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Jay, Nissan Technician
Category: Nissan
Satisfied Customers: 20074
Experience:  20+yrs experience with Nissan & Infiniti Trained & Certified.Currently still working for Dealer
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2001 nissan pathfinder: The crankshaft sensor..2004 model..2001 model

Resolved Question:

I am trying to replace a 2001 nissan pathfinder vq35de with a 2004 vq35de. The crankshaft sensor was not the same in teh 2004 model and I have purchased it and placed it in. We have connected the second crankshaft sensor that was in teh 2001 model on a makeshift support. we have also placed the flywheel from the 2001 model on teh 2004 engine. However the car will not start and the computer is giving a crankshaft sensor code. Is it possible to use a the 2001 computer with the 2004 engine, and what else must I do to make it work.
Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: Nissan
Expert:  Jay replied 8 years ago.
Hello and thank you for using

I am trying to remember the differences so I can help you. The 01 VQ35, that has the big fat crank sensor, and it secured by the trans bell housing. The 04 vq35 is the small crank sensor that is also secures to the bell housing. But if I remember correctly, the block or the upper oil pan is notched for one of them.

I ran into a situation like this once, I am just trying to remember what was the resolution for it, so the more info the better.

Let me know, thanks Jay!
Customer: replied 8 years ago.

both models go into the same place into the bell housing i think. I am not much of a mechanic

Expert:  Jay replied 8 years ago.
Oh no. The 01 bolts to the block & the 04 goes to the bell housing. So the mounting is completely off. Your best bet is to swap the 01 lower oil pan for the 04 after inspecting it and see if that will cure your mounting problem. You have the have the flywheel to crank sensor distance perfect for it to work, and its impossible to check the distance properly when you try to set the sensor. I would look into the upper oil pans and see if that is where the sensor is mounted on the 01, then see if you can just swap pans.

If you have any more questions on this, please feel free to ask. Thanks Jay!
Customer: replied 8 years ago.

The sensor that that 2004 uses is fits perfecty into the notch that is made for it. No mounting problems there. How ever it was for the senor that that 2001 uses that there was no place for, since the 2004 only uses 1 crankshaf sensor. On the 2001 on model that sensor goes in the front under the wheel. We placed the 2001 wheel on.

I am still a little confused at what I should do.


Expert:  Jay replied 8 years ago.
The crank sensor by the balancer? I am pretty sure that the crank sensor for the 01 mounts on the oil pan, and the 04 mounts on the bell housing. Let me know, Thanks Jay!
Customer: replied 8 years ago.

Yes, the crank sensor by the balancer is the one if I am not mistaken the 2004 model does not have right? How many cranksenors are on the 2004.

Expert:  Jay replied 8 years ago.
I have just been reading on your situation and I have some bad news. The 04 engine is different and will not work in your truck. As much as you think it will, it won't. The 2001 and 2002 engines will, but the 2003 and 2004 will not. They are 2 different engines.

Sorry to give you the bad news. Thanks Jay!
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
would exchaning the 2001 computer with a 2004 computer work?
Expert:  Jay replied 8 years ago.
I am sorry, those motors are different. Different crank sensor locations and arrangements, and valve timing control systems. The 01 and 02 engine are the only two engines that will work in your 2001 pathfinder. The 2003 and 2004 motors work the same way. If you had a 2004 Path and you grabbed a 2001 engine, I would be telling you that only the 2003 and 2004 motors will work.

Sorry to be the one to tell you, but that is why you are having the problems you are having.

Thanks Jay!
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