CarTalk.com Blogs Car Info Our Show Deals Mechanics Files Vehicle Donation

New Car...NEW TRANSMISSION!? Part 2

Recap: Last week I started a thread explaining that I bought a new 2008 Ford Mustang, and after 2,800 miles I brought the vehicle in for service due to the gears grinding when shifting into 3rd gear. As the Car Talk community suspected the problem was due to a synchronizer. Rather than replace the part the dealership installed a new transmission.



Now for the new developments. I have put about 100 miles on the new transmission and from the start there was a constant screeching/whining noise coming from the engine which only stops when the clutch is pressed, the car vibrates/shakes much more than before, and the ride is much less smooth then before. Did they install this thing incorrectly?



I will be driving the car through the sales departments showroom window this evening to have them take another look, but once again I turn to the trusted Car Talk Community for your inuput.

Sorry to hear about these developments. Sounds like the clutch throw-out bearing is making noise. Didn’t anyone hear this before you drove the car away?

Start looking into the lemon laws in your state. You may need, eventually, to go this route.

Whatever you do, remain calm. The sales department has nothing to do with this problem. It’s the service department you need to deal with, and perhaps the Ford factory rep for your area.

What I would do is contact Ford Motor Co. (their site has a section related to service questions I think) and verify that the transmission was actually replaced.
Make SURE during all of this that you have copies of a written repair order. If push comes to shove then you are dead in the water without documentation.
If the transmission was really replaced then it should be documented and on file.
(Another method of verification is by the transmission serial number.)

You’ve definitely got something major wrong there and something is likely going to blow up soon because screeching often denotes hot dry metal that should not be hot and dry.

The part that still baffles me is why an entire transmission would be replaced due to a lousy synchronizer. With every warranty situation I’ve seen the internal repair is made rather than replace the unit as an assembly.

Mcparadise is right. Lemon laws vary from state to state, but generally speaking, if a problem persists and you need to take it back three or more times, you may be entitled to a new vehicle.

Start here - http://www.lemonlawamerica.com/

This forum is great! You guys rock! I have contacted Ford Motor Company through their site regarding the issues, experience, and other concerns. On my original thread many wondered why the entire transmission was replaced. The mechanic stated “I am not even going to mess around with this, it’s a new car we’ll just drop a new transmission in place. That should solve everything”. Guess he thought he was doing me favor, or maybe he saw more then he was stating. KEEP YOUR THOUGHTS COMING!

A comment like that makes me question the process even more. When it comes to a warranty issue this matter is not decided by the mechanic or even the service manager. Warranty policy from Ford Motor Co. decides what will be done.

On every warranty repair I’ve done (and on every make of car) the old part must be retained for inspection by the regional service rep. After he signs off on it (may be a week, month, whatever) the faulty part is then disposed of.

Excuse my confusion on this issue but a process such as replacing an entire transmission for a measly synchronizer issue just utterly baffles me.
Wonder if they would allow you to see your old transmission… :wink:

…and the hits just keep on coming. So, the dealer calls me back and says they have pulled the new transmission they just installed and found that they need to replace the front plate. Is it just me, or does anyone else find it strange a brand new car would have a 2nd transmission installed and already has a malfunctioning part after 2 days of driving? What is this front plate they are speaking of?

Maybe the clutch “Pressure plate”??

transman

Another possibility is that the mechanic got grease on the clutch pad somehow. That owuld account for slippage and the accompanying noise. I had a similar event with a car air conditioner. It also has a clutch. My AC made noise unless I turned it off and disengaged the compressor clutch. The grease might burn off, but you don’t have the time to wait.

Something sounds funny during all of this. The even odder part would be who is paying for all of it?
Ford Motor Company is not going to dole out warranty money without evidence to back up a repair and they’re not going to pay for “do overs”.

No idea what a front plate is unless theyr’re referring to the one in this picture.
(Similar anyway) The bolt on plate around the mainshaft nose.
http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/T-5-Mustang-Transmission-5-0-87-93-Setup-5-Speed_W0QQitemZ250363444013QQihZ015QQcategoryZ33733QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem
No idea why in the world a front plate would need to be replaced on the transmission and the only other plate would be the pressure plate.

About 25 or so years ago a gentleman made national news when he became disgusted with his new Chrysler. He drove it up onto the grass in front of the dealer’s showroom (Los Angeles area) windows and got out. The salesmen inside were gawking and wondering what was going on until the guy drug out a gas can and dumped a couple of gallons of gas on it followed by throwing a match at it.
The car was a total and the owner was charged with 2nd degree arson. At least the car problem was solved!

Seriously though, the more this story goes the stranger it gets and I have no idea what is going on. It may be time to get Ford’s corporate office involved because they are the ones who, in theory anyway, will be paying for this.

Yes sir, the gas can sounds about right, but seeing as someone has already gone that route I will have to find something more original.

You’ve mentioned a few times that the repairs don’t make sense, and I wish I could answer your questions. I haven’t gotten myself involved with who is paying for what as long as it’s not me paying. They tell me they are replacing parts X,Y, and Z, and I simply ask them if it will work correctly this time and if it’s covered by the warranty. So far, the service folks have been nice enough, but the info I get changes. First the sync was broken and had to be replaced, but as a courtesy they replace the whole transmission. Today they admit that they haven’t been able to actually diagnose what is wrong so the transmission was replaced as a cautionary step (or something to that extent). They went into a detailed description about this front plate and first it was broken and needs to be replaced, but then they say it really only needed grease and is simply being replaced as a courtesy because the car is so new. The new part replacement had nothing to do with the transmission just the clutch mechanisms. Pretty courteous group. Either way I have the invoices stating what was done and/or replaced, and all of their orginal descriptions saved on my voicemail. Upon one of our conversations the guy said my transmission is on the ground next to the vehicle. I keep visualizing a mad doctor digging around inside my child looking for his house keys. Poor car.

I have reached out to the corporate offices the other day and so far the responses have been along the lines of someone will contact me in 2 business days, and within two business days I am contacted. In the meantime I will continue to play nice with the service department until I hear more from corporate and others. Keep me in mind. I will probably stop posting about new developments for a while, but I will keep checking back for comments and suggestions from all of you. Everyone’s input has been very valuable!! When all is said and done I will let those interested in on the outcome.

Stayed tuned for our next exciting episode of “New Car…NEW TRANMISSION!?”