Reader Question: I have a 1997 Nissan Altima GXE with about 145k on it. I noticed driving off from a light shifting from 1st gear to 2nd it shifts very hard and jerks but runs well and have no other issues.
Do you have any idea of what the problem could be?
Please help. I love the car and try to keep it maintained regularly.
Does this model have a switch near the gearshift or on the dash to change the shift performance of the transmission? Some of these vehicles had a switch to make the transmission shift harder or smoother as the driver desired. Look for it, or have your mechanic check it for you.
Someone could have switched it to the harder shifting selection. If you do not have that option, I would have your mechanic or a transmission shop mechanic take a test drive with you before you did anything.
You might do more harm than good by “servicing” the transmission fluid and filter with that many miles on it.
They might be able to manually adjust the shift pattern for you so the transmission shifts sooner and at lower engine RPM, thus making a smoother shift.