Xtronic CVT reliability??

Home of the Nissan Cube forum and CubeDriver.com
User avatar
IBx1
Posts: 5
Joined: Thu Jun 25, 2009 7:45 am
Car: 1995 Buick Riviera(mine!), 2000 Saturn SL2(mom's), 2009 Subaru Forester(dad's)

Xtronic CVT reliability??

Postby IBx1 » Thu Jun 25, 2009 8:00 am

Hey everyone, I found this website while looking for info about Nissan's Xtronic CVT. I need honest, unbiased(try hard) answers.

We have a 2000 Saturn SL2 with 168,000 on the clock, and things feel like it may not be with us for much longer. It'll probably see 200,000 but not much further. I'm the car shopper of the house, so I'm looking at a small car for our next one since I'm gonna be out of the picture and up at college.

We also have a 2009 Subaru Forester, and there's a reason why. We HAD a 2003 Saturn VUE with the CVT transmission, and that's why I'm here asking you guys about the reliability. The CVT in the VUE went on us at about 76,000 miles and the car was in the shop for an entire month. It went, AGAIN, on us at 148,000, and when our lowest quote was $5,300 to replace, we made a down payment on an AWD car instead of ekeing out another 40,000 miles of that car, which had a few other underlying problems anyway. It sucks though because everything else on the car works fine, just the transmission is gone.

We have nightmares about CVT's because of this experience.

Our car cycle works like this: dad gets the new car, then when it's time for the next new car in usually 5 years, mom gets that car and dad gets the next new one. My dad commutes to NYC and back every day, putting 25,000 miles A YEAR on our cars.

Our new car cycle will be different since our new cars will be so close to each other in age; mom will take the Forester since it's worse on gas(26 miles per gallon, very good but not as good as what we're looking at for the next one) for her short commute about 5 miles north and dad will have the new small car, unless it's bad weather like heavy rain or snow in which case he'll take the AWD Forester. Both cars will have to be durable, which we know the Forester is.

Now, I know everything about how a belt and toroidal CVT works, and I know the flaws. However, Nissan uses the same CVT in the Murano(250something horse, AWD, heavy car) as they do in their other cars, and it's their hottest-selling model according to my local dealer. If so many people had them and they all had CVT problems, so many people would be back with their cars and furious.

I'm looking at a Cube for us. Same transmission, with half the horsepower, much less weight, and half the drive wheels. We're just stuck on the CVT nightmares. So tell me, how are all your CVT's holding up? What's the cost of doing regular fluid changes? Are they sealed units so that we can't check the fluid levels ourselves? What's the most miles you've ever put on your CVT, how hard do you drive it, all those questions.

And yeah, have any of you had to replace your CVT? Thanks for the help in advance, and thanks for reading this whole discussion.


User avatar
marlin29311
Posts: 8345
Joined: Sun May 18, 2008 8:21 pm
Car: 2008 Infiniti G35x
Contact:

Re: Xtronic CVT reliability?? (IBx1)

Postby marlin29311 » Thu Jun 25, 2009 8:09 am

Long first post! Welcome to NICO!

- MOD's - I would move this over to General chat, or possibly split it to the subforums, as this deals with many of the nissan vehicles.

Overall, the new CVT's (2007+) have undergone major design changes since the initial 2003 batches (which were plaguing murano owners and such...) and are much much much more reliable, and as of so far, there haven't been many problems (and all the ones that did happen were replaced under warranty by Nissan - not a rebuild, replaced.)

From what I've come to see, the redesign has made significant improvements and have made the CVT more reliable than previously - Nissan targeted having these things stick around for 200k miles (though no one is quite there yet...)

Fluid changes are the biggest pain though - you cannot access the tranny dipstick yourself, as there is a lock on it that has to be opened by a Nissan tech (though you could brake it and void your warranty...lol) - fluid changes are in the hundred's, simply because the NS-2 fluid that Nissan uses is proprietery and costs a hefty sum per quart - I believe for my 3.5 Altima, the chage is around $400....but the NS-2 fluid was designed to withstand 90k miles (my dad's company helped to design the fluid), and Nissan has a diagnostic tool that can determine the life of the fluid in the tranny as well, so you don't necessarily have to do a fluid swap every 30k...

Overall, the CVT has come a long way, and is certianly doing quite well for Nissan at this point - I don't think that they would put a failing transmission into almost all of their cars if they thought it was going to break!

Slither
Posts: 253
Joined: Tue Nov 28, 2006 3:21 pm

Re: Xtronic CVT reliability?? (IBx1)

Postby Slither » Sat Jun 27, 2009 3:19 pm

If your not comfortable with CVT experiences don't get it. If you do and have issues again you'll only be kicking yourself. What's the old saying - once bitten twice shy?

Re: The Subaru, I've read CVT on the Dodge Caliber has been a disaster. I have 2 years lease left on my Versa with CVT. I've had no problems the first 3 years and I drive mostly heavy, congested city traffic. I won't keep the Versa outside of the 5 year powertrain warranty. Better for me to lease something new and be covered, than get caught for 5K(?) with my pants down.

bblair11
Posts: 1
Joined: Tue Jul 14, 2009 3:27 pm
Car: 2007 nissan maxima

Re: Xtronic CVT reliability?? (IBx1)

Postby bblair11 » Tue Jul 14, 2009 3:34 pm

My Cvt failed after 32,000 miles today. 2007 maxima purchased brand new. I am sometimes a spirited driver, (nothing too crazy) I drove it for approx. 18,000 then my wife took over and she drives like a granny. We were shocked and very dissapointed. Car has been fabulous thus far was planning to keep for 7-8 years but I don't know now. I would say a majority of the miles are highway. (70 percent).

Slither
Posts: 253
Joined: Tue Nov 28, 2006 3:21 pm

Re: Xtronic CVT reliability?? (bblair11)

Postby Slither » Wed Jul 15, 2009 5:24 am

Well bb11 at least you have powertrain warranty -this time-.

I don't think you can tow with CVT and if you attach a hitch it voids the warranty - at least with the Versa.

miata007
Posts: 268
Joined: Thu Aug 11, 2005 5:42 am
Car: 2009 Cube 6sp, 2005 G35 sedan

Re: Xtronic CVT reliability?? (Slither)

Postby miata007 » Wed Jul 15, 2009 6:41 am

You may want to get the lower model which has the option to choose 6sp manual. Not many people likes the idea of manual though.

In terms of other options that are missing, you can upgrade it on your own to be better and less expensive. Ex. wheels and stereo.

I also was skepitcal about CVT on top of a new car so I went with manual. This is a nice gear box that works well with the engine. Another great thing is the Cube is based on Versa and the 1.8L has been in used for quite some times.

007

007


mkaresh
Posts: 1038
Joined: Fri Dec 01, 2006 3:45 am
Car: 2003 Mazda Protege5
Contact:

Re: Xtronic CVT reliability?? (miata007)

Postby mkaresh » Sat Jul 18, 2009 7:07 am

I conduct a reliability survey nad haven't heard of too many CVT failures, but then most of the cars involved have under 70k miles on them. Remains to be seen how they'll hold up as the miles pile up.

Car repair histories

AltimaJA10
Posts: 45
Joined: Tue Dec 29, 2009 4:15 am
Car: 2010 Alima 2.5 S (SL)

Re: Xtronic CVT reliability?? (marlin29311)

Postby AltimaJA10 » Wed Dec 30, 2009 8:47 am

marlin29311 wrote:From what I've come to see, the redesign has made significant improvements and have made the CVT more reliable than previously - Nissan targeted having these things stick around for 200k miles (though no one is quite there yet...)

Fluid changes are the biggest pain though - you cannot access the tranny dipstick yourself, as there is a lock on it that has to be opened by a Nissan tech (though you could brake it and void your warranty...lol) - fluid changes are in the hundred's, simply because the NS-2 fluid that Nissan uses is proprietery and costs a hefty sum per quart - I believe for my 3.5 Altima, the chage is around $400....but the NS-2 fluid was designed to withstand 90k miles (my dad's company helped to design the fluid), and Nissan has a diagnostic tool that can determine the life of the fluid in the tranny as well, so you don't necessarily have to do a fluid swap every 30k...
NICO newb - just found this post. If I understand right, Nissan CVT fluid change at 30k mi service (Nissan's recommended Premium Schedule) will run $400?!??? Hopefully that cost will come down before I get in my 1st 30k.

takawira
Posts: 5
Joined: Fri Jul 24, 2009 12:15 pm
Car: Nissan Cube '09

Re: Xtronic CVT reliability??

Postby takawira » Wed Dec 30, 2009 6:48 pm

Well, my cube has 4600 miles on it, so as far as reliability is concerned I cannot say. All I know is that so far there are zero problems. However, I am surprised no-one has brought this up yet, but Nissan has just extended the warranty on ALL CVT transmissions from 2003 onwards. The new warranty is 5years/120,000 miles. That means your car is covered for a pretty long time so any problems will cost you $0 if they happen in this time span. And judging by the first post on this topic the person should be pretty satisfied by that. Oh by the way, NIssan is paying back anyone who paid out of pocket for CVT repairs, including 2003 model year cars. So how about that for customer satisfaction?

W
Posts: 18
Joined: Mon Jul 20, 2009 2:57 am

Re: Xtronic CVT reliability?? (takawira)

Postby W » Wed Dec 30, 2009 8:54 pm

takawira wrote:Well, my cube has 4600 miles on it, so as far as reliability is concerned I cannot say. All I know is that so far there are zero problems. However, I am surprised no-one has brought this up yet, but Nissan has just extended the warranty on ALL CVT transmissions from 2003 onwards. The new warranty is 5years/120,000 miles. That means your car is covered for a pretty long time so any problems will cost you $0 if they happen in this time span. And judging by the first post on this topic the person should be pretty satisfied by that. Oh by the way, NIssan is paying back anyone who paid out of pocket for CVT repairs, including 2003 model year cars. So how about that for customer satisfaction?
Actually the warranty on the CVT transmission has been bumped to 10 years/120,000 miles. They doubled the powertrain warranty both by time and mileage.

engineer20
Posts: 71
Joined: Thu Dec 04, 2014 11:13 pm
Car: 2015 Nissan Rogue SV AWD Premium Package

Re: Xtronic CVT reliability??

Postby engineer20 » Fri Jan 29, 2016 9:41 am

Did you go with the Nissan? How's the Xtronic CVT, esp the newest generation that takes NS3 fluid? A ns2 fluid change is chepaer since the price of NS2 went down, when they come out with NS4, then NS3's price will go down. Should I do a drain and fill myself at 30k, and where is the drain plug located? Thanks.

seldomseen
Posts: 1309
Joined: Thu Jan 24, 2008 7:40 am
Car: '12 Altima Coupe 3.5 SR & '15 Lexus GS350 F Sport

Re: Xtronic CVT reliability??

Postby seldomseen » Wed Feb 17, 2016 1:57 pm

engineer20 wrote:Did you go with the Nissan? How's the Xtronic CVT, esp the newest generation that takes NS3 fluid? A ns2 fluid change is chepaer since the price of NS2 went down, when they come out with NS4, then NS3's price will go down. Should I do a drain and fill myself at 30k, and where is the drain plug located? Thanks.
Don't be cheap! :facepalm: Have your CVT fluid serviced by a Nissan dealership in accordance with the Nissan recommended guidelines. The CVT drain and fill isn't an expensive service----in addition, doing so will better protect you for warranty repair/replacement. In addition, don't overly service the CVT due to fears of it failing. :yesnod In most cases...CVT failure isn't due to hard driving or poor maintenance, and commonly fails due to random "internal component failure", and or "design deficit" that surfaces under certain or constant normal driving conditions.

sjtsnix
Posts: 2
Joined: Sat Apr 23, 2016 12:45 pm
Car: 2014 Nissan Versa Note

Re: Xtronic CVT reliability??

Postby sjtsnix » Sun Apr 24, 2016 10:56 am

Does the 2014 Versa Note have the 'Xtronic' CVT?

I just limped into the Nissan Dealership with 51000 miles on my 2014 Versa Note on Friday April 22nd after having experienced major power loss that morning.

Driving home on the Freeway that afternoon, the dealership is 'on the way' home. The Goal was to drop the car off on Saturday... but, on the way home the power loss was so scary on the Freeway, that I made a beeline for the dealership, hoping and praying I'd make it there. Turning a corner and accelerating up a hill at the dealership provided for a loud 'thump' from up under the hood of the car.

Saturday, I get a call from the Dealer... "We will be replacing your Transmission", I was told it would be a re-manufactured CVT. I was told the warranty would only go up to the original 60K Miles.

Why is this not being replaced with a New, and perhaps Improved CVT?

The reliability factor just took a nose dive for me on this car.

Nissan implemented a "CVT Customer Satisfaction Program" for Model Years 2003 to 2010 per:
http://www.nissanassist.com/vehicles.php?menu=5

and states on that page:

"...a small percentage of owners of early models equipped with CVTs have expressed concerns about the cost of repair of their transmissions after the warranty expires. We take these comments about the cost of vehicle ownership seriously. We strive to provide an exceptional ownership experience and are implementing a thorough Customer Satisfaction Program to address this topic."

Does this mean that Nissan is no longer concerned about my 'exceptional ownership experience' on my 2014 Nissan Versa Note ?

Had I known this information, I may have not even considered a Nissan with a CVT.

How long before Nissan extends Model Years 2011+ CVT warranties?

51,000 miles, Really?

Will I make it to 100K miles and being doing this again at my own expense due to what appears to be a Design Flaw of this CVT?

Thank you Nissan for a car that I have no confidence in anymore.

Stephen

seldomseen
Posts: 1309
Joined: Thu Jan 24, 2008 7:40 am
Car: '12 Altima Coupe 3.5 SR & '15 Lexus GS350 F Sport

Re: Xtronic CVT reliability??

Postby seldomseen » Fri Apr 29, 2016 10:39 pm

It's common practice to replace a transmission or CVT using a re-manufactured replacement. There's been cases of '16 Maxima's with less than 5k miles having their CVT replaced using a re-manufactured replacement. :chuckle:

Nissan hasn't extended the CVT warranty to 100k on +11 model years yet, and will most likely not. If you're concerned about the reliability of your car's CVT, you should trade/sell the car once the CVT has been replaced. Unfortunately, CVT's are better in theory than reality at this point of their engineering. You should know that more and more manufactures are incorporating CVTs into their cars too. :yesnod

InfinitiMaxima
Posts: 9
Joined: Mon Oct 09, 2017 12:15 am
Car: 2013 Altima 2.5, 40k-65k
2006 Maxima, 175k-200k

Re: Xtronic CVT reliability??

Postby InfinitiMaxima » Fri Oct 13, 2017 10:34 am

Well its been 8 years since this thread started. How is the reliability holding up? STILL TERRIBLE! I sold my 2013 Altima with 60k because it needed transmission replacement at 50k. I did beat the hell out of it, but thats still insane. It also came from factory with broken rim. It also... It had so many problems I can't even remember, f*** that thing. I bought a preCVT Maxima and it runs like a dream at 200,000 miles, never had transmission work, it only started to slip on 3rd gear just a few thousand miles ago.

InfinitiMaxima
Posts: 9
Joined: Mon Oct 09, 2017 12:15 am
Car: 2013 Altima 2.5, 40k-65k
2006 Maxima, 175k-200k

Re: Xtronic CVT reliability??

Postby InfinitiMaxima » Fri Oct 13, 2017 10:34 am

Well its been 8 years since this thread started. How is the reliability holding up? STILL TERRIBLE! I sold my 2013 Altima with 60k because it needed transmission replacement at 50k. I did beat the hell out of it, but thats still insane. It also came from factory with broken rim. It also... It had so many problems I can't even remember, f*** that thing. I bought a preCVT Maxima and it runs like a dream at 200,000 miles, never had transmission work, it only started to slip on 3rd gear just a few thousand miles ago.


Return to “Cube Forum”