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Old 10-26-2011, 08:54 AM   #1
newidforu
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Default 2003 Saturn Vue Transmission

Hi

I have a 2003 Saturn Vue with the 4 cylinder AWD. A few months ago the car would not move when put in drive. It had no problems moving in reverse. We took it to a shop and they made us replace the valve body. It worked fine until yesterday when the same problem showed up again. The car will start fine and the engine will rev but will not move in drive. We had to have it towed home. I tried starting it again this morning and to my surprise, it again drives. It almost seems like it needs to completely cool down overnight and then drives again. Do you have any idea of what could be the problem? I would hate to replace the transmission if the problem lies in some other cheaper fix.

Thanks

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Old 10-26-2011, 09:19 AM   #2
Tom92SCm
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2004 VUE 2.2L
Default Re: 2003 Saturn Vue Transmission

Sounds like your transmission is about to completely fail. Search the forums for "CVT" or "VTi". Lots of problems with these transmissions in the VUE. The bad news is that it's roughly a $4000-$5000 fix and your VUE isn't worth that much anymore. And that's to fix it with another transmission like this that will also have problems at some point down the road.

I'm somewhat surprised to hear that the VTI transmission has a valvebody. But I guess my automatic transmission experience is fairly limited and is exclusive to normal geared transmissions.

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Old 10-26-2011, 09:23 AM   #3
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Sad Re: 2003 Saturn Vue Transmission

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom92SCm View Post
Sounds like your transmission is about to completely fail. Search the forums for "CVT" or "VTi". Lots of problems with these transmissions in the VUE. The bad news is that it's roughly a $4000-$5000 fix and your VUE isn't worth that much anymore. And that's to fix it with another transmission like this that will also have problems at some point down the road.

I'm somewhat surprised to hear that the VTI transmission has a valvebody. But I guess my automatic transmission experience is fairly limited and is exclusive to normal geared transmissions.
That was what I was scared of. Is there anything else I can try before I decide to junk my car?

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Old 10-26-2011, 11:16 AM   #4
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2006 VUE 3.5L
Default Re: 2003 Saturn Vue Transmission

I know that, at one time, GM was offering $5K towards a new GM vehicle if you traded in a VTi Vue. You may want to check and see if that offer is still valid. I went through the same pain as you regarding having a VTi Vue. Take a look at my photo gallery and you can see my 04 VTi Vue, which I miss very much, and my 06 V6 FWD Vue, which has been pretty much trouble free. Good luck.

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Old 10-26-2011, 11:39 AM   #5
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Default Re: 2003 Saturn Vue Transmission

Quote:
Originally Posted by newidforu View Post
That was what I was scared of. Is there anything else I can try before I decide to junk my car?
Everyone on the forum is quick to diagnose a failed VTI when sometimes it's not. There was someone recently who came in with issues that everyone thought was transmission related but it turned out to be a plugged cat. His symptoms were a little different than yours if I remember right.

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Old 10-26-2011, 11:56 AM   #6
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Default Re: 2003 Saturn Vue Transmission

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom92SCm View Post
Everyone on the forum is quick to diagnose a failed VTI when sometimes it's not. There was someone recently who came in with issues that everyone thought was transmission related but it turned out to be a plugged cat. His symptoms were a little different than yours if I remember right.
I am having someone look at it this evening for a more thorough diagnosis. However most shops are quick to diagnose a failed transmission when they hear of the symptoms and are not interested in exploring other possibilities. As of now, the car is still running fine after I started it this morning. Its almost like yesterday was a dream.

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Old 10-28-2011, 09:27 AM   #7
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Default Re: 2003 Saturn Vue Transmission

I've been having the same problem except if you put it in Low it will accelerate. The GM dealer diagnostic said it was the TCM-transmission control; repair of $1300; actually the part is $340; I had a mechanic I know do it (takes 5 minutes), part has to be properly programmed to your car. All of this was done; now it drives in Drive (imagine!) so I don't have to shift constantly to get into 2nd and 3rd (yes its automatic!) however it is still slamming into 2nd. I have well over 100K. Is this probably the whole transmission?
Last month a mechanic charged me $700 to replace 2 sillinoids and it had NO effect. Is the car dead?!
Thanks for any help and to original poster: be careful of expensive repairs that will not fix the problem. I was refunded $200 but still am out $500 for NOTHING.

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Old 10-28-2011, 09:31 AM   #8
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Default Re: 2003 Saturn Vue Transmission

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom92SCm View Post
Everyone on the forum is quick to diagnose a failed VTI when sometimes it's not. There was someone recently who came in with issues that everyone thought was transmission related but it turned out to be a plugged cat. His symptoms were a little different than yours if I remember right.
I have a new TCM and now can use Drive but still slamming into 2nd (its automatic). Could it be a need for all new sillinoids? (2 were replaced last month, didn't fix problem). New TCM now it accelerates in Drive. For now. I'm at a loss !!!
Thanks for your help and info.

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