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Nissan Versa Engine Problems



  • my car is a 2008 nissan versa with cvt transmission. i have 155k miles. its normal for the cvt to not accelerate after jamming really hard on the brakes that has cause a wheel 2 lock maybe. i noticed that if i slam on the brakes really hard and come 2 a stop; when i try 2 take off with my foot all the way on the floor it revs 2 about 2800rpm and stays there for about 7 seconds like the parking brake is on and then suddenly the rpms shoot to 5500rpm and takes off...! I mean idk if its normal but i think it's a cvt thing. i remember an automtive magazine testing an altima with cvt and they mentioned that after an emergency brake stop the car didnt want 2 take off again..
  • Check the forum on Altima with CVT transmission, - there are a # of posts on there re: lack of accekeration/safety with the CVT.

    Why doesn't Nissan just fix there problems!!

    Who wants a new lemon!!! :lemon: :lemon: :lemon: :lemon:
  • hey forum
    i have a 2007 versa sl sedan, i have 90,000 miles and love this car but unfortunately the car won't start after i drove it to my brothers house. my mechanic for 15 years said that it could be the crank or cam shaft sensor. he replaced both of them with nissan original parts but it still didn't start.... he unplugged the cam shaft or crank shaft sensor and it started running perfectly but when he plugged it back in it shut off... so he did it again then it didn't start but after a couple of tries it started again but this time he used a scanner and tried to override the sensor so he can plug it in after that was done he plugged it back in then turned on the sensor with the scanner it shut off again wtf...he told me to take it back to the dealer b/c they have the computer diagnostics to repair but for five days they had no clue what to do so on the fifth day and $400 in parts and towing and $400 in rental they want me to get a new engine i said again WTF it is a sensor part not the engine...i need help before i go crazy...i'm on my way to the dealership now to give them a peice of my mind. i will update on what happens... :confuse:
  • It seems the Nissan dealerships, who are supposed to be the experts on their own cars, are pretty clueless about anything other than replacing a wiper blade. :( I keep reading here about dealerships replacing engines, instead of fixing the problem. I guess competent labor is just too expensive ?
  • I have a 2010 Nissan Versa that is a few months old. The service engine soon light has come on 3 times. Been given the old "loose gas cap" routine. Now, they say it is bad gas. Codes shows "Fuel System Lean". Dealer wants $250 to drain the gas and put new gas in. I have been driving about 40 years and never had "bad gas" before. Is this a reasonable solution?
  • PF_FlyerPF_Flyer Pennsylvania Furnace, PAPosts: 8,766
    Could be reasonable. A large number of check engine lights are due to gas gap issues. But if the cap is OK, I suppose it could be bad gas. "Fuel System Lean" seems like it could mean several things related to the fuel system beyond "bad gas", but changing the gas would seem to be the simplest. This is just me, but before I'd pay $250 to drain and replace the gas, I'd try to siphon the tank myself (into appropriate containers of course) and run a couple of tanks of gas to see if that cleared things up.

    Cold weather may also be in play here

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  • Sounds like a bogus solution to me. Obviously if the car runs OK, you could just change brands of gas and see what happens. $250 is outrageous.

    Please let us know what happens ! Good Luck !
  • i saw the sluggish issue popping up a lot here, step on the gas, nothing happens.

    i had this issue, but it was linked to leaving my car sit for two weeks with 1/4 - 1/2 tank of gas. It was about a week after I bought my car.

    Water got into my gas tank, and after driving it for 30-45 minutes (and putting in gas cleaner) it fixed it.

    did this at the suggestion (driving) of the dealership mechanic.

    this is probably in these forums somewhere, but nissan dealerships have their servicing WAY overpriced. i got ripped off for the last time at the 30k servicing and have never gone back.
  • monti2000monti2000 Posts: 13
    My brands new Nissan Versa 1.8L SL CVT developed noises at 3200 km.

    The CVT makes a WHINING NOISE which is most irritiating. The dealer said that this is normal for the CVT. Technical Services said that they cannot do anything about it.

    The ABS braking system makes a CLUNK, CLUNK, CLUNK, CLUNK NOISE on leaving the curb. Technical Services told me that this is normal as the ABS system is calibrating itself. CLUNKING NOISES occur right after the automatic door locks kick in.

    The ABS system makes a strange metal to metal CLANKING noise when stopping on ice with lots of vibration at the brake poedal. Technical Services told me that this was normal for ABS brakes. They asked me if I had hjad ABS brakes before. I told them that yes I had, and that there was never any of this metal to metal CLANKING NOISE when stopping on ice. It does not instill confidence when braking. You feel like the car is falling apart.

    Another strange noise occurs from time to time where something grabs from the back of the car to teh brake pedal in the front whether or not you have your foot on the brake pedal.

    GAS MILEAGE Is misrepresented in the brochure, I am getting about 1/2 of the documented gas mileage.

    How can Nissan sell such shoddy product?

    I am very disappointed in my purchase and in Nissan.

    I would not recommend this car.
  • monti2000monti2000 Posts: 13
    Hi Forum, :mad: :lemon:

    I haven't had time to come and look at your posts in the last few months, but here I am again.

    I have dealt with Nissan Technical Services, and they are pretty lame. They told me that the WHINING NOISE with the CVT transmission is normal, and that there is nothing they can do about it. They told me that the CLUNK, CLUNK, CLUNK, CLUNK NOISES coming from the ABS system is normal, and that there is nothing that they can do about it.

    The metal to metal CLANKING NOISES coming from the ABS when braking on ice is also normal, and there is nothing that they can do about it. They asked me if I had had ABS on my other cars. I have had cars with ABS brakes, and there is no metal - metal CLANKING noise when braking on ice. This thing feels like the car is going to fall apart. :lemon:

    Pedestrians have looked over at me and my car with the WHINING NOISE from the CVT and also with the metal - metal CLANKING ABS noise when braking on ice. :lemon:

    The CLUNK, CLUNK, CLUNK, CLUNK noise from the ABS self calibration has also had some pedestrians look at the car.

    I been reading some of the Versa Forum posts again, and it amazes me to see that Nissan would actually allow their customers to get this pist off at them.

    They have 7% DEFECTS in their production, and their Technical Services Representative told me that he was not aware of this 7% DEFECTS. I told him that the Financial Representative at my dealership had told me about this when he was trying to sell me the extended 5 year warranty.

    I was glad that the Financial Representative had told me about the 7% DEFECTS, and I took the extended warranty.

    Please note that other Versas which we had rented did not make these noises. Had the Versas I test drove had these noises, I would never had purchased the Versa.

    My own brand new Versa was fine for the first 3200 km, - no noises. Then it began making noises in early September 2010.

    Nissan needs to get with their quality program and perhaps think less of catchy marketing gimmicks like let's Shift_Innovation.

    Before we innovate, can we get the basics right? - like the transmissions and the brakes???

    I don't recommend this car to anyone.

    What's with all the rattles and noises on a new car at 3200 km????
  • monti2000monti2000 Posts: 13
    Hi Forum,

    Just wanted to add that when I dealt with Technical Services, they asked if I wanted to switch to the Nissan Rogue or the Altima seeing that I was not happy with the Versa.

    I told them there was no point as they have had problems with engines and CVT transmissions on these models as well. :lemon:

    I referred them to teh Forum and to teh Forum where consumers can post.

    Additional posting sites are at the Lemon Law 1 -888 - 453 - 6667
    and at

    Instead of sleeping I am up at 4 am this morning worrying about these Versa Pronlems!
  • okwithmeokwithme Posts: 1
    Reall? I fail to see the connection since Cinco de Mayo is not really an observed holiday in Mexico. May 5th for most parts of Mexico (meaning excluding areas of tourism) is like our Battle of Bunker Hill. Yeah it was important, but does anyone remember and get wasted on that day? mmm, nope.
  • So what did you wind up doing? I seem to have the same problem. They say I need a new engine and they need every receipt for every oil change. We're really confused about what to do...but it does seem to be a very common problem! Hmmmm... :lemon: :lemon:
  • Well, we really had no choice but to pull together all the receipts and submit them. Then they told us in order to determine if the sludge build up was due to our negligence or to a defect in the engine they would have to break down the engine, take pictures, and then send them to Corporate for a determination. And if it was determined that it was our fault we would be charged $450.00 to break down the engine. It was very nerve racking. We gave the ok, they did everything and then it was determined that there was a problem with the engine. The put in a new engine. Now, after having done all this it is important to know that we had purchased the extended warranty protection. Because we did, it only cost us $50.00 which was the deductable. The Nissan is currently back in the shop as it needed a module relating to the brakes. The Nissan Versa is a very bad model vehicle. We have had the car in so many times and our only saving grace is that we purchased the extended warranty.
  • How many receipts were you able to come up with? Were you the 1 who did some oil changes yourself ? How did you find all of your receipts ?
  • monti2000monti2000 Posts: 13
    Hello Samiam9698,

    The above message appeared in my email. I sent a registered letter to Nissan Customer Service in Toronto, regarding my lemon :lemon: and with that they had the Technical Service "Engineer" come to the dealership and he checked over the car.

    My dealership service manager kept telling me that Nissan was sending in their "US Technical Service Engineers", when I finally brought in the car it was a "Technical Service Engineer" from the Montreal Office who listened to my complaints. He was not able to give me his phone number or a business card.

    When I spoke of the 7% defects that Nissan has on its production line he asked where I got this information. I told him that his Nissan Finance manager at the dealership told me this, and because of this information I purchased the 5 year extended warranty package which includes 4 or 5 oil changes. Nissan has done the first oil change for me. I will bring the car to them for all my oil changes.

    "The Technical Service Engineer" from Montreal told me that he would not be able to do anything about the following complaints: 1. the whining noise coming from the CVT(supposedly), 2. the Clunk, Clunk,Clunk, Clunk noise coming from the ABS brakes engaging every time I leave the curb, 3. the metal to metal clanging that I had on the ABS brakes when stopping on ice and 4. the very bad gas mileage I am experiencing, approximately 11.00 L/100 km. One half the gas mileage in their brochure.

    According to the "Technical Service Engineer" from Montreal these noises are normal on the Nissan Versa. He told me that I should expect the Versa which is a small car to have different noises from larger cars, and that ABS brakes always make noise.

    When I again told him that pedestrians are looking over at me when they hear all of the above three noises, this "engineer" looked at me like he did not believe me. He asked if I wanted to move to a larger model like the Altima or the Rogue. I told him that I had spent alot of time researching a variety of cars, & that he should check the forum for CVT and engine problems on the Altima & Rogue models. What would be the point....?

    As another individual has posted, - what can you expect when you put a rubber band in a transmission?......

    "The Technical Service Engineer" from Montreal told me it was normal for the ABS brakes to make this metal to metal clanging noise. All these noises are normal to them.... Poor suckers are we who bought Nissan product.... I don't recommend the car to anyone, and I have now have no confidence in any of their products.

    As far as my mileage which is 1/2 the posted value in the brochure, again he had a lame explanation that it is not Nissan that determines the gas mileage performance, and that it is difficult to reproduce every driver's driving conditions.
    He had me do a test drive with him so that "he could see how I drove the car",.....?????? I have been driving for over 30 years, and I have had many cars both old and new, and both North American and Japanese cars.

    I told him that had I purchased an old 2nd hand car for $500, I would not have the noises I have with this car.

    He jumped on the opportunity to fix alot of rattling coming from the dash around the windshield. He said that this was something he could fix, and he was quite excited about it. I believe he added some felt around the air bags and/or some rubber insert in the dash to stop the rattling. These noises were more quiet for a couple of days. Rattling noises then returned.

    The morning I gave the car to him was in January 2011, and we had just had another snow storm with ice. The driving conditions were horrible, and when applying the ABS brakes, the metal to metal clanging noise was really bad. He again told me that it is normal.

    Overall I found their follow - up misleading and very lame. It is best to stay away from Nissan. Clearly they are producing inferior product, and they do not stand behind their product, even when customers have paid top dollar for their model plus another $1450 for extended warranty programs.

    I am going to send another registered letter to Customer Service in Toronto, and I will probably copy Nissan in Japan.

    My dealership is lame, and I would recommend that potential buyers stay away from any Nissan product. Check the forums for other Nissan models such as the Altima, Rogue etc... you will find engine sludge and CVT problems on those as well. I guess there are lemons in all models. :lemon:

    Looking at their latest products, the JUKE and the Leaf, -- I cannot feel inspired. They look exactly like their names imply one model is for jerks, and the other will be like a Leaf blowing in the wind. I am sure that it is just a plastic shell sitting on a rubber band transmission.

    By the way what were your km when you had the sludge problem in your engine?

    I began experiencing noises on my brand new Versa 1.8 L SL with CVT at 3289 km. Before that I had no noises. I took great care driving my brand new car. My Versa now has 7100 km on it, and I have the above noises with very poor mileage, and I also have all sorts of strange noises, some of which are grabbing the brake pedal whether or not I am applying the brakes.

    The "Technical Service Engineer" was lame, he did not do anything for any of the above mechanical problems. :lemon: I told him that Nissan would have to take this car back, and he said that they cannot take it back, --- and that it would cost me money to get out of this car.

    I told him it was already costing me money, and that Nissan should refund me all of my payments since the past year.

    How can I possibly be happy with Nissan? Why can they not fix their lemons, - OR TAKE THEM BACK!!!!! IF THEY CAN'T FIX THEM!!!! :mad: :mad:

    Just to add icing on the cake, I take very good care of my car in the winter, and I place newspapers down to absorb moisture from snow etc... I guess some technicians sat in the back to hear the noises when they did their test drives, and my car was given back to me with dirty car mats in the back. They did not even put any paper down to protect my new car mats in the back.

    Even Canadian Tire places paper down on the floor mats when you bring your car in for service.

    Down with Nissan... I find their service quite disgusting....
  • Hi,

    We were able to come up with enough receipts so it averaged out to an oil change every 4,000 miles. However, they noted two things:

    1. because we drove the car a lot and it had high mileage on it (20,000 miles a year) they told us we were at fault because we should have changed it every 3,000 miles due to the high mileage we were putting on it.
    2. we had the oil changed at numerous places...bad idea as I have come to find out. There is a good chance that these "cheap" oil change places use inferior oil and filters. We now take the car to Nissan to have the oil and filter changed.

    I consider our situtation and the fact that they put in a new engine at their expense very fortunate. I would NEVER buy another Nissan product or recommend one.
  • Bought it last year March of 2010, heard about a week or two after buying it the "clunk clunk clunk clunk noise after I get to about 15-20 miles. Called the dealer, they said to bring it in, I did. They said that its "normal" for the ABS to do this. Another issue is when the road is wet and I apply the brakes, the breaks lock up and feel like nuts and bolts are coming out of the transmission (feeling can be felt on the foot when breaking). I haven't took my car in for this, wanted to research this first, but I'm sure they will say "this is normal" like they have with everyone else. Next issue is that when backing up, my breaks "squeal" a high pitched noise. This started happening around 12000 miles on the car. I told the nissan dealer this and they said that there is a "fix" for this and provided me with a "recall" notice of this issue with this type of break pads on the rear. They also said something about the front pads might have some "corrision" on them and they will dust/wipe them off as well. I'm assuming the break pads were a recall? Don't know, but I'm getting them fixed tomorrow. Next issue and I don't know if this is an issue because I couldn't find it on the web, but when I take my keys out of the ignition, the windows will still roll up and down. After about 5 minutes, they will not. Is this normal? :lemon: :lemon: :lemon:
  • oreokittyoreokitty Posts: 1
    I am so frustrated and I hope you can help me. I have a 2008 Nissan Versa (isn't the CVT version). I am the first owner and I have only 50,000 KMS on it. I went in to have my 50,000 Kms maint. done which included cleaning the brakes, oil change, filter change ect. ($769's later... ) I leave the dealership and my brake pedal is vibrating when I push on them. I bring it back the next day and they machined the brakes and remembered that there was a recall that needed to be done on my running lights. Fine, I am mad because for the $769 what the heck did they do to my car? I am freaking out. I leave and again my car isn't right. It is making this sound, best way I can describe it is it sounds like a diesel truck. That isn't right!! So, bring it back and three mechanics look at it and can't find anything wrong and say it supposed to sound that way. Ummm no it isn't and it didn't when I brought it in the first time. So, this Saturday I am bringing it in again. I am getting mad! I noticed also when I push the accelerator it hesitates. Grrr! Can anyone suggest what I should do? :sick:
  • PF_FlyerPF_Flyer Pennsylvania Furnace, PAPosts: 8,766
    edited May 2011
    Step one... deep breath. Sometimes it seems when you have one issue with a car, other things catch your eye or ear and you wonder, "Is this bad too?" Not saying that your car isn't hesitating, but it is possible that you're just noticing something that's been there all along. I've done that myself :surprise:

    Now, back to your actual issues. Vibrating brake pedal DOES sound like warped rotors (NOBODY makes rotors like they used to and warping is fairly common) My 2007 Versa front rotors warped at about the same mileage. I put up with it until my daugther was going to buy the car from me and we replaced them. She's careful not to ride the brake downhill and she's over 90,000 miles now with no warping yet (but give it time). Also, rotors that have been machined to unwarp them will warp faster the next time since they are now thinner.

    If your Versa sounds like a diesel truck, I have a thought on that as well. A flange in front of my muffler rusted out in 2009. That's WAY early and I'm pretty sure that the ethanol in our gas made things worse. Ever notice the amount of water that comes out of tailpipes now? Water is a by-product of ethanol combustion and you can bet that it's a good and corrosive water that's inside our exhaust systems. You may have a hole in the exhaust somewhere, at least that would be my guess. Unless you mean an engine noise rather than an exhaust noise... the Versa certainly isn't as quiet as my Altima under the hood, and at those times that I get "rabbit ears" I can sometime imagine things don't sound right too. My 2011 Versa sounds the same way my 2007 does. Having no reason at this point to distrust what your dealer mechanics are saying, the deep breath/fresh listen theory might ease your mind. Chasing noises that other people can't hear can be hard on everyone.

    On the subject of those regular services from the dealer... I've ALWAYS done those, and yes, the 50,000 K (30,000 mile) interval IS a "big" one price-wise. But with the life we've gotten out of our cars, (over 2 million miles on 9 Nissan vehicles combined since 1979 from the same dealer/service dept with ZERO major issues) I always looked at it as a good thing. Well, a couple of years ago, my dealership changed owners, same shop folks. I had two services done where oil changes got done, but it seemed that not enough oil was put in. No damage to the cars, but it made me lose a little trust. I have a friend who runs a local garage and I do oil changes every 3,500 - 4,000 miles and they check all the belts, fluids, lights, etc that Nissan had been checking and the oil change runs me $35 plus any charges for things that might need to be done like burned out bulbs, etc. We put a lot of miles on our cars and those services come around fairly quickly. I was doing 7,500 mile service intervals, so the services went small ($60-80), medium ($175- $250), small, big ($350+) over and over. So while I'm now doing 5 or 6 oil changes in that same time frame, at $35 each, I'm spending roughly $210 for the same services that were running $700 - $800.
    Like I said, I'm not saying the dealer service is a rip off. (My vehicle history can attest to that) but you can do the same thing for a lot less with no loss of confidence in your car.

    Hope this helps you out a bit! I know it's always nice to have someone to bounce ideas off of!

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  • gagalgagal Posts: 4
    My 2007 Versa broke down on the side of the road. Engine is blown. Nissan wanted $3600 to replace. 62,000 miles so the 60,000 mile warranty was void. Found a guy who could put the engine in and I purchased one. Problem now is that Nissan does not make the gasket that goes on the transmission to put it back together with no leaks. The heat of the engine warped the original one. So the Nissan dealer suggested that they could replace the transmission under the warranty because they don't make the part. Nissan USA now refuses to do anything because they did not put the engine in. Heck, nobody has put the engine in because it can't be put back in!!! When Nissan had us tow the car to the dealer, they have also determined that the radiator is bad which caused all of the problems. Now I have a 4 year old piece of junk!! Does anybody have any suggestion? Does anybody know if the Moss Magnusson Warranty act applies? How can they not make the parts for their own cars? Are there not any laws concerning that?
  • windygal1windygal1 Posts: 7
    I find this incredible to believe! What if Nissan replaced your engine? Are you saying they also wouldn't be able to get the part?
  • gagalgagal Posts: 4
    Well, Nissan won't replace the engine unless we pay them $3500. What we needed was a torque converter seal which goes on the transmission so that the fluid does not leak out. Nissan does not make that seal. The only way to get the seal is to purchase another transmission! I really thought car manufacturers had to at least make the parts to repair their cars. I guess if you have a Versa and the seal goes out, then you can pay $1800 to have a new transmission put in instead of $50 for a seal!
  • beowolfebeowolfe Posts: 2
    My Versa died on the freeway. The PS light came on on the dash. I ran the self diagnosis program and was given the code P0132 (oxygen sensor). The PS code refers to the power steering system. Questions:

    1. Does the oxygen sensor have any relation to the power sterring system?
    2. Will a failed oxygen sensor cause the car not to start?
  • beowolfebeowolfe Posts: 2
    edited July 2011
    Let me start by saying that I'm not a mechanic. But I did sell power equipment in a previous job. If the seal is not made by Nissan, you can take it to a ball bearing retailer such as a Timken Store or a Dixie Bearings. They can measure the old seal and probably get your one that will fit and work.
  • ron819ron819 Posts: 1
    I bought the car new in 2009. I have been very happy with it. Just recently it began having problems with accelerating from a stop. I put my foot on the petal thinking the car will go and the car slowly moves. I then of course place my foot even harder on the accelerator with the accelerator almost to the floor and a couple of seconds later the car takes off and drives fine. While this is happening the engine is racing. It will then repeat itself at the next light or stop sign. The real scary part is when I am merging into traffic. Since the car will not pick up speed I have to make sure there is no one coming. If I do not they might not slow down not suspecting I am having trouble getting the car to move. I hold my breath a lot. I took it to the dealer for repair. They told me if they can reproduce it they can not fix it. As I mentioned earlier it is an intermittent problem and I can not figure out how to reproduce it. Of course I will not give up because I should not have to drive worrying that I might get into an accident. Has anyone else had this problem? If so what fixed it?
  • flavifeflavife Posts: 20
    Similar problems have been reported due to the brake switch not releasing fully. Next time put your toe under the brake pedal to lift it up higher then tap the accelerator and see if it is okay.

    Frank 2009 Versa S sedan MT-6 with 22700 miles
  • Had the car into the dealer last week for some minor problems.
    Maybe not so minor as we suspect a leaking front strut.
    Also mentioned the intermittent loud engine noise.
    Respond was they do that, no remedy.
    Has anyone had this problem.
  • crown5crown5 Posts: 24
    Yes, same excuse with my dealer!
    Noise also getting worst as time goes by.
    From the symptoms and related noise, I conclude there is a certain amount of piston slap in that engine.
    Is it normal? I would not think so. Factories are equipped with all the technology today which eliminates most of human error.
    May have to go to arbitration board on that one.
  • sasebosasebo Posts: 1
    ron 819,
    I thought I was going crazy. I just had my car towed yesterday for the same problem. This is a 2011 Versa purchased in December with only 7,200 miles. I was in city traffic going about 45 mph. I observed that each time I put on brakes, when I then tried to accelerate I had lost all power. I was able to coast to a parking lot. After putting it in park, I started the motor and it ran fine until I came to the next light - problem repeated itself. Third time I knew with rush hour traffic I could not risk my life driving this vechicle. It was towed to the dealer and this afternoon the service department at the dealership informed me they cannot reproduce the problem and haven't had such a problem in the past. I also spoke with Nissan central and they said they are unaware of such problems. The dealer will keep the car for a few more days and hopefully be able to reproduce it. I have the same fears as you and had I been in fast traffic or on the interstate, I shudder to think what could have happened to me. This was the first site I reviewed to see if others were having this problem. I will keep doing my research and pray the dealer is able to reproduce this. Mmmm - wonder if Nissan knows about this but don't want to acknowledge it?
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