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Okay so I have had my 09 LTZ V6 for about a year, have owned a various number of GM vehicles over the years. Is it just me or is this 6 speed tranny very jerky? I dont know if it is because I have gotten used to driving this thing but I swear I feel this thing jerk when it downshifts while breaking or slowing to a stop. The upshifts feel great but the downshifts are very sloppy. I got a supossed transmission TCM update a few months ago and it did nothing, who knows if they even really did it. I find it hard to believe all the other 6 speed Malibu's act this way. It is by no means a smooth riding vehicle. I cant tell if maybe its a transmission/engine mount or just the way the transmission operates. I dont even want to waste my time with a dealer cause I know they are going to say nothing is wrong and its just the way it is. I wish I could drive another one just to confirm my thoughts. What is everyone elses feedback/experiences with the Malibu 6 speed? This car is really starting to drive me nuts.
 

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http://www.chevymalibuforum.com/forums/showthread.php?t=11546&highlight=speed+transmission

You are not alone. See the above thread. I have heard that Ford customers are talking about it too. That makes sense since the tranny was a joint effort between Ford and GM.

Yes it feels different IMO. But the more ratios you have in the tranny, the more it shifts. I've become accustomed to it since I've been driving my 2012 LT1 for about six months now.
 

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That is what I was afraid of. Normal operation with crappy TCM programming. Honestly its getting to the point where I am annoyed to drive it.
 

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I'm on my second V6 6-speed. Upshifts are slow but smooth, downshifts are imperceptible. If you can feel yours while it is in D then there's an issue.
 

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My experience is pretty much the same as Driven Daily. Upshifts and downshifts are incredibly smooth and mostly imperceptible. I would have to say that it is the smoothest-shifting automatic transmission that I have ever had. I have a 2012, so I imagine that GM applied what they learned over the years. If it is just a matter of transmission control programming, I would think that the most recent program update would fix it. If it does not, then there must be something else causing the problem. Perhaps GM modified some of the transmission internals over the last few years too.
 

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No you are not alone on this matter. It is a jerky tranny...Honestly, I am waiting my 100K mark and will sell the car after that.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I figured this was common. Its really ashame the quality that GM is putting out now. Past two GM cars I have owned over the past two years had/have some type of transmission issue. Traded in my 07 Impala SS because of the factory powertrain warranty expired and I was running on my second rebuilt transmission. Unfortunetly I didnt do my research on the Malibu. While the V6 is actually pretty powerful, the 6 speed is pathetic. I am going to hold onto it for a few more months then sell it and most likely move away from GM all together.
 

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I figured this was common. Its really ashame the quality that GM is putting out now. Past two GM cars I have owned over the past two years had/have some type of transmission issue. Traded in my 07 Impala SS because of the factory powertrain warranty expired and I was running on my second rebuilt transmission. Unfortunetly I didnt do my research on the Malibu. While the V6 is actually pretty powerful, the 6 speed is pathetic. I am going to hold onto it for a few more months then sell it and most likely move away from GM all together.
That's what I did. I bought me a new 2013 fusion. I traded my LTZ. Mines was jerking hard as hell and the dealership wouldn't even look at it and told me it was normal. Like DD said. When it still does it in D it's bad. I got rid of mines. :/
 

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I agree its not the smoothest shifting trans. especially at low speeds like 20-30 it constantly wants to upshift and downshift.

Casper...I hope Ford has changed their trans in the new Fusion i'm pretty sure the older ones had the same trans as ours just different controller.
 

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I don't know if they changed it or not but it you cans feel it at low speeds. But this hasn't been broken in yet.
 

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Have the 6 speed in my 2011 sierra with 5.3,08cts awd and my new 2013 Malibu eco and i have no issues with it feeling jerky although in the malibu it does up shift through the gears rather quickly but i heard that's to get in the highest gear possible for fuel economy.
 

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The transmission in my 2012 ruins an otherwise mediocre car. Hard shifts and lack of response are the norm. Try to make a quick traffic move and the tranny takes a 1.5 second vacation then wakes up as if startled to discover it was actually asked to do something. I also suspect this gearbox is responsible for the truck like mileage I get. Either I got a bad one or this is another poor effort by GM. My dealer says it's "normal." Fine. I won't be buying GM again.
 

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I've had an decent experience with mine. Then again coming from a Pontiac trans am with a stage 2 shift kit in it. The Malibu is smooth as butter. It does seem lazy at times tho, but its not a performer by any means. But down shifts are good, really like them and its the occasional upshift to pass on the highway where its slow. Other than that, has been decent and it does what it supposed to do.
 

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The transmission in my 2012 ruins an otherwise mediocre car. Hard shifts and lack of response are the norm. Try to make a quick traffic move and the tranny takes a 1.5 second vacation then wakes up as if startled to discover it was actually asked to do something. I also suspect this gearbox is responsible for the truck like mileage I get. Either I got a bad one or this is another poor effort by GM. My dealer says it's "normal." Fine. I won't be buying GM again.
rafory,

I apologize to hear about the transmission delay that you have experienced. I can understand how displeasing this would be. When did you visit your dealer about this? Have you considered trying another GM dealer for a second opinion? Please feel free to message us if you'd like to discuss further.

Kind regards,

William R.
Chevrolet Customer Care
 

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The Malibu is smooth as butter. It does seem lazy at times tho, but its not a performer by any means. But down shifts are good, really like them and its the occasional upshift to pass on the highway where its slow. Other than that, has been decent and it does what it supposed to do.
Totally agree here, same deal with my girlfriend's car. Even when I mash down the throttle, it still shifts smooth as can be. I like it a lot. The only time the downshifts are jerky is when I manually shift it, but that is to be expected.
 

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It has been some time ago. I kinda gave up on the dealer. They just smiled and said it was normal. Also they wanted to do a fuel system cleaning for 170 bucks that might improve the gas mileage I have complained about since the car was new. Given the horrible mpg they should have done this for nothing. If this car would give me good mileage in return I could overlook the awful transmission and lazy performance. Instead I get the worst of both worlds; poor performance and poor mileage.
 

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My 4-cylinder Malibu would often hesitate when accelerating from a stop; I would punch the gas, the engine would rev a bit and the car would move a foot or so and then stop accelerating, then the tranny would re-engage and the car would lurch forward and accelerate like it should. When pulling into traffic I would slightly rev the engine before actually pulling out, because this prevented the tranny from hesitating. Shifts while accelerating were sometimes obnoxious, this lasted for a couple of years.

A month or two ago I put the car into manual mode and drove it like I stole it. Taking off from every stop sign/light I would mash the gas and not shift until the engine approached 7000 rpm. Just like the old stick shift Mazda 353 I had when I was a teenager. I did that a few times, put it back into manual mode, and it works much better. I can now pull out into traffic without fearing that my car will stop accelerating. I dunno why it's better, but it is.

I remember the salesman telling me it has a learning transmission. Seems like B.S. to me. But who knows, maybe I learned it. Tranny still will hunt between gears if I'm driving in traffic and stuck doing 60mph on a gradual incline.
 

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My 4-cylinder Malibu would often hesitate when accelerating from a stop; I would punch the gas, the engine would rev a bit and the car would move a foot or so and then stop accelerating, then the tranny would re-engage and the car would lurch forward and accelerate like it should. When pulling into traffic I would slightly rev the engine before actually pulling out, because this prevented the tranny from hesitating. Shifts while accelerating were sometimes obnoxious, this lasted for a couple of years.

A month or two ago I put the car into manual mode and drove it like I stole it. Taking off from every stop sign/light I would mash the gas and not shift until the engine approached 7000 rpm. Just like the old stick shift Mazda 353 I had when I was a teenager. I did that a few times, put it back into manual mode, and it works much better. I can now pull out into traffic without fearing that my car will stop accelerating. I dunno why it's better, but it is.

I remember the salesman telling me it has a learning transmission. Seems like B.S. to me. But who knows, maybe I learned it. Tranny still will hunt between gears if I'm driving in traffic and stuck doing 60mph on a gradual incline.
It is indeed a "learning" transmission, what all that entails I'm not completely sure, but having tuned one, I can say it's more a blanket excuse for stumped dealers than anything else. :rolleyes:

When I tuned my 6-speed, the primary learning feature I found was related to shift pressure. I've been told that it learns shift points, but that's false. No one who ever suggested that could back up their argument when I told them I've looked at a used, stock G6 6-speed shift table compared to my Malibu 6-speed after six years of driving and the numbers lined up exactly.

Maybe there was some glitch you managed to override or something.
 

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It is indeed a "learning" transmission, what all that entails I'm not completely sure, but having tuned one, I can say it's more a blanket excuse for stumped dealers than anything else. :rolleyes:

When I tuned my 6-speed, the primary learning feature I found was related to shift pressure. I've been told that it learns shift points, but that's false. No one who ever suggested that could back up their argument when I told them I've looked at a used, stock G6 6-speed shift table compared to my Malibu 6-speed after six years of driving and the numbers lined up exactly.

Maybe there was some glitch you managed to override or something.
Agreed that it shouldn't learn shift points, that has to do with engine torque curves and fuel efficiency. I don't know if my car's problem (hesitation) was simply a 'transmission' problem. Engine, tranny, fly by wire throttle all worked together to make it a poor performer out of the showroom.

I started writing a long winded post about what might have been causing the hesitation but that's just a bunch of guessing and doesn't help. My takeaway:
(1) it took no extra time on my part (I was driving anyways)
(2) it was kind of fun (because manual shifting at stupidly high RPMs is more fun that automatic)
(3) it made my car much better behaved (still no sports car, but better)

Maybe it won't help out anyone else, but who know, maybe it will. I suggest people give it a shot and see if there is any improvement.
 

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Hey, I'm all for spitballing ideas. I might be able to answer some questions with my HPTuners experience.
 
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