Car Problem Reports

Volvo S60 Erratic Shifting or Loss of Transmission Operation

Volvo S60 Problem
28 Reports
Me Too

Model Years Affected: 2001, 2002, 2003, 2005

Drive Trains Affected: AWD, w/o AWD

Average Mileage: 104,464 mi (10,000 mi - 161,671 mi)


Several complaints have been reported regarding Volvo S60 transmission shifting issues. Long shift times between gear shifts, hard shifting, hard downshifting and a loss of transmission operation all together to name a few.

If the issue is minor, a transmission software update may fix this issue. If available, the software should be updated before any repairs are made.

There are several technical service bulletins (TSB's) available from Volvo that address these shifting issues and they should be consulted by the repair shop during the automatic transmission diagnostic process.

Regular servicing of the transmission fluid can help with preventing transmission failure, but not in all cases. Follow the suggested fluid replacement interval recommended by Volvo. You will find this in your owners manual, or find it here:

  • Visitor, , w/o AWD, 133,000 mi

    Harsh shifting and does not shift into gear quickly, long shift in between. there have been so many of these Volvo should eat the cost. Don't you think everyone?

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  • Visitor, , AWD, 79,000 mi

    Car starts but does not move in any gear.

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  • Visitor, , w/o AWD, 120,000 mi

    Delayed harsh drive and reverse engagements. 2-3 Shift slippage. Failed valve body. Very common problem on 01-02 Volvo's. Cost to repair $4500. Rebuilt Volvo Transmission. Volvo are very aware of this problem, but don't except any help from them if your out warranty. Do yourself a favor and buy a BMW or Mercedes instead.

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  • Visitor, , AWD, 106,000 mi

    Parked for 3 weeks, put the car in reverse and it just sits there, will not move.

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  • plazanate, , w/o AWD, 130,000 mi

    delay in shifting especially on start up in the morning

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  • Visitor, , w/o AWD, 85,000 mi

    Erratic shift typically only once at normal operating temperature, usually 1st to 2nd shift, unpredictable, sometime very hard up shift or downshift

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  • Visitor, , w/o AWD, 120,000 mi

    Slow shift, usually between 2nd and 3rd

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  • Symonette, , AWD, 11,000 mi

    After driving approx. 55 miles and then stop in stop and go traffic the car shifts hard when pressing gas again. Volvo technicians are unable to pinpoint problem and after reading the internet it appears I have this same problem..."Erratic Shifting." I have a call into the Volvo dealer now to see if this will help them to correct my problem.

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  • Visitor, , w/o AWD, 78,000 mi

    Hard shifting problem and was told by an auto repair shop that I need a new transmission.

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  • Visitor, , w/o AWD, 50,000 mi

    hard shifting, slipping of gear

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