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Whistler

2005 Lacrosse Shift Feel/Behavior

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Hey guys,

Just got an 05 Allure (Lacrosse) about 2 weeks ago. Got it for a good price and its absolutely mint inside and out, only about 30k on it, 1 owner (non-fleet/rental).

Anyway, I'm starting to get used to the car, but it has an annoying behavior and I'm trying to figure out if its a problem or not. Need some input from people with experience with the 4t65e/Lacrosse.

Is it normal for shifts to be inconsistent in feel? I've been noticing that you can never predict how the shift is going to feel when I am driving around town, mainly the 1-2 shift. Basically, sometimes I will be accelerating from a light, moderate throttle, and it will shift nice and quick with barely any feel at all. Then a few lights later, in pretty much the same situation/acceleration, I will feel the shift a lot more, a little bit more of a jerk than before and definitely more noticeable. Sometimes its a quick and jerky shift, other times is a slow and mushy one. You seem to feel them more when the car is warmed up (at operating temperature) than when you just start it.

They never really feel unhealthy (ie it isn't slipping, they aren't really "harsh", and it isn't shifting erratically), they are just inconsistent in feel. Is this something common on the Lacrosse or is it the start of a problem? I want to figure it out quick since the dealer has a 30 day exchange period and I don't want any headaches with this car for a while :) .

I already took it to get the tranny fluid/filter changed (not a flush). Made pretty much no difference, if anything the shifts got more noticeable.

So far the auto tranny is the only thing I don't like about the car. The inconsistent shifting + the fact that it seems slow to respond to the driver. I really miss the Performance Shift setting on my old Regal GS.

Edited by Whistler
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Hey guys,

Just got an 05 Allure (Lacrosse) about 2 weeks ago. Got it for a good price and its absolutely mint inside and out, only about 30k on it, 1 owner (non-fleet/rental).

Is it normal for shifts to be inconsistent in feel? I've been noticing that you can never predict how the shift is going to feel when I am driving around town, mainly the 1-2 shift. Basically, sometimes I will be accelerating from a light, moderate throttle, and it will shift nice and quick with barely any feel at all. Then a few lights later, in pretty much the same situation/acceleration, I will feel the shift a lot more, a little bit more of a jerk than before and definitely more noticeable. Sometimes its a quick and jerky shift, other times is a slow and mushy one. You seem to feel them more when the car is warmed up (at operating temperature) than when you just start it.

They never really feel unhealthy (ie it isn't slipping, they aren't really "harsh", and it isn't shifting erratically), they are just inconsistent in feel. Is this something common on the Lacrosse or is it the start of a problem? I want to figure it out quick since the dealer has a 30 day exchange period and I don't want any headaches with this car for a while :) .

I already took it to get the tranny fluid/filter changed (not a flush). Made pretty much no difference, if anything the shifts got more noticeable.

The inconsistent shifting + the fact that it seems slow to respond to the driver.

I might be able to offer something here.

First, congratulations on the purchase. I wish they had used the name Allure here because it sounds more like Intrigue, but what the hell.

I've read some reviews where owners chimed in and some also said they didn't like the feel of the transmission. It is most likely a combination of the electronic chip in the transmission AND the electronic throttle control. There is an inherent delay in the sensors processing the inputs (including those of the potentiometer, at or near the gas pedal I presume). They mention that this is particularly annoying when accelerating from a stop on any kind of incline. I notice it on a hilly driveway.

Same thing here. The shifts when the pavement is flat, or in a slight decline away from a light, on a boulevard are almost not felt. Others are sharper. I chalk it up to the new mechanics since the Series III V6 came onto the scene. Like you said, none of the shifts are harsh and none of them feel as if there is anything wrong with the transmission. (I've always like the more consistent shifts of the 4T60 transaxle in my 92 Regal).

And good for you for not doing the flush. They like to sell that service item and I don't like to buy it. Also, if it makes you feel any better, Consumer Reports has given the Allure/LaCrosse's entire powertrain "full red dots" since its inception in 2005.

Sidebar/edit: about the potential headaches, did anyone impartial look at the car at the time of purchase, did the service advisor make any comments and was the fluid a very light pink without a burnt smell?

Edited by trinacriabob
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The fluid in it was pretty much spotless/perfect. I just changed it because I thought it might solve the problem (I was more concerned about the filter anyway), and I knew it wouldn't hurt anyway.

I didn't take it anywhere which is risky, but the car only has 28k, is a W-body (I know most problems to look for myself), and the dealer is pretty respected/has a 30 day exchange period. It was a clean title one owner car that only drove like 7000 miles a year. When I did bring it in for the tranny fluid change I got the mechanic to take a quick look over it for anything I didn't notice, and he said it was pretty flawless.

It makes me feel better if I know that it is normal behavior. Like you said, on flat pavement/decline they are almost invisible, but say a slight incline and I accelerate "briskly" (not flooring it or anything, but moderate throttle), they are a lot "sharper" and noticeable. Its not a slip, bang, or anything that makes me think the tranny is having a major mechanical problem.

I did drive a different Allure before I bought it, and I THINK it felt the same way, but I test drove so many different cars its hard to remember.

Edited by Whistler
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