Hi all. I acquired a fixer upper 2002 Nissan Frontier this past week. It is a crew cab, 4wd and supercharged 3.3L that has 180k miles. Aside from the cosmetic issues that I purchased as a fixer upper, I have a question/concern about the AT.
First off, I have checked the fluid level and it is fine, and the color looks good with no nasty odor.
What I have noticed is a couple of things. The transmission takes about 3 or 4 seconds to engage into Drive. It is worse when the transmission is cold. Additionally, the shifting is very rough from 1st to 2nd, it feels much like a shift kit was installed. This too is much worse when cold, still occurs when warm but more muted. Also, when cold the shift from 2nd to 3rd will occasionally flare.
I plan to do a pan drop and filter change in the coming week. It is a Jatco 4speed, and requires Nissan J-matic fluid.
From what I have read is these are pretty stout AT's. Do ya'll think that a fluid change will resolve these issues? What transmission fluid and/or additives should I try? This truck will only see about 5-6k per year.
The harsh shift is normal for these transmissions. I have 2 of these right now a '98 and an '02 with 4 cylinder engines and they both kick when cold. I've used Valvoline Full Synthetic and had no problems.
Check and adjust your throttle cable if needed. Tighten until you see the butterfly move then go back until it's not open. Also check your throttle position sensor for the correct adjustment.