Save thousands on vehicle repairs with Endurance.
Get a FREE Quote

Are Nissans Good Cars? 

BY: Chris Brown

While Nissan reported a 33.2% decrease in sales for 2020—a fall undoubtedly influenced by the pandemic—899,217 Americans still chose the brand when buying a new vehicle.

There’s something to be said about the number of Nissans purchased over the past year, but that does not necessarily mean all are reliable vehiclesThe Nissan Altima and Nissan Rogue ranked amongst the top 10 models that reported the most issuebased on internal claims data from the past year 

As the leading provider of breakdown protection, we work to alleviate the costs of repairs and now maintenance for all vehicles—especially Nissans.   

We looked at various factors to answer whether or not Nissans are good cars to purchase and own. 


Are Nissans Reliable Cars?

As one of the world’s largest automakers, it’s safe to say that Nissan’s global reputation has grown over the years. But beyond sales figures and their distinctive styling, how do Nissan owners feel about their purchases?

An aerial view of several key review sites shows above-average scores across the board, with many positive comments about comfort, fuel economy, and in-car technology. There are, however, some causes for concern with particular years. The 2013 Nissan Altima has had a significant number of complaints filed compared to other models, which has raised concerns amongst drivers.

The Altima’s reliability rating has increased since 2013, but this number doesn’t consider the breakdowns you can experience while owning.

If you’re planning on purchasing a new car soon, then invest in breakdown protection. An extended auto warranty, also referred to as a vehicle service contract, covers the cost of both parts and labor for approved vehicle repairs, as well as routine maintenance with EnduranceAdvantage.

Newer models often come with a factory warranty in place, so check your owner’s manual to see if yours is still active, as well as what’s covered.    

Are Nissan Altimas Good Cars?

As one of the most popular Nissan models, the Altima sells hundreds of thousands of units per year in the US. While the 2013 model experiences the most issues, the 2011 and 2016 onwards are ideal for those in the market for a used car and looking for all-wheel drive.  

Vehicle class   Midsize sedan  
Latest-model year   2021  
MSRP   $24,300  
Fuel economy   28mpg city/39mpg highway  
Notable features   Comfortable to drive  

Excellent fuel economy  

VC-Turbo engine  

Impressive safety features  

Most reliable model year*   2016 onwards  
Least reliable model year   2013  
Common problems   CVT shuddering (2013 Altima)  

Steering wheel lock failure (2009 Altima)  

Transmission failure (2014 Altima)  

*Derived from Consumer Reports  

Are Nissan Sentras Good Cars?

While not as big a seller as the Altima, the Nissan Sentra is still an undeniably popular sedan. The 2013 model has a relatively high number of complaints, but just like the Altima, models made in the last few years have increased in overall reliability.  

Vehicle class   Compact sedan  
Latest-model year   2021  
MSRP   $19,410  
Fuel economy   29mpg city/39mpg highway  
Notable features   Upscale interiors  

Lots of standard safety features  

Most reliable model year*   2017 onwards  
Least reliable model year   2013  
Common problems   Transmission failure (2014/15 Sentra)  

Blown head gasket (2005 Sentra)  

*Derived from Consumer Reports  

Are Nissan Rogues Good Cars?

A compact SUV with a higher price point, the Nissan Rogue is praised for its spacious interior. However, almost every model has had a significant number of complaints filed against it. The 2013 iteration has attracted the most complaints, with things starting to improve by the time we hit 2017.  

Vehicle class   Compact SUV  
Latest-model year   2021  
MSRP   $25,650  
Fuel economy   27mpg city/35mpg highway  
Notable features   Good passenger and cargo space  

Upscale interiors  

Driver assistance and infotainment as standard  

Most reliable model year*   2017 onwards  
Least reliable model year   2013  
Common problems   Loss of acceleration (2013 Rogue)  

AC issues (2015 Rogue)  

Stops while driving (2011 Rogue)  

*Derived from Consumer Reports  

Are Nissan Versas Good Cars?

If you’re looking for something on the smaller side, the Nissan Versa could be the car for you. At a much lower price point than some of the brand’s other vehicles, reviewers often comment on the ride’s smoothness, but there are some acceleration complaints. The 2009 and 2012 models have the most costly faults, not far behind the 2007 and 2008 models. Buy 2016 or newer, though, and you should be all set.  

Vehicle class   Subcompact sedan  
Latest-model year   2021  
MSRP   $14,930  
Fuel economy   32mpg city/40mpg highway  
Notable features   Upscale interiors  

Great safety features  

Smooth and refined ride  

Most reliable model year*   2016 onwards  
Least reliable model year   2009  
Common problems   Transmission failure (2012/13/14 Versa)  

*Derived from Consumer Reports  

Are Nissan Maximas Good Cars?

For those who want to go big without going SUV, the Nissan Maxima could be the compromise you’ve been searching for. All 2004, 2005, and 2006 models received complaints regarding transmission issues, but since then, these have died down significantly. Other than a blip in 2016, complaints have been almost non-existent since 2012.   

Vehicle class   Sedan  
Latest-model year   2021  
MSRP   $36,990  
Fuel economy   20mpg city/30mpg highway  
Notable features   V6 engine  

User-friendly infotainment  

A significant amount of standard features  

Most reliable model year*   2012 onwards  
Least reliable model year   2004  
Common problems   Jerks when shifting (2004/5/6 Maxima)  

*Derived from Consumer Reports  

Are Nissan Jukes Good Cars?

Launching in 2010, the Nissan Juke had a bit of a rough start. With the first models experiencing turbo and transmission issues, it’s the 2013 model that rates as the least reliable as a result of costly repairs at lower mileage. Owners of 2015, 2016, and 2017 models have had very little negative feedback, making those the model years to aim for.    

Vehicle class   Subcompact SUV  
Latest-model year   2017  
MSRP   $20,250  
Fuel economy   28mpg city/32mpg highway  
Notable features   Turbocharged engine  

Sporty handling  

Most reliable model year*   2017  
Least reliable model year   2013  
Common problems   Turbo failure (2011/13 Juke)  

Transmission failure (2013 Juke)  

*Derived from Consumer Reports  

What are the Most Common Nissan Repairs?

The number of Nissan repairs you experience depends on how well you take care of your vehicle. Following a strict routine maintenance checklist reduces your chances of experiencing a breakdown, but essential components will experience part failure as time goes on.   

Here are the top 10 Nissan repairs* drivers experienced-based on internal claims data for a better idea of what to expect.  

Top Nissan Repairs

  1. Transmission Replacement
  2. A/C Compressor
  3. Control Arm Front Lower
  4. Alternator
  5. Strut Left Front
  6. Blower Motor
  7. Engine Mount Front
  8. Constant Velocity Joint Boot
  9. Radiator Cooling Fan Motor
  10. Stabilizer Bar Bushing

Although Nissans have high dependability ratingsthey’ll still require a few thousand to fix sudden car repairs. To avoid this from happening, you can invest in a Nissan extended warranty to cover both parts and labor.  


Do All Nissans Come with a Factory Warranty?

New Nissan vehicles are backed by the manufacturer’s standard warranty, which covers you for up to 36 months or 36,000 miles—whichever comes first. You also have the option to purchase their limited powertrain coverage for five years or 60,000 miles.

Used vehicles typically come with a manufacturer’s warranty, but you also have the option to explore coverage from a third-party provider. Providers like Endurance offer comprehensive coverage and now up to $3,500 in maintenance coverage with their newest protection plan. If you’ve also purchased a Canadian grey market Nissan or have a salvage title car, you can still qualify for EnduranceAdvantage.

Endurance covers different models from the Nissan Leaf to the Nissan Frontier. Learn more about your options by requesting a free, no-obligation quote today.

Save Thousands on Nissan Vehicle Repairs with Endurance

Once you’ve decided on the Nissan for you, the next step is to make sure it’s protected. After all, even the best car in the world will need maintenance and repairs at some point, and you want to be covered when that time comes.

With Endurance, not only can you tailor your contract to your specific needs and budget, but you’ll also get 24/7 roadside assistance, rental car reimbursement, and trip-interruption costs as standard. Plus, every new member receives a year’s free access to Endurance Elite and the host of amazing everyday driver benefits that comes with it.   

Get started by requesting a free, no-obligation online quote now. Take a trip over to our Learning Center for more information on other popular models such as Toyota, Ford, Hyundai, Kia, Lexus, and Honda.  

* This is data based on Jan 1 – Nov 20, 2020, Endurance claims data, not intended to be used to inform automotive purchases.   

More like this

Get started with a FREE quote.

        Get a FREE Quote