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Nissan Pathfinder



  • I went out to get something at the store just now, and putting my
    Pathfinder into reverse to pull out of the driveway....

    Foot on brake.. Parking Break released, depress button pull into reverse.

    I wait a second, I feel it 'engage' into reverse by a loud noise and a THUMP
    by the car...

    I don't think that's normal, eh?

    It has 2600 miles on it.....
  • Pdown77-

    I wouldn't buy it unless and until the seller fixes it. The seller may have tried to fix it and couldn't, that's why it's for sale now. Who tries to sell a vehicle that's shaking like a leaf without trying to remedy the problem?

    Based upon the commentaries I've read, some folks have an easy time ridding themselves of the shimmy, others try everything to no avail. Why run the risk of a chronic vibration in your new (to you) Pathfinder?
  • I sometimes have that happen too. Very intermittently. Maybe when the engine is idling real fast , the transmission then engages and it makes kind of a lurch? Doesn't happen enough to bother me but I make sure my foot is firmly on the brake when I shift.

    Happy Pathfinding!!!

  • smithmdsmithmd Posts: 167
    I have a PDF copy of the Nissan service bulletin pertaining to the shimmy. If you want a copy, e-mail me at and I'll be happy to reply with a copy.

    My shimmy appeared on my '99.5 4x4 with about 18k miles. Nissan service went through the TSB and finally fixed my shimmy with the fancy balance machine mentioned in the bulletin.

    The shimmy returned when I bought new tires at about 25k miles and was easily remedied with the same balance machine.

    At 52k, the shimmy has not returned. I'm sure that when I replace these tires in 10 or 15k, I'll have to have them balanced on that same machine.
  • tloke1tloke1 Posts: 185
    QUOTE - "The Pathfinder will probably never be in the shop. Extended warranties are more useful and much less reliable vehicles like the Jeep Grand Cherokee..." - BigOrange30

    BO30, HOW can you possibly make such a ridiculous and unfounded claim that "The Pathfinder will probably never be in the shop"?? (and that Jeeps "will"). You obviously have not read through any the posts in this forum to see that the Pathfinder does indeed have plenty of problems. If you need me to make a list of them I'd be glad to do that. Your own vehicle has already been in the shop, what, twice now? And you also know about the long list of TSB's for prior model Pathfinders. So since YOU bought the 2002 PF, NOW all of a sudden they will be 100.00% reliable?

    *IF* Nissan HAD the confidence in their products, they would offer a FREE extended warranty, just like Jeep does for their new models (7 Years/100K!!). But Nissan KNOWS that their Pathfinders WILL be in the repair shop in the future, hence the $1000+ charge for the extended warranty.

    While the PF is a reasonably reliable vehicle and no doubt many will not see a shop for some years to come, on the other side there will be plenty that will indeed be in the shop in the future, that you can count on.
  • bigorange30bigorange30 Posts: 1,091
    Basic warranties are mainly for something that may be well designed but may not have been put together properly in the factory that made the part or the factory that assembled the car. The problems will likely happen once and be fixed permanently one time. An extended warranty, on the other hand, is for protecting you against poor designs that repeatedly fail. A person often sells this vehicle before the warranty runs out because they know there will be signicant problems later.

    While no vehicle is problem free, the Pathfinder or QX4 will not be in the shop for $1000 worth of repairs during its first 100,000 miles that would justify the extended warranty. What do other people think?

    Yes, my QX4 has been back once to replace the door welts. They were probably put on wrong at the factory. That was a very minor problem, IMO. It does not involve any moving or critical part.
  • nissangirlnissangirl Posts: 186
    I have noticed that several Nissan Dealerships have already received the '03 models, but there are no pictures available. Are they hiding these vehicles? Does any one know where I can see a picture of the '03 with possibly the new colors?
  • jecklesjeckles Posts: 87
    Most extended warranties for appliances and cars alike are intended to make money for dealers not protect owners from financial disaster.

    There are some vehicles that need them, but most don't. Check out consumer reports....not this board for the truth about extended warranties and long term reliability...
  • xplorx4xplorx4 Posts: 621
    I purchased an extended warranty for my truck. What a waste of money. Naturally, I failed to read the fine print on the back of the warranty form when I bought it; I just "trusted" the dealer.

    Lo and behold, when I attempted to take advantage of the warranty when the struts on my truck started leaking at 50,000 miles, I was told that the warranty doesn't cover that. It only covers the struts if they "snapped in half". HA! What a crock!

    A couple of months ago, my "check engine" light came on. Turns out the "EVAP canister" was bad. Covered? NOPE. It's a "wear item", just like brakes, spark plugs, and oil filters, I guess.

    As for the need for an extended warranty, I'd probably never buy another one. Nearly all warranty-covered repairs are going to occur within the basic (3/36; 5/60) coverage anyway.

    And I'd have to say that beyond the standard warranties, the likelihood of a $1000 repair occuring will be very small. And even if you could make a warranty claim on a repair that might normally cost $300, you'd need THREE such claims just to recover the cost of the warranty itself.

    So if you DO get a warranty, make sure you read the entire document and FULLY UNDERSTAND the limitations before you commit.

    Bottom line, I'd have to agree with jeckles and bigorange30.

    NOTE: I can only offer experience with my Nissan; I'm not so certain that I would not need an extended warranty on a domestic vehicle. My truck will probably reach 100,000 miles next month, and I have yet to spend $1000 on unplanned maintenance that would be covered under any warranty (beyond the 3/36;5/60).
  • tloke1tloke1 Posts: 185
    I will certainly agree that for the most part extended warranties are a total rip-off. First of all, when you buy one of the extended warranties they don't even kick in until after the manufacturer's warranty ends - that could be 3-4 years or longer. And when you add the total to the total amount financed you are in many cases paying interest on the warranty cost as well. What many buyers don't realize is that for a lot of these extended warranties, IF you want one, you do NOT have to purchase it at the time you purchase your vehicle. Most dealers want you to think that, but in the past I have asked point-blank if I could pay for it "later" and the answer is usually "yes", as long as you by it before the factory warranty runs out.

    And as xplorx4 noted, study the limitations if you feel you have to have an extended warranty. And even then you may run into hassles if the problem lies in a "gray" area. Plus, some warranties are transferable if you sell the vehicle while others are not.

    And remember that dealers can be very negotiable on these since they are mostly pure profit. Usually the last person you see in the purchase process (in the "Finance/paperwork" office) is heavily commissioned and will twist your arm very hard to try and sell you one of these (along with undercoating and fabric guard "protection").
  • bigorange30bigorange30 Posts: 1,091
    with tloke1's reversal. First he chews me out for recommending that someone not buy an extended warranty and now he is against them. What gives here?
  • xplorx4xplorx4 Posts: 621
    I think tloke1 was commenting on your statement that basically said something like 'Nissans won't be in the shop [for warranty repairs] and Jeeps will be; therefore Nissans don't need extended warranties and Jeeps do."

    If you compare the 5/60 powertrain warranty on the PF with the 7/100 on the JGC, you could make either of two conclusions:
    1) Jeeps don't need an extended warranty because they're covered by the basic warranty, which is the same term as Nissan's extended. Seems like a pretty good deal, since the Nissan ext. warranty costs $1000.
    2) Jeeps need the extended warranty because they're more likely to break down between 5/60 and 7/100 than the Pathfinder, which, if hasn't broken down before 60K, won't break down within 100K. So Nissan need not include it for free, and dealers are free to "sell" ext. warranties and make pure profit.

    Blah. Whatever. This is nonsense anyway....
  • tloke1tloke1 Posts: 185
    QUOTE from BigOrange30: "First he chews me out for recommending that someone not buy an extended warranty"

    Say what?? Please explain, WHERE did I say this? Where did I "chew you out for not recommending an extended warranty"?

    QUOTE from BigOrange30: "and now he is against them. What gives here?"

    ??? What reversal??? I have NEVER been FOR extended warranties. You must be confusing my posts with someone else's.
  • tloke1tloke1 Posts: 185
    I tend to disagree with the statements made here that IF a Pathfinder has no major problems up until 60k then they will be problem-free until 100k or beyond. Hogwash. Just look at the long, long list of TSB's on PF's from a few years back. Hardly a "perfectly reliable vehicle".

    For anyone out there buying a new SUV and looking at either a 2002 or newer Jeep, or a 2002 or newer Pathfinder (and other vehicles too), your chances are just the same that one or the other will or will not have problems.
  • xplorx4xplorx4 Posts: 621
    I will still contend that a Nissan is more reliable between 60K and 100K than a Jeep, Ford, Dodge, or GM is. It is my belief that if there's an issue with the Nissan powertrain (assuming proper maintenance), it will surface within the powertrain warranty, and not likely soon after the 5/60 expires. I'm not so certain that domestic vehicles can make the same claims. Note I did not say "problem-free", nor did I claim the Pathfinder is "perfectly reliable". My point relates to items that would be covered under an extended warranty; I would say that the Pathfinder is more "relatively reliable" than a domestic vehicle. This is not a blanket statement, however. It's a generalization, but I still think the probability of failures that would benefit from an extended warranty is lower with a Nissan, not "just the same" as you contend.

    tloke1- Please point us to some TSB's that are directly connected to issues that occur to high-mileage (60K+) Pathfinders, not NEW ones, which would still be covered by the 3/36 bumper-to-bumper.

    Also, compare the number of recalls that Nissan has had to do for the Pathfinder, Xterra, and Frontier compared to the recalls that GM has had to do for much of their vehicles over the past 6 years. I don't know the stats for sure, but I see lots of headlines about "GM recalls [hundreds of thousands of] vehicles..." but not too many about Nissan, Honda, or Toyota.

    By the way, tloke1, do you by any chance own a Jeep, not a Nissan?
  • bigorange30bigorange30 Posts: 1,091
    If that list is true, it has no correlation to the # of problems the Pathfinder/QX4 has. I don't see many owners on here at all that have any significant problems whatsoever. The JGC problems board is full of people though reporting on 1-3 problems/day. I have too many friends that have problems with them also to think that its not true.

    I'll take #2 under xplorx4's possible conclusions.

    Anyone here think that the Pathfinder is loaded with problems like tloke seems to think?

    Yes, xplorx4, tloke does own a JGC.
  • tloke1tloke1 Posts: 185
    I tend to disagree with the statements made here that IF a Pathfinder has no major problems up until 60k then they will be problem-free until 100k or beyond. Hogwash. Just look at the long, long list of TSB's on PF's from a few years back. Hardly a "perfectly reliable vehicle".

    For anyone out there buying a new SUV and looking at either a 2002 or newer Jeep, or a 2002 or newer Pathfinder (and other vehicles too), your chances are just the same that one or the other will or will not have problems.
  • jecklesjeckles Posts: 87
    This warranty and reliability stuff is rediculous!

    Please check consumer reports or some other reliable source of information. This board is more anecdotatal than a compilation of Facts!!

    Here are some facts:

    TSBs are not an inication of reliability

    Jeeps do have a reliability problem

    The Jeep 7/100 powertrain warranty covers internally lubricated parts and complete failure is required before warranty kicks in... It is not an extended warranty by any stretch!!

    Extended warranties are designed to make huge profit for dealers. So odds are your average repair costs will be less than extended warranty price (otherwise dealer loses money!). The odds are definitely in your favor, otherwise price would be higher or dealer wouldn't offer extended warranty. I've almost bought extended warranty many times, but usually come to my senses...

    I have relatives that have gotten lots of miles out of their Jeep product (w/o warranty)

    I have friends that would never purchase another chryler product because of transmission problems.

    I have other friends that have "worn out" several transmissions and differentials in very few miles.

    I am not aware of very many Nissan transmission failures.

    Most PF problems on this board are not reliability issues. They are nit-picky in most cases... hence very hard to fix (vibration, noise, shifting, etc. - myself included) Very few problems actually render the car imobile. The exhaust manifold issue is the exception (for older PF). The same cannot be said for Jeep products, which is why I did not purchase one. I love the styling and comfort of the JGC, but alas cannot tolerate the poor reliability.

    All that said, car (or truck) buying is quite personal and emotional. Buy what you like, but make an informed choice. Understand the maintenance and reliability issues of each model (they are often quite different). There is nothing wrong with buying something that needs lots of work, if you are prepared to do the work (like a Jag)

    That is all I will say on the subject.
  • My "Check Engine" light is on after not tightening my gas cap. I tried disconnecting the battery overnight but it is still on. Any hints on how to get it to clear?
  • bgritzbgritz Posts: 139
    Just keep on drivin'. If it was only the cap, it'll reset itself I believe.
  • bgritzbgritz Posts: 139
    not to kick a dead horse, but we had a Cherokee, keyword here is had. I grew up around Jeeps and everyone else in my family has one currently.

    They were great when new, but as the old odometer ticked away, it became more costly and unenjoyable to drive. That being said, I believe the 4.0 inline six they produce is bombproof, it's just the vehicles and tranny's they drop it onto are sub par when compared to some other vehicle manufacturers.

    Whether it be wind-noise, rattles, handling, fit and finish, comfort, or any other number of issues, Our Pathy SPANKS our former, (and every other Jeep I have ever seen) in nearly every category.

    With nearly 50k on it, I have had exactly 0 problems with the Nissan, Not one, not even a rattle. By 50k the Jeep was annoying as hell, not to mention the costs associated with it after 130k (master computer, 2 injectors, 2 fuel pumps, Auto tranny etc...)

    thanks Jeep, you gave me the impetus to buy a better made car, and it's been worth every mile!
  • tloke1tloke1 Posts: 185
    Jeckles, your post is filled with so many inaccuracies and unfounded claims I won't even begin to waste my time to address them. I guess you are an expert since you read one or two issues of Consumer Reports. TSB's most certainly can provide an insight into the reliabilty of a given vehicle. They do not give the whole story of course, but TSB's, since you do not understand what they are, address, in part, what are known as "problems" in vehicles.

    I'll say it again, for those of you PF owners who think the reliability is so great on your vehicles - go to and look over the list of TSB's for the PF. Go back a few years, say 1998, and look there and at the years after. You'll find so many problems they are hard to count. And in some cases the PF problems exceed Jeeps for given years. So don't come on here and brag about how "reliable" the PF's are - they have their share of problems JUST LIKE every other manufacturer. And PF owners WILL be visiting the repair shops many times in the future, JUST LIKE everyone else.
  • kmrqkmrq Posts: 50
    Who cares what expert or data says. If you feel reliable in car that you drive then keep it and be proud of it. Don't go around and tease other car owners because they don't own same cars as you. Come on guys... we're not kids. And if you are looking for a new car or a used car and need advice if the car that you're looking for has good reliability than go look at the data to get some idea of how the car is. Also, if you wanna ask the owners of the car you are interested, then ask them what problems they had. Don't go around asking if Jeep or Nissan has better reliability cars.
  • bigorange30bigorange30 Posts: 1,091
    tloke is using his standard of a vehicle that breaks down alot and thinks that every vehicle probably does that. The 2000 JGC (the latest model available) shows 55 TSB's on his Alldata site. 24 of them were engine or mechanical related, 8 were safety and 10 were convenience or comfort items.

    On the other hand the 2001 QX4/Pathfinder had a total of 31/36 TSB's.

    Only 5 of them were engine or mechanical related (1/5 of the JGC), 1 was safety and 2 were comfort or convenience. All of the remaining were procedural improvements, new diagnostic tools or software updates to save the Nissan service shop time or money. This disproves tloke's point about TSBs being related to vehicle problems. Nissan is in pursuit of excellent where Chrysler is in pursuit of keeping their vehicles on the road.

    tloke: when are you going to provide us with real data that proves the Pathfinder is unreliable and the JGC isn't. Those of us who drive the Pathfinder/QX4 know its just not true.

  • phil47phil47 Posts: 394
    When I was looking into PF vs JGC 2 years ago, I used the Consumer Report and Lemon Aid guides to better understand what I was getting into. Both indicated that the PF was not only historically considerably more reliable, but had a higher predicted reliability. When I read through the TSBs, I also found what bigorange30 mentions...very few of them relate to major powertrain or electrical/mechanical issues. Most of them are related to new or updated diagnostic info.

    As it turns out, my 2 years of ownership of this 2001 LE have been free of any major issues (as was my previous year with my 1999.5 PF LE).
  • tloke1tloke1 Posts: 185
    BigOrange, you need to compare fairly here. You picked the 2001 Nissan (with a much lower amount of TSBs than 2000), yet compared it to the 2000 GC. And no, the 2000 GC is NOT "the latest model available" - there are indeed listings for 2001 and 2002.

    You need to go back and select the 2000 Nissan and break out the 85 TSB's listed, instead of the 36 listed for 2001.

    I have never claimed that the Pathfinder is "unreliable" as you state, I am ONLY claiming that the Jeep reliability has IMPROVED the past couple of years to bring it above most other SUV manufacturers, AND that Nissan, like ALL other brands, has their share of problems too. Plus, the Nissans have a lot of irritating problems that the Jeeps do not have like fit and finish, rattles, wind noise and the like.

    BigOrange is claiming that Nissan's will NEVER see the repair shop, and that ALL Jeeps will. I am simply stating the truth, that Nissans have their share of problems and some WILL be in the shops. I have owned a Jeep for over two years now without a single problem whatsoever. Fit and finish are perfect, no rattles, squeaks, leaks, nothing whatsoever.

    BigOrange is unfairly informing potential buyers that if they buy a new Jeep they will all have problems. I am just trying to defend that inaccurate claim as it is just not true. 2001 and 2002 Jeeps have been remarkably reliable. Let's quite using 1999 data, we ALL know that Jeep had major problems that year.

    And as I stated, go look at all of the TSB's for Nissan PF's for 1998, 1999, 2000 and you will see TONS of problems!!! YES, PF's are reliable for the most part, but they DO have their share of problems and they are NOT PERFECT as BigOrange would like everyone to believe.
  • bigorange30bigorange30 Posts: 1,091
    Therefore you can't use the 2000's as representative of what the vehicle has today.

    OK, I do now see the 2001 and 2002 JGCs. Again I see that if you compare the 2002 JGC to the 2002 PF/QX4, I see that the JGC has 8 Safety/Engine/Mechanical TSBs and the PF has ZERO. 8 is huge for a 2002 model.

    I NEVER said the PF was perfect. I believe I quoted that the 2001 has 5 problem TSBs. It is just in a different league than the bush league that the JGC plays in.
  • tloke1tloke1 Posts: 185
    BigOrange30, I predict in a couple of years you will get tired of your QX4 and trade it in on one of the new 2004 or 2005 Grand Cherokees. Don't get me wrong, I think the QX4 is a decent vehicle, I just think the GC offers a lot more in terms of style & looks, comfort, speed, drivability, innovative options and so on. Ya gotta give Jeep credit though for the recent dramatic improvements. Now that they have fixed most of the reliability problems, I predict the GC will be among the top rated SUV vehicles within the next couple of years. As for some other U.S. brands, I think Ford and GM are heading downhill very fast. Especially Ford, it's one problem after another after another...

    The bottom line here is that you are happy with your problem-free QX4, and I am happy with my problem-free GC. What more could we ask for?
  • bigorange30bigorange30 Posts: 1,091
    that I will get a JGC. The 8 TSBs for the 2002 will be 24 in 2 years. Its a simple concept, as parts get older, they break more. I see no improvements in the JGC quality. Good grief, a person that buys a brand new JGC today has to turn around and take it back with 0 miles on it and get 8 things fixed if they don't want to get stranded on the road somewhere. Why is that acceptable?

    BTW: Why are you attacking me when xplorx4 and jeckles are agreeing with what I said? Its beginning to look personal.
  • bigorange30bigorange30 Posts: 1,091
    994 Recall - Instrument Cluster Reprogramming - I don't know what that is but they call it a SAFETY RECALL, that's enough for me.

    14-001-02 Fuel Cap - Difficult to Remove - You're out somewhere with the gas tank on empty and you can't get the cap off. You're stranded and your wife has to come and get you.

    23-015-02 Outside Rearview Mirror - Glass Replacement - It may not strand you but I sure wouldn't drive it very far without a rearview mirror. Some people do but I would not.

    19-008-01 Steering Wheel - Popping/Ticking sound - You're certainly stranded if you suddenly can't control the steering, it might even cause a wreck.

    14-006-01 Fuel Tank - Premature Fueling Nozzle Shut Off - You can't drive without fuel

    08-017-01 Safety Systems - Vehicle modifications/repair - Who know what that is but it sounds serious enough.

    25-001-02 EVAP System - MIL ON/DTC P0442/P0455/P0456 Set - I am not sure what that is. Can you explain that one?

    21-006-01 A/T - Fluid Usage - If the fluid level is not checked frequently and is allowed to run dry, you will get stranded.

    And the QX4 TSB you refer to 02-011 is a diagnostic tool for the service shop. Now you're not being fair including that one. That leaves the QX4 with ZERO.

    Do you even read the sources you quote?
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