Nissan's decision to fit continuously variable transmissions across even more of its new models may be coming back to bite the Japanese automaker, as it's been hampered by customer satisfaction issues relating to its XTronic CVTs, which are provided by a supplier called JATCO.

From what we're understanding, the issue largely relates to customers' unfamiliarity with the non-traditional shift nature of a CVT. Dealers have reported complaints and service visits from owners over the belt-driven automatics (did these people not test drive the cars before they bought them and notice that they don't shift conventionally?).

The company, which Nissan owns 75 percent of, has come under fire from none other than Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn, who's spoken about JATCO and its troubles rather openly. "Every time you launch a new CVT you always have some risks," Ghosn said in an interview with Automotive News. "So we now have a process by which, before we launch any new CVT, [JATCO] come before the Nissan executive committee to explain all the measures they have taken to make sure there are no surprises."

Nissan's oversight on JATCO will fall to Bill Krueger, the brand's current manufacturing and supply chain boss in North America and its future executive vice president of US and Mexican operations, according to AN. Krueger will be visiting JATCO next month. Along with dealers, the supplier will attempt to provide a greater range of information to consumers about the benefits and characteristics of its CVTs.

Speaking to AN, Nissan spokesman David Reuter said the latest string of transmission related issues, which took a chunk out of the brand's profits in 2012 according to Ghosn, related largely to Nissan's hectic launch schedule. "They're in the past and behind us now," Reuter said.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 81 Comments
      The Friendly Grizzly
      Customer: My car is not running right. Service writer: What's it doing? Customer: It's making a funny little noise. Service Writer: Because it's a funny little car!
      Frank
      • 1 Year Ago
      I am used to driving with a CVT...I had one in my Prius and it was flawless. I purchased a 2013 this past May and it has been in the shop twice already with a replaced Torque Converter and reprogramming the CVT. It is going in again tomorrow for the shuddering of the car from the CVT. As far as the pompous ass that wrote the article above....he questioned if we ever tested the Pathfinder before we bought it...yes we did and it ran great until it hit 4000 plus miles and then the CVT problems at low speeds occurred. It is apparent that Nissan does not have a solution for the Shuddering of the Pathfinders....pursuing the "Lemon Law" is a viable option at this point. I am used to a CVT.....I had one in my i am used to a cvt...had one in my Prius and it was flawless
      deserthackberry
      • 11 Months Ago
      I just started a petition to recall Nissan CVTs at http://wh.gov/lPXct.
        DR Kirby
        • 3 Months Ago
        @deserthackberry

        Too bad it is no longer available, I would have signed that!!

      Jim Davis
      • 1 Year Ago
      I'm a tech for Audi and CVT transmissions are full of problems... And that is why Audi is ditching CVT and using DSG transmissions. Didn't know this company was the ones making them for Audi, kinda explains why they are having problems aswell
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Jim Davis
        [blocked]
      Tweaker
      • 1 Year Ago
      Amazing. The CEO of the corporation that owns 75% of the company is blaming the company. If I were a Nissan owner, I'd be blaming him.
      zizixx89
      • 1 Year Ago
      They dont need a CVT in the maxima or altima V6 pathfinder quest or QX60
      Roy Hunter
      • 1 Year Ago
      CVT equipped vehicles are a big risk, if the transmission fails it can't be repaired, you either have to spend big bucks on a new CVT transmission which by desgin is also prone to failure, or sell the car for parts to recoup some of the loss.
      foxtrot685
      • 1 Year Ago
      Whats more interesting, its the JATCO CVT's aren't all faulty across different manufacturers that use them. For instance, my car uses the same JATCO JF011E CVT that the Lancer, Jeep Compass/Patriot, Dodge Caliber uses along with the Nissan Sentra. The Sentra has far more problems with its CVT that the others listed, but its the exact same hardware! It seems that Nissan would have the best of the best since they own a majority of the company while the other manufacturers would get the faulty equipment, but the opposite is true for some reason!
        chanonissan
        • 1 Year Ago
        @foxtrot685
        I do agree, donot know what there issue, but it also have to do with nissan engineering programming the shiftng pattern, but nissan will some how get it the problem fix.
        chanonissan
        • 1 Year Ago
        @foxtrot685
        if you read the Jatco webpage, what I understand is that nissan first use the new models cvts call CVT7 and CVT8, so they end up with the early issues.
      DR Kirby
      • 3 Months Ago

      After just having a CVT fail in a Rogue and getting no help from Nissan, I will never touch a Nissan product or any car with a CVT for as long as I live. Watch out, they blow up after the 120K warranty extension and they basically say you're on your own. Never again...

      4gasem
      • 1 Year Ago
      The #1 reason why I wouldn't even bother looking at a Nissan is due to their heavy use of CVT transmissions. I'd rather have an 8 or 9 speed conventional.
        Aric Matthew Beemer
        • 1 Year Ago
        @4gasem
        It\'s a new design Nissan will get it fixed. It\'s more efficent to have a CVT then a complex 8 or 9 speed transmission.
          edward.stallings
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Aric Matthew Beemer
          It is not more efficient in terms of energy use because CVTs have a lot of power robbing friction. The trade off is that you get to keep the engine in its most efficient range, something a 9 speed could probably do as well. As for complexity, you are correct.
      Aric Matthew Beemer
      • 1 Year Ago
      I wish people in general would stop dissing the CVT. People sound so old and out of touch with reality when they don\'t give it a chance and say it sucks because it\'s doesn\'t behave like a regular tranny.
        iMac
        • 2 Months Ago
        @Aric Matthew Beemer

        Please don't bring in sexual preferences to this discussion.

        Pandabear
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Aric Matthew Beemer
        Because they are not as reliable, case close.
          chanonissan
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Pandabear
          how you explain subaru reliability? nissan issue have to do with jatco did not properly test these CVT, and nissan are the first use them, hence they end up with the problem. The first generation had the same issue with the maxima and murano until it was fix.
          animekyoto89
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Pandabear
          Baseless.........
      BipDBo
      • 1 Year Ago
      "From what we're understanding, the issue largely relates to customers' unfamiliarity with the non-traditional shift nature of a CVT." That's BS, smoke and mirror rhetoric from either Nissan or JATCO. Service techs can easily just tell somebody that it's behaving normally. In reality, these CVTs are a pleasure to drive. The rubber band experience has mostly been worked out and lack of shifts is a pleasant, smooth, welcome experience. People aren't coming in because they miss the shifting. Anybody who is observant enough to the sound of their engine likely knows that a CVT behaves differently. The issues that they are having are much more serious. CVTs are failing, which was entirely foreseeable because, well, belts drive is a dumb idea, and just bound to fail. To their surprise, however, they are actually failing within the warrantee period, and dealers have ordered stock piles of these things to serve the constant need for warrantee replacements.
        Susan
        • 1 Year Ago
        @BipDBo
        "Anybody who is observant enough to the sound of their engine likely knows that a CVT behaves differently" Do you think the standard appliance driver has that level of sophistication about subtle engine noises? I rather doubt it.
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