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Kat
Kat, A.S.E. Certified Nissan Specialist
Category: Nissan
Satisfied Customers: 211
Experience:  21 years total experience - 8 1/2 years Nissan Experience
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Car runs rough on cold start, upon stepping on gas..black smoke

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Car runs rough on cold start, upon stepping on gas the motor hesitates. I have P0128 code and P0340 (camshaft position sensor). Motor runs very rich as a little bit of black smoke comes out of the back of car during acceleration.
THe P0128 is the thermostat function and the P0340 is for the camshaft postion sensor. The camshaft sensor is buit into the distributor and cannot be replaced. You have to replace the entire distributor assembly.
Customer: replied 7 years ago.

Thank you Kat, sorry for the delay. Distributor assemblies start at $165 and up. I guess I'm nervous about buying the assembly just to learn that it wasn't the problem. Do you know of any typical symptoms of a bad camshaft position sensor or distributor? Does my problem sound like the typical problem when that sensor goes bad? I understand that you are not at the car and cannot not tell me for sure what the problem is. I just would like a tad bit more input. Thank you so much again, Ian.

The camshaft position sensor can make the vehicle run rough at idle, have poor acceleration, feel like it is misfiring, make the vehicle run lean or rich and even cause the vehicle to stall. Once the vehicle stalls sometimes it will start back up immediately as if nothing is wrong and sometimes it will not start at all. It sounds as if you are having a typical failure of the camshaft sensor inside the distributor. Eventually it will fail completely and the vehicle will not start at all.
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