2003 Nissan Altima SE from North America




Vehicle hard to start all in the sudden. I changed the fuel pump and I still have the issue. I called the my Nissan sealer, and they told me my cam shaft & crank sensor are bad, and need to be replaced. $500 +- parts and labor. I guess I will be investigating cost and local parts store.

General Comments:

The car runs like a champ! The stock quarter miles times are just as fast as many hot cars out there... People stare at my car like it's a Bentley. Pearl white on 18" Infinity 05 rims.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 14th February, 2011

16th Apr 2012, 23:09

My 2003 Altima has 95,000 miles, and over past two years has had a persistent erratic problem. While driving, it will suddenly feel like it will not accelerate, and sometimes will start shaking. It was worse while idling at intersections, and felt like it was going to die. Lots on the Internet regarding faulty crank sensor. Changed that out, and still have persistent problems that seem to stump the mechanic. Have read problems related to cam sensor also. Also possible soldering issues, causing a problem with the crank sensor, but Nissan will not offer anything, without committing to pay for an expensive diagnostic test.

Today my car died while driving, and I had to coast over to the side of the road. The service engine light had come on the night before, indicating crank sensor, but the car died today before I could get it to a mechanic. Called Nissan corporate previously about the problem and a possible recall, but the rep seemed clueless and showed a lack of care. This problem is all over the Internet, and I have talked to other Altima owners who sold their car over the same issue.

I was a big fan of Nissan, and no more. Never buying this again. Hoped to have a car that would far outlast 95,000 in a small town. Big regrets over this purchase and the poor attitude from Nissan Motor co.

28th Jul 2012, 22:12

Had this issue with my 03 Altima, where it would suddenly die at intersections. Dealer wants over $400 to replace the poorly designed cam and crank shaft position sensors, but I declined. Thankfully I'm pretty handy, and I bought the 2 sensors from Auto Zone for $35 each. The sensors are identical part #s. I replaced both sensors, and one of them is really hard to reach, since it's back by the firewall and down at the bottom. The car ran like a champ after replacing the sensors. I quickly sold the car the next day, while it was running good, to a dealer who gave me a fair offer price. I found out the catalytic converters are the next to go on the 2002-2006 models, and that requires way more money than I was willing to spend.

2003 Nissan Altima S 2.5 from North America


Gets the job done with some class and charm


I purchased this car after reading as many reviews as I could. I called Nissan Canada, and they informed me that the previous owner addressed all the recalls (sensors, long bolts, etc.)

I was happy with the peppy engine, the handsome looks and spacious interior. I had the precat preventatively replaced with a Magnaflow. The mechanic showed me that the material inside was beginning to crack, so I got the problem before it caused any damage.

Afterwards, I address an exhaust leak in the front flex pipe. But the technician informed me that it was from an accident when the car was rear ended (exhaust system was pushed inwards)

At 148,000 km, I changed the battery after it wouldn't start on a really cold morning.

Today, at 151,000 km (94,000 miles) I sent the car in for brakes at all 4 corners including the outer tie rods.

All the work I've done is regular maintenance. The car is 8 years old, and I do a lot of driving downtown and in traffic, so I figured brakes and front end would take a beating.

I'm satisfied with the car, it does what I want it to do, and starts every morning when I need it to. It's spacious, and relatively good on fuel (considering city driving). I haven't had to put up with the dealer, I have my own mechanic who treats me well.


General Comments:

I would recommend this car while making all the preliminary background checks. Call Nissan headquarters, give them the VIN and see if all the recalls are done. It's best to buy the car knowing the previous owner kept up with regular scheduled maintenance, and drove the car without hooning it.

The precat issue isn't a constant, but you can tell if the car needs it if the idle is rather rough. The harder the car was driven, the more severe the damage. If it was driven maturely, then there's a good chance you can replace it before the damage happens.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 31st January, 2011