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Volvo XC90 T6 Transmission



  • It was actually my dream car too... I had no intention of selling it but when I had already gone through two transmissions at under 55K miles I knew it was going to happen again and I had to sell it and I got out of it when I still had an extended warranty and I traded it into South Coast Volvo Dealership for the xc60---which as I said, has been perfect.. Volvo should do a proper recall of all those cars as they are permanent lemons---a shame because most cars in their fleet are fantastic. If you can, try to give it back to the dealer you bought it from and pester them or something, as it will require a new transmission all the time and they're not cheap. Both times it happened to me it went from driveable to disabled in 50 miles or so.
  • I thought we had passed the mileage limit too at about 108,000, but took it to a dealer based on another mechanic's recommendation (a second opinion after a repair that just didn't take). Volvo covered almost all the cost of the repair... in the neighborhood of 8 grand. In the end, I paid about 4 grand, what I would have paid an outside mechanic, but I also got the radiator replaced and a bunch of stuff repaired from a botched attempt by a "Volvo" repair shop that was not affiliated with a dealer. This all after 3 months of repair/drive/break/repair cycles. Since it has been fixed by the dealer it has not had a problem. If you've not already junked the car, give it a try. They are likely to cover a large part of the repair. I believe they charged me for parts only, and comped the labor. That's no small comp.
  • I've been reading some of the posts, and this transmission thing blows. Since I don't have the T6, am I still looking at the possibility of transmission problems down the road? I have 68,500 miles, and I'm about to get the transmission serviced, merely because of the miles. And if I read some of the other posts right, if you have under 100,000 miles, Volvo will cover the replacement of the transmission and accompanying repairs at no cost?
  • You're partially correct; a common caveat seems to be the owner having to contact Volvo North America (through their dealership) to request to be considered for their Goodwill Assistance Program, if their XC90's have suffered a catastrophic transmission failure. In many cases, we're hearing that Volvo will pay for a significant protion of the repair bill, but only after verifying the transmission's serial number and diagnosis from a certified Volvo dealership. Interestingly, I just learned of an XC90 at my dealer currently with a V8 engine in it that suffered a total transmission failure at 70,000, in addition to the angle-drive failing (which supplies power to teh rear wheels), and engine components. Volvo is helping them out with this assistance program, too. It's indeed a love / hate with these cars; we love their safety, comfort, and performance, but hate the constant [and costly] repairs. All the best to you on yours.
  • Dear all, I wonder if you can help me? I found this page via the Wikipedia XC90 page. There is a link under the reliability / T6 gear box failure section.

    We have an XC90. I am in the UK. It cost us just over £50,000 and is now out of warranty. Like so many people have said here we bought it as a solid investment car - pay a lot to start with but get "Volvo" reliability - so I was surprised when the gearbox suddenly died at around 55,000 miles. The AA rescue service diagnosed the fault from about 50 yards away "Its a T6 XC90 - it will be the gearbox" and the main Volvo dealer have confirmed that its in need of a new one costing just over £4700 all inc. after discounts. Volvo have offered a good will gesture of 30%.

    In the UK this falls under something called "The Goods and Services Act". Goods have to be "fit for purpose". Like nearly everyone the fault has shown itself out of warranty between 50k and 60k. My thoughts are that Volvo knew that this would be the case, based on other failures before ours. They knew, while the car was under warranty, that it was not fit for purpose but chose not to recall the fault because it would damage their reputation (as has been an issue with Toyota in the UK). Quite rightly, if they had made it known that there was a faulty gear box that would suddenly fail putting my family in danger as it did - I would not have bought the vehicle, so I understand their reasoning.
    The many hundreds of reports I have found on the internet are not enough. I need to be able to present a case with "witness statements" and I would be grateful if those people who have experienced an XC90 T6 with transmission failure (only this specific fault) would send me a witness statement explaining who they are (Name and Address), what vehicle it was (i.e. XC90 T6), the year of manufacture and the mileage at which the fault came to light. The letter must be signed for it to carry any weight with the UK court - that's just how it is. If you are able to also send any supporting document (like a letter / invoice / bill from Volvo confirming the fault) then that would be helpful. In the UK there is a second action available in Negligence insomuch as it can be argued that Volvo were negligent in not recalling a product that they knew to be faulty. the fault is such that it can potentially cause danger (sudden and catastrophic loss of power while driving). In that circumstance it may be possible to backdate a claim over the previous six years and recover costs already incurred.

    I do not know if its possible to find out how many XC90s have the fault or what percentage is affected or whether any technical information regarding the fault (expert assessment reports, details of the part number) and so on may be available - help in that regard would very much be appreciated also.

    Finally, if there is anyone technically minded out there who knows how to get this message to a wider XC90 audience then I would be grateful. Its really upsetting that Volvo have chosen to manage the problem like this. My view is that the decision to not recall a design fault of this magnitude is fundamentally wrong and potentially unsafe.

    I have set up an email address and would very much appreciate your help as I have described above.

    Kindest regards,

    Anthony Gallagher
  • Had my oil change at the dealership and the same day this message appeared "Transmission Service Urgent". Not a lot I can do on a Saturday but I will be contacting Volvo North America and the dealership on Monday. I purchase it in 2003 and have approx 101,000 miles. The only major problem: my driver seat over heated and start to smoke. I miss the heated seat. If I do not get any assistant I will just have to park it and take public transportation. Sad!!!!!!
  • I just purchased one :cry: :cry: and reading all these posts I am regretful.
  • I wished I had come across this site before I plunked down my money and signed the contract. :cry:
  • goldentixgoldentix Posts: 13
    Do whatever you can to get out of the contract. Everyone who sells Volvo's knows about the problems that have been had for the model years in question and it's almost criminal that they're allowed to be sold or at least to be sold but the dealer/seller should disclose the problem. It's not a secret to anyone selling these cars---. Again, do whatever you can to get out of it or you'll be putting in a new transmission soon---and then another----and another. (I was on my third transmission at 75ish thousand miles).
  • jettblackjettblack Posts: 5
    I had our transmission rebuilt @ 64k miles and now @ 105,000 miles no problems. I think credit to the mechanic. I have heard that it is better to have the trans rebuilt than to have it replaced. Sometimes they use stronger parts I think. The key would be to find the right transmission repair mechanic. Yours is fine to date though. We also have slight clicking in the front end but it has not progressed. Had to have the radiator replaced but other than that I like it. They drive good and handle the road well. I paid 14k in 2009 for it and almost as soon as I purchased it that transmission went out. It is a 2004 Volvo XC 90. Just curious what did you pay for yours, what year and when did you purchase it?
  • kcv70kcv70 Posts: 1
    There was a class action lawsuit in which Volvo agreed to in 2012. I'm not sure what happens to those wth issues after the 2012 filing deadline. It might be worth contacting the attorneys...
  • My local dealership replaced my original transmission at no charge to me at 103,000 miles, now at 170,000 that transmission needs to be replaced. Do you think they replaced it with the same bad transmission? I am trying to get them to warranty this transmission also. I purchased a Volvo because my mechanic told me that these cars should last till 300,000 miles. Now I am looking at replacing this car at half of it's lifetime. I am very disappointed.
  • I had a 2003 XC90 T6 and it went through 3 transmission between 103k and 115K miles. The second one was purchased by me since Volvo refused to cover anything (the car had 100K miles warranty). The warranty for this transmission was 12 months, unlimited miles. The third one was warrantied by Volvo since I told them that I will join a class action lawsuit - still the same 12 months, unlimited miles. When I asked why the warranty is limited to 12 months I was told that this is the industry standard (I do not know if this is true or not). I guess you will have a hard time getting more warranty from them.
    As far as the type of transmission goes I was told by Volvo that the replacement transmissions are "rebuild" ones, meaning same old transmission, with a few new parts.
    I got rid of my Volvo XC 90 after realizing that in order to keep it running I would need to put $5 or so at 125K miles. It needed new rear end shocks (self leveling, very expensive, $450 per shock), $1200 for oil leak fix, all wheel drive gone and a bunch of other smaller issues.
  • I was going on my third transmission when I finally sold my Volvo----they probably put in a fresh new one at 103,000 miles---but it doesn't matter----the way the car was configured it destroys transmissions in that model year. Volvo should have recalled all of them or offered up free transmissions for life as it was their error---but they didn't.
  • kdvt26kdvt26 Posts: 3
    I had 2006 V8 XC90 and had to have the transmission replaced at 60,000. I called Volvo USA and they gave me $1500 towards the price of the new transmission (total was $7000) and had the dealer replace it. About 9 months later I was told the steering was failing and it was another $800 to fix. That was the last straw, we cut our huge losses with that car (that I loved until it had all these problems) and got a 2014 GMC Acadia - which is a dream and no issues at all, finally! These Volvos are no good, once something starts to fail plan for more to come. I called Volvo USA several times complaining that they need a recall on the 2006 V8 models but they won't take any action. (The other recalls I believe were for earlier years and not the V8 model). You are better off cutting your losses if you can and get something else. These SUVs are money pits and garbage.
  • Well, I never thought that I would have been SO disappointed at owning a Volvo! But right now I have only to say research, research, research! After having owned two older models of Volvos in the past (both of which were close to 200,000 miles before we retired them) we decided to become Volvo owners again. Found a beautiful well maintained 2006 XC90 V8 two years ago and decided it would be our step back into being proud Volvo owners again. (If I like this one, I would go by a new one) Out of the blue at approximately 70000 miles I started experiencing a "shudder" between 2-3 gears. I took my car to my mechanic for a scheduled maintenance and after several visits it was finally diagnosed as a transmission issue. Part of the problem being a cross contamination issue. With this information in hand, I went the dealer to obtain a second opinion and, yes, they agree I need a new transmission. AND yes the cost would be approximately $7500.00....same price I received from my mechanic. One nice thing, the dealer agreed to contact Volvo of NA to request assistance with the cost....knowing it was a design issue and not a maintenance issue. NO! Volvo would not even consider an assistance.....this was after 2 weeks of waiting. Talked with their customer affairs office and was told that since I couldn't provide adequate service records that there was nothing Volvo could do. Now I am perplexed and extremely disappointed. Will I buy another Volvo.....hell no! If someone isn't willing to admit that they have an issue and aren't willing to provide assistance with that issue then forget it! Volvo knows that the transmission issue goes beyond the T6 models and have failed the consumer.
  • abdknsnabdknsn Posts: 1
    edited November 2013
    The 99-05 Volvo S80 and 2003-2005 XC90 models use the GM 4T65E transmission. They are prone to failure. The early versions (pre-2003) used a 4th clutch hub that didn't have hardened splines on the input side. They are quite common to strip out. The result is no 4th gear and whining from the debris going through the pump. The 2nd clutch drum is also prone to failure on all units. The forward band is also prone to wear and breakage causing a slipping when going forward (when worn) to no forward movement at all (when broken). I've found that certain reputable rebuilders like Certified Transmission are the way to go for replacement. The O.E. replacement from Volvo (read GM) are built to early specs and don't last any longer than the first unit. The rebuilds from companies like Certified actually modify the build specs to tighter tolerances resulting in a longer lasting unit. Unfortunately, Volvo believed that the 4T65E was necessary because the tried and true Asian Warner 50-42 that was used for years wouldn't be able to withstand the power and curb weight of the full size Volvos. They phased out the 4T65E beginning in 2006...
  • Hi, How do you know all this? Is there anywhere you can point me to where this information is documented?

    I am not doubting you for a moment - clearly you know what you are talking about but I am in the UK and when our vehicle died we referred the matter to VOSA - the government department that investigates vehicle issues. They have the power to instruct Volvo to recall a defect and rectify it. The official response from Volvo was that they had no knowledge of any issues with the XC90 transmission at all, ours was an isolated incident and they would not inspect the vehicle and so could not comment on specific cases. VOSA accepted their response and the matter was closed.
  • If you go deep in this site to the myriad of letters, you will see the same problem confirmed over and over and over again---and in some cases Volvo offered help to the dealers and in others they denied it. Yes, the vehicle absolutely should have been recalled---those early years of the XC90 the cars transmissions were "lemons." Disaster. And why the car wasn't recalled officially is a miracle to me---along with why Volvo did not get more bad publicity from what they did. This problem seemed to be an exception to their normal high quality--(I have an XC 60 now that is great).
  • I just bought a 2006 Volvo xc90 for $14999. Has 62,167 miles on it. I have driven it 650 miles and just found out it needs a new transmission. $7,500!!!! I haven't even made my first car payment! My 30 day or 1,000 mile warranty ran out 7 days before I was able to take it to a certified mechanic. I am trying to work things out with dealer. Volvo of America says they can't help. I am trying to figure out if I should try and rebuild it or replace it. I don't want to spend another $7,500 when my car gets to 125,000 miles. Is this car worth holding onto?
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