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Reverse Fails to engage after start-up

I own a Diahatsu Gran Move, 2001, automatic and a couple of days ago it started to have the problem of not engaging reverse gear after start-up. If I first engage drive, without moving the wheels, it will engage reverse. There is no problem engaging reverse at any other time. Any answers?

Have you checked the fluid level? Is it up to the ‘full hot’ line with the engine running, after driven 5 miles, and on a level surface?

If the fluid level is okey, get back to us and we will advise you further.

Fluid level is OK. What next?

Could be a sign of a weak pump inside the tranny. I’ve had problems where I put it in reverse after startup and have to wait. Slowly, reverse will engage. Just a thought. Try backing into the garage. :slight_smile:

2 possibilities. Shift control linkage, or cable. (Not sure which one you have) or possibly a converter drainback issue. This is where ATF drains back into the pan from the torque converter after sitting. The converter then has to charge with fluid before clutch engagement. You might want to let a trans shop take a quick look.


Just another thing. If you don’t press hard enough on the brake, you will be able to move the shifter but reverse won’t engage. That’s what happens on my GMC pickup. When I put it back in park and do it right, there is no problem.

I tried waiting as you suggested but it did not work. If the pump is weak surely there would be other transmission problems? It happens only after start-up and makes no difference where or not the engine is hot or cold. Luckily I don’t have to reverse into the garage as I can always engage reverse after first selecting drive. I really want to get the bottom of this but don’t want the mechanics in Bermuda to go to school on my dollar. Thanks for your help.

Thanks for this tip but I had already figured that one out but this does not answer the question as to why I can engage reverse only after first selecting drive. Is it possible that this is something to do with the inhibitor switch? Everything I read swings me back to the original diagnostic question: what is so special about start-up and it’s relation to reverse gear.

Let’s first examine the shift control linkage or cable: surely if this was the problem I would have trouble (a) with the selection other gears or (b) with reverse gear selection at other times?

If this was an ATF problem would you expect it NOT to occur after the car has been driven for an hour and is then shut down only for a few seconds before being started up and reverse selected. It seems to me in my ignorance that as the car cannot be described as “sitting” that the drainback is less likely in this circumstance.

I really want to try to get to the bottom of this as I don’t want the mechanics in Bermuda to go to school on my dollar. Any more thoughts?

After going into drive you will be able to use reverse. The only explanation is that one switch cannot be used to decide everything. There has to be a cutout somewhere or the poor owner would be stuck in a parking spot all day.

This system was designed to prevent reverse from working if the shifter was moved by some freak accident. Too many children got hurt, so the manufacturers looked to make the cars safer. Some old Fords used to have a poorly designed detent and if you left the car idling, the shifter would fall into reverse but never into drive.

The system has nothing to do with startup. It’s safety related.

That’s an interesting point and would indeed solve the mystery but without access to the Tech manual I will be unable to verify it. I can’t find a tech manual for my Diahatsu anywhere and believe me the dealers are unlikely to let me look at theirs. They see me speaking ‘blond’ and the dollar signs float before their eyes. Thanks for your help