Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

New Sentra Owners' Experiences



  • I Have this issue, brand new car, took it in 3 times, still doing it. You would think with the recent problems Toyota is facing Nissan would want to adress this issue quickly. especially with the Corrola now having steering problems. Good luck with your litigation.
  • It's amazing how Nissan America is so devoid of common courtesy and help. Good ole due process. Still awaiting response to settlement letter. I know I shouldn't hold my breath.....

    Will keep all posted. And I agree that in light of the Toyota fiasco that Nissan should want to jump at the chance to shine with their customers....
  • I hear ya. I will post any results as I get them. If lemon law doesn't work, I will go to the media.
  • Nissan just sent me an email asking how my recent service apointment was, I followed the prompt to give negative feedback about this issue and i was asked for a username and password that i don't have, don't know, never had. I tried again following the prompt to leave possitive feedback and sailed right on up to thanks for the feeback and the submit button. Very shady customer service tactic.
  • How 'bout that. One would think with all the Toyota stuff they would wise up.
  • je123je123 Posts: 1
    edited March 2010
    I noticed this discussion when I was looking to see if there was an issue with these. I just want it to be aware that my 07 sentra is also having the same "pull to the left problem."

    I bought the car from a non-nissan dealership and returned it to see if they could fix it. After they tried alligning and rotating tires they did not know why it was still having problems, but they mentioned it could be a "torque pull" where the left tire is working harder than the right - causing it to pull. They suggested taking it to a nissan dealership since it is still under warranty. I will do that soon, and I also look forward to hearing outcomes from nissan and lemon law suits.
  • barpyebarpye Posts: 8
    Noted, I have an appointment to drop the car at a nissan dealership where the car was purchased later in March for the nissan lawyers and I guess mechanics to "inspect" the vehicle. After that I anticipate I will receive a court date. I will post the up-dates and outcome.
  • ovyboxovybox Posts: 21
    edited March 2010
    Just came back from my second encounter with the Service department. Visited another dealer this time, cause the first one seemed incompetent to me. They could not find anything, of course.

    In the meantime I've been reading the Corolla forums and seems like they have the exact same problem: the car is wandering all-over the road. They suspect it is the Electric Power Steering causing this problem. I think they are right: the change from hydraulic PS to electric PS is what we feel. The EPS is praised all-over the internet for its technological advantages, by engineers most likely. It is unbelievable how these idiots can ignore how consumers feel about this stupid EPS.

    Implications: this seems to be a design flaw, not an execution flaw. It means the dealers cannot do anything. There are no better parts to put in place.

    What I plan to do next:
    - file a complaint with NHTSA ( to make them and Nissan aware of the problem. I really do think this EPS (the way it is tuned now) is a safety problem: if you take your eye off the road for 5 sec, you may end up in the other lane. It is also a downgrade in driving comfort: I got Hulk's forearms from correcting the fcking steering every 2 sec.
    - try to get a brand without EPS. Maybe one with hybrid PS (hydraulic and electric).

    I recommend that we all do file with NHTSA, otherwise we will not get noticed. Coupled with Toyota's complaints, it may have an effect. If we get at least 20 complaints on the same topic they may investigate. Last time I searched their database I only found 1, from 2007 I believe.

    I think we will not be able to change much: changing the power steering on each Nissan (and Corolla) would be quite expensive. Car makers will pull out the big guns. But at least we send a signal to either improve the EPS or switch back to hydraulics. In the meantime I have to accept that my $3k '97 Toyota is a more pleasant driving experience than my $15k '08 Sentra. :mad:
  • mad3catmad3cat Posts: 5
    I had the pulling to the left problem and hard to control on the road at highway speeds problem with my 2008 Sentra. I finally found a dealership that would replace the steering column which replaced the electronic steering. (The first dealership I dealt with actually yelled at me for bringing my car back with the same complaint so often!) Absolutely no difference. It is a horrible car to drive at speeds faster than 55 which also bring (most often) longer driving times. My hands would ache and arms would be sore up to my shoulders. Nobody can figure this out. If 2007 are having this problems it's not electronic steering. I couldn't take it anymore. I got a Ford Fusion (32 mpg highway) and LOVE IT! It's so classy inside and drives like I'm going through butter. I always had Altimas in the past and should have stuck with them. I will probably never go back to Nissan after this experience.
  • mad3catmad3cat Posts: 5
    I had the pulling to the left problem and hard to control on the road at highway speeds problem with my 2008 Sentra. I finally found a dealership that would replace the steering column which replaced the electronic steering. (The first dealership I dealt with actually yelled at me for bringing my car back with the same complaint so often!) Absolutely no difference. It is a horrible car to drive at speeds faster than 55 which also bring (most often) longer driving times. My hands would ache and arms would be sore up to my shoulders. Nobody can figure this out. If 2007 are having this problems it's not electronic steering. I couldn't take it anymore. I got a Ford Fusion (32 mpg highway) and LOVE IT! It's so classy inside and drives like I'm going through butter. I always had Altimas in the past and should have stuck with them. I will probably never go back to Nissan after this experience.
  • mad3catmad3cat Posts: 5
    It's funny how we get the same reasons from the dealers... 'the tilt in the road'. If that were the case, all cars would have the 'going to the left' problem and when you are on the right side of the road you would drift off to the right. Get rid of it. I have owned 10 cars in my life and not ONE has been difficult to keep on the road.
  • ovyboxovybox Posts: 21
    Thanks for sharing. Certainly saved us the trouble of getting the steering column replaced with no improvement. I have no choice but driving the Sentra and end up with Dwayne the Rock Johnson arms... :mad:
    I have submitted a complaint with the and like mad3cat, I'll try to keep away from Nissan. Sound impossible but I'll keep away from electric power steering as well, although it will be more and more difficult as all car makers seem to be heading that way.
  • I thought I would share my recent experience with my 2007 Sentra 2.0 S. I just finished a trip to Florida and back in a weekend. About 1700 miles total. Left on Friday, returned on Sunday. I have just turned over 48,500 miles during the trip. The tires are the originals, just passed inspection. I averaged over 35.6 mpg overall, averaging over 80 mph for most of the trip (I-95 all the way). Not a single glitch. The only issues that I have had were a recall for reprogramming of the ECU, and a paint wear on the drivers door trim. All-in-all, a very reliable car. Too bad it's not paid for yet, or I would get a current year model! :)
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,910
    I just drove home in my new (leased) 2.0 S, in silver. I was looking for a good, reliable car at a reasonable payment and little out of pocket, and was focusing on used cars until I saw that Nissan had a lease special on the Sentra. My last Sentra was a 1997 GXE, also silver, and incredibly the 2010 car cost me about the same. And it's a much better car than that 1997 Sentra. My initial impressions is that it's fairly smooth riding for a small car, and very quiet because the CVT keeps the revs low (e.g. 1800 RPMs at 60 mph). The driver's seat could use a little more thigh support but otherwise seems comfortable. Good room in back, and I like how the rear seat bottom flips up to create a flat load floor (well, almost flat, there's a little step at the back of the seats). The controls are smooth, especially the HVAC dials, and there's clever touches such as the sliding cup holder adjuster.

    I almost got the SR with its alloys and sporty trim, but the dealer that offered the best deal had only one, in black, and I don't like black (too hard to keep clean). But they had several S models, including silver (first choice), and I like that it has side moldings to help keep dings off the doors. Also the wheel covers are some of the better looking plastic covers I have seen, so I won't miss the alloys (which just seem to get scuffed up over time).

    I'll post more when I have more experience with the car. Averaged 38.5 mpg on the way home from the dealer, if the trip computer can be believed. Given the low revs on the car, when driven with a light foot, I can believe that number.
  • beezer5beezer5 Posts: 4
    Really disgusted with how things have transpired. Nissan America received 5 opportunities to repair pull when law allows 4, and it hasn't changed one iota. Throw in an employee from dealership following me out to my car berating me for being upset at the complete lack of customer service from dealership and the BBB being a joke of an institution which apparently the automakers keep in their back pockets, and here we are. BBB feels there should be more repair attempts to correct. How many? 10? 20? 50? It's beyond comprehension. Nissan Sentra's aren't all 100 percent in perfect working condition. Upon having issues, I cannot understand why it is so difficult to to something for the buyer who used good faith in buying the car?
  • we just bought a 2010 sentra sl and we began to notice a clunking sound coming from the rear of the car and when ever we closed the rear doors and passenger side door. we thought it may be that the muffler is loose. took the car into the dealership, and the tech was trying to wheel us and deal us that there is nothing wrong with the car. he showed us how the muffler moves on another new sentra, but didn't show us the sound it makes when you close the door. out of curiosity, my wife and i stopped at another nissan dealership, and when we closed the rear doors on a new sentra, the car didn't make the clunking sound. it sounds that the noise is coming from a "sheet" of metal around the muffler, which is what the nissan tech told me he moved away from the muffler while i was talking to him in front of the service department. please advice. :(
  • capaccionecapaccione Posts: 11

    Went to court - both side had expert witness and drove the car - mine said it was a safety issue - Nissan said it was fine - Nissan asked the judge to drive it - She drove and said it was not bad enough to cause the lemon law to be used and ruled she would not have Nissan repurchase the car.

    in summary - do not let the the judge drive the car -
    Nissan is being allowed to sell a car with defects - I hope no one gets hurt.
  • ovyboxovybox Posts: 21
    This is unbelievable; since when are judges experts on car quality and safety? Judges are supposed to rely on the law and the opinion of the experts, not personal perceptions. This is why we have jury, to eliminate the personal perception from the justice process. That judge seems off the line to me...she should have asked for a third expert it there was a tie in votes. But I wouldn't invest more resources into this...
    My sympathy man.
  • ovyboxovybox Posts: 21
    I was talking to a friend with a PhD in electrical systems and he suspects that on medium quality cars (Sentra, Corolla) they install electrical motors which provide too little power to assist the steering. To reduce costs of course (or bad design). It makes sense since I feel my steering is stiff and requires a lot of power when making small adjustments (what you would do when driving straight on the interstate to correct for the road surface). When making sudden turns as well but you kind of expect that even if it requires more power.
    So my friend was saying that probably the premium cars (Altima, Camry) will not have this problem. I guess trading in on a more expensive car is the only way out.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,910
    edited May 2010
    Was this a case tried in a court of law, or an arbitration hearing with an arbitrator? I also cannot imagine a judge deciding the case by driving the car herself. But I could see that happening in an arbitration hearing.

    If it was in a court of law, you could appeal the case, maybe demand a jury trial next time.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,910
    edited May 2010
    Your Sentra must have a different design than mine then. My 2010 Sentra takes very little effort to correct the steering. If anything I think it could be a little firmer on the highway.

    Unless your friend has insight into the actual parts used in cars like the Sentra and Corolla, I don't see how he can suspect that the steering motors don't have enough power to assist the steering--and why that would save any significant amount of money on the cars. Has he even driven the current-generation Sentra and Corolla?
  • beezer5beezer5 Posts: 4
    Have a 2010 Sentra. Crazy pull on it. Repaired 5 times in 7 months of ownership to no avail. Dealership isn't customer friendly, not willing to take bacj car and neither is big bad NIssan America, who can go **** themselves as far as I'm concerned. Car was purchaed in good faith with said defect, which wasn't discovered in the few blocks of test driving done and we're expected to hold onto vehicle for 1 1/2 to 2 years for a court date? What's the point in paying for the car if it can't be used? Why does Lemon Law take so freakin long? I am this close to going to one of those "in your corner" reporters to give them the story. Nissan refuses acknowledgement of defect although 3 dealership employees including service manager and a BBB inspector, who simply advised us to get it fixed AGAIN although we tried pretty much every month we've had the damn car.....pretty sick of this. Nissan could have handled this much different. WIll never in this lfetime buy Nissan again.
  • barpyebarpye Posts: 8
    Thanks for your response. I'm still waiting for court date. didn't know it would take so long. Went to nissan a few weeks ago for a court required inspection by nissan and their lawyers. Dropped it off in morning and told receptionist the car was there for inspection only. In afternoon they called to say they were done so I went to get it. Upon pick up the girl says they adjusted the steering wheel. I asked to see the service manager. I asked him who authorized the work. He said not to worry because it was warranty work and it was no charge. I explained that NOBODY AUTHORIZED THE WORK and that they should not have done any adjusting, etc. as the car was there for inspection only. He really had a hard time trying to answer. Then, unsolicited, he says " by the way that car does not pull". I told him I was not there to debate with anyone. When I drove my defective car home I did not notice any change in the steering wheels position nor any change at all. What a bunch of dummies. I hope this i a factor the judge considers on my behalf. I can't believe the outcome of your case. I will say this though, No more electric steering vehicles or nissan vehicles for me.
  • ovyboxovybox Posts: 21
    Hey backy,

    It would be a good idea to rephrase your post: the way it sound right now puts you in the same boat with those people (working for the manufacturer probably) who try to tell us that we do not have a problem. Or that we should shut up.

    Based on the symptoms my friend emitted a theory which explains very well the problems that we all feel: the steering requires a lot of effort when driving on the interstate. Interstate driving requires small adjustments and if you do not get enough assist from your power steering you'll feel it in your arms.

    You are refuting the theory without presenting a better one, which nobody does in a world of adults. Only kids resume to saying "No, that's not it". Adults say "No, more likely this ... is the cause...". So please stop attacking MY theory if you do not have a better one. I do not need to drive the new-generation since that will not solve my problem, will it now? Unless you are willing to switch your Sentra with mine.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,910
    edited May 2010
    How about if you rephrase YOUR post? It makes it look as if you have no room for someone to have an opinion different from your own.

    If you'll look at my post, what I said what that my Sentra does not seem to behave the same way you described your car's behavior--hence the speculation that mine might have a different design (which btw is in fact an alternate explanation, yes?). Mine does not require "a lot of effort" when driving on the interstate. I said that I'd prefer if the car actually had a firmer steering feel than what it does. I also questioned whether someone is in a position to determine that parts on a car are substandard or in some way not up to the task they were designed for, without knowing anything about the parts themselves or even driving the cars in question. Or has your PhD friend driven the Sentra, and Corolla, and has analyzed the parts in question?

    I am not refuting or attacking your theory. I am pointing out that my car doesn't behave as yours does. I never said I doubt that your car behaves as you described.

    Since you seem to want me to provide my own theory, here it is, which relates to cars like the Senta and Corolla that have EPS tuned for a light steering feel. My theory is that some owners will find the steering feel considerably different from what they are used to, and will think that the steering is therefore defective in some way. It's just a theory... you are free to ignore it. But if a car pulls to one direction or the other while driving down a flat road, that could be indication of a problem such as bad alignment or wheel balance, or some other defect. I wish you success in getting the problem resolved to your satisfaction.

    Edit: Just found this, you might find it useful. Look in particular the section near the end starting "Disadvantages". I think the 2nd paragraph might explain why you are finding your car "tiring" to drive, especially compared to a car with non-EPS steering.
  • ovyboxovybox Posts: 21
    Excellent contribution backy. Your theory is a very good alternative. Thank you.
    I recommend everybody who has the problem to read your link.

    I still do maintain the possibility of a small electric motor for the EPS. As we all know these work within certain ranges, that is you can only adjust the current within certain limits. If mine is already at a max, there is no solution. Also, increasing the current above a certain limit will decrease the lifetime of my EPS motor (right when I am about to go out of warranty).

    Right now I am in contact with Nissan USA and they are collecting data from the dealers I have visited. With this new piece of information I can give more precise info about my problem. Let's hope they can tune my Sentra.
  • barpyebarpye Posts: 8
    Had arbitration hearing and won. That only means nissan gets 30 days to agree or file for trial. Given some of the posts here and others i have found, plus the fact that the assigned lawyer just lost in the previous case which was identical to mine, I elected to accept an offer of $5000 and keep the car as is instead of going to trial. I feel this is a bird in hand and chancing a trial is probably a loser. Something is better than nothing but I do it with no glee. Now I must trade in this p.o.s. for something else.
  • texassuetexassue Posts: 11
    I was prepared to love this car; my husband and I rented a Sentra on our vacation. Up to that point, I was looking at Mazda 3 and Honda Fit. But this car drove like a peach and was roomy and quiet. I researched and it looked like the Sentra was super reliable. And I got a great deal on my new SR- or so I thought. Now, I am living a nightmare-

    1) Within the first 3 weeks of ownership, I got in the car twice to find out that the clock reset to 12 and the radio presets were gone- just like when you get a new battery. Dealership service maintained they were clueless about cause.

    2) Two weeks later, radio and clock went out entirely. Replaced, and service said that there was a short and burned out fuse. I thought to myself- in a NEW CAR?

    3) A week later, car did not start at all. I jiggled the gear shift, it then started. Drove 2 miles, suddenly ALL electrical systems went out and car lost power. Fortunately, I was not up on the highway and coasted into a plaza. No lights, no horn, no nuttin'. Water in five of the six battery cells was very low. Towed into dealership, where they replaced a "bad" battery. I insisted that they check to see why the battery would burn up water like that. I was told- "No problem".

    4) Exactly ten days later, car is towed again from work. Completely dead electrical system again. This time, I am told that the mechanic is "100% sure" that the problem is likely the one that caused the radio- failure of factory to properly weld a connection behind the battery so that battery wasn't recharging. I was told, however, that the proper part to fix this was on national backorder. The proper part being called both a connector for a wire harness or the right battery terminal. (Hmmm- do I smell a coming recall?) After six days in the shop, with no loaner car furnished to me, I picked up the car tonight after the proper part came in and it was "repaired". I drove it home two miles this evening. Two hours later, when I got back in to visit a friend at the hospital, the dashboard lit up real purty and I still had a horn- but it didn't start. Not even a sputter. I looked in the battery and the water in all chambers was low. (Curiosity question- why was the battery not checked?) I put more water in then tried to start the car both in park and neutral. Nada.

    Service division was closed but I talked to dealership sales manager who told me another 2010 Sentra with exactly the same problem got towed in to them yesterday. The mechanic had last week told me he saw the same thing four months ago.

    By the way, I took this in twice before the electrical problems started because of a "popping sensation" under the floorboard when I turned the wheel to the right. It came and went, and shop said they couldn't replicate it so had no fix. But if the steering is electrical, I wonder if there is a relationship.

    Well, my "new car" got towed in a third time in 2 weeks tonight. But I am beginning to question whether this is fixable, and, if a bandaid is put on this, what confidence can I have that there aren't other slipshod quality problems awaiting me in the future? Meanwhile, my 175,000 mile Taurus that I thought was on its last legs and that my son now uses is going strong, air conditioning cold as the day I bought it.

    Is anyone else aware of such problems? What has been your experience?
  • ovyboxovybox Posts: 21
    Hey texassue, I hear you. It also seems to me like the service guys have a screw all attitude, no curiosity at all: they just stamp on a diagnostic without digging in too much. Oh and the "unable to replicate" seems to be the order of the day.

    My car is about to go out of warranty because of mileage and I can't say I had big problems. Never had to tow it. Two problems that I had: sticking steering and "out-of-round" breaks. The latter got resolved. I think the former is a design flaw and I'm stuck with it like most people on this forum.
  • ovyboxovybox Posts: 21
    since nothing budged with NHTSA I placed a complaint with Nissan customer service. They did admirably in handling my case but it tooke some driving around until I found a service department which was acceptable (polite, share some information about the problems of my car). Here what I had on the plate:

    Sticking steering: the car would follow the last header after a small adjustment instead of reverting to the neutral position (go straight). You know, when you briefly pull on your steering wheel at high speeds and let go, it would revert to a neutral position. If you do a small adjustment (just to stay in lane), it would not revert. They replaced the rack and bushing with very little improvement. I believe they did it just to impress me (have something done). This problem is not solved. I believe it is a design flaw and I'll stay away from Nissan.
    I also suspect most people do not feel this problem because they have nothing to compare with: we have two cars, and I can feel how different the older Toyota drives. If most Sentra buyers have the Sentra as their only car and haven't had a car before, they wouldn't know about this problem.

    Out-of-round brakes or whatever that means (comes off the work sheet). My steering would rattle and shake vigorously when I used the brakes repeatedly. Say if I was driving down a 3 miles long hill I would use the brakes intermittently. By the time I reached the base, the steering would shake very bad,almost scary. At first I thought the ABS was kicking in but looks like it was something else. They solved this problem.

    Conclusion: I am really scared about buying another car which uses EPS and, well, I cannot buy another Nissan. For them it is easier to deny/divert attention than get their engineers to look at it. This is not a job for the repair guy but for engineers and they failed to realize this.
Sign In or Register to comment.