North Fulton County

This automaker promised to fix melting dashboards for drivers -- but not in Georgia

NORTH FULTON COUNTY, Ga. — An automaker promised to fix melting dashboards for some drivers -- but not in Georgia.

It's a defect in certain model Nissans and it comes with a big safety risk.

“Oh, it’s melting,” Nick Petrus said.

All it takes is a quick look or a touch to know something is not right with the dashboard of Petrus's 2008 Nissan Altima.

“It feels like goo,” Petrus said. “It’s gross. It’s disgusting. It’s like slime.”

But the "goo” is not the main problem. It's what happens when Petrus drives.

“The real issue is the glare that that causes in the windshield,” he said.

In a picture from a class action lawsuit, it appears the driver could barely make out the pedestrians.

Nissan settled the lawsuit two years ago and now provides fixes for the problem but only for Florida owners.

The problem primarily occurs in areas of high heat.


The dealership told Petrus it would charge him more than $2,000 to fix the dashboard.

Channel 2 investigative reporter Justin Gray went through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration database and found well over 100 complaints about melting dashboards in 2008 and 2009 Altimas.

The Center for Auto Safety has been pushing for a nationwide recall.

“You’ve got a glare that is next to impossible to see through that puts other drivers in danger. It certainly puts pedestrians in danger,” said Jason Levine with Center for Auto Safety.

Gray spent the past couple of days trying to get answers from Nissan.

A spokesman said the company will be contacting Petrus directly to “understand the matter and help come to an appropriate conclusion.”

But the spokesperson didn't answer Gray’s questions about the larger issue: why the company will only pay to fix these cars if you live in Florida.