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Dodge Charger Transmission Problems

SporinSporin Posts: 1,066
I've been VERY interested in getting a Charger or Magnum, but now I'm spooked. I have a friend who works in the auto industry (technical information) as well as one who's an engineer at Consumer Reports who are both pretty set against them.

It all comes down to transmission issues. This would seem to be confirmed after digging around on it seems like a huge percentage or people have experienced the trans. leak and needed new gaskets etc.

This does not give me a good feeling about long term durability. That said, those same guys all seem to LOVE their cars. :)

I'm spooked. Thoughts?


  • xtecxtec Posts: 354
    I think the transmission those Mags are talking about are the 4speed.I checked all the service bulletins and the only one I find is for the'05 300.That is for a shudder when the converter clutch kicks in.My Charger has the 5 speed auto,and so far its the smoothest transmission I ever had.
    My last car was A '02Intrepid SXT with the same 4 speed that the 300 owners are complaining about.I can tell you that the 5 speed is lot better than the 4speed.I have just
    over 1000 miles and so far its been great.I think another problem is it takes time the the computer to get to know your driving habits.Once its complete it should shift better,that what I found with mine.Also being a retired mechanic,I had to reprogram the computers(trans) with a test drive giving it all driving conditions.You have to do this once power is lost.I also think the '06 have the bugs out from the '05 trannys.which were the trial transmission.Thats to bad for the ones with the problems,but thats what they count on to improve the product.I hope this helps.
  • SporinSporin Posts: 1,066
    I thought the same, until I started digging more.

    In the US, there are NO civilian 4spd Chargers. The 2.7/spd combo is limited to just fleet units. You can get the 2.7/4spd. in the Magnum though.

    The Hemi and the 3.5 both get the same 5spd auto, and it IS having issues.
  • If you read the referenced posts to the end you will find it was a leaking Transmission pan gasket. A problem granted but NOT a serious problem.
  • SporinSporin Posts: 1,066
    I did read all the way. I'm just afraid it's indicative of overall quality down the road.

    Coming from a string of ultra-reliable Japanese cars, I'd hate toe buy my first American car in a decade and have major issues.

    I'm not trying to bash the car, I'm just concerned.
  • xtecxtec Posts: 354
    I checked every tech bulletin I could find and there is no
    bulletin for leaking transmission.Only thing on the tranny is a shudder from torque converter,but I think these are early production cars.I'M a retired Mechanic and can pick up a problem right away.So far I see no problem and say its one of the smoothest transmissions I ever had.I think the gasket leaks could have been bad gaskets.If it was serious ,I think they would put out A bulletin.
  • SporinSporin Posts: 1,066
    Good to know, I appreciate all the extra input. :)
  • manybmwsmanybmws Posts: 347
    I rented a brand new 06 Charger (4K miles) while my primary car is in for body repairs and have been very impressed with the ride, steering, and handling - especially for the money. BUT, I have also experienced transmission klunks at low speed with the 6-cyl auto. There must be something to this.

    Great ride though...
  • batistabatista Posts: 159
    My 06 Charger shifts kind of hard (differently)when cold and once the engine/transmission warms-up it is fine.
    I found it frustrating at first because with it being a brand new car I didn't want to take it to the dealer.
    The manual states that when the car is new it learns the shift points and when cold you need to pause for a few seconds when shifting from park to drive.
    What exactly do you mean by klunking? When (cold?) and at what speed and hard acceleration?
  • manybmwsmanybmws Posts: 347
    It does it after warmed up and at low speeds with no stress in the equation. It is an auto tranny with the 6. I can actually feel the klunk - a momentary thud sound in an otherwise smooth gear transition.

    If I owned this car - it would be back at the dealership.
  • xtecxtec Posts: 354
    Are you talking about the 4 speed tranny or the 5 speed tranny.There is a big differance in the two.If the car has the 2.7,its a 4speed,if it has the 3.5 then its a 5 speed.I have the 3.5 with the 5 speed,and mine is smoother then any tranny I had.I did have the 4 speed in my 02 Intrepid SXT that did clunk when you slowed down then take off.
  • batistabatista Posts: 159
    I have the 3.5L with 5 speed. One time going up a hill and at about 30mph I floored it and there was a 1-1.5 sec hesitation followed by some shake then it climbed hard.
    Have you floored it while driving at 30-40 mph?
    I remember test driving before I bought and the 3.5L isn't that great at highway speeds when you floor it.
    The acceleration and smoothness is best when flooring it from a stop. It makes some nice sounds too.
  • manybmwsmanybmws Posts: 347
    the charger only comes with the 3.5 liter six.
  • xtecxtec Posts: 354
    The Charger has the 2.7 for fleet and rental cars.I just talked to a salesman at Compusa and he had a 06 Charger with a 2.7.I read that they were going to have the 2.7 for the 07 model.If you see a Charger with no badge on the fenders,thats the ones with the 2.7.If you go on the Dodge website and look under Charger ,it shows the 2.7 as standard.
  • manybmwsmanybmws Posts: 347
    It was an Enterprise rent-a-car. Returned it already since the 530 got fixed. I was impressed by the car though.
  • xtecxtec Posts: 354
    Thanks, thats pretty good coming from someone who has a Beemer.I like my Charger SXT,The 3.5 has plenty of power for me,plus all my driving is in the city.Your rental car was probably the 2.7 with the 4 speed which I had the same clunking you had with my Intrepid SXT with the 3.5.It might me the nature of the 4 speed to do that.
  • xtecxtec Posts: 354
    I did your test at 30-40 range,and mine kicked in fine with no weird sound other then normal engine,and exhaust sound.No
  • batistabatista Posts: 159
    Thank you for your reply.
    I have a little less than 1000 miles so once I hit 1000 I will try it more often. What I felt was probably the transmission downshifting hard.
    Once the rpms go down to 650 I can tell the transmission will shift a lot smoother.
  • ive got a 2006 dodge charger and it has only 20000 miles on it and it haas a leak undewr it which looks like tranny fluid , dont nthink it power sterring or brake fluid, has any one else had this damn problem? :P
  • xtecxtec Posts: 354
    Sounds like your still under warranty.Take it back to the dealer.Some people on here had that problem,and it was a O-ring leaking on the transmission sensor.It should be no problem fixing it.
  • I own a 2007 with the 6 cyl 2.7 engine. Loved the car, although a bit underpowered. After a few months I developed the transmission shudder when slowly accelerating from about 1200 rpm. It shuddered and seemed like it didn't want to shift unless I stomped on it. Very annoying in traffic. I've had the car in 4 times for service. First they said it was low on oil, then they replaced both upper and lower manifolds (said they were warped), and also replaced a cracked PVC valve. When the manifolds were replaced, the car then developed a high pitched whine. No one could explain that. They finally had a Chrysler rep look at the car, and he said everything was operating normally. Very hard to believe. HELP!!!
  • xtecxtec Posts: 354
    Crank-I'm sorry that your having all these problems with your Charger.I have a '06 SXT and love it,and so far no problems.I found a service bulletin that sounds like your problem with your transmission.Its service bulletin #2100207,the date of bulletin is July 17,2007.It states torque converter shudder,and shift improvements.To me thats sounds like that is you problem.Tell the dealer to check the bulletin #to see if it is for your car.The high pitch noise your hearing sounds like you might have a vacuum leak somewhere in you engine.Have them check for a leak.I hope this helps.If the dealer gives you a hard time,try another dealer,even a Chrysler dealer,which ever would be closer.Good Luck.
  • got my charger in and had it fixed within 45 minutes, it was a o-ring on the sensor, what a relief , love the car so far.
  • Thanks for the reply. I'll do more digging. I did call another dealer already, and he said he would not look at my car unless authorized by Dodge to do so. I think I will though. Hate this dealer.
  • I too have had the same trouble. I have a 2006 Charger. It is currently in the shop for the second time for this problem. They said the torque converter was changed on the first trip. I also have a check engine light that keeps coming on. Said I had a carbon build up in the intake and throttle body. I had them to clean the areas. I have had the car less then four months, and it has been in shop three times so far. I like the ride and handling. Not to mention the appearance. It sure be nice to leave in my garage, instead of the dealer.

    Thanks for the heads up on the service bulletin. I will be sure to pass it along. They no mention of this at the dealer.
  • xtecxtec Posts: 354
    jrturf35-I hope you get your problem resolved.I have a question about your carbon build up.If you have the 2.7 engine,their is a problem with sludge build up,and it also has a PVC system problem that would cause your carbon build up.Good luck,and I hope you get to enjoy your Charger.
  • I was told that I had a cracked PVC valve and that it was replaced. I've even received e-mail from Chrysler syaing that they contacted the dealer and their own technician said the car was fine, but I could bring it back again if I'm not satisfied. Go figure. Then why would I bring it back? After having the car in for service 4 times, I'm tired. I'll drive as is, and return in in 2 years when my lease is up.
  • I have an '08 with the 3.5L HO. It only has about 2500 miles on it, and I am feeling a shudder, but only when it shifts from 1st to 2nd, and not all the time. I just got it back from the shop and they said they did a software update, and test drove it and it was fine.....I still feel it!!
  • xtecxtec Posts: 354
    You may need to drive it for awhile for the transmission to reprogram to your driving.If that doesn't work,ask the service manager to go with you for a ride,and show them when it happens.Good Luck
  • crankeecrankee Posts: 5
    I feel your pain. The car looks great, but it's a piece of crap. Since they worked on mine, I now have a whistle that they hear, but cannot find. Sounds like a vacuum leak. I also have a speedometer needle that will ocassionally bounce to zero and come back. They told me that it was a fuse that will sometimes blow when you use the CD player. Which I never have. No more Dodges for me!!
  • crankeecrankee Posts: 5
    Thanks, but I've had the car over a year. It should have done that already. Besides, I don't want a car that has to adjust to my driving. The service manager did feel it when we took it for a ride. Didn't seem to make a difference, and nobody seems to care. I guess they're not concerned about losing business.
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