Saturn Aura Transmission Issues

reatopekareatopeka Member Posts: 1
Has anyone experienced their transmission seem to jump back in gear after coasting at low speeds in traffic. When I push on the pedal after coasting it jumps back in gear and is very frustrating. I have had it checked out at dealer and they told me they re-programmed the Transmission which scared me. But that didn't fix the problem. Will be taking it in one more time before I decide what to do. But has anyone had this happen to them..?


  • 09_pos_aura09_pos_aura Member Posts: 1
    Yes.. I have a 2009 Aura XE with 5600 miles on it. The tranny issues started at 800 miles. Dealer can't find anything wrong. It bucks, bogs and sometimes completely stalls before downshifting. It also acts like it's stuck in gear when you coast, just like a manual transmission. There's a pulsation thru the steering wheel which started at 2500 miles. It goes away a few seconds after a "warm" start. I have a burning smell coming from the engine compartment after driving at highway speeds. GM screwed me on the free XM trial. I got 48 days. The dealer said, call XM. XM said, call your dealer. Both did nothing. My right rear window leaks. My average MPG is 16.2 with 70% highway driving. Much lower than my 06 Magnum that I got rid of for this POS. Overall I give it a D+. After all, it is quiet inside.
  • saturn_commsaturn_comm Member Posts: 27
    If you haven't done so already, please contact the Saturn Customer Assistance Center at

    Best regards,

    Kyle Johnson
    Saturn Communications Director
  • snickers32snickers32 Member Posts: 3
    I also have a 07 aura, same problem, car seems to buck also usually between 40 to 50 miles an hour. Dealer replaced head cylinder and cam shaft!!!!! Same problem still there. Mechanic who took drive with me felt it also. said not right. They could not find a problem, said all 07 drive this way. Is this really Car of the year? My mechanic said seems like transmission not clinking into gear. Bringing it back one more time, then going for lemon law.
  • phaetondriverphaetondriver Member Posts: 175
    I have had my XR for well over a year and it has done that many times but only shortly after starting out. To me it acts like the torque converter isn't full and it slips but then the converter pump builds pressure and it grabs, like popping the clutch. It is annoying but at least mine only does it in the first minute or so then it is fine. Never done it at 50 mph.
    Might be programming, but I'm old school so I would look at the torque converter/pump first.
  • hawksnest1hawksnest1 Member Posts: 9
    I was wondering if I was the only one with this problem. My vehicle does the same thing when I'm in rush hour traffic. I gotta tell you, this car looks great but it really is a piece of @%$#. I can't believe this vehicle won car of the year. I recently discovered a leak up by the headliner by the driver door by the door seal. I can't wait to see how they are going to resolve this one. They haven't been able to solve the right front suspension noise or a noisy starter motor when the temperature is in the minus range.

    I recently had my rear speakers changed due to a rattle in them, now i don't have nearly the powerful bass response that I use to. The dealership just changed all four rotors due to pulsation. I've had software updates to my transmission as well but I have rough idle sometimes and i feel it and see it on my tach. When it's cold as well, my base idle will go up by 200 rpm, this is without using the defrost mode. The ventilation setting is usually set to floor. The fuel economy for this vehicle can be so atrocious, that I try not to use my defrost as much as possible because that causes the RPM to be bumped up by 200+rpm. MY sunroof rattles when it's in the up position as well as the sunshade. I recently noticed a knock in the steering especially when i turn to the right. I also have to bring it to the dealership for them to try and buff out theses tiny rust marks all over the vehicle, yes the paint colour is white. Believe me I could go on!

    Piece of #%$#@^ i say!!! I am planning on going through the arbitration process.

    I've only had this vehicle only for three months. I picked it up after getting the XE initially and I wasn't happy with the performance for the amount of fuel that that thing was using, so I move up to the XR. This vehicle is an 07 manufactured in oct 06. I opted to take this vehicle from the dealer with 9500 KM on it because they were supposedly having difficulty getting a dealer transfer for a brand new car.

    I can't wait to get rid of this GM piece of $#@#. I might revisit them when the finally learn to make a proper vehicle.

    I feel Like some kind of test subject with this lemon.
  • snickers32snickers32 Member Posts: 3
    forgot to mention, first time i brought it in for bucking, they replaced my head cylinder and cam shaft......that was a totally different problem they say....had a kia before this gm and really sorry i traded up for this. hate to say it but will never buy american again...never had one without problems.....
  • snickers32snickers32 Member Posts: 3
  • phaetondriverphaetondriver Member Posts: 175
    Go to another dealership. The trans programming should fix the gear/torque converter problem, according to other posts again. Neither should cause you any loss in mileage, might even get better. I have never had any of the problem you report in over 19000 miles in my XR. S
    orry to hear you are.
  • goldenguygoldenguy Member Posts: 2
    Definitely a transmission module issue, simple programming and software upgrade should have fixed it. Wait for the Brake Rotor and other re-occurring problems to begin.

  • ponggodponggod Member Posts: 11
    After reading about these transmission problems, I was wondering if this is a known problem with the 4-cylinder versions, particularly the new 6-speed tranny.

    - Robert -
  • bvdj84bvdj84 Member Posts: 1,724
    I am fairly certain that the 4cyl engine in the Aura is the same as the engine in the Pontiac G6 4cyl. Fairly minimal differences at all.

    But, I have an 08 Pontiac G6 with the 4cyl 4spd automatic engine. I am experiences the same symptoms. 40-50mph it lunges,slips bucks a bit into the next gear. Until it gets too that point the RPM's are just up higher, sort of like others have said.... as if I had a manual and haven't shifted yet. The transmission is all over the place and unpredictable. The power band is also off, the power is not always there. I'll push down a bit, and it will either be there for me, or well.... not so much. The transmission has to jump way up to get decent power. Even then, it seems so choppy and rough going through the gears.
    Going through traffic gets annoying too, it keeps going up and down notably through the gears. You can feel it, its choppy and rough. Also, if I get up to speed normally, not really hard, but a decent push... you sorta let off the gas once you get up to speed a bit, but it sorta lunges or slips roughly into gear once I let off a bit. Now, it almost feels like it does better when I push it harder, than if I were to drive it nicely. But, both faster or slower pushes still feel choppy.

    So, I am not sure if my transmission is going out or it needs re-programmed? But, I don't think a r-program would change how the actual transmission feels, but rather how it shifts right?? It does not feel right... it does not seem right...

    I leased the car, and it had 200miles on it when I drove it off the lot. Even then, I will honestly say the transmission felt a bit rough, especially in this one gear. It just an ever so slight jolt. I just don't think it should act like this. I do think it has gotten worse than when it was new. I can't be just me. I have had the car for 1 yr now, and I came from an 06 Accord 4cyl. I know its not a Honda 4cyl, but this does not seem right at all. I am very concerned about how I should word this all to the dealer. I am thinking of documenting it in writing so they can visual see what I saying. Do you think my transmission is bad??? :lemon:

    I have been reading all of these posts, some were of the V6 engine, but I have been experiencing these symptoms on my 4cyl. If you all have any advice on how I should approach this. Please let me know. :)
  • tbran1tbran1 Member Posts: 3
    My wife's Aura has been flawless so far at 3000 miles.Hope this continues... gets phenomenal gas mileage and its good looks turns heads wherever we drive it!
  • elenbieelenbie Member Posts: 1
    My '09 Aura XR has 34000 miles on it,and I have had absolutely NO trouble with it.It has performed perfectly,and during interstate highway driving it gets approximately 35MPG with the V6.
  • kerry11kerry11 Member Posts: 12
    Wow hate to hear all this stuff, I just bought a used 09 Aura and It is in the shop getting new trans, The sad part is I just had a lemon 06 Equinox and used my settlement money to buy this car and already having issues... This is not good The dealer told me the first time it just needs fluid, the next day I took it back and told them you will replace the trans as I almost got in accident when the car would not move as the trans was stuck!!!!
  • mzrgrsmzrgrs Member Posts: 1
    Enough said...
  • shee09shee09 Member Posts: 1
    A recall has been publicized by General Motors, for the Saturn Aura, 2007 through 2010 model years. Since the vehicle shares platforms with the Chevrolet Malibu and Pontiac G6 sedans, the 2008 through 2010 model years of those automobiles are also integrated, bringing the whole of recalled automobiles to almost 500,000. The problem is with the connecting tabs on the transmission shift cable, which can result in the park gear failing to engage. Source: Saturn Aura recall.
  • gmcustsvcsarahgmcustsvcsarah Member Posts: 1,964
    Good morning,

    If you (or anybody who owns one of the affected vehicles) would like for us to check to see if your vehicle is included in this recall, we're happy to do so. Please email us the last 8 digits of your VIN at [email protected]

    Sarah, GM Customer Service
  • chrissyh2chrissyh2 Member Posts: 5
    I have a Saturn with 102k miles but its only 4 years old. Its at the dealership and we are waiting for an answer to see if GM will help us out on this. We have already replaced a transmission in a chevy silverado truck back in march. We do not have the money to fix this problem. We still owe $5,800 on this car!
    Does anyone have luck in having GM help them out?
  • ashlow8701ashlow8701 Member Posts: 1
    I hope! I have a 2007 Saturn Aura that is having some kind of transmission issues - it is also at 100,000 miles (right under) and I owe a little over $6,000 - sheesh! Hopefully there is something they will do - the warranty just expired of course!
  • gmcustsvcsarahgmcustsvcsarah Member Posts: 1,964

    Keep us posted on your progress with getting this transmission concern diagnosed, and we're available to check into this further with you if you like. Please email us at [email protected] with more details and we will go from there (include your name and contact information, a summary of the situation, the last 8 digits of your VIN and mileage, and the name of your dealership).

    Sarah, GM Customer Service
  • chrissyh2chrissyh2 Member Posts: 5
    GM only would help out up to $1000 and until they took the car apart no one could tell me what the bill would be, I was lucky the deaership paid off my car loan and I bought a used toyota camry! no more saturn
  • geoffnygeoffny Member Posts: 2
    This is sounding like a broken record in this topic. I have a 2007 Saturn Aura XR with the 3.6L and 6 speed automatic as well, and I had these exact same issues. I complained to the dealer when i bought the car with 56k on it (was the old Saturn Dealer) and they reprogrammed the TCM and said the issue was fixed. I said it was a little better, but still doing it. I was told that was the way the transmission operated. I now have 98,700 miles on the car and was getting ready to schedule the 100k transmission fluid service on it. I was driving it friday and it started slipping horribly, and bucking when put into reverse and feeling like it is going to stall. It bucked hard enough that it almost sent me out of my parking space in front of an oncoming vehicle. I have driven it exactly 14 miles since it happened, half to get home, and half to get it to the Saturn Authorized Service center by me.

    I just was informed by the dealer that the transmission has had an internal failure, and will need to be rebuilt or replaced, to the tune of $2700 for a rebuild, $3700 for a replacement with a new. And to top it off, they said my powertrain warranty expired six months ago, so none of this is covered. Doing a little research, I see this is a common issue with this transmission, yet there is no recall and only a TSB (Service Bulletin Number: 09-07-30-012B NHTSA ID #:10038284 ). If you look at the Arcadia and Enclave sites, you will find more information about the 6T70 transmission that is used with the 3.6L in the Aura.

    This was my first newer GM vehicle, after having switched back from driving an import, but after this experience, who knows. It is sad because I used to love the quality and dependability of the 3.8L and 4T65E transmission, having owned roughly 8 GM vehicles with that motor/trans in the 13 years I have been driving. I wish they never did away with it. Got much better mileage than the 3.6L.

    Right now my car will probably be parked while I try and figure out where the money for this repair will come from. Thankfully I can get a ride from a coworker in the mean time.
  • gmcustsvcgmcustsvc Member Posts: 4,252

    We're sorry to hear that your Aura will need a transmission rebuild or replacement. If you wanted for us to check into this further with the dealership (though we're unable to make any promises up front), please email us at [email protected] (include your name and contact information, the last 8 digits of your VIN and mileage, and the name of your involved dealership along with a quick recap of the situation).

    Sarah, GM Customer Service
  • torgoniustorgonius Member Posts: 2
    My 2007 Saturn's transmission failed exactly 5 days past the 5 year warranty expiration.

    GM's "help" was to offer me 4,000 towards a new GM car which I could not afford.

    Now I see a recall in the works about this issue.

    I highly doubt I'd ever buy another GM car.
  • scmadscmad Member Posts: 5
    I started experiencing some of the same scenarios as listed above.

    I have a 2007 Saturn Aura XR with the 3.6L and 6 speed automatic and began to notice the bucking, when put into reverse, on January 16. I called my mechanic, who has serviced the Saturn since 11/08, and asked that I bring it in to the shop. An evening later, I lost the transmission and had to have my car towed. The Saturn is now at a transmission specialist getting a rebuilt transmission at a lovely price tag of $3,000. I've had to rent a car at $30 a day and the replacement of the transmission will take a week,

    I've not learned what caused the transmission failure and am very dismayed that there was no forewarning. The car has been serviced on a regular basis; just had the transmission fluid changed as the Saturn reached the 100k mark.

    After doing some research, I too have noticed a trend with this car, that had been my very best vehicle over the past 25 years. This vehicle is to last at least another 100k without losing a transmission. My husband worked at GM for 30+ years and after extensive research thought this car would be the one without major problems.

    How is it that there aren't any recalls? I'm sure GM is aware of this and would like to know what they have to say and what is their plan of action.

    Very disappointed. :sick:
  • jenst33jenst33 Member Posts: 5
    I have a 2008 Saturn Aura XE with only 58,000 miles on it and recently it started jumping gears when i get to 40-45 mph.... Its annoying and today took it in to a dealership for that recall September last year from on my car i knew nothing about since recently when it started acting up... What it does is goes up and down with the gears in that speed limit.... The dealership took care of the recall but that didnt fix it and i have a powertrain warranty till June 30th of this year...I cant afford to pay to have them look into this further only the quick 25 pt inspection which they did and said it didnt look like anything.... soo what im asking is anyone else having this same problem and could it be a recall? This car is not that old and it just started acting up please help!!!!
  • gmcustsvcgmcustsvc Member Posts: 4,252
    Let us know if you would like for us to check into anything further for you. We can be reached at [email protected] (please include your name and contact information, the last 8 digits of our VIN and mileage, and summary of the situation).

    Sarah, GM Customer Service
  • scmadscmad Member Posts: 5
    Kristie and Karen

    What is the criteria you follow in responding to messages? There was no response to message #26 with the same common problem with the transmission going at 100k; and not a word of assistance from either one of you.

    A response would be appreciated.

    Thank you!
  • kevdesadkevdesad Member Posts: 1
    Wow, I am amazed, it seems like everyone is writing the same thing. My Aura died today, 101690 miles, and the transmission died, slipped for about 1 hour and then suddenly it was done. Does any one know if a recall or a GM repair option is available?
  • scmadscmad Member Posts: 5
    Unfortuntely for owners that really like their Saturns, there have been no recall relative to the transmission problem.

  • ditoolanditoolan Member Posts: 3
    My Aura is currently at a repair shop (126k) waiting for a tranny rebuild and also has a cat conv code issue. The tranny is supposed to be covered up to 120k from what I have read due to a recall regarding a cable issue they extended it. GM REFUSED ANY ASSISTANCE. I just wanted them to pay for the dealer to diagnose the issue being they wanted 2 grand to even look at it..hit a brick wall at every turn. If anyone has any advice or has had this similar problem repaired please help! I have seen that the codes could be bogus and be caused by a dirty engine...I have been told that GM doesn't even make the one cat conv anymore and might not be able to get an aftermarket one which means I will not pass a state inspection...
  • nashvegas2nashvegas2 Member Posts: 1
    Felt some occasional hard shifting into reverse for a week or so, then the whole thing died completely on the road yesterday. 110,000 miles, so no warranty help on the $3000 bill to repair transmission. Shop said it was what typically happens when these trannys go down: loss of 3rd-5th gears and reverse, and very expensive to repair. I've had several cars go beyond 200,000 miles and have never had to replace a transmission, so I am disappointed in the Saturn.
  • onefunkaronefunkar Member Posts: 113
    4 speed auto has shift cable only covered longer than normal.... 6 speed auto has wave plate problems and is covered on a case by case basis. usualy when wave plate goes it wont shift into reverse.
  • teegee2teegee2 Member Posts: 1
    edited April 2013
    We just started experiencing the same transmission issue on our 2007 Aura XR 3.6L auto transmission and we only have 48,000 miles on the car. Since the transmission slipping causes the vehicle to randomly want to stall out, I filed a complaint with the NHTSA because this puts the driver in potential danger. I asked for a recall to be issued, and sited this particular forum, stating the numerous consumers having the same issue which simply cannot be random and unrelated.

    If you agree with me, and feel a recall is warranted, please go to the NHTSA website ( and file a complaint asking for a recall.

    Also send a letter to GM Customer Assistance ( or send email to: [email protected], so the complaint is on record.
  • jenst33jenst33 Member Posts: 5
    Jennifer Thilmont; the last 8 digits of my vin number is 8F222982; 59,234 miles...It is jumping up and down the gears at 40-45mph and its automatic transmission... It seems like it wants to act like it wants to stall when its doing that...Jen
  • jd29skjd29sk Member Posts: 3
    I am having issues with my transmission that just started to occur after 88,000 KM on my 2007 Saturn Aura XE. The shifter would indicate that I was in a reverse or park, but the car would continue to move forward. I was able to start it by putting in into neutral to get it home, but now it won't start at all. I looked at the recalls they did for Saturn Aura's and it very much sounds like the shift cable issue, but when I gave my local dealership my VIN... it was not part of the recall.

    I spent about $1000 trying to get my break lights to work correctly, and then they wanted to charge me about $2000 for replacement of the driver control module and installation before I told them I would not pay another cent into the issue and they did it for free after I filed a complaint with GM Canada. For 3 years I had the break light issue on and off in which it went to the dealership 1/2 dozen times and now I see that GM is considering a recall on this issue? I will be submiting a claim if the recall does go through on past bills. I'm annoyed at the issues that have occurred, but I'm pissed off at the response of GM and the massive delays. If there is a bigger tranmission issue than the shift cable, i'm going to give up on the car as there is no way with proper maintenance a car should have these issues at 88,000 KM. Since GM closed the Saturn line it's been awful to try and get anything accomplished.
  • ditoolanditoolan Member Posts: 3
    I just picked my car up..$2300 for the rebuild....I will email a complaint also, hopefully I will be able to get reimbursed if they recall..
  • jd29skjd29sk Member Posts: 3
    Just an update on my post. It was in fact the shifter cable and the dealership has agreed to fix it at no cost under "special coverage". I think they have to look further into this matter as there are probably many other VIN's that are not covered under the recall and they should be. Again another safety issue and this is the second incident where I've had to go to GM Canada and lodge a complaint before they agreed it was a manufacturing issue. Just like the break lights!
  • jenst33jenst33 Member Posts: 5
    I already took my saturn in for that and it did nothing for my car... Yes it was a recall for me and covered 100%....I will never buy another Saturn again... This has been the worst of worst issues I have ever had with a car...
  • jenst33jenst33 Member Posts: 5
    I hope you have gotten your issue taken care of because I owe $12,000 on my Saturn and will never buy another one again...
  • jd29skjd29sk Member Posts: 3
  • onefunkaronefunkar Member Posts: 113
    unfortunely saturn wont care if you ever buy another saturn since they are out of business.
  • jerseyjoe2010jerseyjoe2010 Member Posts: 1
    I have a 2010 Saturn Aura with 113,00 highway miles that stopped today. I put the car in drive and heard a rubbing sound. The car jerked so I stopped. I put the car in drive again and heard the sound again. The car would only go 20 miles per hours. It will not go into reverse. This is a problem and should not have happened on a car this new. Is it the transmission? Is it part of a recall?
  • gmcustsvcgmcustsvc Member Posts: 4,252

    I am very sorry that you've experienced this issue with your Saturn vehicle. Have you had an opportunity to get into a GM dealership for diagnosis? I can check if there are any recalls listed under your vehicle. If you are interested, please send me your full name and VIN to [email protected] ATTN: Amber. I look forward to your response.


    Amber N.
    GM Customer Care
  • onefunkaronefunkar Member Posts: 113
    if you have a six speed auto it could be the infamous wave plate problem. they break and usually first sign is no reverse. also you dont have a 2010 aura. that was the only saturn not built for 2010. has to be 2007,08 or 2009.
  • love2waterski2love2waterski2 Member Posts: 2
    My 2007 Aura's transmission failed on Monday at 92,000 miles. Quote from local dealers were $3650 to $3800, but they could not guarantee any parts availability as there are only four transmission in the U.S. apparently. They said GM had no information about availability of a factory refurbished unit.

    Local transmission shop said the same. They get parts from the dealer and if the dealer doubts they can get them, this independent shop couldn't either.

    The dealer offer to tear down the transmission (for $4,000 to $4,500) but again, would not commit to being able to get the parts to fix if if they tore it apart.

    So apparently, not only is it broken, but there don't appear to be the parts to fix it.

    Has anyone been successful with customer care? Or am I wasting my time talking with them?

  • ditoolanditoolan Member Posts: 3
    GM covers the transmission up to 100k from what I was told. Mine failed at 127k. Had it rebuilt for $2000 at a local reputable shop. The dealer only puts in refurbished/rebuilt anyway. Good luck!
  • love2waterski2love2waterski2 Member Posts: 2
    Just an update, talked to Saturn Customer Assistance just now, they said the transmission is warranted for 5 years or 100,000 miles and since mine is six years old, it is not coverage under the warranty. She asked what they could do to assist me. My reply was that I wanted the parts available to get it fixed at a reasonable price.

    Her response was that I needed it to be towed to the dealer (it is currently at a friends garage since that was the closest place to tow it to when it failed) and I would have to pay the "diagnostic fee" to have the dealer look at it before they will go any further. If I have the dealer repair it, they will waive the diagnostic fee, if I choose not to get it fixed, I will need to pay it (she will call me back to let me know what the fee is). She said that any assistance is on a case by case basis.

    She never really addressed my questions regarding availability of parts for repairs.

    the Saga continues...
  • rhino26rhino26 Member Posts: 1
    I also have a 2007 with only 43,000 mi on it, transmission quit on me on the freeway...almost caused an accident. I had it towed to my mechanic, he check with GM..they said no warranty (5yrs) and my repair will cost in excess of 3000 I am amazed 43,000 miles and the transmission is crap, its not even broke in yet. This does not shed a very good light on GM or its policys. I have been a loyal GM owner for 40 yrs have owned 7 different GM vehicles. This will be my last.
    it is disgusting to have a car with 43,000 mi and have to expend almost 4000 dollars to rebuild the tranny because there are no new ones available. Thank you for another well built american car.
  • wsu_qtwsu_qt Member Posts: 5
    First I would like to say that I love my 2007 Saturn Aura - now with that out of the way this is the first major issue hat I have had but boy is it a Big issue! I have 106,000 highway miles and it stopped in a storm on my way home from work. The transmission started jerking, then making a weird noise and then my speed slow dropped to 20 miles an hour. I pulled over and let the car run for a moment. As I tried to merge back into rush hour traffic my transmission light came on. I put the car over again and tried to go in reverse - it did after a few seconds passed. This is a major problem for a single broke soccer Mom who relies heavily on a car. I will be at my dealership tomorrow. Is the cost really $2,000 - $4,000. - Oh-No!! Has anyone determined if G M has issued a transmission recall? Is any of this part of a recall? :cry:
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