Pontiac Grand Prix Transmission Problems

rayainswrayainsw Member Posts: 3,190
edited July 2017 in Pontiac
No joy.

Picked up my GXP this evening.
They replaced the throttle body.
They could not re-program the PCM.
( ? )
There is still an issue – an internal transmission problem.
They have ordered the part – a ‘valve body’.
Not available in the Southeast.
Request has been forwarded to Lansing.
(I am in the Metro tlanta area.)
So – I was offered the ‘loaner’ (a Chevy HHR – 4 cyl.) or I could take back my car – as it was – to drive until the part arrives.
Approx. 5 days = current estimate.
So . .
- Ray
Wondering (among several other things) how such a part could possibly not be available closer than Lansing . . .
2022 X3 M40i


  • chats1chats1 Member Posts: 158
    So sorry about your transmission problem. Your car is a 2005, right? Couldn't they overnight the part? You should have insisted. Twice my dealer had a part overnighted -- once on this car and another time on a GTP. I went back the next morning and it was there. On the GXP the latch had to be replaced on the hood. Door ajar kept on coming on even though the hood was shut. I have a strong feeling that the GXP is going to be a "flop." I may sell my 2006 even though I've had no problems. But, still there are issues re this car. Good luck! I have to say one thing -- maybe my brother was right. He warned me about this going -- switching from 8 to 4 cylinders. He said this was done before and had problems. I don't remember what car though.
  • evandroevandro Member Posts: 1,108
    Cadillac tried DOD in the late 70's, I believe. But then they used an 8-bit microprocessor with 2KB of memory. Now GM is trying the same with a 32-bit microprocessor with 1MB of memory. It was a good idea, but before its time.

    Then again, as any unproven technology, it's likely to have a few hiccups for some years until it's debugged.
  • bob97bob97 Member Posts: 16
    In addition to the much less powerful and less reliable microcomputer, the Caddy was also a more complicated 4-6-8 switcher and allegedly it was the middle 6 that caused the headaches. I always wished I had an 8 in my 97 Grand Prix, so I bought the GXP with my fingers crossed.

    Ray, I’m sure all the regular readers on this forum have their fingers crossed for you right now.
  • rayainswrayainsw Member Posts: 3,190
    “So sorry about your transmission problem. Your car is a 2005, right? Couldn't they overnight the part? You should have insisted.”

    Well, I suppose I could have said something more aggressive than I did.
    I was somewhat annoyed at the time, so I decided not to say anything until I was somewhat more calm.
    If the car had been either completely un-drivable –
    or at least somewhat more annoying to drive under my commute conditions –
    or if I had planned a long, outside the Metro area (cruise control safe) drive for this weekend -
    well, then I might have insisted more strongly.

    The other factor for me here is that I have not driven a GM vehicle (except rentals) since I traded my ’97 GTP in late 2000. I am using this experience to ‘test’ the Dealer Service and the GM parts system. I do like this vehicle quite a lot – and when I approach 25K – 30K miles (typically 2 years + / -) I will need to decide if I want to extend the GM warrantee and keep it beyond 36K Miles. In addition to my perception of the reliability, the service I can obtain will be major factors in my decision whether to keep or trade at that time.

    2 of my last 3 cars were Lincolns. The Dealer service and parts response (the few times required outside scheduled maintenance) were excellent.

    If I do not hear anything by tomorrow AM, I plan to call the Dealer again.

    Oh, and I see no indication that DoD is involved in this ‘event’. FWIW.

    We’ll see.
    - Ray
    GXP Beta Tester, apparently . . .
    2022 X3 M40i
  • rayainswrayainsw Member Posts: 3,190
    After 2 failed attempts at repair (see above for symptoms) a new transaxle was ordered & installed.

    Yesterday, I picked up my GXP, with the new transaxle installed.
    I have now driven it approx. 45 miles.

    No more surge, buck, chuggle.

    TCC lockup working as expected – and as it did previously . .

    With luck, this will be the end of the saga.

    - Ray
    Hoping every nut & bolt & connector is re-attached to spec.
    2022 X3 M40i
  • evandroevandro Member Posts: 1,108
    Sorry to hear that the tranny was indeed bad. I hope that this one lasts longer than the car.

    Good luck.
  • ocmike3ocmike3 Member Posts: 232
    Good luck with the new trans axle. How many miles did you have before it started to act funny?
    I have only put ~2400 on mine in 6 months (Its my weekend driver). Only complaint I have is a buzzy trim piece around the sunroof (which is why I prefer not to have them in addition to never using it)
    I must say that as a commuter car this car sucks!!!! but not in a bad way - its all the other drivers on the road! This car loves to kick and haul, but it was like being a rabbit stuck in a huge crowd of absent minded turtles...
    I drove it to work a few days and practically went crazy in the evening jaunt home. I think some of that hp transfers into the drivers seat and 70 -80 mph seems like a crawl. :P
  • rayainswrayainsw Member Posts: 3,190
    "Good luck with the new trans axle. How many miles did you have before it started to act funny?"

    Approx. 7,200 miles. - on the way back from a 600+ mile drive over Thanksgiving weekend.

    It went immediately and instantly from just fine to "oh, my goodness, there is a problem here". No gradual deterioration in trans. performance.

    - Ray
    Hoping I'll turn out to be the only 1 . . .
    2022 X3 M40i
  • allstarallstar Member Posts: 1
    My automatic 2000 Pontiac Grand Prix has been making a whining noise and is difficult to go into gear occasionally. I took it to a shop and diagnotics shows 1. Torque Converter 2. TFF Intermitent Stuck on on and 3. Maximum Adapt Long Shift. The mechanic clered the codes and took it for a ride. Checked diagnostics again after the ride and no codes. I drove it last night and it started that whining racing noise again and then eventually shifted into gear. Is anybody familiar with this? Do I have a transmission problem, only does it once in a while.
  • eckwheeteckwheet Member Posts: 2
    same problem. 2000 grand prix gt auto trans. Only notice this problem when car warms up and/or extended driving. Getting the "whinning noise" and also hard downshifts in all gears. only 55k on it! Turn the car off, wait a minute, turn back on. Problem goes away. msg 119-120 sounded similar in problem. Have you had this problem fixed?
  • jts9657jts9657 Member Posts: 1
  • italia68italia68 Member Posts: 2
    Hello thank you for your reply.... my car is totalled! Theres nothing left of the engine at all. I wish I would have known about this problem before so I could have it checked. I have contacted Pontiac so they do know I don't think it will do anything, maybe help someone else, they are supposed to get back to me in a day or 2.
  • cdamechcdamech Member Posts: 31
    I had s similar problem and thought it was the Transmission on my 1999 Grand Prix. It turned out to be the Power Steering Fluid being very low. Does your noise get worse when you turn the Steering wheel when in parked mode, Check Power steering fluid and TOP it up and see if you get the same noise. Power Steering Fluid level inidicator is hidden at the back part of the engine
    compartment and not checked regularly by service mechanics.
  • eckwheeteckwheet Member Posts: 2
    Trans slams in all gears when vehicle is driven for extended periods of time. Trany started acting up at about 45,000 miles (55k presently). No problems present them selves when the car is below operating temperature. Car runs perfect. If I only drove 10 miles a day, would never notice. Only seems to act up in "stop and go" driving. When the car develops the problem, it is accompanied by a power steering type whine.. I have changed the fluid/filter twice which did nothing. Could anyone shed some light on what this problem could mean? I'm beginning to think this trans is a lemon. Anything would be appreciated.
  • teasley12teasley12 Member Posts: 2
    Hello whoever can help! First of all my catalytic converter went out...luckily this was under warranty and I got it replaced free. About a week later, my transmission went out. Had it replaced leaving my car in the shop for 3 months. The mechanic said the pan underneath was full of metal from the transmission. Well, now my car has started making this noise when I'm driving...it sounds to me like an airplane fying through the air. All I need are some wings and I feel like it would take off. My boyfriend thought is was the tires so he rotated them...still making the noise, but seems to be getting louder. I'm also having some trouble with my power steering and the trac off light stays on most of the time and the car makes a roaring noise quite often and I can feel it when I depress the brake pedal. The mechanic that replaced the tranny said it would be ok to leave it as is because it's not actually affecting my brakes. (I couldn't afford to fix it at the time...tranny was almost $2,000)I only have a little over 80,000 miles on my car. Does anyone have a clue?
  • teasley12teasley12 Member Posts: 2
    It's me again! Just thought ya'll might need a little more info about my car. It's a GT with a 3800 series engine. I would also like to add that the car sounds pretty good when it's just idling. It doesn't start making the airplane noise until I begin driving. The faster I get, the louder it gets! The service engine soon light comes on but doesn't stay on. I just need some help. I already know that a wheel sensor needs to be replaced which I've been told that the whole hub has to be replaced at the same time...over $300. I've already spent all of my savings on the tranny! Someone please tell me that my other problems aren't serious!!
  • bman64bman64 Member Posts: 14
    power steering is going bad thats the whining noise
  • pblithpblith Member Posts: 1
    how did you get the catalytic converter replaced for free? My car is in the shop w/ this problem now! Thanks!!
  • jpfjpf Member Posts: 496
    The catalytic converter is covered under the emissions warranty for up to 8 years or 80,000 miles (130,000 km). I have a 2000 S10 that had just under 80,000 miles when it went. I moved from Canada to the U.S. and GM still covered the converter replacement free of charge.
  • bigdawgkg24bigdawgkg24 Member Posts: 2
    Hello all.I have a 2000 Grand Prix GT with 200,378 miles.About a month ago the transmission just stopped going into overdrive.Transmission fluid has been changed every 20,000 miles.Last change was 5 mos. ago.Transmission changes perfect except will not go into overdrive.When driving at about 50 miles per hour it will make an attemt to go in overdrive then rpms jump up 200 from about 2300 to 2500.also at times it fails to down shift when turning in when i dont come to a complete stop.i have been told it could be the pressure control solinoid or the tcc solinoid.if anyone can help or have ideas whats going on any help will be greatly appreciated.Thank You. :sick:
  • samb2samb2 Member Posts: 1

    I am in a very simillar situation. I just noticed that my GT with 210k is not going into overdrive. I did a tranny coolant flush 2 month ago. so it could have been since then, or just last week. Any ideas? I will shift all other gears right but overdrive.
  • pupppawpupppaw Member Posts: 1
    Hi all.... I need help.... I have a 2000 Grand Prix GT and it has about 84,000 miles on it. About a year and a half after I got this car the over drive gear went out which was under warranty . But..... in feb.06 the transmission went out. I have had to this date 2 re-built transmissions, many solenoids replaced in it, internal wiring harness and even a new computer put in it....(the 1st time the transmission was fixed they found metal shavings in the pan) Now the problem that I am having is this.... When I put the car into drive it is taking off in 3rd gear ( which feels like I'm towing a house behind it) sometimes the service engine light comes on and sometimes it kicks real hard into the correct gear, then runs great after that. There have been times where I have turned the car off and waited anywhere from 5 mins. to a few hours and started the car up and put it into drive and everything was smooth. Anyone ever heard of this or have any ideas what might be wrong?
  • suzyq0000suzyq0000 Member Posts: 3
    According to my husband it could be a bad 1-2 shift solenoid and/or a pressure control solenoid.
  • abbierabbier Member Posts: 1
    I am having the same problem now. My 2001 Grand Prix has 75k and when it shifts, it makes a wining sound and then shifts really hard, but this is only if I drive it more in one day than usual. If you find out what it is let me know. I am thinking the trany is going, which I heard is not uncommon on these.
  • slaplanteslaplante Member Posts: 8
    Hi all, I have a 1998 GTP that I have had for 6 years. It has about 160,000 miles on it. My car has had most of the problems people have discussed here. My lastest problem is that sometimes when I go to start my car, it won't start unless I press on the gas. Once it starts, I can't let off on the gas or it will quit. This has happened three times now. In order for me to get it home, I had to keep my foot on the gas at all times (or it would quit) and throw it into neutral and use my left foot on the brake to slow down. After getting the car home and letting it set for about 20 minutes, it started and ran fine. Another problem that has me stumped is when I take off very fast (with the help of the supercharger) from a stop, I get this clunking noise that I can also feel from under the car. Once the car gets up a little speed, the clunking goes away. Someone has suggested it might be the transmission mounts. Has anyone else experience this? I have had everything in the front replaced including the ball joints, a-arms, tie rods, bearings, bushings, ect. Any and all help is much appreciated as I love my car and don't want to get rid of it. Thanks
  • scottyward1scottyward1 Member Posts: 3
    Check the fuel filter and pump. It may be that the filter is clogged and needs replaced. After enough fuel is thru it may free up enough to run regularly but when the car cools back down the clog may reseat in the filter. I have had this problem on other cars and it helped.
  • slaplanteslaplante Member Posts: 8
    Thanks for the info but we changed the filter about 5 months ago. The car had been sitting for several hours before it refused to start. I drove it for over an hour with it quitting whenever I let off on the gas. After getting it home, it only set for a few minutes before it decided to start like normal and run like normal. It was almost like shutting it off for a few minutes gave it time to reset a sensor or something. That is why I am leaning towards some kind of sensor. This has happened three times so far at a rate of about once every 2 or 3 months. After the first occurance is when we changed the fuel filter.
  • chele5chele5 Member Posts: 8
    I had the same problem with my 2001 grand prix. The dealer said it was the fuel regulator. I thought the car was going to fall apart with the clunking noise that was coming from under the hood. It wasn't cheap - around 400.00 - but it fixed the problem.
  • chele5chele5 Member Posts: 8
    The dealer told me that it was a trany job - but said nothing about a rebuild - just a replacement part (around 500.00)
    When I spoke with several trany shop's they all said the same thing. REBUILD. Because if you replace that part within 6 months you will have to rebuild anyway (cost you double in labor costs). It's a nasty truth about these cars. They said most tranys go around 70-80,000 miles and that I was lucky when mine went at 125,000.
    Good luck.
  • slaplanteslaplante Member Posts: 8
    Could you describe exactly what your car was doing please? The garage I took my car to could not tell me what was wrong with it. They were going to just start replacing parts until the problem was fixed.
  • bigdawgkg24bigdawgkg24 Member Posts: 2
    I cant figure out why my 2000 grand prix gt is overheating.it has 201,000 miles on it and still runs great.i have flushed radiator and replaced thermostat and both cooling fans are working and i removed air from cooling system after flush.its fine as long as car is moving but if i run ac and stop at a red light it overheats quickly.if ac is not on its fine.im just confused here.anyone else had this problem.oh and i posted before about car not going into overdrive well i found out that 4th gear clutch is burt out.....455.00 repair.it was a common problem with grand prix.that is what causes some of the transmissions to make a whinning sound.hope this helps someone out.
  • momwagmomwag Member Posts: 14
    I had a similar problem and it was that the fans would not come on when the a/c was on. There is a temperature sensor on the front driver side of the exhaust manifold. The wires going to the sensor had burnt in two from contact with the manifold. I replaced the burnt wiring and the engine ran cool.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Member Posts: 64,481
    If your radiator is really clogged up, flushing won't fix that.

    Usually, (but not always) low speed overheating is indicative of an AIR ciculation problem, not a coolant circulation problem---so the suggestions to check the fan operation with the AC on might be a good one.

    If the fans are working full blast, there's either a severe coolant flow blockage or (gulp) head gasket or cylinder head issues.
  • bxdbxd Member Posts: 186
    The previous suggestions are good. Also note that these engines can be hard to bleed all the air out of. I believe there are two bleeder screws, but don't hold me to that. I have seen where a small pocket of air in the system causes reduced flow, and during idling your cooling system is working its hardest.

    Assuming you're sure the air is all out.... I have seen Prestone Radiator Flush HELP a bit. I don't generally believe in additives, but I used it on my car and noticed the difference. I added two small jugs and ran it slightly longer than they recommend. Otherwise follow the directions on the package. At your own risk... I had a good experience but I can't guarantee you will.
  • bettie_bluebettie_blue Member Posts: 2
    I have a 1994 Pontiac Grand Prix GTP...recently I have been having to put alot of money into her...rebuild transmission was the most major problem. However right now, the car when I give it gas it fumbles and will NOT go. It feels like the car wants to die. My shop I took it too thought it was leaks, and spark plugs...I replaced just about everything and the car is still doing the same thing...if you know anything, let me know!THanks!
  • falsterfalster Member Posts: 9
    I would think maybe--- engine missfire, bad fuel injectors, something wrong w- the exhaust....many many things it could be. Need more info-what exactly happens, what exactly the shop did, condition of car, ect.
  • n5445n5445 Member Posts: 28
    I would check the Egr valve and the Tps( sensor)
  • bettie_bluebettie_blue Member Posts: 2
    Alright, recently I had the EGR tube replaced, a tune up and replaced vaccum lines. What happens exactly is that when I give the car gas, it surges power and will barely move. I think when it gets to about 1.5 rpm it does this. (So that really is barely moving because idle is like 1 rpm) It just starting doing this all of a sudden. The condition of the car is good. I was in a minor fender bender a couple days before the car started doing this though.
  • steve115steve115 Member Posts: 9
    Help! My 2000 GrandPrix-GT with 75K miles is surging (tack swings back and forth between 2500-3000 RPMs) when accelerating through the 45-55 mpg range. Is this the trans going bad or some kind of engine speed sensor problem? Is this common at this age and miles? Is it having a problem deciding if it should go into overdrive or not? I love this car and everthing is perfect other than this - it just started last month!
  • guestguest Member Posts: 770
    I have a 2000 Grand am that did the same thing as you have discribed. Have your catalitic converter tested. I had mine replaced and my car runs so much better now. No more surging.
  • justin_n_mojustin_n_mo Member Posts: 4
    Just to let everyone know, I bought a 97 SE 3800 with a transmission going out. I put some Lucas transmission lube in it and got about 6mos of use out of it. I finally replaced the transmission in March. Fortunetaly, I am skilled enough I did this myself and it only cost me the $250 for the Tranny and about 12 hours pulling and 12 hours installing of my time on my back (which sucks when you don't have a lift). Right now my A/C, Heater blower motor quit working actually it only worked from settings 3 to 5, and now finally quit. I am going to replace the resistor pack and hopefully that fixes it. If anyone has any how to questions on replacing a tranny feel free to ask. Thanks,
  • Karen_SKaren_S Member Posts: 5,092
  • falsterfalster Member Posts: 9
    Hey Justin, I don't know if you saw my posts on my Grand Prix GT 01 but I'm concerned with the transmission....it shifts hard only sometimes. I can go a few days without it happening but once it starts it won't stop until the car has been shut off for a few hours. I just flushed the tranny myself and it seems to shift smoother, but it still does it every now and then...any suggestions as to the problem??? Thank you,
  • f350_6x6f350_6x6 Member Posts: 1
    my 02 is doing the same thing, it just started. have you found anything out on what was wrong? i have not dtc's.

  • pckeenanpckeenan Member Posts: 3
    I've got a 2000 Grand Prix GT with 164K miles. I've got the whining when accelerating and turning at low speeds (power steering fluid???); I've got the tach floating when accelerating at the mid speeds (catalytic converter???); I've got the transmission slips every once in a while where it slams into gear (????).....where do I start?
  • steve115steve115 Member Posts: 9
    No, I have not fixed it yet. Now that it is colder (and traffic is worse with few opportunities to accelerate) it does not seem to be as bad. I will post it here if I get it fixed.
  • kaciekacie Member Posts: 1
    I have a 2002 Grand Prix SE and when I get in the car in the morning when the engine is cold the transmission slips like I am on a piece of ice. After the car is warmed up there is no problems. What is wrong with my car? I just bought it a month ago and the day after I bought it this started Please Help me.
  • montana_catmontana_cat Member Posts: 26
    Ok. Add my car to the list of "problem children".

    In reference to messages #43, 44, and 47, I am also having the surging/jerking with the tachometer jumping. It can be induced at any speed, but it especially happens when going up a long hill. If you are holding a consistent speed and then try to accelerate a little bit, the car begins to jerk and the needle does the same. My 1999 Grand Prix GT has a little over 60,000 miles on it and I am the original owner. I have had it do it between 25-30, 35-40, 45-50, 60-65, etc. It is very random. Sometimes it does it; sometimes it doesn't.

    Prior to this problem, the dealership first tried replacing a throttle sensor, then the pressure control solenoid, and finally the torque converter. The car no longer shudders when it shifts between 45-55, but it will do the thing I described in the above paragraph. So, it went back to the dealership for a tune-up - had new spark plugs, fuel filter, had wires checked, and had air intake cleaned. It still jerks when I go up hills. So, today it went back and they cleaned some kind of air sensor (or something like that, can't remember) for the fuel injectors. They didn't charge me ... said to drive it a few days and see what happens. Well, I took it out tonight, drove it up a hill and the jerking began again.

    I also had to have the pressure control solenoid replaced previously at the 30,000 mile mark.

    Any help and suggestions of what to tell the mechanics would be appreciated. :sick:
  • solomonsgtpsolomonsgtp Member Posts: 1
    I have a 97 GTP with similar hesitation/jerking while climbing a hill. It feels like the tranny is slipping just a bit. Anyone found the cause of this yet?

    Also-a heavy sputter/lagging occurs during heavy acceleration. Are they related?
  • montana_catmontana_cat Member Posts: 26
    I went back to the garage last week for the second time. They said my catalytic converter was plugged. So, I had a new one put on (fortunately still under warranty!). The mechanic thought this WAS the problem.

    Well, guess what? It still does the same thing. It is back at the shop today. They are going to keep it a few days and test a bunch of things. (sigh) :confuse:
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