• Apr 25, 2011
Late 90s Infiniti QX4 SUVBack in January, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration announced an investigation into corrosion problems in older Nissan SUVs. There were 35 cases reported of excessive rusting, with 18 of those cases leading to steering issues.

It didn't take long for that investigation to result in a recall, as NHTSA has announced on its website that Nissan is recalling 195,991 vehicles for corrosion problems. According to the recall, the 1996-2004 Pathfinder and its 1997-2003 Infiniti QX4 twin contain a hole in the upper strut housing panel that can allow road salt to enter.

As a result, the corrosive ice-melter could cause corrosion of the strut tower housing, which can in some cases pull away from the inner hood ledge assembly. NHTSA says that the issue can result in "grinding noises, increased steering effort and possibly the steering column to break." If that happens, owners may lose steering control, possibly resulting in a crash.

To fix the issue, owners will need to take their vehicle to a Nissan or Infiniti dealer, where a technician will inspect the strut housing and make any necessary repairs. Hit the jump to read over the official NHTSA press release.

[Source: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration via The Detroit News]
Show full PR text
Vehicle Make / Model: Model Year(s):
INFINITI / QX4 1997-2003
NISSAN / PATHFINDER 1996-2004
Manufacturer: NISSAN NORTH AMERICA, INC. Mfr's Report Date: APR 20, 2011
NHTSA CAMPAIGN ID Number: 11V244000 NHTSA Action Number: PE11004
Component: STEERING:COLUMN
Potential Number of Units Affected: 195,991
Summary:
NISSAN IS RECALLING CERTAIN MODEL YEAR 1996-2004 PATHFINDER AND MODEL YEAR 1997-2003 INFINITI QX4 VEHICLES ORIGINALLY SOLD, OR CURRENTLY REGISTERED IN, CONNECTICUT, DELAWARE, IOWA, ILLINOIS, INDIANA, MASSACHUSETTS, MAINE, MARYLAND, MICHIGAN, MINNESOTA, MISSOURI, NEW HAMPSHIRE, NEW JERSEY, NEW YORK, OHIO, PENNSYLVANIA, RHODE ISLAND, VERMONT, WASHINGTON D.C., WEST VIRGINIA AND WISCONSIN. IN AREAS OF THE COUNTRY IN WHICH HEAVY CONCENTRATIONS OF ROAD SALT ARE USED, A MIXTURE OF SNOW/WATER AND SALT MAY ENTER AN ASSEMBLY LOCATION HOLE IN THE UPPER STRUT HOUSING, CAUSING WATER TO COLLECT AT THE MATING SURFACE OF THE STRUT HOUSING PANEL AND THE INNER HOOD LEDGE ASSEMBLY. OVER TIME, THIS SNOW/WATER AND SALT INTRUSION MAY RESULT IN CORROSION OF THE STRUT TOWER HOUSING IN SOME SUBJECT VEHICLES.
Consequence:
THE STRUT HOUSING MAY CRACK AND PULL AWAY FROM THE INNER HOOD LEDGE ASSEMBLY. THIS MAY LEAD TO GRINDING NOISES, INCREASED STEERING EFFORT, AND POSSIBLY THE STEERING COLUMN TO BREAK, RESULTING IN THE LOSS OF STEERING CONTROL, WHICH COULD RESULT IN A CRASH.
Remedy:
NISSAN WILL INSPECT THE STRUT HOUSING AND REPAIR THE VEHICLES AS NECESSARY, FREE OF CHARGE. AN INTERIM NOTIFICATION LETTER TO OWNERS WILL BE MAILED ON OR BEFORE MAY 16, 2011. OWNERS MAY CONTACT NISSAN AT 1-800-647-7261.


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  • 15 Comments
      • 3 Years Ago
      [blocked]
        rally25rs
        • 3 Years Ago
        Yawn... More recalls of American junk. http://www.autoblog.com/2011/04/14/ford-f-150-airbag-recall-balloons-by-1-2m-units/ (point being; every manufacturer has recalls)
          caddy-v
          • 3 Years Ago
          @rally25rs
          http://www.autoblog.com/2011/04/21/toyota-recalls-308-000-rav4-and-highlander-models-over-airbag-se/ You were saying?
          mikoprivat
          • 3 Years Ago
          @rally25rs
          are you sure you know what you're talking about??? In your profession are you cranking out "american junk" also, or what you do is exceptional...the way you talk, I think you are also producing American Junk.
      • 3 Years Ago
      [blocked]
      erhcanadian
      • 3 Years Ago
      Breaking news: A 15-year-old car can rust out!
        mikoprivat
        • 3 Years Ago
        @erhcanadian
        I don't want a rusted out nissan or whatever to hit me or others because they lose steering...4 years, 10 years or 15 years OLD!!! If you canadiennes like to play that game in your arctic circle region, be my guest, not in the USA.
      Avinash Machado
      • 3 Years Ago
      So when will the Model T get recalled?
        • 3 Years Ago
        @Avinash Machado
        [blocked]
      Basil Exposition
      • 3 Years Ago
      What a handsome SUV compared to the hideous current gen.
      _M7_
      • 3 Years Ago
      WOOOOO A 15 years OLD CAR CAN GET RUST ...I DIDNT KNEW jajajajaja its like saying another recall from japanese cars pfffffff
      mythicalprogrammer
      • 3 Years Ago
      My parents have a 97 forest green pathfinder LE, our first new car (not used). It was in 3 accidents, read ended and T-boned, and it is still running with over 340,000 miles on the Odometer. Probably more accidents, shrug don't remember. It's pretty good. The only trouble we got from it is the radiator hose leak. The front passenger door is not working was due to being T bone and the tranny rattle from a complete stop to start motion; but I chalk that up to the 3 accidents that car was in. The interior didn't age very well, it was pretty crappy in life span. Overall, my family and I totally respect Nissan. If anything their V6 engines are amazing. We still have it lying around so we can haul stuff. We don't have to haul stuff anymore, new business, but my parent got the Juke. Ugly little thing, but I just drove it yesterday, when my parent came over to visit. Love the engine, the brake is kinda weak compare to my 03 Kompressor, but it's fun to drive haha. So yeah, it is rock solid.
        mikey
        • 3 Years Ago
        @mythicalprogrammer
        i have a 2001 LE with 275,000 miles and it's going strong. In fact it just passed inspection yesterday. My interior is still in good shape - leather is splitting a bit at the seams but nothing else. the only issue I've had with it was the tranny blew at 150,000m.
      4x4pakistan.com
      • 3 Years Ago
      Nissan Pathfinders and their rebadged Infiniti QX4s both SUVs have almost similar external appearance, sophisticated 4-wheel-drive system and mechanical specifications. Previously this problem was not known...however Nissan recalled these vehicles for good. These vehicles have the corrosion problems and steering issues. Both vehicles contain a hole in the upper strut housing panel that allows corrosion salts to enter and it damages the steering column which may result in some crash.
      icon149
      • 3 Years Ago
      i've got one originally sold in CO... doesn't seem to be a part of the recall... hmm.
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