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Discussion Starter #1
My Volt 2012 with ~ 120K miles broke down last week on the road. Got the bad news from the dealer today:

Stating that the transmission needs to be replaced and costs about ~7,000.00 Almost the value of the car.

Car was 5 weeks ago in for oil change and checkup. Nothing unusual regarding the propulsion system at that time.

Anythink like that happened to another owner here, any advice? Please

BTW, dealer stated there is a bulletin out there if the care is driven more than 50% on gas engine (mine is 55%) there
can be problems with the transmission (Still can't believe it)

Thanks
 

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I don't know anything about the bulletin or if the dealership is correct, but you might consider a used transmission. They seem to go for about $750-$1500 on www.car-part.com. I don't know what the labor costs are to install, but hopefully it would be considerably less than $7,000.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
thank you. I don't know enough about used parts and probably the dealer would not use them or? But will check
 

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The link I gave is an auto recycler search engine, so you might be able to find one locally. They are usually totaled cars, but they list mileage and sometimes have photos, so that helps. I'd avoid stuff located in the recent flood/hurricane areas though.
 

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....

BTW, dealer stated there is a bulletin out there if the care is driven more than 50% on gas engine (mine is 55%) there
can be problems with the transmission (Still can't believe it)

Thanks
Say What???
Did they provide you with a printed copy of this 'bulletin'?

For something like this, shouldn't you always get a second opinion? You would if this was your doctor telling you "$7000, please."
How much to have it towed?

And don't tell this dealership what or where you are towing it to.
And don't tell the new dealership the history of what you have been through. Cold Call them, understand?
What does Onstar have to say? Surely there were check engine lights/codes set.

This situation has an aroma.....
 

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Sorry to hear about the problem but there is more than an "aroma" here. What exactly were the symptoms? FYI the Volt doesn't have a conventional transmission. It's a planetary gearset. Would be most interesting to hear what the dealer thinks went wrong with one of these.
 

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I have to agree that something smells off here. There really isn't a whole lot going on inside the Volt "transmission". Certainly nothing like a traditional automatic. There is a youtube video floating around that has a breakdown of the Voltec drive unit that clearly shows it's all pretty direct in how it operates with little that can go wrong outside of physical damage. As for potential for high gas use related to failure, that just sounds like a crock. Mine has about 70% gas use and I have 110K on the clock with no issues as far as the drive train are concerned and just had it in the shop last month for fluid changes. Incidentally it's back in for a heater issue (posted earlier), and they'll be doing they inspection on the car again and I expect to get another clean bill of health out of that. I would definitely get another opinion if you have another Voltec facility available in your area you can take it to.
 

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No, there is no bulletin about that. Plenty users drove the cars 100% on gas (GE Leased vehicles).

I would find a different dealer and contact GM directly.

As others say, what were the symptoms?
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks all, will get a second opinion and more info soon. All started normal driving on a state road. When going up a steep hill the warning 'engine propulsion reduced, service soon' then it said electric range is 12 miles. A minute later the car stalled and was just able to pull over.
 

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We have transmissions? Dumb girl question, but I really didn't know we had them.
Not a transmission in the traditional sense. However, a "transmission" is required to transmit power from motor/engine to wheels .. in the case of Volt, its a planetary gear system. This "transmission" is more often referred to as drive train or power train in EVs.
 

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Would be curious to hear more about this. Something as catastrophic as a $7000 "transmission" at 120K miles seems unusual and possibly fishy, as others have said.

However, if it turns out to be true, I would think a team of GM engineers would want to understand how this happened. And you could probably seek out some kind of courtesy or goodwill for a replacement.
 

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Just for curiosity's sake, how old is the 12 volt battery and can it be tested before any major work is undertaken?
 

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Also have you changed the transmission fluid ever? It was due I think at around 90k miles according to the manual. I doubt not changing fluid would have killed the transmission, but it may have exacerbated an underlying undiscovered issue?
 

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It's a Transaxle, with 2 MG's, 3 clutches, planetary gears and a differential that the 'Axles' plug into.

Will be interesting to follow this tale.

There is such a thing as a catastrophic failure where when the drain plug is removed, there is a stew of metal chunks coming out with the ATF.
And it happened so quick that possibly no codes were set. Does anyone think that is possible?

Does anyone think this OP sap needs a second opinion?

Please buddy,,,, there are shady dealerships.....
 

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We have transmissions? Dumb girl question, but I really didn't know we had them.
"Car guys" sometimes interpret the word "transmission" to mean only a traditional manual or automatic gearbox. But really, look up the word in the dictionary or wikipedia, any box that has power inputs and outputs is a transmission. Volt has a planetary gearbox, which absolutely meets that definition. Even a single speed gearbox (used by many EVs) is still a transmission.
 

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Thanks all, will get a second opinion and more info soon. All started normal driving on a state road. When going up a steep hill the warning 'engine propulsion reduced, service soon' then it said electric range is 12 miles. A minute later the car stalled and was just able to pull over.
Not sure what you mean by the car stalling in this context. It sounds like the engine died, and the car said you had twelve electric miles left - but then you couldn't drive those twelve miles and had to pull over?

Did the car lurch or vibrate when it "stalled"? Did you have any electric motion at all?

The Volt drive unit does have three clutches in it, but I'm not aware of a failure mode that would disable your ability to drive electrically unless the gears disintegrated, which is highly unlikely. Even a total hydraulic failure should have left you the ability to drive electrically...

(Failure of the MG B power electronics will absolutely stop the car, but nothing in this description suggests that happened.)
 
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