2003 Nissan Primera Dci 2.2 turbo diesel from Germany


Overall, I'm very happy with this car and I hope it continues to run as well as it does


A week ago I purchased a UK Spec 2003 Nissan Primera (right-hand drive, manual, hatchback) for around 500Euro. With the exception of my previously owned 240SX and Murano, and since we don't have this model in the U.S., I have no prior experience or knowledge about the Primera. In lieu of all the posted problems others have had with this model, I took a chance and bought this used Primera.

1. The seller disclosed a problem with the immobilizer, which I experienced when I was inspecting the car. The car started up fine when I first tried. We drove around and then parked. After I bought the car and was ready to leave, it wouldn't start. We removed the under-steer cowling to expose the ignition cylinder. We unplugged and re-inserted the white NATS plug. Then the car started fine. As a precaution, I replace the battery (CR2025) in the key remote. I'm very concerned about getting stuck or stranded roadside if this problem reoccurs. I'm seriously considering to disable the NATS system entirely. No security system is worth causing the driver and passengers to become stranded at the most inconvenient time if the system becomes glitchy! I'd rather have no security system at all.

2. The only other problem is the driver's door "electric door lock actuator," which makes a buzzing sound when I unlock the doors.

General Comments:

So far, the engine and trans appear to be working like a champ. I figure after 100,000 miles, if the car hasn't had substantial engine or trans repair yet, it may be one of the exceptions. The electric windows, moonroof, wipers, int/ext. lights, and electronics and controls in the dash all work fine as well. The radio and speakers work fine. Haven't tried the CD player yet. The front/rear windshields and side-glass are all in great condition. The rubber moldings have really held-up well for a 13 year old car.

The seats are very comfortable. I was surprised how well the car accelerates and handles in the turns. Great suspension.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 18th April, 2016

2003 Nissan Primera SVE 2.2 dCi turbo diesel from UK and Ireland


Painfully unreliable!


Cam timing chain & gear (expensive to repair).

ABS faults, which also prevent the speedo from working (on-going).

Seatbelt warning (both front seats).

Radiator failed.

Suspension components failed (inc 2 front struts).

Air con pipe failed at join to compressor.

General Comments:

Very comfortable and easy to drive, nice to drive on the motorway.

Pretty economical for a 2.2 litre engine.

Spacious interior (estate version).

Bought the car as I always thought Nissan's to be very reliable. Apparently built in conjunction with Renault - don't know if that's why they are so unreliable, but suspect it is!

Overall, this car has been a bitter disappointment. On paper, it should be the ideal family car, but you can only keep throwing money at a car for SO long...

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 3rd August, 2010

2003 Nissan Primera S 2.0 from UK and Ireland


The dream turned into a nightmare


Throttle idle valve playing up; the car was stalling when stopping at junctions, and the revs dropping below tickover when my foot wasn't on the accelerator.

Intermittent problem with starting; one time it would start OK, then it would just turn over and not fire, then it wouldn't turn over at all. Turned out to be a fault with the circuit board behind the computer screen.

Driver's side electric window mechanism collapsed; it appeared the brackets that hold the window in place are made of plastic, and are not man enough for the job.

The interior (mine's light grey) is impossible to keep clean; I'm a coach driver, but some times it looks like I'm a coal merchant!

General Comments:

It was a car I had always liked, and I was happy when I bought it, but my happiness soon turned to anger.

I paid a bit over the odds, because it was a low mileage example, but the problems I have had are what I would associate with a much higher mileage car; within 2 months it had been back to dealers twice.

I had a Mk II Primera for 4 years, and it never cost me a bean, so this influenced my decision to get this model, but I have been very disappointed with this car. I suppose it was to be expected when I found out that the electrics were done by Renault! If I had known this before, I would have stayed well clear!!!

The fuel consumption is terrible; the 6th gear is no different to 5th, so motorway journeys show no real difference in fuel economy by having the extra gear.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 13th June, 2010