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#18 of 202 2006 Xterra Bad clutch...$3300 bill...should I trade it?
Mar 13, 2009 (10:25 am)
I bought my 2006 Xterra new in March 2006 and have done over 70% highway driving. The truck currently has 43,000 miles. As most of you know the mileage is well below stated on the sticker. I drive 75 mph and am lucky to get 16 mpg. I don't do any off-roading and have only towed with it once while moving.
The steering column was replaced under warrantee during the first year.
I have dutifully completed oil changes and use synthetic oil. I have been driving a stick since 1985. I have not had the dealer complete the scheduled maint but was planning on it since I have owned it for 3 years without changing the rear end fluids.
I noticed the engine over-reving slightly during shifts last week and took it to a local Nissan dealer.
Once I found out that the vehicle was no longer covered under warrantee I took it to a local repair shop that does work on mostly foreign late model autos. He is a friend of mine and I have used his shop for over 12 years on Saabs, BMWs, Volvos, and Toyotas with excellent results.
The total bill came to $3,300. I'm sure the dealer bill would have been closer to $5000.
The $3,300 bill included:
Clutch replacement at 43,000 miles
Here lies the problem!!! Nissan uses a $160 clutch disc in a vehicle that makes 260 hp. I'm no engineer...but this doesn't seem like a good place to skimp.
They used to install beefy clutches in their high HP vehicles. My 1984 300zx turbo clutch lasted close to 100k.
Flywheel replacement ($800 part...surprisingly in stock at a local dealer the part was torn up pretty bad)
My repair shop said it was unusual to find a part like this in stock!!!!!
30,000 mile service (the fluids and filters were close to $400)
New battery...Too early in my opinion.
total parts: $1454
Should I cut my losses and trade this puppy in now while I can get a good deal while the dealers are hurtin? Any suggestions?
Thanks for your advice.
#19 of 202 Re: 2006 Xterra Bad clutch...$3300 bill...should I trade it? [coach877]
Mar 22, 2009 (6:06 am)
It's unfortunate that no aftermarket manufacturer is marketing stronger clutch components for the Nissan 6-Speed. That way, when the work was complete, an owner would know that the fix was good.
I'm wondering too if the clutch master cylinder set up might be a partial culprit. The 4.0L 6-Speed (only) clutch master cylinder assembly should be adjusted to a length of 120.5mm (4.74") from the hole in the clevis (where it attaches to the pedal) to the mounting surface plate of the assembly (engine side of firewall). Ya pretty much have to remove the thing to measure the set up.
My clutch master cylinder squeaked and after FOUR trips to the Dealer, they finally replaced it ..... and didn't adjust it properly before installing it. Fortunately it's set so that the travel is slightly beyond where it should be, but if it were adjusted short, I wonder if clutch slippage might occur? This being a hydraulic clutch, it's hard to say. I'm no Engineer.
#20 of 202 2008 Xterra Off Road clutch failure
Apr 09, 2009 (11:16 am)
I too just had to have my clutch replaced at 20.5k miles of normal driving (no off road). My wife and I have had only manual transmissions in all our cars for the past 40 years because of their durability vs. automatics. Boy were we burned by this our first Nissan. I am an ex-automotive engineer and currently restore cars, and I can restate the obvious: Nissan clearly put a weak, underdesigned and untested clutch in this vehicle. My guess is that since they adapted the 350Z 6-speed trans with its integral bellhousing to the X, they must have also had to use the Z clutch, perhaps smaller OD and which is designed for a car of significantly less weight. I was expecting a pickup-type of rugged drivetrain, not to mention Japanese design durability. Instead we got a junk clutch; very un-Japanese. If there is no news of a Nissan recall and free replacement with a truck-type beefy clutch in the next 6 months, we will sell our 08 X and never buy Nissan again. It is still hard to believe a major Japanese car co such as Nissan would release such an unreliable drivetrain, when their major sales advantage has always been their great designs for reliability and many troublefree miles.
#21 of 202 Re: 2008 Xterra Off Road clutch failure [gfg]
Apr 30, 2009 (6:46 am)
Sometimes manufacturers under-design clutches, or they increase the horsepower and try to get away with using the same clutch. Sounds like Nissan may be guilty of this. You may want to look into using a Tribco www.tribco.com clutch, their 100% Kevlar composite clutch discks are available through many clutch rebuilders.
#22 of 202 Re: 2008 Xterra Off Road clutch failure [charles44]
Jun 07, 2009 (4:38 am)
Jim Wolf Technology now offers a clutch disk and flywheel for the 2nd Gen Xterra and Frontier with the VQ-40 engine and six speed.
Prices are $450 for the Flywheel and $485 for the Clutch Disk.
Jim Wolf Technology VQ-40 Stuff
I do not own these; I've had no trouble with my Frontier as yet, but I have only 20,000 Miles on it. I am very happy to see that there's now an alternative out there if I do have trouble.
#23 of 202 Re: 2007 Xterra Clutch RIP @ 30K (km) [Just_Peachy]
Jun 08, 2009 (12:04 pm)
I also have a 2007 Xterra and at 32,000 miles and told it is not covered under warranty. I am ready to fight on this after reading all the other complaints regarding this same issue.
Have you had any luck with Nissan? I am waiting to hear back from a regional manager regarding having this repaired at no cost to me. Does not sound positive though.
I am very interested in joining the fight and possibly even a class action suit if this is not taken care of by Nissan.
#24 of 202 Re: 2008 Xterra Off Road clutch failure [gfg]
Jun 08, 2009 (12:09 pm)
I too am having same issue and would like to know if you have received any positive feedback/answers in regards to this problem with the clutch from Nissan.
A regional manager is supposed to call me back after he researches with his engineering department before he can answer me if the repair will be covered under Nissan.
#25 of 202 Re: 2008 Xterra Off Road clutch failure [d3363]
Jun 09, 2009 (5:13 am)
I have not seen anything from Nissan (web searches of recalls, service bulletins, etc) indicating they will take any ownership for repair and correction of this defective clutch design. I don't know how to go about reaching someone with responsibility within the Nissan organization. I don't think the dealers have any clout in forcing this to a head; their hands are tied by Nissan warrantee policy.
If anyone has an idea on how to reach a decision maker in Nissan this would be a start. Or if there is someone out their willing to lead a class action lawsuit I would certainly join. This website is likely just a small percent of owners with this problem who happened to find it, and 6-speed Xterras are a small percent of sales. Does the pickup also have the same Z-based 6-speed/clutch, or the stronger 5-speed clutch? I still feel the Z-based clutch is not designed for the much heavier Xterra and this is the root of the problem.
I've appreciated the inputs from others on beefier aftermarket clutches, and wonder why Nissan's premature clutch failure repair includes installing the same weak factory parts.
#26 of 202 Re: 2008 Xterra Off Road clutch failure [gfg]
Jun 18, 2009 (7:04 pm)
My 2006 Xterra Off Road just received a new clutch, flywheel, and transmission from a local dealer under warranty at 40K miles. . I've had a rattle & vibe since around 15K. Dealer finally heard it after multiple visits, and told me it was the transmission. When I asked "are you sure" they said they were, even though when I would barely tough the clutch pedal the vibe would stop. I though it was the throw out bearing. Upon teardown they told me it was the clutch so they ended up replacing everything including the transmission. I guess when mother Nissan is footing the bill they don't care. I've never heard of a flywheel needing replacement with the clutch. Is this unique to the Xterra? After reading this forum, I'm proably going to sell it while it has some value.