Notes: Ahh, the ole' sophomore slump. The 2008 Acadia suffers from widespread transmission failure around 75,000 miles.


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
2 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
80,666 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2008 GMC Acadia drivetrain problems

drivetrain problem

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2008 GMC Acadia Owner Comments (Page 11 of 12)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #34

May 042013

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 84,000 miles


There was a "clunk" upon acceleration from stopped, soon after vehicle would not move. Wave plate was destroyed in transmission causing a need to be rebuilt, as so many, if not all others in 2007-2009 GMC Acadias have been. Out of pocket cost to me is $3,500 because GM used a $2 part instead of an $8 part. This is an huge safety issue that is stranding people, mothers with children, in dangerous situations, all the while, GM is well aware of the problem and solution but refuses to step up and take responsibility for it. There needs to be a safety recall for this issue.

- Milwaukee, WI, USA

problem #33

Apr 182013


  • 112,000 miles
Transmission blew.

- Glen Allen, VA, USA

problem #32

Apr 172013

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 56,845 miles
I was driving my 2008 GMC Acadia along with my sister and her two god children. We were at a red light and proceeded to go when the light turned green. Got up to 20mph and the SUV jerked severely. Once it jerked the SUV would not go over that mileage. We were all scared! I took them home and drove to a GM dealership. I paid $114 for a diagnostic test and was told they did not know what was wrong. They speculated that a wave plate broke or moved. They advised in order to know for sure, I would have to pay $900 plus for a deeper diagnostic! I'm under my 100K mileage and no one is honoring that. I'm a mba student and don't have that kind of cash! I've only had this SUV for 3 years. I bought it used, had only one owner before me, and it was under 20K miles. Sounds like GM's product is not reliable and they do not stand behind their product. I tried to buy an american product to put help our economy and this is the repayment for it! I'm going back to foreign cars, I will never purchase another GM built vehicle as long as I breath!

- Addison, TX, USA

problem #31

Apr 012013


  • 41,000 miles


My car engine starting revving while driving at normal speeds. While driving with my 3 children in the car, it came to a dead stop and couldn't go in reverse. The vehicle was towed and then diagnosed with a broken 35R clutch wave plate. Had to have the transmission rebuilt at 48K miles. The car had been driven less than 10K miles a year for 5.5 years.

- Westport, CT, USA

problem #30

Apr 012013

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 81,125 miles
While driving down interstate state at 70mph I came up on slower traffic and had to slow down to 60-65mph before I could change lanes. Once changing lanes and as I went to accelerate the vehicle seemed to downshift and RPM went from 1800-2000 to 5000 and the vehicle basically stalled for about 5 seconds causing a 18 wheeler to basically all but wreck to keep from killing me and my other 5 family members in the vehicle. I pulled over at the next exit and made sure there was no kind of transmission codes or anything to show up on the dash but I still checked my fluids and everything checked to ok. I had 325 more miles to get home so I basically had to baby it to the house. It happened several more times during the trip but that was the worst. I have also experience on several occasions that the airbag in the passenger side front seat turns itself on and off for no apparent reason with the same individual sitting in it who weighs 130lbs. At first I just thought it may have been the way they were sitting but I weigh 200lbs and it did the same with me. I'm hoping to get these problems resolved by dealer tomorrow but with so many transmissions doing the same thing the gov & GMC need to take charge of this issue and get the damn problem fixed before more people have issue and get killed or injured.

- Columbus , MS, USA

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problem #29

Jul 312012

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 21,431 miles
I have been very disappointed with my vehicle! when I was in the market for a new vehicle I new I wanted the Acadia. I have been a long time customer at my local dealership and when I arrived at the lot they had just brought in a 2008 that had one owner. I was ecstatic because it was everything I could want and not as expensive as a 2012. When I first started driving it was great I loved it! I bought the car with 8,000 or so miles on it and as time went on I started to notice that it wasn't driving like it did the first day I bought it. I drive to and from work 5 days week roughly 35 miles a day. I was in town at the bank and as I started to pull out into the lane my RPM's went sky high and wouldn't come back down and I could not accelerate. I was so scared I pulled over in the next available spot and turned off the car. I waited for 5 minutes, turned it back on and proceeded to pull into traffic. Ever since that day my car has been in the shop twice for transmission issues. I currently have 29,000 miles on the car and it drives like crap! I have it aligned, tires rotated, and I cannot get a smooth ride. The steering wheel shimmies over 50 mph, shimmies when I hit the breaks, my heater doesn't seem to work well unless it is on 85 way too hot. I now have to take the car back into the shop yet again for the same thing transmission failure, alignment off, and who knows what else. I read a lot reviews on this model and seems as though we have all experienced the same issues. I have been a long time Pontiac/GMC buyer and I am very disappointed in GM for not taking this transmission thing serious. How many more complaints do you need to receive before something is done" fatal accident" in which case I hope it isn't me but also nobody else. Please fix this issue it has been a thorn for some time and it's about time that GM do something about it!

- Rolling Prairie, IN, USA

problem #28

Jan 252010

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 82,000 miles


Vehicle leaks water when it rains onto driver and front passenger. Water leaks into airbags and visors. After rains, vehicle will not turn off, even with key removed. Vehicle rolls significantly while in park or when in gear. Transmission skips and slips.

- Belton, TX, USA

problem #27

Mar 102013

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 81,110 miles
I purchased a 2008 GMC Acadia one year ago. It seemed like we had made a god sent deal and now we are finding out that the transmission is going out. Our family doesn't have a whole lot of money to just throw away and we put down $5000 and now we are looking down the barrel of a transmission. Not fair considering the dealership apparently knew it was about to go out. I was driving with 3 other teens in my car and all of a sudden it wouldn't go faster than 25 mph.

- Eunice, LA, USA

problem #26

Mar 042013

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 68,000 miles
My wife was driving the vehicle and approached a stop sign. Once she tried going again the car would not accelerate and we had to tow it to the dealer. They said the transmission went out @ 68,000 miles? also the waterpump, powersteering pump. Master cylinder, as well as something with an air bag connector. The air bag connector has been going on and off for the last two years since we bought it two years ago as a GM certified pre-owned vehicle. I am not sure how this vehicle has not been recalled.

- New Braunfels, TX, USA

problem #25

Mar 082013


  • 76,462 miles
I was driving down the highway on Friday afternoon at 65 mph when I tried to accelerate to pass a vehicle, and the engine just revved nearly to the redline. I was able to reach the exit, where I pulled over, put the car in park, then back into drive to start off again. At this point, the car would not shift out of 1st gear. I was able to make it to a midas shop for a check and they stated that the transmission was shot. Called the local GMC dealer and had the car towed there for a diagnostic. They called Saturday afternoon and confirmed that the transmission needs to be replaced at a cost of $3700. The car is 24K miles under warranty mileage, but just happens to be 5 months outside of the 5 year warranty window. I then called GMC customer care for redress and was told they would investigate. Received a call today ad they left a message, but only to ask which dealership it was at, even though I provided that info on Saturday, to include the phone number to the service department. The transmission problem seems to very widespread based on the number of responses on various websites, but doesn't seem that it is being seriously addressed by GM management and is a very serious safety concern.

- Eagle River, AK, USA

problem #24

Feb 232013


  • 70,000 miles


The contact owns a 2008 GMC Acadia. The contact stated that while driving approximately 40 mph, the vehicle shook and independently decelerated to 10 mph then stalled. After restarting, the transmission failed to shift into reverse. The vehicle was able to resume normal operation. The vehicle was taken to an authorized dealer for diagnosis. The technician stated that the transmission wave plate fractured which caused internal damage. The vehicle was repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the problem. The approximate failure mileage was 70,000.

- Russellville, AL, USA

problem #23

Feb 212013

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 86,000 miles
Transmission started slipping between 2nd and 3rd gear then two days later just quit in a drive thru lane at a fast food. Couldn't get into any gear. I had to have people push it out to a safe location. Towed it home. Now I have a $18,000 piece of scrap metal sitting in my driveway.

- Norfolk, NE, USA

problem #22

Dec 082008

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 5,000 miles
I was taking my daughter to Florida for cheer leading competition; I was just outside of Illinois when the check airbag light and message screen came on thankfully the light went off but came back on on our way back to Chicago and kept coming on and off. Took it to dealer but they only said that the harness was tight they only wiggled it and light went off but came back a couple of days later. Then the power steering started making noise dealer said they didn't hear anything and didn't do anything and noise is getting louder. Then suspension stared it making noise. Took it to dealer and had tie rods replaced. Then the service airbag problem came back and this time didn't go away. Took it to the dealer and they said that the harness was to tight and they rerouted it so it wasn't tight anymore. Worked for a couple of days and its on again but I didn't take it back and now is past its warranty.then head lamp went out. Had to pay dealer $180 (rip off) next the other head light went out. My nephew replaced it in less than 10 min. Now there is a recall for that head light problem. Then wipers arm came loose from motor I had my cousin fix it for me. Now I have had the check engine light on for a couple of weeks took it to autozone came back with the code to replace the canister purge solenoid now I have the transmission problem, it started to act funny shifting pretty hard some times and then a few days ago I was driving on the freeway coming home when I notice the rpms at about 45000 and it wouldn't change gears and the fuel gauge started going nuts I don't know why and had to drive it home on the same gear. Took it to autozone and came back with the same code for the solenoid plus P0700/P0716/P0717 for the transmission. Now my Acadia is just sitting on my driveway no money to fix it and driving my 15 year old truck hoping GMC does something about this nightmare

- Northlake, IL, USA

problem #21

Feb 242013

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 123,000 miles
I was driving to the store when I turned a corner and went to hit the gas to go and I had nothing! my car started rolling backwards down the hill into traffic. I was lucky to not be hit. I slammed on the brakes and threw it into park. I turned my car off and restarted it and tried to move it and I had no drive so I tried to put it in reverse to back it up on the side of the road and nothing I had no drive no reverse nothing!!!!! I had it towed to the shop and I still know nothing on why it happened except they said there is an internal transmission issue. I haven't even owned it a year. I rely on this car to safely get my three kids where they need to be and now I'm terrified to put my children back in this car after reading all the other horror stories about this car. There needs to be a recall!!!!!!!!!!

- Mount Vernon , OH, USA

problem #20

Feb 042013


  • 90,177 miles
The contact owns a 2008 GMC arcadia. The contact stated that while traveling 25 mph, there was a loud pop noise from under the vehicle. The vehicle then became resistant to acceleration attempts. The check engine light was also illuminated and the vehicle would not move forward or when in reverse. The vehicle was taken to the dealer and the contact was advised that the transmission needed to be replaced. The VIN was not available. The failure and the current mileages were 90,177.

- Key West, FL, USA

problem #19

Apr 012011


  • 85,000 miles
I've had three transmissions in this car with only 114,000 miles. Wave plate, torque converter problems.

- Woodbury, MN, USA

problem #18

Sep 262011


  • 37,960 miles
The contact owns a 2008 GMC Acadia. The contact stated that he noticed a puddle of liquid underneath the vehicle. The vehicle was taken to the dealer for inspection and they stated that the transmission needed to be replaced.the vehicle was repaired but the failure recurred. The manufacturer was not notified. The failure mileage was 37,960.

- Ofallen, MO, USA

problem #17

Jan 172013

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 45,000 miles
On two occasions after putting the vehicle in park, turning off the ignition, removing the key and exiting the vehicle, it rolled back and only stopped when driver jumped back in and applied the brake. This occurred on a flat garage surface (no incline) on both occasions, with different drivers on each occasion. GMC dealer says they can not replicate the issue and there is nothing to repair. This vehicle is dangerous, as it can roll back unexpectedly, potentially causing serious bodily injury or death, or damage to physical property. GMC recalled the 2009 Acadia for the same issue previously, but maintains there are no issues with my vehicle. I found additional complaints for this issue on the 2008 Acadia on the internet as well, so this issue is not unique to me.

- Gilbert, AZ, USA

problem #16

Jan 212013

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 65,400 miles
Traveling approximately 65 mph in the far left lane of a major highway. Going up a slight incline I tried to accelerate but the car was not reacting then the rpms would shoot up but the car would not react. I had to cross 3 lanes of traffic to get to the emergency lane. The car would not go over 20 mph after that and struggled at that. I managed to get to a gas station. 1 tow truck, 1 rental car and now $1500 to replace the "wave plates" and "wave housing". additional note - the car broke down in August 2012 as well. In that incident the water pump had to be replaced.

- Brookfield, CT, USA

problem #15

Nov 052012

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 105,169 miles
The power steering stopped working while driving and I had to complete emergency maneuvers to get the car off of the road.

- Atlantic Beach, NC, USA

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