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Nissan Australia / faulty new car!

1 Chatswood, New South Wales, Australia Review updated:

I'm typically not one to complain but... On 3 March, 2008 my family took delivery of our new family car, a brand new MY08 Nissan Pathfinder Turbo Diesel Automatic. On 29 March, 2008 and just prior to its first 1, 000km scheduled service (which was booked for 2 April, 2008), serious problems with the car started to occur. I took the car to my local Nissan service center in Artarmon on 31 March, 2008 and at this time the car was still running on its second tank of fuel.

Specifically, the car would frequently stall whilst being driven at speed and often enter "limp mode" (a condition where the car will only slowly accelerate to 20km/hr) when accelerating from a standstill. Both of these conditions render the car powerless and when the engine is stalled, the car unable to be steered or stopped since there is no power assistance provided by the engine to operate these critical functions. An accident was undoubtedly imminent given that the car had become an un-steerable and unstoppable 2.3ton missile at speed or due to being incapable of executing a safe turn in front of oncoming traffic.

After picking up the car from said Nissan service center in Artarmon and receiving the all clear that everything had been tested and fixed in writing, the car immediately stalled and entered limp mode several times before I arrived home > a measly 3km away. I contacted the MVIRA and the person I spoke to immediately classified the car as a danger to all if it was continued to be driven due to the serious safety issue concerning the engine. I contacted Nissan Roadside Assist on 3 April, 2008 who, under the circumstances, agreed to tow the car back to local Nissan service center. The car has been there over one week now and there is still no resolution.

My wife, children and I have lost all confidence with this vehicle, particularly since we were planning to drive it to Fraser Island during the school holidays in December. We are also inconvenienced as we are without a family car and I would like to know what possible position to take with Nissan Australia regarding the purchase of our new car which has subsequently proven to be totally untrustworthy.

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  • Le
      22nd of Oct, 2010
    0 Votes

    I exactly know how you feel i also have a Nissan Pathfinder and it has brocken out in rust, the back door will not open and the ignition is faulty and wont start and Nissian will not help me .

    The Dealer can not believe it so now i have to proceed with Legal auction.

  • Ra
      16th of Jan, 2013
    0 Votes

    i have a 2011 d22 dual cab that has rust on 3 doors rear bumper, under the bonnet and when the car yard saw this .. oh we will submit your warranty claim as its only 17months old done 18k kms and they want me to pay out $140 for loan car

  • Za
      2nd of May, 2013
    +1 Votes

    In 2007 I purchased a Brand New Nissan Navara D40 ST-X. I needed something that would comfortably tow my horse float, could handle off-road conditions, and had the ability to safely accommodate my future family. All of these things I explained to all the dealers of the various cars I looked at. I chose the Navara because it met all of these needs, with the added bonus of being able to keep smelly horse gear in a separate area to the passengers.
    I was so excited when I picked up my car after several months of waiting. I had genuine extras fitted by the dealership as I was given the impression that it was best for the car and my warranty to buy genuine. These accessories included a canopy, a bull bar and a tow pack.
    Not long after I got my car, I noticed that the canopy was not weatherproof and also that the car had a terrible squeak in the front end. The tray was always full of dust and when it rained, water leaked in. I made an appointment at my local dealership in Werribee and explained over the phone what the problem was. I arranged for someone to pick me up and take me to work. I dropped the car off in the morning and, again, explained why I had brought it in. When I arrived to collect my car that evening, I was surprised to be told that Werribee were unable to help me and I had to take the car back to the dealership I purchased it from.
    So, I booked it in with Essendon, again explaining exactly what the problems were and why I was bringing the car in. Again, I arranged to get myself to and from work with no offer of a loan car. Again, when I dropped the car off, I clearly explained what the issues were. When I arrived back in the evening to collect my car, I was told that the canopy is not weatherproof and that’s just how it was. This was a shock to me as the ARB aftermarket canopy IS weatherproof. When I asked why someone didn’t just tell me this over the phone instead of having me make trips to TWO different dealerships, I was told that Werribee should never have sent me back to Essendon as they are able to handle the issue themselves. Way to not answer the question and just make me even more angry.
    I was also told the squeak was fixed. To this day and despite the fact that I bring it up EVERY time I get the car serviced, it is not. I have discovered that if I unload a full can of synthetic grease in every possible crevice, it does shut up for a short period. This should not be a problem, let alone mine to resolve.
    So, now after wasting my precious time driving all over town, I still have a squeaky car with a tray I can’t leave things in when it’s raining and I have to clean everything that comes out of it. I did ask the dealership why they had sold me something that didn’t do what they said it would and was basically told that they would never have said that. Since it wasn’t written down anywhere and was my word against theirs, I decided I couldn’t be bothered with the argument. Besides, it’s a great car to drive and it tows really well, so I persist.
    Then I get a recall notice about the bonnet latch because apparently the steel bull bar is too heavy for the car in certain conditions. I discussed bull bars with the dealership at length before I chose from the 2 options they presented me. At no time was I told that I shouldn’t put a bull bar on the car or that the steel bull bar might cause problems. I can only assume this was because the car should have been able to cope.
    I took my car in to get it looked at, and it was fitted with an additional bonnet latch which makes it completely painful to open the bonnet. Thankfully, I almost never have to do this so it’s really only an issue for Nissan service staff. Meanwhile, it has come to my attention that Werribee Nissan do pretty much nothing with my car at each service and charge like wounded bulls. So I change to Melton Nissan for my car services.
    Then I get a recall notice for my wheels. I have used my car to tow horses all over Victoria, through mountains, on windy and unsealed roads and tracks. I am more than a little concerned that my wheels may not be safe and that at any stage, on any freeway, they could have cracked, putting my life, and that of my horses and other passengers at risk. I take my car in straight away to Nissan Melton to get it checked. I am told that, as my wheels haven’t cracked yet, I will be placed on a waiting list and I will get new wheels when they come in. Six months later, my replacement wheels still haven’t arrived. I called the dealership to ask when they would be coming in and was told there was a very long wait and they would definitely let me know when I could bring the car in to get them changed.
    After a few years of waiting and more letters from Nissan telling me about the wheel defect, I called Nissan to ask where my wheels were and why they kept sending me letters about the same issue. It seems that despite my phone call and my car having been in for several services, at least 2 of which I asked about the wheels, Melton Nissan had not even told Nissan Australia that my wheels had been checked or lodged something to order the replacement wheels.
    I was referred back to Melton Nissan. I called them and this time was told that they could easily arrange this for me and would have the replacement wheels in a few days. Great. Thanks so much for making me a nervous wreck for the last 2 years every time I towed my horse anywhere, not to mention the number of trips I didn’t go on because I wasn’t sure the wheels would be able to handle it. Essentially, the car was not safe to use in the manner for which I had purchased it.
    In the meantime, a massive crack in my windscreen meant I had to have it replaced. Melton Nissan arranged this for me at a local place and it was done during a service. Shortly after this, my car started leaking. I took it back to Melton Nissan and explained that it seemed that water was coming in the windscreen. I explained that the water was dripping down onto the gearstick whenever it rained heavily and the car was stationary. They checked it and told me they couldn’t find an issue.
    The windscreen had to be replaced again a few months later thanks to a rock flung up by a truck. I asked Melton Nissan to check it again as the leak was still happening and again they couldn’t find anything. After that, the weather cleared up for a few months and it wasn’t until the rain started again that I realised that the problem was not actually fixed.
    Since replacing the windscreen a second time did not resolve the issue, it seems that the only other place water could be getting in is around the aerial. I asked Melton Nissan to check that option when I next took the car in for a service. Again, I was told that they couldn’t find anything wrong. I was also told that it was hard to check unless it was actually raining on the day I bought the car in. Really? I was unaware that water restrictions prevented them from using a hose to test the issue. So, now not only do things get wet when left in the tray, but also when left inside the car. Terrific.
    On this latest service, I was also advised by Melton Nissan that the bonnet cable had stretched and would need to be replaced at a cost of around $200 for parts and labour. I am not sure how a bonnet cable could possibly stretch when the bonnet is only ever opened for a service and to check the washer water. Generously, the bonnet would have only been opened maybe 20 times in its life. Surely cables should last longer than that? I put it to Melton Nissan that this cost should be covered by Nissan. I was told that it was normal wear and tear and would cost me.
    I took my car somewhere else to get a second opinion. As it turns out, there was nothing wrong with the bonnet cable. In fact, what needed to be replaced was the bonnet latch because it had been damaged. I know I didn’t damage it so that only left Melton Nissan. The people there were always nice to deal with, even though they are incompetent. I had no time or desire to get into a dispute with them so I paid for the replacement out of my own pocket and had it done elsewhere.
    By this stage, I am totally over Nissan and pretty angry about my experience so far. Then I get a letter from Nissan Australia asking me to participate in their customer satisfaction survey. I spend an hour answering questions and filling in information about how poorly my car has performed and the terrible customer service I have received. Do you know what I got in response for my time and effort? Nothing. Not even a “thanks for participating”. One of the questions asked if I would ever buy a Nissan again. I said no, with details. Good to know you’re keen to win back the customers you have pissed off.
    And now I have received a recall notice, this time about the towbar. It seems that my chassis might be cracked. So on top of a leaky canopy, a leaky cabin, a broken bonnet latch, a tailgate which doesn’t shut without being slammed, parts starting to come away from the car, some very average customer service and a host of other issues, you are telling me that I am driving my family around in a car that is structurally unsafe.
    Well guess what? It is NOT ok with me that you replace my towbar and weld any cracks. I no longer feel safe driving my family around in this car. I just keep waiting for something else to go wrong. I am beyond disappointed now and just very, very angry. I can't even sell my car now since the story about the cracked chassis has hit the papers because, not surprisingly, NO ONE WANTS TO BUY IT.
    At this stage, I think it's only reasonable that I should be fairly compensated. I would like Nissan to either buy my car or replace it with something equivalent that is not a Navara. At this stage, market value should be at least $23, 000. Take a moment and consider from my point of view and I think you will see that this is actually a very reasonable request. I have been sold a car that is not safe and cannot do what I made very clear I purchased it for. My family has been put in danger repeatedly through no fault of my own, but because of issues with your manufacturing. This is before you take all the other faults and customer service issues into consideration.
    I would appreciate a response from you by the end of this month. Thank you in advance for your time and attention to this matter.
    Natalie Goode – Homework Soho

  • Ci
      28th of Jan, 2015
    0 Votes

    Hi my name is Cindy Cameron, I too will be requesting the same from Nissan as I have had issues with our car as well, simply stated a veichle randomly going into limp mode while overtaking on a highway can be life threatening to my family and anyone else in my path, this should have been grounds alone for a recall.

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