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Nissan Xterra Warning, GET RID OF IT!  Bottom

  • This is a warning to anyone who has a 2005+ Xterra, and I apologize to anyone I might have influenced over the years to buy one!

    READ THIS
    http://www.thenewx.org/fo…ileage-user-outcome.html

    There is really no cure for this problem, get rid of your Xterra now while it still runs.

    I bought an Xterra 2006 S 4x4 new in February 2006 and it was just fine for 11 years. Always had my oil changes done at the dealer even after it was out of warranty and it never gave me any problem. The Xterra replaced a 1992 Jeep Cherokee (XJ) so I tend to keep vehicles a long time and figured another 4-5 years for the Xterra.

    Despite attending regattas on the Gulf Coast, 380-480 miles away from Memphis, I don't drive many miles a year because I work from home.

    I'm also one of the organizers for the Florida 300, that trip overall is about 2,500 miles for me, so a couple of days before I was to leave I was headed up to the Nissan dealership to get an oil/filter change and have the car checked makes sure it was good to go. The dealer is only about 5 miles from my house directly up a busy road.

    I'm driving along mentally checking off what I needed to do before heading south and suddenly realized the engine noise was very loud, the tachometer showed 4,000 and I was slowing down! The Xterra had lost all power to the wheels despite the engine racing.

    Luckily I was in the right lane of three and was able to use my remaining momentum to put into a grocery store parking lot and coast to a stop. I tried "turning it off and turning it on again", shifting gears, 4x4 mode, etc. and no go. So while I sat there having that "Oh $hit!" moment I googled transmission problems and found I was just the latest victim of a well known factory defect in the radiator.

    Unfortunately I didn't know about this well known problem because it is kept a secret by the dealers and only talked about on forums and car problem reporting sites. I wasn't reading Xterra forums because I wasn't modding or mudding with mine.

    Once the transmission cooler, which is integral to the radiator, springs a leak it contaminates and ruins both the radiator and the transmission. The dealer charge to replace the trans with a remanufactured one and a new radiator is about $7,000 and the AAA shop quoted just under $6,000 with some discounts.

    So now I have a 2006 Xterra S 4X4 I'll sell on Craigslist for probably under $2,000 if I can get it.

    If you have a second generation Xterra, SELL IT NOW! (but not to a beachcat sailor) There is a time bomb in your radiator!

    https://www.thebeachcats.com/gallery2/main.php?g2_view=core.DownloadItem&g2_itemId=127738&g2_serialNumber=3https://www.thebeachcats.com/gallery2/main.php?g2_view=core.DownloadItem&g2_itemId=127737&g2_serialNumber=4

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    Damon Linkous
    1992 Hobie 18
    Memphis, TN

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  • man, sorry you didn't learn of this prior to the issue.
    even if you did - what can you do?

    I have a friend who's nissan did the same thing - not sure it was an xterra though

    good lesson here to look through the inter-web and see what issues your future car may have
  • This would not help you out, but for someone with a running, high-mileage Xterra, they could simply replace the radiator / transmission cooler as preventative maintenance before it leaks and blows the transmission. Having a radiator fail after 10 or more years of service is really not that uncommon and not something I would consider to be unique to Nissans.

    sm
  • Quoteil after 10 or more years of service is really not that uncommon and not something I would consider to be unique to Nissans.


    I think the part that is know to fail (a joint in the ATF cooling tube allowing coolant and ATF to mix with disastrous results for the automatic transmission.) is the unique to Nissan part of it.

    If you search google for this issue, 9 out of 10 results are nissan (the other is honda where a similar line becomes free)
  • Settlement Reached In Lawsuit Against Nissan Over Failed Radiators & Transmissions

    https://www.ncconsumer.or…ators-transmissions.html
  • MN3Settlement Reached In Lawsuit Against Nissan Over Failed Radiators & Transmissions

    https://www.ncconsumer.or…ators-transmissions.html

    That is the really bad part, that the issue would be so well documented and yet the dealer never gave any warning at all. Since no recall was ever issued for this they weren't required to tell anyone about it and so they didn't. They treated each case like it was a big surprise, usually trying to put the blame on the owner for not bringing the vehicle in for dealer service.

    That link in the first post to the Xterra forum shows how people are trying to deal with this.The only real hope is to bypass the transmission cooler built into the radiator and install an aftermarket radiator that is only a radiator, or some people are reporting they are just bypassing the transmission fluid lines, flushing the radiator, and running without any trans cooler at all.

    Anyway, my solution was a 2014 Toyota 4Runner

    https://www.thebeachcats.com/gallery2/main.php?g2_view=core.DownloadItem&g2_itemId=127742&g2_serialNumber=4

    --
    Damon Linkous
    1992 Hobie 18
    Memphis, TN

    How To Create Your Signature

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  • Damon, hate to tell you, but my 2000 4Runner w/255K+ miles has an integrated coolant/tranny fuild radiator like the Xterra.... your new T4R (Congrats on the Awesomeness BTW) (Toyota 4Runner) may also.. not entirely surprising either that Toyota and Nissan may use the same or similar styles... Anyway, when I started towing heavy loads a long distance I spent $100 at autozone and bought/installed the biggest external/auxillary transmission cooler (radiator exclusively for the transmission) and installed it.. When doing that, I decided to bypass the tranny portion of the main radiator specifically to prevent the strawberry milkshake... and I plugged the tranny lines on the main radiator... That was years ago, and now I have a new radiator anyway. Point is, the biggest killer for a transmission is overheating, unless you have an integrated radiator/tranny cooler... if so, it's not too hard to do what I just described... Cheers, see you next weekend at Slip to Ship and hope it goes w/o a glitch!



    Edited by robpatt on May 16, 2017 - 06:49 PM.
  • robpattDamon, hate to tell you, but my 2000 4Runner w/255K+ miles has an integrated coolant/tranny fuild radiator like the Xterra.... your new T4R (Toyota 4Runner) may also..!


    Yes, I don't think the integrated trans cooler is that unusual, it's just that the particular radiator used in early second gen Xterras was flat out defective.

    Check out these two timelines of complaints from CarComplaints.com, your 2004 is the most complained about 4Runner with 56 complaints,
    http://www.carcomplaints.com/Toyota/4Runner/

    my 2006 was only the second most complained about Xterra with 234!
    http://www.carcomplaints.com/Nissan/Xterra/

    Of course the Xterra is not the only vehicle with a fatal flaw.
    http://www.carcomplaints.com/worst_vehicles/

    --
    Damon Linkous
    1992 Hobie 18
    Memphis, TN

    How To Create Your Signature

    How To Create Your Own Cool Avatar

    How To Display Pictures I…he Forums in the forums.
    --
  • QuoteAnyway, my solution was a 2014 Toyota 4Runner

    she's a bute Clark!

    wow - your new ride has very few reported issues
    http://www.carcomplaints.com/Toyota/4Runner/2014/

    QuoteOf course the Xterra is not the only vehicle with a fatal flaw.
    http://www.carcomplaints.com/worst_vehicles/

    interesting that the top "worst" cars - most of them have Transmission at the top of their complaint list
  • MN3
    wow - your new ride has very few reported issues
    http://www.carcomplaints.com/Toyota/4Runner/2014/


    Saw that! And the complaints are things like "arm rest squeaks" and "uncomfortable seat" instead of "total drive train failure that put my life in danger on the interstate". icon_lol

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    Damon Linkous
    1992 Hobie 18
    Memphis, TN

    How To Create Your Signature

    How To Create Your Own Cool Avatar

    How To Display Pictures I…he Forums in the forums.
    --
  • Sorry to hear about your Xterra issues Damon. Good choice on the 4Runner, if you can afford it they are great vehicles.

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