Hard Shifting, Erratic Shifting and Other Transmission Issues on Volvo XC90

Many complaints have been reported regarding Volvo XC90 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 address this issue so if available, the software should be updated before any repairs are made. After a software update or repair, the shift adaptation needs to be reset. A good quality Volvo repair shop will know how to perform this task.

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: http://bit.ly/Volvo_Owners_Manuals

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Average mileage: 106,005 (47,773–195,000)
6 model years affected: 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, more2007, 2008
32 people reported this problem
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Viewing 1 - 20 of 20 problem details
2004 Volvo XC90 84,000 mi,
"Urgent Transmission Service Required" message; slipping; hard shifting; failing to upshift or downshift when appropriate.
2007 Volvo XC90 161,000 mi,
Transmission seems to sputter when switching gears on my 2007 XC90. Is there a quick software fix perhaps? Or some other cheaper fix other than replacing the transmission?
2007 Volvo XC90 81,868 mi,
Hard shifting from first gear to second gear
2007 Volvo XC90 96,000 mi,
Hard shifting when it gets warm, works much better in winter
2004 Volvo XC90 137,000 mi,
I just got message " TRANSMISSION SERVICE URGENT " on my Volvo XC90 2004
2006 Volvo XC90 100,000 mi,
Bought a 2006 volvo xc90 took it to the dealer because of hard shifting at about 30 and 50 mph they did a software update. That is a total joke. Still have the problem and if the dealer would have been honest I wouldn't have bought a car with a broken transmission. So looks like we will be replacing the transmission. Volvo should be responsible sounds like it should be a recall!
2004 Volvo XC90 109,000 mi,
2006 Volvo XC90 108,600 mi,
Between 30 & about 45 the transmission starts jumping and jerking...it also seems to be slipping...
2007 Volvo XC90 142,000 mi,
Transmission, CV Axle, Transfer case. I have not driven any car with so much problem. Even Volvo dealerships can not have the right diagnostic.
2005 Volvo XC90 106,000 mi,
Vehicle will hard shift at 1/4 tank of gas may be fuel related but also when tank is full but intermittantly
2006 Volvo XC90 80,000 mi,
Occasional downshifts are delayed and harsh, been to the dealer four times with no resolution. Unlikely to buy volvo again, service quality is terrible.
2007 Volvo XC90 60,000 mi,
occasional slipping began at 60k. Performed software update, no difference. Experienced problem an average of 10x per year and continue to get "transmission service due" message. I performed full transmission flush at 100k (2 month ago) and have problem once more since.
2008 Volvo XC90 47,773 mi,
I purchased the car about a month ago and brought it back to dealership they said they put in a new transmission, but still having issues with loud noises, jerky when I put it in reverse or other gears. Shifting hard also. , ct dealership told me it was normal not to worry about it. It also has other issues that were fixed and some that are normal. I paid a good amount for it. I think I should purchase a warranty for it soon
2005 Volvo XC90 66,000 mi,
At 66,000 miles my transmission went out. After weeks of working with Volvo N America and local dealer they agreed to replace my transmission. However, the drive train was warn as a result of the defective transmission. They refused to replace the drive-train. Now, the car is making a rumbling rattle. Local mechanic said it's because they didn't replace drive-train. Both should have been done or the transmission will go out again.
2006 Volvo XC90 131,000 mi,
From 2nd gear and through 3rd gear the engine revs and does not shift until I let up on the accelerator. There is a loud clunck sound. I tried the manual shifting, that was way worse. I will be going in to have this serviced ASAP. To expensive of a well maintained car to have this happen.
2006 Volvo XC90 75,000 mi,
Exactly as it says - hard downshifting - especially - coming fast downhill around a corner - auto transmission downshifts very roughly - jolting the car.
2005 Volvo XC90 52,000 mi,
Our XC90 has hesitated since we bought it, now our "angle gear" needs to be replaced for thousands of dollars. We do not have AWD without the replacement. The car drives terribly erratic.
2003 Volvo XC90 124,000 mi,
Hard shifting and improper gear ratios. Gears slip slightly sometimes. Serviced (replaced fluids) in transmission and added Lucas Trans Fix. It helped to alleviate the symptoms slightly (gears shifed a bit smoother with low throttle, but still vibrations and hesitation at higher throttle). In short, was not ever fixed or resolved, but is not as exaggerated.
2006 Volvo XC90 100,000 mi,
I bought this car less than a year ago and it starting having shifting problems right away. My mechanic tried replacing the transmission fluid and some other kind of treatment a few months ago that he didn't end up charging me for because he said it didn't fix the problem and I would eventually need to replace the transmission. That someday came and today he told me it will run 7,500 to replace the transmission. I am just sick. It doesn't feel right to have to put this kind of money into a car that I am still paying on. I bought it used from a dealership and it does not have any kind of warranty.
gear shifts from auto to manuel without warning