2004 Nissan Xterra Reviews and Owner Comments

2004 Nissan Xterra owners review and rate their 2004 Nissan Xterra.

2004 Nissan Xterra (6 Reviews)
Body, Interior & Misc.
Drive Train
Electrical & Lights
Exhaust & Emissions
Heating & Air Conditioning
Suspension & Steering
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I bought my 2004 Xterra from the first owner. It's been reliable. Problems I have experienced are common for the vehicle. I live inner city. From time to time in the winter I get a check engine light.Scanning showed a loose gas cap.Locking gas cap does not keep people from siphoning gas.If electrical comes on but car refuses to start then move shift lever with the brake depressed and reposition into park. The lock out switches on this version are touchy.I have less than 100kmiles and already have had to replace the alternator, and rear springs. That dual catalytic converter replacement is going to be spendy and mine is on the way out.If they go through calipers frequently make sure to buy a pre-loaded caliper and a must do is to change out the rotors at the same time.Bad rotors will wear out brake pads and calipers very fast.My most recent problem is the dash lights went out as well as the tail lights. Nissan wants a grand to rip my dash apart to change the harness.I am retired and don't have it.I guess I will only be driving in the daylight hours from now on. The fuses are all okay. I read that if one of the tail lights or running lights is out it'll do the same thing and no one has to rip the vehicle apart to change the part.I will try to check the light bulbs myself and then recheck the tail light fuse. The dash lights are connected to the tail light and those fuses are located in the box next to the battery. My other option is to go to the vo-tech when they are doing wiring and have them do it for parts money.
So I purchased my xterra about 2 mnths ago and I had no problems with except my steering wheel was alittle hard to turn but that wasn't really a big deal and my breaks were a little squeaky. all of a sudden my truck wouldn't start, my battery didn't die because all of the electrical stuff still turned on and when I turned my key the truck didn't make any ticking sounds or anything it just made a sound like it wanted to start but wouldn't turn over to actually get the truck going. it was so weird because I NEVER had any problems with this before. I tried getting a jump and the it still wouldn't start so I assume it wasn't the battery. the mechanic told me it was my timing belt but for some reason I have a weird feeling about this. has anyone delt with this before ? & if so how much did it cost you to get it fixed ?
For some reason my XTerra is going through brake calipers at a rate of once a year. In July 2011 I was told it was because I need to change them at the same time so I forked out the money and changed both. Now it is January 2013 and my right caliber is sticking and the vehicle is not driveable. I guess I will be shelling out another 500+ bucks. I will never own another Nissan.
I bought my 2004 Nissan Xterra 4x4 SE about two and a half years ago with about 69,000 miles on it, it now has 92,580 miles. It has been an overall good car just certain things that you would think wouldn't be an issue are when your a full time student already struggling to make ends meet. Although not the cars fault right after purchasing it I found out the dealership from which it was purchased didn't replace the timing belt so that was an immediate $580 bucks. The exterior plastics does not hold up well in the heat or the sun period they fade faster than any car I've ever owned prior and I always keep it in the garage. another issue is the air conditioning went out just last year luckily right after the extreme summer heat, but is somewhat of a big deal seeing as I live in blistering Phoenix. I was quoted around $950- 1100 to replace, something to do with the fan clutch and compressor, so needless to say I've had to hold off on that whole ordeal. Now it is slightly lifted and I have taken it on a trail or two but is extremely well maintained and I've only put synthetic fluids in it since I've owned it. But before I decided to get it lifted one of my leaf springs snapped while on my way to work it completely caught me off guard and this was only a month or two after I bought it. So overall good trucks just cheap finishings and poor workmanship in the suspension and engine electrical areas.

I purchased my Xterra new in 2004. This has been probably the most reliable vehicle that I have ever owned. Solid mechanical performance with no repairs.

I have used synthetic fluids in the crankcase and transmission since 3,500 miles. I switched to a permanent cleanable air filter for long term use. My goal is 250,000 miles on this car. I am confident that the car will make it.

Downsides are all cosmetic. I live and Florida and the sun has ruined the plastic covered bumpers and the fascia under the wipers. The door side moldings and fender trim has also suffered under the hot Florida sun. This vehicle has neve been garaged and the plastic does not hold up well in the sun. I am planning to have all the plastic trim removed, painted and reinstalled. I suspect I will spend $500 - $750 for this. The front grill looks absolutely horrible due to sun and environmental damage so I will have it painted as well.

The plastic features inside the car do not hold up well over time. There is a lot of cheap fit and finish with this car inside and out.

The front lights have yellowed and faded in the sun. I paid $150 to have them cleaned about 1-1/2 years ago and they are yellowing again. I will actually look into replacing them because I plan to drive this car for another 5 to 6 years. I think it will be worth the investment.

I have towed boats and jetskis with the aftermarket tow hitch with no issues or problems. The most I have towed is around 4,000 pounds and the vehicle is rated to 5,000 pounds towing capacity.

Recommendation for replacing the timing belt is at 60,000 miles but I stalled until 94,000 miles. Replaced the timing belt, water pump and had the head gaskets replaced. Also repaired a leak in the rear main seal. Quoted nearly $2,700 with labor and my local dealer discounted the work down to $1,500. (It pays to have a good relationship and prior service at a local dealer). Even if I had paid the full price that would be $2700/7 years = $385 annual maintenance costs. To that you can add my other maintenance of approximately $1,500. That works out to $3,780 over 7 years for a total maitenance costs of $540 annually. I think that is great.

I only wish that the Xterra had stronger cosmetic constitution.

My other complaint is that the dash lights seem to have dimmed over the years. I understand that I can have the dash lights replaced and I am investigating that cost to determine if it is worthwhile for me.

Overall I have been pleased because I bought this car strictly for utilitarian use and it has servec me extremely well. If I were in the market today or certainly when I am I will look immediately to Nissan or even Infiniti as I will then move to a near luxury sedan or coupe.
great car