Nissan Loses Devoted Customer Over Demonic Driver's Seat

Consumerist reader Brian has been devoted Nissan owner his entire adult life, having owned upward of 10 different Nissan vehicles over the years. But now Brian is looking to move onto non-Nissan pastures after the driver’s side seat of his new Pathfinder became possessed by some sort of malicious demon.

Brian bought the Pathfinder — his third — in Nov 2008 and experienced numerous problems from day one: The clock didn’t keep time; the outside thermometer read random temperatures; the gas gauge was defective.

Says Brian in his letter to Nissan:

The most dangerous of the defects involved the electric driver’s seat. When driving the seat would suddenly and abruptly “adjust itself” sending me careening towards the steering column. The dealer replaced the control panel. Replacing the control panel resolved the abrupt movement problem but has replaced it with a more subtle problem of “creep”. When driving the car for extended periods, constant readjustment of the seat is required for comfort and safety. The problem is so subtle that it doesn’t show up during the quick test drive by the dealer’s techs so my claims are, in their eyes, unrepeatable.

Out of sheer frustration I finally called 800-NISSAN1. After “careful research” Nissan’s customer service has decided that since the dealer cannot duplicate the problem in a 15 minute test drive, there must not be a problem. My suggestion that they take it for a longer drive was answered with “that’s not the dealer’s responsibility”. A follow-up call several months later was responded to with a “we’re not able to duplicate the problem therefore we’re not going to fix it.”

I now have a vehicle that’s just over a year old with 50K that has a potentially deadly problem. The manufacturer, to whom I’ve been very loyal to over the past 25 years, is flatly refusing to resolve the problem. It appears that my only recourse will be to file a complaint with the NHTSA and to serve Nissan USA with legal notice that, due to their failure to act responsibly, they will now be liable if I am in any way ever injured in this vehicle’s driver’s seat.

Brian says he plans to keep this Pathfinder until he can find a trade-in offer that won’t have him losing too much money.

We’re curious to find out if any other Consumerist readers have had this problem with a Pathfinder or any other Nissan…

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