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Saturn Outlook Transmission Problems



  • I have a 2008 Saturn Outlook that is a complete lemon. I purchased it new, and have had so many problems that I just do not know what to do, I have had major things replaced including a water pump, transmission sensors, timing things, and a host of other problems. This car has stopped on us 3 times during family vacations. A complete mess!! Now I just passed the 60,000. miles on my warranty and it just stopped again 2 hours outside of my town while headed on a trip again. I need to know who to contact for help? Any advice? I tell anyone that will listen to never, never buy a GM. The only reason we bought this car was because it had more room than the Honda Pilot at that time. IT is a terrible feeling to pay 500. a month for a car that you are scared to drive. HELP.....
  • downardsdownards Posts: 1
    My wife's 2008 Outlook is having the same dissengaging problem. Did you have any luck with a resolution to this problem?
  • ppp123ppp123 Posts: 4
    Sort of. The 3-5-Reverse clutch plate was replaced along with the torque converter. It took 2 weeks for the repairs as the plate was repaired and transmission reinstalled on the vehicle. There was a loud whining noise coming from the transmission, so the transmission had to be removed/repaired/reinstalled. The day after my wife picked up the vehicle the check engine light came on which involved 2 more weeks of repairs. This time the timing chains were replaced due to stretching (second time this repair was completed on this vehicle). The check engine light was still on which led to replacement of the cylinder heads.

    I don't know if this is covered under the 100,000 mile powertrain warranty, but we did receive an extended warranty from GM before the bumper-to-bumper warranty expired due to all the problems we've been having. That helpe to cover the loaner/rental. My wife was handed a bill (accidentally) for the transmission repair and it was about $3,100. While it did not show up on our bill, I think my wife said that the service advisor said the engine work was over $4k.

    I contacted GM customer service and the regional manager for GM offered us $1,000 towards the purchase of a new GM vehicle. The regional manager said that they can't buy back the vehicle as it's past the original bumper-to-bumper warranty. I'm now in the process of filing for arbitration with the state attorney general.
  • bjagbjag Posts: 2
    I switched tires and the problem has been greatly reduced......I think.
    My plan is to test it again the next time it rains. fyi: I had the Goodyear Frontera tires with 4/32 of tread, but the tire guy thought they might have been the original tires (55,000 miles) therefore replacing might help.
    Try going with a non-goodyear tire and see what happens. Or, wait for a few days until we have rain and I will give you a better feel for the benefit of new tires.
  • gmcustsvcgmcustsvc Posts: 4,251
    If you would like to email me about your situation I would be happy to look into it for you. Please include your VIN and current mileage.
    GM Customer Service
  • My wife and I bought an 07 Saturn Outlook XE AWD right when they came out. Within the first few months of ownership our car was in and out of the shop several times ( over 30 days I believe) for the Sun Roof Leak. Somehow Saturn could never replicate the leak, but it happened every time it rained. Soon after they finally fixed it a recall came out for the sunroof. It was missing part of the track to guide the water out. Solid engineering there! Somehow, a year or so went by with no issues, then all of the sudden Timing Chain, Water Pump, Transmission. The timing chain and water pump were both replaced and that took about 3 weeks. I finally got my car back and had to take it back in a few days later for the transmission. So overall, it took about 1.5 months to completely fix those issues. I tried to get GM to purchase back my car, or place me another Outlook with same features. They informed me that they were not able to do that. BS. All they gave me was a service package that took care of oil changes, tire rotations, and another service for which I cannot remember for. This package was good for 3 years. Bottom line is the package had a value of about 300.00 give or take….probably take. This process took about another 2 months since I was trying to get them to take my car back. Sweet way to keep your customers with legitimate issues happy GM!
    Since the time of those major repairs I have noticed that my driver side seat slightly moves when it should not. On top of that when I am driving and go to accelerate, it’s almost like the car hesitates and the engine jumps forward when it finally kicks in. I notice this mostly when I am driving on the highway. It does not happen every single time. But it at least happens several times daily. I am curious to know if you other unfortunate Outlook owners have this issue as well? If so, have you had this problem fixed? What was it? My car goes into the shop tomorrow to get the newest recall for the timing chain which requires a Calibration of the engine control module, including the engine oil life monitor. So they fix this issue and now I am required to get more frequent oil changes.

    GM is useless to work with and I am really starting to believe that they could care less about their customers!
  • mruffinimruffini Posts: 14
    "My car goes into the shop tomorrow to get the newest recall for the timing chain which requires a Calibration of the engine control module, including the engine oil life monitor. So they fix this issue and now I am required to get more frequent oil changes. "

    How were you notified of this recall? I have an 07 outlook and suspect that I have the same problem, but haven't received any notification...
  • wolf2947wolf2947 Posts: 1
    Our 2007 Saturn Outlook has had more than its fair share of problems.
    First, the same problem with acceleration hesitation that started this thread. I mentioned my concerns to the sales dept., who told me that it would go away as the computer adjusted to my driving style, and that there were software upgrades that would take care of it. I should've known better than to trust the salesman.

    Second, power steering failure after driving through several inches of water. It happened as I turned from one road to another, and as the vehicle didn't turn as expected, I had trouble wrestling it into the right lane, and almost had a head-on with oncoming traffic in the left lane. The dealer adjusted the flaps that are supposed to protect the power steering belts. The dealer assured me this will prevent a reoccurrence, but that doesn't reduce my anxiety about it happening again.

    Third, I took the car in for an oil change, and without consulting me GM service tore down the engine and transmission. Imagine my surprise when I went back at the end of the day to pick up my car. After promising to have it back in three days, when I went to pick it up, it wasn't ready. I got it back in eight days. I'm now going to a different GM dealer 20 miles farther away.

    Four, about a month after I got the car back the water pump failed (at 42k) while we (my wife and me and our two large dogs) were about 2 hours from home. GM covered all the repairs, but it was extremely inconvenient and I would have preferred it didn't happen in the first place.

    Five, we had to stop driving the vehicle, nicknamed "The Stenchmobile," because mildew smell is overwhelming. We took it to our new service department, who found a leak at the rear hatch drained into the insulation below the cargo compartment. Waiting for parts. Estimated cost of repair is $800.

    I have a Chevy pickup (2004), and drive another (2007) for work. Both have been great. Wish I could say the same for the Saturn Outlook. I feel like I really got taken when I bought it.
  • ppp123ppp123 Posts: 4
    outlook sucks,

    Have you checked your state's lemon law? I've been through most, if not more, of the same problems you have. You may want to make some phone calls.

    As far as your driver's seat, we had a similar problem during the first year of ownership. It needs a new seat base. However, the problem has recently returned.

    After being in the shop for almost the entire month of February, we are still having various problems as the check engine light comes on and off. What's interesting is that it only happens on weekends when the shop is closed and the light turns off by Monday morning. My wife took the vehicle in this past Wednesday and they checked the computer's memory. Apparently it's the transmission again. They can't do anything with it unless the light is on. I guess I (or my wife) have to wait to get stranded again.

    For some reason, I don't think this latest recall is going to solve any of these problems.
  • I received a letter in the mail 2 days ago. Call your local service center and ask them about it. Maybe you can bring it in and get it done without the letter. When I dropped it off, they never asked to see the letter.
  • gmcustsvcgmcustsvc Posts: 4,251
    I am currently assisting Christina on the forum. Have you spoken to your local dealership regarding these recent concerns? I would recommend contacting your local dealership. They should be able to assist you further. I can also look into this further. In order to do so I will need your VIN as well as your name, address, and phone number sent to me by email. Thank you in advance.

    Tricia, GM Customer Service.
  • I have not contacted my local dealer with these issue, only because I truly doubt they will be able to provide me with what I want. If GM itself could not service my needs what makes you think that a local dealer can. We have legitimant concerns with vehicles that your company should stand by and replace, but you only offer vouchers for 1k-2k off a new vehicle or a [non-permissible content removed] service plan for oil changes. How about you replace my car with one that does not have the issues I/we are all dealing with, if you truly stand behind the product you sell.

    If you are willing to help me please respond with a valid GM phone number and extension. I will not post any of that information on the web for all to see.
  • fboyerfboyer Posts: 1
    My wife is a first time car buyer, and GM said they took care of women first time buyers. Her transmission failed this weekend, and we are waiting for the diagnosis. my guess is GM will not pay to replace her transmission, even though it is a 2003 ion with under 125,000 miles, which is included in the class action lawsuit from 2008. Our VIN number wasn't specifically included in the lawsuit. We are planning on contacting FOX 2 problem solvers, and want any other Detroit are Saturn owners to post here. Bad publicity from a number of detroit area saturn owners might be something GM would want to avoid.
  • I am having this same exact problem with my 2009 Outlook. I thought this was a problem they had fixed! We have had it into the shop twice now and they cannot replicate the problem. When we get the car up to 55-65 MPH it goes into the Hurky Jerky. Shifting back and forth like it can't figure out which gear it needs to be in and OMG just forget about using the cruise control, you'll lose your fillings!
    Anyone anywhere have any ideas on a fix for this??? :sick:
  • We were not notified of this recall either but the service dept told us about it when we took our 2009 Outlook in for a problem with it running just awful when we are on the hwy at between 55-65 mph. It does this jerky thing and forget about using the cruise control, talk about whip lash.

    I wonder why recall notices didn't go out on the timing chain issue :confuse:
  • gmcustsvcgmcustsvc Posts: 4,251
    I apologize you did not have information about the recall. If you would like to provide me with your complete contact information and VIN I would be happy to update your information in our systems.
    GM Customer Service
  • gmcustsvcgmcustsvc Posts: 4,251

    Are you taking your vehicle to a GM dealership?

    Thank you,
    Caron, GM Customer Service
  • Yes we are. in fact the Service adviser we have is from the now closed Saturn Dealership.
  • gmcustsvcgmcustsvc Posts: 4,251

    I would like to set up a case with GM Customer Assistance. Could you please send the VIN, current mileage, full name, address and best contact number for our records sent to me in an email? Any assistance you can provide would be greatly appreciated.

    Thank you and have a great weekend!
    Caron, GM Customer Service
  • Ok information has been emailed to you. Thank You
  • gmcustsvcgmcustsvc Posts: 4,251
    Thank you we have received your email.
    GM Customer Service
  • Mobaybaby,

    I also have the 09 Outlook, with similar performance issues. What I have done to resolve the issue is increased my oil change frequency. After I took it to my dealer for the issue originally, they performed some bogus circuit board replacement. I encountered the issue again shortly after. I just so happened to perform the oil change prior to going to the dealer a second time for the issue. The hesitation stopped.
  • I am having similar transmission issues plus more and have a 2008 Outlook. It also "spins out" off the start when it does not feel like I am pressing the gas that much. The dealer just said I am a "lead foot". It also is shifting gears strangely once and a while even at lower speeds.

    I dont know anything about the recall either. I bought this car used last year from a dealership and feel taken advantage of since I was not told about this. Do they have a legal obligation to tell you? :lemon:
  • Here is what ours turned out to be....
    With the help of GM Customer Service, the Dealer took the car back in and replaced a spark plug they forgot to replace when they earlier replaced a faulty ignition coil which was keeping the 5th cylinder from firing.
    Once that little forgotten issue was taken care of the car runs like a dream.

    It was a little frustrating as this is the second issue we have had to have this 2009 Saturn in the shop for. The first was a headlight wiring harness that caught fire and had to be replaced...funny but it was not covered by any warranty and it was not a recall issue (even though the service person said she had taken in several Outlooks for the same exact problem).
    I am hoping the car now runs without further issues, I really want to LOVE this car.

    As for dealers and recalls..I would never buy a used vehicle without a Car Fax or other type of report which would tell you of any issues as well as any recalls and if they had been done. ;)
  • gmcustsvcgmcustsvc Posts: 4,251
    mobaybaby ,
    Glad to hear your concerns have been addressed and resolved. Please feel free to email me with any other questions comments or concerns.
    GM Customer Service
  • reefk29reefk29 Posts: 1
    Ineedto speak with a GM customer ServiceRep asap! We bought a 2007 Saturn Outlook2 months ago.. only43,000 we were drivingto San Diego and all of our gears broke and the transmission is gone. Me, my husband, and 3 small children were stranded on a moutain side for 5.5 hrs till the tow company came. We had it towed over 100 miles and didn't get home till 1am. Yes we paid out of pocket for that, and now it is in the shop and the transmission needs to be replaced. We DONOT WANT this vehicle anymore. My husband is getting ready to deploy and this is ridiculous!
  • gmcustsvcgmcustsvc Posts: 4,251

    I would encourage you to get a second opinion from another GM dealership. I would be happy to see if your vehicle has a recall, just email me with your VIN.

    Thank you,
    Caron, GM Customer Service
  • gmcustsvcgmcustsvc Posts: 4,251

    You can contact customer assistance at 1-800-553-6000. Hours: Mon to Sat, 8am to 9pm ET; Closed Sunday.

    Thank you,
    Caron, GM Customer Service
  • I have a 2007 Outlook XE AWD with 58,000 miles, I'm the original owner. I love the car but am concerned I got a lemon. Since I purchaed the vechicle I have had numerous transmission problems, from hard shifts to searching for the right gear. I particular when on the highway if I slow down due to traffic then try to excelerate the car hesitates and searches for the right gear, the car then seems to down shift to far and the engines screams. I have broguht it into service many times (two different saturn dealers, and now two chevy dealers) no one has been able to fix it.

    In additon, I also have acheck engine light that will no go off. The servie departments make repairs often reprograming or replacing the plugs and wires, but by the next day the light is back on. The car wil be going back again this week.

    My final problem is with the tracktion control. When it is cold or damp outside, the tracktion control warnign lights come on upon first starting, and remain on for about 2 miles. The light flashes that the traction control is off and to service the stabilatrack. This is another iussue the dealers can't seem to get right. this particular issue has been happing for about a year. The last dealer I went to for both the engine and stabiltrack issues told me everything was fixed, but when I picked up the car that night after work, the warnings came on as soon as I started the car. Unfortunately the service department was closed, so I had to take the car home.

    Luckly, everything has been under warranty, but I starting to consider dumping this wreck of a car.
  • jnance1974jnance1974 Posts: 2
    I have a 2008 Outlook with 87k miles. I drive to and from work on a flat freeway. Here is my experience: In the first 45k miles, this car needed a new transmission and a new water pump. In the second 45k miles, it has needed a new throttle, the wires behind both headlights melted together and needed to be replaced, and now, it needs yet ANOTHER transmission. GM paid for the 1st replaced transmission, I'm waiting to see if the 2nd replacement will be covered. The other items were not covered. In the meantime, I miss work to deal with these things and pay for a rental car. I bought a new car to AVOID significant car trouble for 5 years or so. I am going to buy huge car magnets for the sides of my car that say "Do NOT ever buy a GM product." I will be the biggest advertisement of how [non-permissible content removed] GM is. And to think our tax money bailed them out. Tax dollars hard at work. Lovely.
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