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Old 09-08-2011, 01:15 PM   #1
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Automatic Transmission Problem

I've got a '97 900 Turbo with an automatic transmission. Today, on the way home from work after driving for about 30 minutes, I stopped at a stoplight and when I pulled away from the light the transmission slipped from Drive to Neutral and the engine revved up. The lever in the cabin had not physically move. I quickly changed the lever to Neutral and back to Drive. Whereupon, as soon as I pushed on the accelerator the transmission slipped to neutral again. I had to lock the tranny into 3rd gear to keep it from slipping and get it home. Any ideas?

I checked the fluid level and it is on the low side, but not below the minimum line. No warning lights came on. I changed all the tranny fluid about 4 months ago and there didn't seem to be any metal shavings in the pan or other signs of a problem. The only other thing, is there is a vacuum-looking hose that comes off the top of the tranny that is broken, but from the looks of it that hose has been brittle and broken for a while and I've had no previous issues.

Help please!
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Old 09-08-2011, 04:37 PM   #2
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Sounds like the linkage is maybe loose. I think that hose is just a breather, but I could be wrong. What color was the fluid?
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Old 09-09-2011, 06:55 AM   #3
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OK. I did a little more testing this morning and it DOES physically slip the gear selector forward from Drive to Neutral. It happens under moderate to hard acceleration whether rolling or stopped. You're probably right that sounds like a loose linkage, I'll have a look this weekend.

Thanks for the tip on the hose. Any idea what the end not connect to the transmission is supposed to connect to? When I spotted it the end at the transmission was broken and other end wasn't connected to anything. And, I couldn't spot a potential spot to connect it...
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Old 09-12-2011, 06:12 AM   #4
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Another update: I followed the Haynes guide procedure for adjusting the selector cable. Also, below the transmission range switch is a nut that keeps the post in place that the range switch fits on. I found it to be loose so that when the range switch was in drive there was some up and down play to the post. I re-tensioned that as well. But I'm still experiencing the problem. Any help??
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Old 09-12-2011, 09:47 AM   #5
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Check all you're motor mounts. Do you feel any clunks when under accel or braking?
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Old 09-12-2011, 09:53 AM   #6
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There is a clunk on acceleration. I'll check the mounts. Thanks for the tip.
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Old 09-13-2011, 05:42 AM   #7
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I used to have a clunk on acceleration, and it was due to my trans mount being blown. Its on the drivers side, and you'll have to pull the plastic covers underneath and in the front of the wheel well to get at it. Fairly easy to change out, or to see if its broken. Mine was completely split.
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Old 09-13-2011, 07:09 AM   #8
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Great to know. I checked the rear engine mount where it bolts to the center of the subframe this morning and it seemed to be fine, no visible cracks, tears, or signs that the hydraulic fluid had leaked out. I'll pull the wheel liners this evening and see about the mounts on both the driver's and passenger's sides.
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Old 09-14-2011, 06:25 PM   #9
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Looks like it was the mount under the transmission on the driver's side that had failed. Rubber was torn. The mount on the passenger's side, under the flywheel looked aged with the rubber showing cracks, so I'm going to replace that one as well. The one at the back looks fine.
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1997 saab 900, automatic transmission, slipping

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