1. Its pricey. Used ones range from $500-1000 on ebay, with new ones for $1800+ from your local nissan dealer.
2. No guarantees with used parts. Unless you drove the car you yank it from, you're kinda just hoping the one you buy is in good condition
3. The big one. Nissan pretty much fucked up with this trans, offering sub-par synchros in the earlier revisions, causing grinding and engagement issues in early model year 350z and G35 cars. They released multiple revised versions of this trans, the last of which is the "CD009" trans (previous ones been cd008, 007, 006, and so on). This last one is supposed to have resolved all the issues, but using different design synchros, and according to some accounts i've read, a different 1st and 5th gear (speculation, i have not confirmed this).
I've been keeping an eye on ebay for the last year, and from time to time cd009 boxes pop up, and sell for more than i want to pay. Some times boxes pop up and the seller either cannot or will not confirm or guarantee that it either is or is not a 009 box. Nissan made the brilliant move by having no discernable markings between any of the boxes, other than a thin sticker with the rev. edition on it. The sticker doesn't hold up to weather and wear and pretty much always falls off, leaving you and i with zero chance of telling what box it is. Complicating the issue further is the fact that there seems to be no consensus as to which models came from the factory WITH the 009 in the first place. I've read "late model 05 and all 06", "some 04, all 05 and all 06", and i've also read that many earlier models were replaced with 009 boxes under warranty. Either way, i did not feel very comfortable forking out a fat wad of $$$ on something that MIGHT be the right box.
Eventually i came upon an ebay auction from LKQ, who is a nationwide engine/trans/parts supplier. I've picked up used engines and trans from them in the past while when i was still fixing cars for a living, and i know theyre a stand up operation. I emailed them asking if it was a 009 box, and they responded that it was indeed. I jumped at it and had the transaction completed right away.
The trans arrived today so i immediately started tearing into it to inspect the gearsets and see if i could find any indication of which rev. box it is. I also (thank you google) found a copy of the factory FSM online, and it has indications between quite a few cd008 and cd009 specific parts, and diagrams showing the differences between em.
link to manual is here:
diagram following shows there is a plate on the back of the trans, and once you have the rear section of the housing off, you can see it. On the rev 008, the retaining plate is 2 piece; a left side and a right side. On the rev 009, its 1 piece.
My trans happens to have the CD009 plate, therefore i believe it to be a 009 box. Throughout the manual, there are also many other places where it indicates and shows differences between 008 and 009 parts, but many of them you would have to completely disassemble the gears off the shafts to tell the difference.
/\/\/\/\/\ in the photo its the dark grey plate behind the gears, held on by torx fasteners. On the 008, its 2 piece. On the 009 its 1 solid piece.
hopefully this info helps some people who are also on the hunt.
it only takes about an hour, using the info in the FSM to pull the rear tail section off, exposing this side of the gears. If you plan on milling the bellhousing to fit an adapter plate, you'll have to tear all this shit off anyways.