2017 Nissan Altima - Dealer won't help with transmission problem+

Our local Nissan dealer, despite thousands of complaints found online, nationwide, continues to claim that our 2017 Nissan Altima has a “software” problem (rather than a major transmission problem. No matter the weather, every time we start from a dead stop, at a signal, stop sign, or out of our driveway, the transmission CHUGS for at least 100 ft… necessitating that we give it more (wasteful) gas to overcome the chug. Despite having a whole-car, high-level extended warranty, with $75 deductible, they tell us that the “chug” is not covered… and charge us an additional $99 to “Fix” it. The chug is still there, but lighter—for about two weeks, Then, it’s back in full force. It appears several states have managed to pull off class-action suits… but not in Indiana! Seems like collusion to us. This is obviously a major, dangerous, and serious class-action problem that Nissan continues to coverup.We are senior citizens on a fixed Social Security budget and can’t afford to challenge the company. How can we force the local Nissan dealer to properly replace our transmission, under our extended warranty, without them continuing to make us feel like “CHUG-CHUMPS?” Our warranty is up January 1, 2023.

“ let’s welcome them to our community!”
No thanks, there are enough already here making blanket “dealers suck, never going to buy “xxx” brand again, need a lawsuit,” type statements.
What have you done besides keep going to that dealer? Are there no other Nissan dealers in Indiana? Have you complained to anyone or agency that can actually do something? Or are you just going to come to sites like this to complain, which is pretty much guaranteed nothing will get resolved.

If the OP has never elevated his/her complaint to Nissan at the corporate level, he/she has missed a very important step that can make a difference in terms of how an issue like this is dealt with. Contact info can be found in the Owner’s Manual. Just be sure that you don’t tell the Nissan folks that you will never buy another one of their vehicles, because that will remove much of their motivation to help you.


Return to the dealer and explain that the problem still exists, they won’t know what happened two weeks later if you don’t tell them.

The extended warranty company will send an inspector to check the car before the repair can be approved, if there was a software update that applied to the vehicles symptoms, that must be done first. Now perhaps the warranty company will approve the repair.

Why are you so sure that it is the transmission? It could be an engine problem. Do you have a check engine light on? Do you have over 60k on it? Are you loosing a little coolant over time?

I have never heard of a transmission “chugging”, but I am willing to be corrected if other forum members have ever heard a transmission “chugging”.

Has the dealer noted the issue in a test drive? If not that could be part of the problem. If they have and have not fixed it time to elevate or try another dealer.

Good ideas above. You’re probably going to just have to live w/it unless/until/if the transmission won’t make the car move at some point. Next time you are thinking about purchasing a car, suggest to ask here first. Complaints about Nissan CVT automatic transmissions aren’t an uncommon thing here. You can see for yourself using the forum search feature, link upper right this page. Nissan’s manual transmission, very few complaints here, from my recollection.

This chugging you describe has been noted by others. It is usually caused when the spark plugs are replaced. Part of the intake manifold has to be removed to get at some plugs. the seal between the two halves of the manifold are supposed to be reusable but if one of them gets damaged or left out, this chugging occurs.

So, have you had the plugs changed? Is the idle speed higher than 800 rpm? High idle speed is an indicator of a vacuum leak that affects one cylinder more than the others.