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Nissan Xterra Manual Transmission Problems

greg62greg62 Posts: 3
My 2006 X needs a new clutch, they say, at 23000 miles. No excessive driving habits. No fluid leakage detected upon visual inspection. What's up with that?


  • I have a 2006 xterra offroad. I am having the same problem, clutch replacement required at 40,000 km (25,000 miles). Again, normal City driving, no offroading. Nissan Canada customer relations won't budge on the warranty or providing good will help on the cost. Seems to me like a classic "premature wear" on the clutch material, rather than normal wear... will likely sell the truck ASAP and never buy Nissan again due to the below standard parts and horrible customer service relations.
  • greg62greg62 Posts: 3
    The end of the matter is that Nissan sucks in this situation. 23000 miles and the Xterra needs a new clutch. I neglected to say that the steering column had problems within months of our purchase. I got rid of the vehicle and went with a Jeep. Nissan is off my list forever. Perhaps when the truth comes out that Nissan quality is going down, down, down I will at least have some personal satisfaction. Maybe I just got on board to late. Once bitten twice shy.
  • mcamaramcamara Posts: 1
    i bought my 2006 nissan xterra last feb2007 and just this weekend after drinving the car for only a year and 2months with 11,000. miles the clutch is worn out.
    the dealer said that the cost for the replacement of the clutch is $1700 and not under warranty.
    i just have a had time believing that i have driven so terrible to have to repace the clutch. I've been driving for over 15 years manual cars and never had this issue.

    i just feel at the mercy of the dealer since they told me that they had never had a nissan xtrerra with a clutch issue....WTF :confuse: :mad:
  • I have been driving manual trans. for over 35 years, including 2001 and 2003 Xterra. the 2007 I purchased has a clutch failure at only 16k.

    no city driving,

    no hauling,

    over 10 years experience driving xterra manual trans.

    over 35 years experience driving manual trans

    and nissan wont pay for new clutch -- not even a dime!!!

    needless to say, i will never buy a nissan again.
  • You guys WHo are Having the verry rair clutch problem. There is a bulitin out you should have got a lettor in the Mail from nissan. If you did not bring it to your Nissan dealer. these trucks are real grate trucks. and peapol with the Nissan frunttear are not having problems same trans same clutch. Think you 3 guys just happen to have bad luck. I will try to find the bulitin for you guys Thankyou Marco.
  • asaasa Posts: 359
    Please let us know when you find something on this Marco. I've been lucky so far with my '06 Frontier 6-Speed at 13,500 Miles and have had no troubles. But, I've read on some Frontier forums that owners have had the same sort of clutch failures despite conservative driving.
  • Hey guys I think you guys should look at Nissan They will have your answer I dont no any mor at this time I no that is a grate websight how ever. If I have sum time I will look Let me no Thankyou have a real grate day Marco.
  • gsouthamgsoutham Posts: 1
    I also have a 2006 Xtera and the clutch went at 35,000 km. My Ford Explorer clutch lasted 220,000 km so I wasn't expecting to replace the clutch this early. Today at 40,000 km, I was told I need $750 in brake work. I called Nissan Canada today and they said if there are enough complaints, they will do a recall.
  • My clutch failed at 23,000 miles. I recently had it repaired at my expense since it is considered a wearable part and not covered under warranty. I am having a hard time believing this part failed due to my driving behavior. I travel mostly over flat lands, do not down shift to slow the vehicle, do not hawl loads. The car has not been abused.....Nonetheless I've driven 2 different makes also manual transmission for a total of 15 years before the Nissan and never had a clutch failure.Sounds shockingly similar to your experiences. There is a trend here that Nissan must address. I hope all have voiced their concerns to the Nissan Consumer Affairs thru Nissan Official site under the contact us tab. I suppose this is the right place to start.
  • tasintasin Posts: 1
    Ok - 2nd clutch at 43,000. This obviously is a design flaw. Have been driving standard transmissions for about 40 years and did not believe this was happening. My dealer was great on the first incident and replaced at no cost. 2nd just occurred this weekend so will see what happens, but afraid this car is going to have to go. I do a lot of cross country driving and cannot have this happen in middle of nowhere. This really should be a recall issue
  • ...mmmm it would appear I am not alone. I learned today that my clutch is worn out at 31,000 km. I am also a manual diehard (30 years). A significant chunk of this distance was long distance in Canada - so not a lot of gear changes. This travel is well documented. Lets hope Nissan will come clean. I am in the process of talking with Nissan... I will continue to post.
  • I have 2007 Nissan Xterra with 22000 miles and am in the process of having the second clutch put in. The first one wore out at 8000 miles. The dealership is now in the process of replacing and will let me know what they find after they take it apart. I have not been given any encouragement that they would find anything other than driver issues. This is a two wheel drive Xterra no off roading. I cannot afford to be replacing clutches every 8-12,000 miles. Any ideas?
  • grubzgrubz Posts: 2
    This is my 3rd nissan and it will be my last. I picked up my 07 xterra after the frame on my old pathfinder rusted away even though the exhaust was still original and the engine and tranny ran like new. I gave nissan the benefit of the doubt that they've learned to build a decent body by now but now am faced with selling a truck that I bought 4 months ago off a friend who knows how to drive stick. I figured I wasn't going to have any major problems for at least 5 years and that i'd have it for at least 10. yeah right.... dealer tells me it's my fault and being the nice guy he is will do the work for 1800, as opposed to 2400. I'm not sending any of my money in the direction of these clowns so i'm having a tranny shop replace the clutch and for sale it goes in the spring. worst thing is that centerforce doesn't make a clutch for these 4L xterras (or frontiers); if they did i'd consider keeping it, but if it's just gonna be replaced with the same bad part then it's gone.

    Does anyone know of any quality aftermarket clutches for these trucks?
  • So, $2,600 CAD bought me a new clutch but not the confidence that I won't need another soon. Again, this vehicle has had an easy life. There are no bulletins out regarding the clutch. I am an ex automotive engineer engineer - something is amiss! There is just too much evidence concerning the 2006 release. I wonder if we will see a spate more with the 2008 when the mileages get to the break point or whether Nissan has done a sneaky fix. I invite you to contact me, I am pusuing Nissan on this. Don't be a victim! (
  • coach877coach877 Posts: 1 goes.

    I bought my 2006 Xterra new in March 2006 and have done over 70% highway driving. The truck currently has 43,000 miles. As most of you know the mileage is well below stated on the sticker. I drive 75 mph and am lucky to get 16 mpg. I don't do any off-roading and have only towed with it once while moving.

    The steering column was replaced under warrantee during the first year.

    I have dutifully completed oil changes and use synthetic oil. I have been driving a stick since 1985. I have not had the dealer complete the scheduled maint but was planning on it since I have owned it for 3 years without changing the rear end fluids.

    I noticed the engine over-reving slightly during shifts last week and took it to a local Nissan dealer.

    Once I found out that the vehicle was no longer covered under warrantee I took it to a local repair shop that does work on mostly foreign late model autos. He is a friend of mine and I have used his shop for over 12 years on Saabs, BMWs, Volvos, and Toyotas with excellent results.

    The total bill came to $3,300. I'm sure the dealer bill would have been closer to $5000.

    The $3,300 bill included:

    Clutch replacement at 43,000 miles

    Here lies the problem!!! Nissan uses a $160 clutch disc in a vehicle that makes 260 hp. I'm no engineer...but this doesn't seem like a good place to skimp.

    They used to install beefy clutches in their high HP vehicles. My 1984 300zx turbo clutch lasted close to 100k.

    Flywheel replacement ($800 part...surprisingly in stock at a local dealer the part was torn up pretty bad)

    My repair shop said it was unusual to find a part like this in stock!!!!!

    30,000 mile service (the fluids and filters were close to $400)
    New battery...Too early in my opinion.
    Wiper blades
    Mass Inspection

    total parts: $1454
    Labor: $1768

    Should I cut my losses and trade this puppy in now while I can get a good deal while the dealers are hurtin? Any suggestions?

    Thanks for your advice.
  • asaasa Posts: 359
    It's unfortunate that no aftermarket manufacturer is marketing stronger clutch components for the Nissan 6-Speed. That way, when the work was complete, an owner would know that the fix was good.

    I'm wondering too if the clutch master cylinder set up might be a partial culprit. The 4.0L 6-Speed (only) clutch master cylinder assembly should be adjusted to a length of 120.5mm (4.74") from the hole in the clevis (where it attaches to the pedal) to the mounting surface plate of the assembly (engine side of firewall). Ya pretty much have to remove the thing to measure the set up.

    My clutch master cylinder squeaked and after FOUR trips to the Dealer, they finally replaced it ..... and didn't adjust it properly before installing it. Fortunately it's set so that the travel is slightly beyond where it should be, but if it were adjusted short, I wonder if clutch slippage might occur? This being a hydraulic clutch, it's hard to say. I'm no Engineer. :(
  • gfggfg Posts: 5
    I too just had to have my clutch replaced at 20.5k miles of normal driving (no off road). My wife and I have had only manual transmissions in all our cars for the past 40 years because of their durability vs. automatics. Boy were we burned by this our first Nissan. I am an ex-automotive engineer and currently restore cars, and I can restate the obvious: Nissan clearly put a weak, underdesigned and untested clutch in this vehicle. My guess is that since they adapted the 350Z 6-speed trans with its integral bellhousing to the X, they must have also had to use the Z clutch, perhaps smaller OD and which is designed for a car of significantly less weight. I was expecting a pickup-type of rugged drivetrain, not to mention Japanese design durability. Instead we got a junk clutch; very un-Japanese. If there is no news of a Nissan recall and free replacement with a truck-type beefy clutch in the next 6 months, we will sell our 08 X and never buy Nissan again. It is still hard to believe a major Japanese car co such as Nissan would release such an unreliable drivetrain, when their major sales advantage has always been their great designs for reliability and many troublefree miles.
  • Sometimes manufacturers under-design clutches, or they increase the horsepower and try to get away with using the same clutch. Sounds like Nissan may be guilty of this. You may want to look into using a Tribco clutch, their 100% Kevlar composite clutch discks are available through many clutch rebuilders.
  • asaasa Posts: 359
    Jim Wolf Technology now offers a clutch disk and flywheel for the 2nd Gen Xterra and Frontier with the VQ-40 engine and six speed.

    Prices are $450 for the Flywheel and $485 for the Clutch Disk.

    Jim Wolf Technology VQ-40 Stuff

    I do not own these; I've had no trouble with my Frontier as yet, but I have only 20,000 Miles on it. I am very happy to see that there's now an alternative out there if I do have trouble.
  • d3363d3363 Posts: 4
    I also have a 2007 Xterra and at 32,000 miles and told it is not covered under warranty. I am ready to fight on this after reading all the other complaints regarding this same issue.
    Have you had any luck with Nissan? I am waiting to hear back from a regional manager regarding having this repaired at no cost to me. Does not sound positive though.
    I am very interested in joining the fight and possibly even a class action suit if this is not taken care of by Nissan.
  • d3363d3363 Posts: 4
    I too am having same issue and would like to know if you have received any positive feedback/answers in regards to this problem with the clutch from Nissan.
    A regional manager is supposed to call me back after he researches with his engineering department before he can answer me if the repair will be covered under Nissan.
  • gfggfg Posts: 5
    I have not seen anything from Nissan (web searches of recalls, service bulletins, etc) indicating they will take any ownership for repair and correction of this defective clutch design. I don't know how to go about reaching someone with responsibility within the Nissan organization. I don't think the dealers have any clout in forcing this to a head; their hands are tied by Nissan warrantee policy.
    If anyone has an idea on how to reach a decision maker in Nissan this would be a start. Or if there is someone out their willing to lead a class action lawsuit I would certainly join. This website is likely just a small percent of owners with this problem who happened to find it, and 6-speed Xterras are a small percent of sales. Does the pickup also have the same Z-based 6-speed/clutch, or the stronger 5-speed clutch? I still feel the Z-based clutch is not designed for the much heavier Xterra and this is the root of the problem.
    I've appreciated the inputs from others on beefier aftermarket clutches, and wonder why Nissan's premature clutch failure repair includes installing the same weak factory parts.
  • rico52rico52 Posts: 3
    My 2006 Xterra Off Road just received a new clutch, flywheel, and transmission from a local dealer under warranty at 40K miles. . I've had a rattle & vibe since around 15K. Dealer finally heard it after multiple visits, and told me it was the transmission. When I asked "are you sure" they said they were, even though when I would barely tough the clutch pedal the vibe would stop. I though it was the throw out bearing. Upon teardown they told me it was the clutch so they ended up replacing everything including the transmission. I guess when mother Nissan is footing the bill they don't care. I've never heard of a flywheel needing replacement with the clutch. Is this unique to the Xterra? After reading this forum, I'm proably going to sell it while it has some value.
  • d3363d3363 Posts: 4
    So your repairs were covered under the warranty?!!! I have a 2007, 32,000 miles Xterra and was told absolutely not!
  • d3363d3363 Posts: 4
    Well, I don't have good news. Finally did hear from my regional manager and of course he kept saying it was a wear item and would not be covered under the warranty, etc...even though I told him of all of these postings here and it was not a driver fault situation, but a inadequate clutch. The Nissan dealership told me it would be $800 to just take it apart to look at it, and then of course the parts would be extra...and to be prepared to pay up to $2000. Which implied to me, they knew what to expect and have seen this before.
    I brought it to a respected mechanic in town and after looking at it agreed that the clutch is not built for a 6 speed, high HP vehicle. The flywheel was also damaged and needs to be replaced. I am supposed to be able to pick it up this afternoon.

    But here is my suggestion to everyone;

    Go to the Nissan website, click on the Warranty tab, and send an email explaining your problem. A regional manager should be assigned to you and contact you directly. You have to have a "file number" before anyone will return your calls. You should receive the file number in your email confirmation. Hopefully if they receive enough of our complaints they have to document it and rectify this problem.
    My plan is to sell it, trade it in and get a totally different vehicle. It is very unfortunate because this is my third Nissan and did like the Xterra very much. But since they will not even consider stepping up to the plate to help a loyal customer, I am ready to contact the local news station also and have the Consumer Guru go after them! Good luck to everyone and if anyone ever hears good news, please let us all know!
  • rico52rico52 Posts: 3
    The repair was indeed covered under warranty. I'm surprised yours was not if you are the original owner. The Xterra is supposed to have a 5 year or 60,000 mile warranty on the drive train. There's no way you should burn up a clutch in less than 75K even if can't drive a vehicle with a clutch very well. Like I said, I'd been hearing the noise & felt vibration since 15K, but my vehicle had ~ 40K when they finally diagnosed the problem and repaired it. I agree with the rest of you folks, that it is a design flaw, but I doubt Nissan will ever own up to it. Too bad, I like the Xterra, but I'm selling it and will not buy another Nissan.
  • Well, the clutch on my 06 xterra started slipping slightly a week ago and now is almost completely shot. Tomorrow I will see how things go with the dealership, I've bough two xterra's from them so we shall see........
  • We'll I began to get the run around at the dealership today, until I mentioned to them I had printouts from this and several other forums describing the exact same problem, then I mentioned the fact that I have a second xterra (loyal customer) and that I just replaced the clutch on my Galant Vr4 turbo at 114k compared to the 29k that is on my xterra X, you guess which one get's driven harder.

    Now they have to call nissan tech support and talk with them, which is sounding a little better than oh go buy a clutch and pay us to put it in, the saga continues. FYI, my lawyer friend mentioned that if they do refuse to warranty it to file a complaint with the state Attorney General, she said she has never had a warranty claim not be honored after the AG's office makes a phone call, hopefully it won't get to that point, we shall see.
  • Well, went in today and was assurred both the clutch and flywheel will be replaced under warranty after the dealer spoke with the Nissan Tech support line. :-D If anyone else experiences this problem drop me a line at I will be happy to try and help you get covered under warranty.
  • asaasa Posts: 359
    I wonder if the actual problem might be in the master cylinder or it's adjustment and slipping is occurring even when the pedal is not depressed. Just food for thought. It seems weird that some of us have had trouble and others not. I hope mine lasts. I'm like you and get long life from clutches -- 240,000 Miles on my Toyota and 180,000 on my Mitsu (blame my wife on the Mitsu). ;)
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