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really awful
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
108,300 miles
Total Complaints:
10 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. new/rebuilt transmission (10 reports)
2009 Chevrolet Impala transmission problems

transmission problem

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2009 Chevrolet Impala Owner Comments

problem #10

Dec 152018

Impala LS 3.5L V6 Flex

  • Automatic transmission
  • 125,000 miles


I bought the car in September or October of 2016, it had 107xxx miles on it. It looked and sounded great (aside from some minor body wear and tear). I took excellent care of this car. l always kept it clean, changed the oil and rotated the tires regularly, etc. Loved it. Solid car, decent on gas but strong takeoff and acceleration. I used it for Uber off and on when I was hard up for money.

One day my girlfriend used it and was picking up a ride, and the car just wouldn't go. She called me crying and said she knew the transmission just blew which sucked bad because we were already hard up. I had noticed a very strange whirring noise from behind the dashboard prior to the failure, BE MINDFUL OF THAT NOISE!! It almost sounds like a whiny vacuum line. The trans wouldn't drive in automatic 4 speed, I had to manually shift from 1st, it was the only way it would go anywhere.

I bought a used trans with 88xxx miles on it in February of 2019 and had it installed in the same month. They replaced all the seals (I made sure they showed me the old ones). Guess what? At 130xxx miles it's starting to display the same symptoms. Chuggy takeoff in 1st, random slips in 3rd and 4th, no noise but anticipating it soon. I'm so pissed, I still owe over 3k for a loan for this car and it's now sitting because I don't want it unusable in an emergency.

AVOID, AVOID, AVOID the 2009 3.5 models they are a money pit!

- Devon V., Grand Rapids, MI, US

problem #9

Oct 102018

Impala LT 3.5L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 115,235 miles

We bought the car so we could have a reliable family car that's great on gas. It had normal wear and tear, had to replace wheel bearings and a CV shaft seal. A few months ago it started to act up and now there's a grinding noise coming from the passenger side output shaft on the tranny. The gears started grinding into the case. It's been sitting in my yard for almost a month now. As many cases as there are about the trans going out on these cars, Chevy should take responsibility and fix them. They know it's a crap transmission and won't do anything to help people out. They could at least make the rebuild kit cheaper.

- John K., Tucson, AZ, US

problem #8

Apr 272018

Impala LT 3.5L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 101,000 miles

Just bought this car last year under a 10k loan (ripped-off). I bought the car to replace my previous 2000 Impala with a more current and reliable 2009 Impala for college. I was wrong.

After a couple of months of owning the car, the vehicle started to shift hard and it slipped into gear. I thought it was a good idea to get a transmission flush, which temporarily fixed the problems but after another couple of months, they came back. Fast forward to April, I was driving and the car suddenly would not want to accelerate. It came to a complete stop and would not move. Only reverse worked. Had to get the car towed back to my parking spot at college. Then got the car towed to my hometown about 1 hour away for storage until I figured out what to do.

Ordered a rebuilt transmission off of Ebay for about $1500 and bought transmission fluid from the auto store. Then my Uncle and I replaced the transmission ourselves. I was not going to pay the $4000 the dealer wanted or the $2800 that other repair shops wanted.

- Joe H., Marshalltown, US

problem #7

Apr 272018

Impala 3.5L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 198,000 miles


December of 2016 at 105,000 the transmission went out. Now again for the 2nd time at 198,000. Of course past the warranty time frame and mileage for the rebuild, so I have to pay to get it done again. $1,800 the 1st time, getting quotes for the same up to $2,500 now. The car is paid off so not even really worth getting it fixed until my son drives in a few years then make the investment to put a new tranny in. Just ended up getting a new car the other day. Damn Impala sucks!

- Tim P., Centralia , WA, United States

problem #6

Jul 182017

Impala LT 3.5L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 100,000 miles

My mom gave me her car, a 2009 Chevy Impala in Nov 2011. She bought a brand new 2012 for herself. She is elderly and rarely drives. When I received the 2009 impala it had less then 6,000 miles on it. So, like brand new. I have driven it for 5 years and 9 mos. Then transmission failed on me one morning 7/18/17. Before that I only had to replace 2 batteries, wheel bearings, and tires numerous times because I was cheap and only would buy used tires. Divorced mom of three. Pinching pennies where I can. The air conditioner makes noise when it first turns on but I can ignore it. So back to the transmission. I left my house to go to work 7/18/17 and didn't even make it to the end of the street before the car wouldn't go anymore. It was on, I was pressing the gas and nothing. I could however go in reverse. I backed up into my driveway and called AAA. They towed my car to a shop nearby. I was told by the mechanic without even looking that based on my description that its my transmission and would be $1600 to repair it. I didn't have the money and had to beg my mother to pay and I would reimburse her. I'm just so afraid now that more problems may be at bay. I called the mechanic and he stated that the engine sounds good. Just the transmission is dead. But I know at and over 100,000 miles that my car will need the timing belt, mounts and gaskets checked and water hose. I'm just in a worry because I don't want to be without a car. I don't want a new one right now. The mechanic stated that they would do a diagnostic on the car or check it with the computer once they can drive it again after the transmission is fixed. He quoted me a week for it to be repaired. I dropped it off Tuesday but didn't get down there to sign the work order until they were closing so that pushed it into Wednesday to start working on it. So I have to ride with a co worker to get to work for a few days. Thank God for her.

- sallyfasho, Detroit, US

problem #5

Feb 262016

Impala SS V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 100,000 miles

My husband drove our car to work. When he got off work late that evening. He called me and told me he couldn't come home because the transmission may have gone out in the car. Mind you, my husband works and hour away from where we live. I had to gather my children on a school night to drive an hour away to pick up my husband. In the meantime our car was being towed to the nearest Cheverolet dealership which was closed by the way. He had to miss work the next day to get the business worked out with the car. We eventually had to get the car towed again to a facility close to where we lived because we couldn't afford to pay what Cheverolet was asking to fix it. It was ludacris! Needless to say, we got our car fixed and it is running very well. But you can cool believe, when I am able to purchase another vehicle, it will not be off the lot of a Chevy dealer!!!

- kflournoy, New Caney, TX, US

problem #4

Feb 242015

Impala LT 3.6L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 115,000 miles


I bought my 2009 Impala with only 65k miles on it. I drive mainly highway mile as I work 45mins from home. After having my Impala for 2 years, I was left stranded on the side of the interstate by a failing transmission. Not only was I upset by the cost of the fix and the cost to get my car home; that was not something that should have needed to be replaced at that point in time. I guess when they say that "they don't make things like they used too..." you really need to take this to heart.

- megamomma, Hiawatha, IA, US

problem #3

Dec 142015

Impala LS

  • Automatic transmission
  • 33,000 miles

No warning. No idiot light. No weird sounds. No previous problems.

I ran some errands, picked up a friend and was headed out of town for dinner. My car acted like it was spinning on ice or in neutral. It would barely move no matter how much I pushed on the accelerator. My transmission pan is full of metal shavings, transmission is trashed with only 33,000 miles on a 6 year old car that was driven normally.

- betsywestie, Vassar, MI, US

problem #2

Jan 302015

Impala SS 5.3L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 115,484 miles

I bought this car used in 2012. This car had periodic electrical issues and a CO2 sensor failure, but there were no issues comparable to a total transmission failure. Earlier in the winter of 2015, I noticed that the transmission would not shift up into fourth gear on the freeway until after ten minutes of driving. One day in Ann Arbor, MI, I was accelerating out of a turn when the RPM meter started revving to 6,000 and the engine lost power. After restarting the Impala, the car went a few hundred feet to red light and died at the intersection. I eventually was able to drop this vehicle off at an automotive repair shop following a long trip full of transmission failures and start-ups. The mechanic later stated that the transmission would need to be rebuilt. The repair cost was over $1,600 and the transmission still possesses the same problems that existed prior to this event.

Warning signs to look out for prior to transmission failure:

-Transmission hesitation

-Inability to use fourth gear after cold start

-Imminent sign: loud whine/buzz coming from engine compartment (not fan belt)

- pauldo, Ypsilanti, MI, US

problem #1

Mar 142015

Impala LS 3.5L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 80,117 miles

I can not f*cking understand how a car that is barely 6 years old needs a new transmission. I just hit 80K+ miles and did all my maintenance on the car. I was driving and the car would not go beyond 10 miles per hour after trying to drive up a hill. I then had to pull over because it died on me trying to go up that hill. Two tows later I have spend so much money on a young car.

- Jackie B., Newark, NJ, US

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