That is exactly my point. People are drawn to Asian branded vehicles due to their "superior quality". Yet Americans; the same kind of Americans that work for Chrysler, Ford, and General Motors, are building some of these foreign brands here in the U.S.

How is the build quality for Renault-Nissan or Toyota, using American labor, any better than the quality of American vehicles?

I am not "trolling" or bashing. I just want people to understand that American vehicles (Chrysler, Ford, and General Motors) are just as good as these foreign brands. American vehicles are NOT inferior to foreign brands! Give America a chance!

this is realy to bad for nissan, because the frontier is much better looking and mor powerfull than any tacoma!

Buy American Or Say Bye To America
the American vehicles are really coming back with good quality especially since this recession began and it was time to this to just goes to show that all truck brands have there problems as long as there are human being pushing the buttons there will always be things like this going on

Dan The Man-

Very valid points.

The U.S. economy has everything to gain, or everything to lose, by people's buying habits! Do not be afraid of U.S.A. pride!

I do not make generalized blanket statements saying the Japanese cars, or European, or American cars are better. I look at each model and/or product on an individual basis.
When it comes to 40,000 dollar trucks, I'll buy what is the best one. Period.
If the head office happens to be Japanese.
So what!
It's my money.
I'm not worried about where the profits go.
I do worry that if the vehicle falls apart, I'll spend all of my disposable income on repairs. That isn't good for "my own" personal economy.

The Japanese got a huge hold on the North American market because of the garbage that was made here in the 70's - '80's. Combine that with poor fuel consumption, and poorly designed emission systems.

The industry average is 151 problems per 100 vehicles.
Lincoln,Buick,Cadillac, and Ford are the only "American" companies that are above average.
Lexus,Toyota,Acura,Infinity, and Honda are all Japanese companies that are above average.
Hyundai is also above average but they are Korean.
Jaguar, Porsche, Mercedes-Benz, and Saab are also above average.

Everyone else is below average. (Including Nissan).

Draw your own conclusions.

Dan The Man-

Very valid points.

The U.S. economy has everything to gain, or everything to lose, by people's buying habits! Do not be afraid of U.S.A. pride!

i am not afraid of American pride, i am afraid of American Greed

@ Lou
same goes for here i am not a fanboy i buy what is reliable and does the job for me i don't care what it is, and when i buy a truck i will review to the T because if it breaks guess who will be paying for it ME, right now i can buy any truck and i will help the American people

@Dan the man -
I bought an F150 because it was comparible to the Tundra in reliability. It was considerably cheeper to buy. Sure, buying a home grown product is a better option for one's country. We seem to miss the fact that "home grown product" is dependant on the soil the plant is built upon, as opposed to the flag the head office is flying.

You are bang on with your statement.

The domestic auto industry(UAW is part of that industry) got lazy and greedy.
They counted on "American pride" as a prime selling feature of their crappy products.

Unfortunately, it took the near collapse of the US auto industry for most of them to realize that people want quality products.
Ford has built their sales back up based on the quality of their products.
Chrysler and GMC are still struggling. I think we will see Chrysler turn around faster than GMC.

@ buy american

you said;( Here is where I am lost...Now, people (import fans) are proud to say; "My Toyota (Nissan) was built in America by Americans", blah-blah-blah. Do these people want the perceived "Japanese quality" or the obvious American quality/pride?

What is the reasoning here? )

I'm not an import fan i own (tagged and insured) 1 pontiac, 1 buick, 1 chevy, 1 honda, 1 toyota.

Here is the FACTS. comparing the R&D and quality build of the new body Tundra its built BETTER with more useful technology (whether anyone understands it i dont care). Its built by Americans is only EVER said because the so called "patriots" like yourself are so quick to yell ITS FOREIGN so i retort with FACTS that your so called american trucks are the foreign ones.

LOOK, its this simple. I bought after studying all of them what i really believe to be the best half ton EVER made, whether you believe that is up to you. Most people just "assume" theirs is better, I on the other hand actually studied HOW THEY ARE BUILT. no assumptions. I PERSONALLY DONT CARE WHAT BADGE IS ON THE HOOD! it was made in this wonderful country putting money in MY FELLOW PATRIOTS POCKETS TO BUILD IT, THAT SIR IS AMERICAN PRIDE. you think what you want nobody but you muddied the "whats more american" waters with your comments.

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