The Nissan Xterra is a compact SUV that was discontinued in 2015. Read more Nissan reviews to learn about other models.
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Bought 2009 Nissan Xterra, from time to time the vdc off / slip light would go on since purchased, contacted dealership and they advised me it had been raining and sometimes sensor will show when going from 2 to 4 wheel drive and will go off... So ok lived with it, doing it at the rare times it would do it - notice though it would come on during dry weather and didn't matter was in 2 wheel or 4 wheel... Made appt. with dealership for oil change and advised need that looked at this happening - they said my battery was weak so I got the battery replaced.
Later on took back to another dealership and they said Nissan wouldn't cover, talk to Nissan north American rep - basically said they wouldn't have a Tulsa dealership cover and if want can see if Missouri dealership would fix, since outside the normal Nissan warranty and that my Nissan extended warranty, which is the premier package bumper to bumper wouldn't cover -- really? Bumper to bumper isn't that with them! - that's why Nissan has 1.3 review scores out of 5 stars -- they don't stand behind their cars/trucks or their warranties.
Sitting in my 2014 Nissan Xterra Pro 4X with my friend in the driveway, with the car in park. Unexpectedly, all side curtain airbags are explode. After we pull ourselves together and try to regain our hearing, I immediately drive my car back to the dealership to get the car repaired. That was 21 days ago and NOTHING has been done and no one will return my calls. I have never been treated like this before in my life.
2 years ago was in need of a vehicle. Found an Xterra I could afford. First thing that went wrong was the driver's side window motor went. Then the check engine light would come on all by itself then goes out. Had no problems until last year when I was rear ended. The tire pressure monitoring system went, then my vdc and slip light came on. After numerous times of resetting the system ended up changing the vdc relay and another relay to the tune of $250. Finally got check engine light to go out. Then in Jan my rear caliper froze up and cracked my rotor in two. Ended up with another $250.
Now it's July and I find out my radiators leaked into my transmission. Did the bypass but it was too late. Damage is already done so it needs a new transmission. So last night I needed to go to the store, car wouldn't start. I replaced my starter. Still won't start. Now I find out it may be my ipdm which has a recall. But I'm out a car for now. Why didn't Nissan fix the problem that they knew was there before? Or was a recall too much money the company would lose.
I bought my 2007 Nissan Xterra in August 2013. I've kept up with regular maintenance such as oil change etc. It has not even been 2 years since I bought the car. I noticed the "service engine soon" light came on and took it to the dealership for checkup. I was told the following needs to be replaced: vent valve, transmission, radiator which was leaking fluid into the transmission, right rear axle and differentials along with the brakes. All these needed replacement. Total cost for parts with labor and tax was estimated around $10,000. I understand I bought the car used and currently has 126,000 miles on it, but gees, the cost for repairs is more than the car is worth. And yes I took the car to a different shop for a second opinion and was quoted thousands of dollars to get it fixed. So now, I am stuck with a vehicle that could break down anytime from now and still have about 8K left to pay on my loan. Certainly, I'm not blaming all Nissan's but this is really upsetting.
I bought my 2010 Xterra with an off-road package, brand new from a Nissan dealer. I have 58,000 miles after 5 years of ownership. These are the things I have had to do since I bought it: 1. Change oil every 3,500 miles - all covered free of charge by the dealership ($ 0); 2. Replaced tires at 55,000 miles - they were shot! (US$ 400); 3. Replaced battery at 4 years - it was done (US$ 120)
This has been a VERY reliable vehicle for me. My only 2 complaints are: 1. The hands-free bluetooth. It sucks. The microphone is mounted against the roof and it picks up all noise from the wind. It is impossible for anyone to hear what you have to say unless you are parked, there is no wind and you speak with your head/mouth pointed right towards the roof. 2. I am extremely careful with any of my vehicles. Even getting in and out and keeping them neat and tidy. The floor mats are of very poor quality. Even under very little stress, you will have to get them replaced after 4 years - they will start to fall apart after that.
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I have owned my Xterra for 10 years and have been broadly satisfied with the car and the dealership. However, there were various issues with the car and the service, of which a faulty fuel gauge is one example that will cause me not to buy a Nissan product again. Two examples:
1) Certain years of the xterra have a faulty radiator. I found out about this when I was at about 105,000 miles - not through Nissan, rather through a lawyer who was promoting a class action suit. The problem had been known by Nissan for some months prior to my bringing it up and while I was still within the warranty period. Nissan's response, "essentially too bad, fix it yourself or sell the car. You are outside the warranty period." When I asked why no one had mentioned this to me until I brought it up, the response, "We have no obligation to do so."
2.) Faulty fuel gauge. I just had to pay $575 to repair the gauge. This has never worked properly, something I brought to the attention of the service folks on numerous occasions from the day I bought the car. It was never fixed because it did not show up on the system check. Response by Nissan customer affairs when I approached them to complain, "Too bad, we have no obligation to fix things that don't appear on our system checks.." The buying of a car is only part of the overall customer experience. Nissan does not seem to understand this.
Purchased '05 XTERRA as the 2nd owner in February 2013. In Feb. '15, Timing chain broke. Mechanic attributes failure to the PLASTIC tensioners Nissan installs to keep the chain tight/in place. Estimate of $5,000 to replace with used engine. No thanks. Still owed $8K on this POS and selling as is, I might get $2500. Have read countless similar stories from other X owners. Thought I was safe getting the manual transmission...thought wrong. If there is EVER a class action suit, count me IN.
Updated on 03/19/2019: I bought my Xterra from CarMax with low miles (around 60k) then at 64k the radiator leaked into the tranny and blew it. Nissan picked up half of the cost because of the lawsuit. After that the timing chain went, gas gauge went, U joints. Just as of yesterday at 146k my radiator leaked again into my tranny and now AAMCO said it needs to be completely redone. They have a way to nipple off the radiator with a secondary unit that will prevent the radiator from ever leaking into the transmission again so I’ve decided to do that now for 3k since I’m almost paid off.
I’ve spent way too much money on this car, they certainly should have been recalled in good faith by Nissan or they should have made sure to correct the problem the first time I had it repaired at a Nissan dealership in Cherry Hill NJ. If you’re in love with this car I hope you’ve got deep pockets and make sure to go in and have that radiator bypass the tranny completely before you destroy it and get coolant in there.
Original review: I bought a used 2007 Xterra from Carmax. They didn't disclose the major defect these Car have with a faulty radiator tank that eventually blows your transmission. I only have 62k. In February I found tranny fluid in my radiator. A Nissan dealership service insisted it didn't need the warranty work done so they flushed my radiator and sent me out the door. 2 months later it shifts hard and bumps at 40-45 mph. Take it to a different Nissan dealership and told my tranny and radiator broke and would be a $2500 copay since the $0 date was expired after March. I complained to Nissan consumer affairs that I reported it in Feb. with first dealership but they refused to honor it. On top of this, my timing chain is shot and will also be $1600. Completely disappointed with Nissan and feel taken advantage of. I thought I was buying a reliable vehicle. Ya, it looks cool but it will drain your wallet beyond normal standard costs of wear and tear.
Purchased a 2002 Nissan Xterra. Had it about six months was turning into a parking space in a shopping mall. Suddenly the engine started a high-pitched rev. Before I stop it the vehicle lunged forward as if the accelerator had a mind of its own. It crashed into four other cars before it stopped. Never had anything like this happen to me in decades of driving American made cars. From this experience I would never own another Nissan even if given to me for free. The officer that showed up on the scene said I was diving recklessly and issued me a $280.00 fine. Talk about turning a bad thing worse. He didn't see it happen but deemed it positively my fault and not the truck's.
My car began shuttering bad enough that I was afraid that it was going to stall or that I would get into an accident. Thankfully, I didn't. I found out that a faulty radiator had leaked into the transmission. Apparently, this is a well known problem. I am being told by Nissan that it will cost $7,000 to repair/replace the radiator, hoses, transmission etc. My mileage is just over 106,000 miles so, like everyone else, I will get no help from Nissan in making these repairs. I can't afford to fix it at this time so it will have to sit and wait while I will pray that there is a recall soon.
Re the Xterra, just say no. Bought a used 07 for my wife, coz she thought it "looked cool" - there's a brilliant buying decision right there. At 98k it did the usual Xterra thing of totally ** up the radiator coolant and transmission coolant. My local auto shop eventually found a compatible transmission from somewhere in CA, and after $5.6k the car was again usable - for one week. Then the timing chain started to rattle, another $1.5k. WTF, I thought these were high quality vehicles. No more Nissans. Anyway, because the car had less than 100k mls Nissan ponied up half the transmission repair bill, which helped. We are now in a quandary, we have so much money into this jalopy that I hate to get rid of it, but we do a lot of road trips and I don't want it going fubar half-way across Death Valley. That said, my 99 Dodge Caravan is way more reliable, but of little use as a tow vehicle.
Another thing about the Xterra, the engine power far exceeds the vehicle's dynamics, i.e. do not exceed 60mph on an interstate, particularly in a high wind. It has a short wheelbase, large unsprung weight, and poor aerodynamics. We drove ours from Seattle to Omaha and back, and much of that was white knuckling it, especially across Wyoming. There has to be something better, but I am not sure what.
2006 Xterra - So disappointed, replacing the catalytic converters for a second time! All four tire sensors are bad, in less than two years of being replaced....
During driving, sometime I am getting suddenly burning/smoke smell inside my xterra - 2015 model and it's critical. Two times the complain made to Nissan service, till now not able to solve this issue. The xterra was purchase before 5 months, due to this I am upset as no proper solution.
I have a Nissan Xterra and it is a great vehicle! Nissan is unable to do more with the transmission and coolant issue because of a class action law suit, which if people would do their research would know, I don't understand how people can complain about having to change the other wear items when they are over 50k or more. I have been an Automotive Master Tech in many brands for 20 years. Belts, filters, and fluids do wear and this is normal. Also the manufacturers are buying their parts from some other manufacturer and I don't see you bashing them. The Xterra is an awesome vehicle for what it was designed for. It just amazes me that everyone tries to get out of paying for everything!
I don't recommend anyone to buy a Nissan Xterra 2005. I used to be a Nissan believer but after the issues I had with Xterra, never again I will buy another Nissan. I have been the original owner since new and it has been a nightmare. First problem with 37k miles, fuel level sensor went bad, conveniently 1,000 miles right after factory warranty expired, cost $645 to replace it.
Second problem, universal joints after 60k miles. Third issue both front suspension bushings twice. 4 issue with 99k miles the whole rear differential cost $3453 and the icing to the cake recently both front catalytic converters, throttle body and oxygen sensors cost $6678 with a discount, almost the book value of the truck.
Who knows what's next thing that will go wrong. Nissan is building junk, and unreliable components, I have never replaced a whole rear differential in any previously owned SUV, nor so many bushings, universal joints or exhaust components before 150+ thousand miles. This truck is supposed to be build more robust than a car so you can even go off roads and it's a piece of crap. Good job Nissan. Customer will buy more replacement parts than car in the future.
Will never buy again! Barely 52k, ball joints are bad, replaced serpentine belt, hoses just last March. Now my rec value cover gaskets are leaking, the timing belt is bad and I need cabin filters replaced. The interior is poor. The liner hangs and fabric on doors is unglued. You would think I use it daily transporting livestock, but I'm single and obviously rarely drive it. To replace anything on this vehicle isn't cheap either. Usually $600-1,500. I have owned 7 vehicles, most turned over in mileage and I didn't have to invest much of anything in them. The sad part is I love my truck and have to say goodbye.
I had a couple of 90s Nissan cars, which drove without problems to over 200K miles, so we quickly became huge fans of Nissan. I purchased a used 2005 Xterra with 70,000 miles in September of 2014. Two weeks later, the catalytic converter went. As soon as I replaced it the other cat converter broke. The dealership quoted me at $1400 for each cat converter. Obviously, I took it to my mechanic and got them both fixed for about $1000. Being such a big Nissan fan, I'm hugely disappointed that the company has taken a turn for the worse. I'm sad to say that going forward, my family and I will start looking at other manufacturers.
Another 2006 Xterra bites the dust... Happy New Year, your radiator leaked into the transmission & ruined it. 144k miles so way past the warranty. Also had to replace timing chain in 2011 for over $1000 none of which was covered by Nissan. Nissan used to make a great car / truck. No more Nissans for me EVER.
Bought my 2006 SE that was dealer demo with 6k on the engine. The fun started with replacing the fuel pump since it was tripping my check engine light. Apparently the fuel float arm warps and then the check engine light comes on. The pump is only $60 but because of its location the job takes 4-5 hours and at $125/hr labor cost it gets expensive. I've been towed twice because of this defect and replaced it 4 times so you do the math. 1st and 2nd time cost me $800 at the dealer, another $600 from a local mechanic robbing me and 3rd and 4th time from a good mechanic having mercy on me at $500 each time. Replaced the radiator once and had the mechanic check the fluid lines since the radiator can leak into the transmission cooler creating the "pink milkshake of death." So far no probs with that. Rebuilt the tranny because some computer chip that went bad tripping the check engine light. I got a break on that to the tune of $2,800. Normally a $3,500-4k job.
The truck has 115k on the engine and the rear differential is failing. Cost to replace is going to be about $3,500 and looking for a mechanic other than Nissan service area to do the work. I think I've put another 8-10k back into the vehicle in repairs alone and not counting regular maintenance. I will keep this ** working since I've got so much in it. Not worth selling it. At 200k and if I feel I've squeezed everything out of it I will take this pile of ** to get it crushed and open a good bottle of scotch. I WILL NEVER BUY ANOTHER NISSAN VEHICLE EVER AND WILL ADVISE ANYONE NOT TO BUY FROM THIS COMPANY. TOTAL PIECE OF **. BUY ANYTHING ELSE BUT DO NOT BUY A NISSAN!!
Just starting having issues with my xterra. Found out it's the radiator fluids going into the transmission. The nightmare begins, stay tuned.
My daughter purchased a used Xterra with 86K miles on it. At 106000 miles the radiator failed like so many others had. I contacted Nissan and they flat out refused to cover any repair on it because the mileage was too high. I changed out the radiator and flushed the transmission. Things were good for about 3 months, now the transmission has failed. Again they refuse to do anything. So I had to buy a used transmission and now I have to get it installed. Why does a company get to decide what they think should be covered and when they can say too bad? This was a known problem that should be covered regardless of mileage on such a newer car. Once again the consumer gets screwed. I wish someone could look at all these failures and demand that Nissan correct everything that failed and reimburse those who couldn't afford it and had to do it themselves. Lord knows this has created a huge financial burden on my family.
I was driving down the street and attempted to turn... My steering wheel turned, but my wheels didn’t. I came to a stop and realized… Something broke. I could have been killed if the traffic was any heavier. My 2002 Nissan Xterra was recalled in 2010. Their leads to corrosion in an extreme case. It will lead to cracking. I am the extreme case. Nissan never contacted me to inform me of the recall. Their first agent told me that since I did not purchase it from a Nissan Dealer, they are not responsible for informing me. The second agent (escalation after complaining) who called a day and a half later agent said, "The US Postal Service loses millions of letters each day. It would be too cumbersome to send certified letters or to call everyone." I questioned him, “If you know the letters are lost, why would you rely on them to deliver this notice? It’s not a cigarette lighter we are talking about.”
He changed the subject and didn't address my question. He said he would have to "put me ahead of someone else, to address my issue." I questioned, “It's almost two days since you called. If this were not urgent, would I have waited a month?” He then advised me that I could not have it fixed at the closest garage of the breakdown - remember no steering (now vehicle going on day 3, 67 miles from home). He would see if it could go to a Nissan dealership but wouldn't know till the end of the week (as a favor?). I informed him, Nissan dropped the ball here. I have a title registered with the state. This should not have gone this long. “It's not a cigarette lighter.” I advised him I would contact the Attorney General of the state. He said “I cannot continue this call since you said that - I was going to have it towed to a Nissan dealer until you said that", after the fact. Poor service, poor attitude, and a horrible vehicle.
I have a 2007 Xterra, so far u joints and 2 recalls, 102,000 miles. Now!!! At once driving down the Ed and stopped at light. Would not accelerate hardly at all! Got home, thank God! Shut off engine and tried to crank again and it was dead completely! Had to have it towed and found out - first, the starter went out due to over amping and then come to find out the transmission line was broken in the radiator - all my fluid leaked into my radiator!!! Now we're hoping my transmission is not ruined!! Replacing it and triple flushing the system. Very unhappy with Nissan, and they won't help at all!!
My check engine light turns on and my tire sensor light is on. I take it to the dealer and they run a diagnostic for $150. One of my catalytic converters is breaking apart and my tire sensor is failing. I decide not to get it fixed there but with a mechanic (dealers too expensive) catalytic converter $1110 tire sensor $110. Not 2 days later one of my other tire sensors is out and I need a new gas pump... another $700 (all replacements are out of pocket) it's been a month since and my check engine light turns on again. Apparently my radiator broke mixing with the water and leaking into the transmission. Nissan knows about this problem but if you're past 100,000 miles they won't make themselves responsible. Need I say it's $4,690 to fix my transmission!
The only recommended SUV from Nissan. First off to those who have had issues with their xterras, at least you didn't buy the rogue/murano. I bought my Xterra 4x4 new in 2010 and have only had two problems in the 42,000 miles she has on her. The blower motor went out on Christmas eve during an unusually cold Dallas night leaving me without heat for a few days. Luckily it was under warranty. The 2nd issue is with the paint. Sadly my Artic White paint seems to chip straight to the anti corrosion protectant coat. Main area of concern was the hood and the roof along the roof rails.
I hate to tell you this but cars and trucks are not built to the high standard they were in the 50's and 60's but with the higher safer standards that have to be met in today's age. There's a trade off on the quality of workmanship. Especially when all mechanical parts are made by starving enslaved Chinese in China. No car company is perfect and no one car is going to be perfect. With every 100 cars rolled off the assembly line 10 will be lemons. Another 40 will have at least one major flaw in the first 50,000 miles. Buying a car is like shooting craps, hope you get lucky. Lastly though I am a mechanic and auto Collision specialist. I am no way work for the benefit of any car manufacture. Hope this was helpful.
Starter replaced 2x and going for a third one.
I bought my Xterra in 2012, worth a little over 24,000 miles on it, and I loved it. However shortly after purchasing it the fuel gauge sensor had snapped inside of the fuel pump and my gauge just read empty all the time. Nissan reluctantly replaced my entire fuel pump as the car was still under warranty. Then I revenge one of those BS notices from Nissan about how they knew that the radiator could leak into the transmission but that it wasn't technically recalled and so they would not pay to fix it if the problem occurred. So fine I got my mechanic to reroute to cooling system so that it wouldn't leak into the transmission if the radiator leaks.
Then I took it to get aligned and do some basic maintenance. You know new filters and oil change at the Nissan dealership since they're always sending out coupons. They quoted me $200 and then told me that they couldn't actually align it perfectly unless I was willing to put another $200 part on the axle. I declined but they told me they had already hooked it up to their machines so I still had to pay for the 100 alignment. Then to top it all off their quote didn't include $250 labor for the 45 minutes that I was there and I had to pay nearly $500 to get my keys back, and they wouldn't give me the one to one point credit either. I will never go to the dealership for service again, but this experience was just last month and now my service engine light is on for an emissions leak?? And my entire car kind of shakes when I turn on the AC like it is straining my engine? By the way it has just over 50,000 miles now.
Routine maintenance goes a long way. Nothing major: brakes - rotors - belts - fluids and lots of gas and tires bought new 2003. Lots of tires, 1 rear brake job, 5 or 6 front brake brakes and 3 rotor jobs just because I drive so much and I like to keep on stopping. 2 timing belts, misc belts and hoses, 4 CD players, 2 driver seat fabric replacement dang clothe seat, 1 starter, 1 alternator, and 1 distributor. Umm, it didn't need it. I misdiagnosed what the issue was. Turned out the timing belt was bad but I wanted the easy way first.
A couple gas filters, a few air and in cabin air filters, replaced all the fusing just because. A couple of speakers, 1 gear shift I guess at 300k you'd become a little loose too, 1 muffler - yeah it made it to 300k. A few wheel bearings, change out or re-grease. What can I say? I like to get it muddy and wet sometimes. Umm, 6 or 7 sets of tires. After 300,000 plus miles, the Xterra had a major problem. The transmission on it was slipping some and instead of a rebuild, I found a used one at a great price. While the transmission was out anyway, got the rear main oil seals replaced. Heck I already got 10,000 plus on it. Even had a same oil leak from the valve cover gaskets. Got them gaskets replaced and now no oil leak.
Heck it don't burn much oil and I don't change but ever 7 or 10ishK. Use Castrol or Pennzoil. Been using Pennzoil lately - don't everybody like a $1 off each gallon of gas. I pays for the oil on the gas fill up. Swapping out the radiator today not from wear and tear but I drop it when I did the timing belt this year and the dang micro crack on the top where I puled it won't take but easy fix - will be done in an hour or less.
The 2002 Nissan Xterra is a well made clunker in my opinion. It is sluggish in movement similar to a tank, and burns through fuel like one too! I traded it in at 6000 miles. Six thousand, you feel me.
I bought a 2005 Nissan Xterra 4x4 in about 2008 with 45,000 miles. In the first year the thermostat went out, car overheated and left me stranded in Las Vegas! Less than $500 fix. Crankshaft sensor went out in 2013, $250. The BIG PROBLEM is the CROSS CONTAMINATION from Transmission and radiator. This happened in 2013 with 72,000 miles, just out of extended warranty! **! And cost the usual $2500 but at least I have a brand new Transmission now! I hope the same problem does not occur with the new parts as I expressed to the dealer!
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