Celica Transmission

The car is a 5 speed manual. It has 147K mi on it. When I first had a problem with it, I could not get the car into any gear. It was towed to a garage where they said it was most likely a bad transmission. I was able, but barely, to drive it a very short distance home. On the way home, it sounded like something was dragging on the ground. When I got it home, I looked underneath and nothing was dragging. I was able to shift to 1st, 2nd & 3rd gear on the way home. When I pulled in the driveway, it just jolted to a stop. I have not been driving it, but I do run it in the driveway to keep the battery going. So, sometimes I can get it into gear & sometimes not. When the car is off, I can shift the gear stick.

After talking to a few different mechanics, there is a difference of opinion as to what exactly is wrong with it. Some think it is just a clutch, others say bad transmission. I’m told that this particular model is prone to transmission problems once it hits 150K mi. My brother thinks it may just need transmission fluid. When we tried to find the reservoir, it is impossible to get to without really expensive special equipment? I’m trying to sell the car, but I don’t know exactly what’s wrong with it, so interested parties don’t return. What’s wrong with my car?

What did the mechanic do to diagnose the problem?

A Toyota should not be dying at a mere 150,000 miles.

The “reservoir” on a manual transmission is not difficult at all to get to. Buy some $40 ramps and drive it up on there. On the side of the transmission will be a fill hole. Unbolt it and check. While you are down there, drain it and replace the transmission fluid. While you are down there, take care of the clutch and differential.

Personally, I don’t think changing the fluid is going to do anything for you- this is a mechanical problem, but heck, go ahead and do it.