fastoldfart
fastoldfart Reader
4/12/22 6:54 p.m.

Holy grail find, a 2015 Nissan Altima, only 40,000 km (25,00 miles for you 'mericans), estate car. Garage queen condition. Seems like a perfect replacement for my Mrs and times of non Miata friendly driving. I am only hesitant because of the transmissions reputation.  Are the really that bad?

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John Welsh
John Welsh Mod Squad
4/12/22 6:58 p.m.

How long would you plan to keep it?

Is there a carry over factory warranty that might go 10 years to 2025?

fastoldfart
fastoldfart Reader
4/12/22 7:01 p.m.

Very long term, we are retired.

pointofdeparture
pointofdeparture GRM+ Memberand UltimaDork
4/12/22 7:06 p.m.

A coworker of mine at a prior job had his CVT Versa bought back under lemon law because of issues with the transmission. Another coworker at that same job had a Maxima that at least had the dignity to crap the bed 15k out of warranty. There was a lot of Nissan hate in that building to say the least.

One thing: people talk a lot about how unreliable they are, but few mention how awful the driving experience is. I almost got into a terrible accident in a Nissan Versa rental because I slammed the gas to merge onto a very busy freeway, the tach jumped to life, and the car just...didn't accelerate. It made all the noises and went through the motions but just slipped its way along as if I had the acceleration force of a warm breeze.

fastoldfart
fastoldfart Reader
4/12/22 7:09 p.m.

I'm thinking that if CVT has a 150k life,  that would take her about 15 years. if it is a regularly replaced disposable item, I may have to reconsider.

Pete. (l33t FS)
Pete. (l33t FS) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
4/12/22 7:19 p.m.

A lot of the people who hate them drive rental cars with them.  Constantly changing drivers makes the adaptives go all schizo.

My sister has had a Versa for a very long time now and no issues so far.

You must change the fluid every 60k or so and use the correct fluid.  A lot of people are either never told about this or they balk at the expense.

John Welsh
John Welsh Mod Squad
4/12/22 7:48 p.m.

In reply to pointofdeparture :

Im reminded of the classic salesman line, "you think you hate it now, but wait 'til you drive it."

My wife had a first year Versa ('07) with CVT.  We only kept it until 80k but it was no trouble. It drove "okay" but nothing inspiring.  It was, as expected, a boring car.  I will say that I was learning of other peoples trouble and wanted it gone before any was seen.  So, one experience of 80k with no trouble and by your admission, you'll never get to that high of miles.  

Byrneon27
Byrneon27 GRM+ Memberand Reader
4/12/22 8:38 p.m.

I work for a Nissan dealership we probably do between 3-5 4cyl CVTs a week. Nissan warranty policy, warranty extensions, and goodwill coverage are extremely generous. 

The cars tend to be at best treated as throwaway so limited maintenance and abusive (at best) driving is common. 

 

If you have the cooler TSB done and the fluid changed regularly ($200 every 30k or so) they're at best okay. 

The current crop of "Xtronic" CVTs is much more robust and very nearly pleasant to drive. 

Datsun310Guy
Datsun310Guy MegaDork
4/12/22 8:41 p.m.

My son bought a cream puff '07 Sentra in '11 and literally drove it coast to coast.  Nissan handed out extra warranty on this one as they admitted the cvt sucked.

I drove Route 66 and on a hot 95dgF day it would whine going up inclines but never a problem.   I drove it from near Yosemite to Chicago in 2 days (900 + 1,100) and it whined a little but was fine.   He sold it last month with 75,000 miles on it.   

Shoot - I even drove it on to the Bonneville Salt Flats but didn't set a record.   
 

RaabTheSaab
RaabTheSaab New Reader
4/12/22 8:49 p.m.

My SO has a 2015 Sentra with the CVT. I have to admit that I don't hate it, but it's not an exciting transmission. 80k miles with nothing but regular maintenance and no problems so far. 

Woody (Forum Supportum)
Woody (Forum Supportum) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
4/12/22 9:28 p.m.

25 years ago, when you heard an awful sounding car driving by, you'd look up and see a GM 2.8 V6 with a rotted out exhaust. 
 

For the past ten years, every time I hear a horrible sounding car driving by, I look up and see a Nissan Murano. 
 

Based on that alone, I would have Zero confidence in a Nissan CVT. 

Sonic
Sonic UberDork
4/12/22 9:53 p.m.

The most hateful car I've driven in recent years was a 2020 Altima.   It was so bad in several key ways, including the transmission.   Driving a similar Camry, Accord, and even a Malibu and they were all so much better.   Nissan should be embarrassed to sell these things and I can't understand why anyone would buy one if they tried literally any comparable car other than that the Nissan dealer is the only one to approve a loan for them

Feedyurhed
Feedyurhed UltraDork
4/12/22 10:42 p.m.
pointofdeparture said:

One thing: people talk a lot about how unreliable they are, but few mention how awful the driving experience is. I almost got into a terrible accident in a Nissan Versa rental because I slammed the gas to merge onto a very busy freeway, the tach jumped to life, and the car just...didn't accelerate. It made all the noises and went through the motions but just slipped its way along as if I had the acceleration force of a warm breeze.

This exactly^^^^^. I had a rental Sentra with a CVT and it jerked and sputtered and was damn near dangerous to drive if you were left turning across oncoming traffic as it might move and it might not. The worst rental experience I ever had except for a Ford Fiesta with a DCT. Nissan bad times 10. Now I won't rent anything with a CVT which basically means I rent various Toyotas and most Hyundai/Kias.

ddavidv
ddavidv UltimaDork
4/13/22 7:59 a.m.

Do you really want a car that the only option if the transmission goes bad is to replace it with a brand new one?

Pete. (l33t FS)
Pete. (l33t FS) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
4/13/22 8:07 a.m.
Woody (Forum Supportum) said:

25 years ago, when you heard an awful sounding car driving by, you'd look up and see a GM 2.8 V6 with a rotted out exhaust. 
 

For the past ten years, every time I hear a horrible sounding car driving by, I look up and see a Nissan Murano. 
 

Based on that alone, I would have Zero confidence in a Nissan CVT. 

Nissan V6s had a very complicated Y pipe that incorporated flex pieces, a flat section, and a converter.  When the flex pieces fail, the design makes it difficult/impossible to repair, and a replacement is hideously expensive.

That is why there were so many transverse Nissans with exhaust leaks.  People whose budgetary constraints forced them into a Nissan because they will finance you no matter how awful your credit is are somehow uninterested in spending $1800 to fix a loud exhaust...

infernosg
infernosg Reader
4/13/22 11:44 a.m.

I can't really comment on their durability but the driving experience of a Nissan CVT has led me to explicitly put "NO NISSANS" on the rental request form when I have to travel for work.

Tony Sestito
Tony Sestito UltimaDork
4/13/22 11:54 a.m.

I can't recommend Nissans with CVT's to anyone after hearing (and seeing) the horror stories my buddy has told/shown me. He's a service manager at a local dealership, and every time I stop by, at least half of the cars in the shop are getting the CVT swapped. His dealer also has a designated 2nd shop they use to store trashed CVT's. Last time I was there, there was a mountain of failed CVT's sitting in that shop that he told me was from a couple weeks of work. There had to have been over a hundred of them! Basically, he said anything bigger than a Sentra doesn't make it to 100k miles, often failing long before that. And I believe it; every person that I know that had a Nissan equipped with one lunched the CVT before 80k miles. 

I've also sampled a few Nissan CVT's myself to see if they are really that bad, and found all of them to be annoying to drive at best and sickening to drive at worst, especially on the highway. Last one I drove was a Maxima, and with that big V6, it was fine around town. It was big and comfortable on the inside as well. But on the highway, I felt like I was bouncing back and forth on a giant rubber band trying to maintain speed. Cruise control made for a nauseating experience, as in motion sickness. And I don't easily get motion sickness! 

C/N: Awful reliability + terrible driving experience = AVOID.

Find a 2014+ Mazda 6 instead. Probably similar money, but much better reliability and much nicer to drive and look at, inside and out. 

NY Nick
NY Nick GRM+ Memberand Dork
4/13/22 12:11 p.m.

I don't have any experience with the Nissan CVT's and I know this question is specific to them. I think people are commenting on CVT's in general as well. I have a 2020 CRV and the CVT in that is awesome, you stand on it and the CVT puts the engine at peak output and just keeps pulling. A well done CVT can really be nice to drive.

rothwem
rothwem Reader
4/13/22 2:30 p.m.

They supposedly did a big update to the Nissan CVTs in 2014, but the one in our 2016 Nissan Rogue started to shudder around 70k when it was under load in warmish (80ish F) temps.  We Carvana'd it before it blew up on us. 
 

It's a shame, it was a pretty decent driving vehicle otherwise, and I loved how much room there was under the hood.  We also got fantastic mileage--averaged 28-29 for the life of the car.  We probably should've just driven it till it blew up and slapped another transmission in. 

GameboyRMH
GameboyRMH GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
4/13/22 5:04 p.m.

The verdict seems to be that Nissan CVTs want to be big and strong like Subaru CVTs when they grow up...

bigeyedfish
bigeyedfish Reader
4/13/22 5:56 p.m.

My mom had a Murano with a CVT.  Father-in-law had an Altima with a CVT.  They were the worst driving cars I have experienced, and I have owned a bunch of absolute garbage cars.  I don't know if either of them had any reliability problems, but you couldn't talk me into buying one.

Byrneon27
Byrneon27 GRM+ Memberand Reader
4/14/22 9:41 a.m.
ddavidv said:

Do you really want a car that the only option if the transmission goes bad is to replace it with a brand new one?

For what its worth Nissan has and routinely recommends/agrees to pay for  a rebuild procedure rather than a replacement. 

Dannynever
Dannynever New Reader
4/14/22 6:37 p.m.

My GF has a 2008 Sentra with the CVT. It hasn't blown up yet at 90k miles.  Is the trans fluid change an easy diy? Anything I should know?

 

Opti
Opti Dork
4/15/22 11:57 a.m.

Normally I say failures are from lack of maintenance, I cant say that with the CVTs in Nissans. Ive seen too many fail before they are even due for their first service. I know of a versa that was on its third transmission before 50K miles.

glueguy (Forum Supporter)
glueguy (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand Dork
4/15/22 1:12 p.m.

My last Kicks! rental. CVT decided it was done just before 20k miles in morning rush hour. Left it for dead and took uber back to the airport for a non-Nissan-CVT replacement. It'll be a while before I'm over the annoyance of being stranded in a rental. 

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