California Lemon Law News + Info

Nissan Versa Cars With Manual Transmissions Lose Power While Driving

Stalling events in Nissan Versa cars with manual transmissions have prompted the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to prompt a federal investigation.

The Office of Defects Investigation has received 20 complaints and multiple field reports of 2022–2024 Nissan Versa vehicles with manual transmissions stalling without warning while on freeways or in city traffic. According to the ODI Resume, the Nissan Versa cars stall or go into limp mode, resulting in limited torque available to move or accelerate the cars. Some complaints allege that the vehicle stalling results from releasing the clutch too fast, among other reasons.

“I’ve owned this car less than a month and this has happened to me twice. I start to drive the car and experience a severe loss of power. The accelerator is pushed to the floor and the car barely moves. This happened when I was attempting to pass another vehicle. Could have had disastrous consequences. No indication on the dashboard that anything is wrong. If this happened while trying to merge onto a highway the results could be catastrophic.”

2022 Nissan Versa, October 14, 2023

The limp mode or stalling occurs without warning. Many of the complaints allege that they cannot maintain a speed above 30 miles per hour or accelerate to avoid potential road hazards.

“For some reason my car won’t accelerate. Went to Nissan twice and they can’t do anything about it. I was in second gear almost stalling out on a slight hill and no acceleration on third gear that one time I was merging onto the highway.”

2024 Nissan Versa, January 24, 2024

“2023 Nissan Versa S has manual transmission. Car will intermittently lose acceleration. When this problem starts, the car is unable to go over 30mph in any gear and even with the accelerator pedal pushed to the floor. This has occurred 5 times so far. Sudden loss of speed creates a life threatening situation when driving on a highway and speeds of 65 mph are expected. The car will suddenly drop to 30 mph or lower without any warning and will not accelerate. Problem is not fixed by restarting the engine. Car was taken to Premier Nissan of Fremont, California on 10/20/23. They reported: 2560 did not verify customer concern. Road tested with additional technician, drove vehicle in every gear from 1-5 5mph to 65 mph. Also down shifted from there and no hesitation or loss of power was felt. Vehicle moves fine in all gears. All ok at this time. Car was returned to me on 10/24/23. GPS locator on, the car indicates that the car was always parked at dealership for the 4 days and not driven. I connected an OBD code reader to the car’s port and it reported a Camshaft Position Error, but Premier Nissan of Fremont, California refused to take that input, saying they did not want to influence their technician. After the ‘no-problem’ diagnosis they stated that they do not see any history of issues on their NISSAN supplied OBD reader. Hence the car has no problem. I am fearful of driving it on the freeway and losing acceleration which will result in me getting rear ended and killed!!!”

2023 Nissan Versa, December 27, 2023

“I had stalled my car and after I restarted it my car had a significant loss of power. I shifted and the car would not accelerate at all. Top speed was 25-30 mph. I had my gas pedal depressed and no change in speed/ I limped to a dealership, turned the car off and restarted and the car was back to normal. This vehicle was 2 days from purchase and less than 500 miles on it. I reported to the dealer and was never called back for instructions on how to proceed.”

2023 Nissan Versa, July 13, 2023

“If the manual transmission is stalled, after restarting the engine, it has a lack of power. The vehicle feels like it is in limp mode and won’t go past 25 or 30 mph. I was nearly rear ended by a couple of different vehicles, or nearly hit when pulling out into an intersection with reduced power to the engine. This has happened 3 times. Nissan dealer could not duplicate.”

2024 Nissan Versa, March 1, 2024

“Turning on my vehicle I had extreme loss of power. I will be taking it to the dealer tomorrow. It would not accelerate past 55 miles per hour when the gas pedal was pushed all the way to the floor. When I pulled over and turned the car off the vehicle ran fine with Normal power. This is a brand new vehicle with 1000 miles on it. I got it with 3 miles on it.”

2024 Nissan Versa, February 28, 2024

The investigation has not yet yielded a root cause, but one complaint submitted to NHTSA alleges a potential cause: a manufacturing defect.

“This manual car puts itself into limp mode any time the engine is killed (If you drop the clutch too quickly because it is a manual transmission) while driving it. Once it is in limp mode (restricted speed and power to protect the engine) it must be pulled over and turned off for at least 15 seconds before restarting the vehicle to reset the computer and get it out of limp mode. This is a huge safety hazard in traffic, on a hill, on a freeway on-ramp or many other places. This car has put itself in limp mode when it died from dropping the clutch, when it almost died while working the clutch, and when turned off and back on quickly to reset a Bluetooth connection that wasn’t working. A Nissan corporate regional representative, Nissan specialist and Nissan Engineer evaluated the car and said that it is a manufacturing defect – a programming issue that makes the electronic control module think that the car is not functioning properly when it dies (it happens sometimes when driving a manual transmission!) and so it puts itself into limp mode to protect the engine from a problem that doesn’t exist. Nissan said the vehicle code would need to be reprogrammed to repair the issue. Nissan also said they have no time frame for reprogramming the code to repair the defect and to just wait – with no timeline forthcoming. This is an issue on all 2022 manual Nissan Versa vehicles, not just this particular car as it is a programming issue. I contacted another dealership to test one of their new 2022 manual Versa vehicles. They drove it and found the exact issue. I do not know if the issue was fixed on 2023 models or if it is an ongoing issue. Nissan has acknowledged the issue. Driving this car is unsafe and Nissan has said to just drive it and wait.

2022 Nissan Versa, March 21, 2023

Other consumers have also alleged via complaints that this is a known issue among Nissan Versa cars.

“Multiple incidents where car has failed to accelerate properly. When it happened this morning, I was in the vicinity of the dealership. Foreman mechanic road-tested the vehicle with me, and back at Nissan my car put out the engine code P2615-00 camshaft posi signal B1… I was told this is a known concern on manual transmission Versa vehicles that is ‘being looked into by engineering.’ On a previous visit to the dealership about this problem, I was told that the acceleration problem could have been caused by bugs covering the front crash sensor! Anyway, on a couple occasions, when merging into traffic, this problem was dangerous… I’ve resorted to my emergency blinkers a couple times….Then, upon being able to pull over, I shut off the car, and when I re-start the vehicle it runs like a champ again.”

2023 Nissan Versa, January 31, 2024

The investigation is currently in the preliminary evaluation phase. The Office of Defects Investigation is assessing the scope, frequency, cause and potential consequences of the Nissan Versa stalling events. These investigations can determine if certain vehicle populations ultimately need to be recalled.

Lemon Law Help by Knight Law Group is an automotive lemon law firm that exclusively practices in California. If you are a California resident who purchased or leased a defective vehicle from a licensed dealership in California, we may be able to help you get rid of your potential lemon and recover significant cash compensation. Model year restrictions apply: 2017–Present vehicle models only.

However, we cannot help those who reside outside of California or purchased their vehicle outside of California unless they are active duty members of the Armed Forces, nor will we be able to refer those to a lemon law firm in their states.

To learn more about the California Lemon Law and your legal rights, visit our guides on the California Lemon Law and Used Car Lemon Law for more information.

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