My 2005 Nissan Maxima (Build date of 08/04) has 69000 miles and has started showing signs of what may be serious transmission problems.
1. Takes about 5 seconds to click into gear after the shift lever is put in "D".
2. Very hard jerky shifts between 1st to 2nd and 2nd to 1st, and is accompanied by a loud clunking noise.
3. Transmission slips out of gear during regular driving, allowing the engine to rev freely then jerking back into gear with a loud clunk. This followed by a burnt oil / electrical type smell that gets inside the car, and is evident outside after stopping.
Sometimes I go for days with no symptoms at all, and other times it may happen a dozen times in a day. I took it in to the dealer and none of the problems showed up for them, but they noted that the engine mounts were broken, but that would not cause these symptoms. They suggested a new transmission and motor mounts for $4,000. I drive mainly on the freeways in Southern California and have maintained and babied this car since it was new.
This is my first Nissan, and I have loved this car until these symptoms. I have been eying the new 2009 Maximas, but now I am not sure of this car's long term reliability.