IPD - Volvo Parts SpecialistsVolvo PartsVolvo Salvage: Used Volvo Parts and Over 50 Years ExperienceSouthern Vo Vo sells genuine used Volvo parts

Please use this Amazon link ... and help keep MVS on the Web. Thank you!Amazon.com

Advertise here via Google


Not part of the forums? Register. It's free.

Need help? See our Help Page.

Transmission Problems

Help, Advice, Owners' Discussion and DIY Tutorials on Volvo XC90s. The XC90 proved to be very popular, and very good for Volvo's sales numbers, since its introduction in model year 2003 (North America).

Transmission Problems

Postby VolvoXC90-03 » 10 Dec 2006, 23:09

The whole transmission in my 2004 volvo xc90 went and i was wondering if anyone has had the same problem.
Posts: 1
Joined: 10 Dec 2006, 23:06

Re: Transmission Problems

Postby joycepeck » 06 Mar 2007, 16:02

VolvoXC90-03 wrote:The whole transmission in my 2004 volvo xc90 went and i was wondering if anyone has had the same problem.

I own a 2005 xc90 with less than 20,000 miles and the transmission went out on it last Thursday. No explanation from dealer, just being replaced with new one and they are happy. It is warranty but still I'd like to know why.
Posts: 1
Joined: 06 Mar 2007, 00:21

Transmission Failure, 2004 XC90

Postby buckeye1 » 03 Oct 2007, 14:21

I purchased my 2004 XC90 through Military Car Sales while serving overseas. My vehicle went in the local dealership on numerous occasions explaining to them that we were experiencing problems with the transmission slipping and not operating correctly. Of course, like most dealerships they find the easy over the hard way to explain what the problems was. Needless to say, I am back stateside, my warranty has expired, and it is now sitting at an AAMCO shop for repairs. When I initially return from overseas in August of this year I had to take it the dealer for the exact same problem, warning signal appeared on dash,and I was told by the dealer in Fredericksburg, VA, after diagnostic checks were performed they stated that there was too much fluid in the transmission, and they needed to purge some for it begin to operate more smoothly.... WRONG! Now the vehicle is worst than it was when I took it there in the first place. My concern with the whole issue is that I spent quite a deal of money for this vehicle, and feel strongly that Volvo has to give an explanation why why a vehicle with just 62,00 miles has to have a new transmission.
Posts: 1
Joined: 03 Oct 2007, 14:05

Postby pattieb » 12 Oct 2007, 17:45

Join the club! My '03 with 64000 miles needs a new transmission. My husband called Volvo customer service to see what they would do since the warranty is only 5/5. They said we should have purchased the extended warranty and are willing to give us a 10% break on a $5000 estimate - big deal! We had it towed to another transmission place this morning. In talking with different mechanics, this seems to be a very common problem with all makes of volvos. Needless to say, I tell everyone I know and even those who drive a volvo that I don't know to dump it before the warranty expires.
Posts: 3
Joined: 12 Oct 2007, 17:38

Postby MadeInJapan » 10 Nov 2007, 22:24

Aren't transmissions warrantied for longer than the basic plan? I would think so. I have read many stories where owners, even after the warranty has expired got Volvo to take care of transmissions. In regards to the guy who came stateside from overseas and who's warranty has expired, take your car to the dealer and if at all possible, show them the paperwork of previous repairs and where you took your car in with complaints related to the transmission. If the dealer won't budge, then go higher to the regional manager and even Volvo of North America.
'98 S70 T5 Emrld Grn Met/Beige Tons of Upgrades Mobil-1
'04 V70 2.5T Red/Taupe Some Upgrades Mobil-1
94 850 Sedan NA Drk Blue/Tan
'00 V40 Purple/Grey Mobil-1
MVS Moderator
MVS Moderator
Posts: 12099
Joined: 31 Mar 2005, 14:14
Location: Knoxville, TN American but born in Japan
Model and Year: '98 S70 T5

Postby pattieb » 11 Nov 2007, 03:41

No the transmission does not carry a warranty longer than the basic. The dealer had no desire to help and it was volvo NA that offered the 10% off. I only wish I could sell it for at least what I owe on it, but no luck so far. No more volvos for me!
Posts: 3
Joined: 12 Oct 2007, 17:38

Rear Final Drive Unit 04 XC90 T6

Postby seldon » 02 Feb 2008, 01:00

Our 04 XC90 T6 has been diagnosed with a leaking rear final drive. Cost to replace? $4400. The vehicle has 51000 miles on it; the warranty expired last June, but we purchased it in December.

Two questions? Any alternative repairs? Any idea how best to approach Volvo? In our case, Volvo North America has already denied my request for a courtesy repair due to the vehicle being past the warranty expiration date.
04 XC90 T6

04 S60
Posts: 1
Joined: 02 Feb 2008, 00:57
Location: Michigan

Postby binger » 06 Feb 2008, 00:43

I am new to this website so I hope this will post ok. I purchased a 2004 Volvo XC90 last April and unfortunately did not get an extended warranty. Within in the first few days my radio didn't work. The stations kept coming in and out and then would eventually not work at all. Our local dealer tried for two weeks to see if they could fix it but with no prevail. I had to purchase a new radio that cost a little over $800.00.

The first week of September I went to make a left hand turn (on a very busy street I might add) and my transmission went out. I couldn't move. At only 55,000 miles I thought I might have some luck with our dealer or Volvo and getting this replaced for free. Yeah right, what was I thinking. After 2 months of fighting with both Volvo and our local dealer (Crippen or should I say Crappin' - rude people) we had to replace the transmission for more than $4,000.00.

I purchased this Volvo because of safety and reliability. Guess I was wrong. The car didn't give me any warning that there was any problem with either the radio or transmission they both just stopped working. Did I mention I had both of my kids with me when the transmimssion went out.

Anyway, I dont' know why but it makes me feel better to read all your comments and to know that I'm not the only one experiencing these problems. I am shocked that Volvo won't stand behind their car. After gcontact many people it ended with a call (from who they say was their top management personel) they said they couldn't help because the car didn't have a history of a 'perfect service record'. This was my first car purchase that wasn't General Motors made and have experienced more problems in less than a year with my Volvo than I ever did with any of my General Motors vehicle. If any is looking to buy another Volvo let me know :D
Posts: 1
Joined: 06 Feb 2008, 00:20
Location: Mason,MI

Postby Maxbaby » 27 Sep 2008, 23:01

I'll just add this here, that the parts guys at my Volvo dealership told me recently that it's the XC90 T6's that are the ones to avoid at all costs. They said it's a GM designed/partially assembled transmission on these XC90's that was a pile of junk from the drawing board. They said there aren't anywhere near the number of transmission problems with the T5's or the V8 model XC90s.

I'd like to know if any of the mods have any insight on this bit of information, as wifey and I are debating buying an XC90 for the space. I'm more in favor of an XC70 only because of the slightly better fuel economy, but that's another debate altogether...
1993 850 GLT

Close to 360,000 km
User avatar
Forum Member
Forum Member
Posts: 368
Joined: 17 Mar 2007, 15:20
Location: Edmonton, Alberta, Canada

Re: Transmission Problems

Postby stone36 » 25 Oct 2008, 00:28

Do just what Volvo said and DON,T buy T6. They did change the transmission, I think for 2006, but the 03-05 is a GM that is a modified version of what they use in the Pontiac sunfire. If I remember right coolant leaks into the transmission and burns up the insides.

You'll find posts everywhere about tranny's going at 10K-50K, volvo hasn't and won't make a replacement for them, so they are SUPER expensive ($5K) because there are only so many to go around and you have to buy a rebuilt.

The only exception is if you have great access to a few rebuilts and someone who can put it in for under $500. Because you can find the T6 model for $2K-$4k less than the 5 or 8 cyl.

But that still leaves you to risk being stranded somewhere. From everything I read, you get a warning light and about 5 miles later you are going nowhere...
05 V70R TiKap (so happy) 91K
05 XC90 2.5T FWD TiBlak 97K
94 850 wagon 2.4 (N/A) 155K (Sold running like a champ)
User avatar
Forum Member
Forum Member
Posts: 368
Joined: 18 May 2007, 15:03
Location: Columbus, OH
Model and Year: 2005 V70R and XC90

Re: Transmission Problems

Postby 98expeditionXLT » 03 Nov 2008, 01:55

Are there any attorney Volvo owners who could comment if using a GM transmission in a Volvo constitutes fraud? Remember in the early 1970's, GM got in trouble for using Chevy engines across many of their product lines, specifically in Oldsmobile cars. When you are experiencing major problems around 60K miles, the dealer should go to bat for you with Volvo.
Forum Member
Forum Member
Posts: 36
Joined: 22 Dec 2007, 02:01

Re: Transmission Problems

Postby Dextrobrick » 06 Nov 2008, 20:24

Here are some thoughts about the General Motors Hydramatic 4T65-E transaxle used in both the 1st generation S80 T6 as well as the XC90 T6.

1) The S80 was the first P2 platform Volvo that the S60, XC90 and 2nd gen V70 are all built on. The P2 platform was designed before Ford purchased Volvo in 1999. Prior to Ford's purchase of Volvo, Volvo was a small independent automaker with limited resources.

2) In a very bold move, Volvo decided to produce its most powerful engine ever at the time and launch this engine in the then-new FWD successor to its 900-series RWD sedans. Thus T6 engine option for the S80 was born. The engine in the S80 T6, like the XC90 T6 that would come later, was a twin-turbocharged straight-six that--a) was exceptionally long (wide as it sits transversely in the S80's or XC90's engine bay) and b) was exceptionally powerful in that it produces a surge of high torque at very low RPMs unlike 4-cylinder engines and naturally aspirated 6-cylinders.

3) At the same time the S80 T6 debuted, General Motors was already producing its own line of large mid-size sedans powered by its own supercharged V6 engines which exhibited the same surge of high torque at very low RPM tendencies of Volvo's T6 engine. These GM sedans were the same size as an S80 and included the likes of Buick's Regal GS and Park Avenue Ultra as well as Pontiac's Grand Prix GTP and Bonneville SSEi.

4) GM's Hydra-matic 4T65-E was beefed up internally for use with the supercharged V6 so that GM's supercharged V6 sedans got a heavy duty version of the 4T65-E. This heavy duty version of the 4T65-E is what Volvo used with its T6 engines.

5) The 4T65-E transaxle is surprisingly compact given its torque handling capabilities. This is due to how only the torque converter sits aside the engine while the transaxle's gearsets and valve body are located behind the engine. The limited space available in the S80 and XC90 engine bays meant that not just any transaxle could be bolted up to the T6 engine.

6) The 4T65-E is proven to work adequately in 3,600 lb mid-size sedans with forced induction engines. Which means that the 4T65-E in the S80 T6 should last a very long time if driven prudently.

However the XC90 has one *very* serious fault that the S80 does not have. That is that the XC90 weighs 1,000 lbs more than an S80. That's half a ton more weight that the transaxle must contend with. So driving an XC90 is equivalent to driving an S80 with a permanently attached 1,000 lb trailer in tow behind it. No doubt driving an XC90 prudently then would require even more prudence than the lighter S80.


So why doesn't, say the 2.5T have the same transaxle issues as the T6?

The T6 and 2.5T powertrains really can't be compared directly--a) the 2.5T's Aisin Warner AW50 transaxle can't fit in the S80 and XC90 engine bay along with the T6 engine as the transaxle is too wide and b) 2.5T engine isn't as powerful and doesn't produce the surge of high torque at low RPMs as the T6 engine does. So one could argue the 2.5T is too weak to do any damage to a 4T65-E.
Posts: 4
Joined: 06 Nov 2008, 19:30
Model and Year: 2002 S80 T6

Re: Transmission Problems

Postby AcL » 14 Nov 2008, 22:32

Hi Guys from across the pond...I have to disagree with this just being a T6 issue as there are many diesels over here...including mine.
Again there are many reports on sites in US and Europe of this very same thing, all under transmission / Bevel gear / Angle Gear failure.
I had the car on a muddy grass verge and thats it...couldnt get the car off as the power all went down on the FW and nothing from the back.
I had just taken it to a dealer and found another owner with the very same response - 'Suspect bevel gear / angle gear failed' - mine at 58k and his at 72k. Im not sure of the conversion but we had £1300 costs to deal with this. I'm of the opinion that these are crucial to the car as part of its sales and safety pitches.
I am commisioning an independant report as here in the UK (because i put the deposit down on a Credit Card) I have the option to pass on those costs to them. I'll let you know how it goes
Posts: 1
Joined: 14 Nov 2008, 22:23

Re: Transmission Problems

Postby farioler » 04 Mar 2009, 15:39

Just took my 2004 XC 90 T6, 84,000 miles in for an "Urgent Transmission Service" warning message.
Dealer diagnosed problems with 2nd 3rd gears, cost estimate $5,200! Would like to hear from others about cost and experiences.
Posts: 2
Joined: 04 Mar 2009, 13:23
Location: North Carolina
Model and Year: 2004


Return to Volvo XC90 Forum

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 12 guests