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 3 of 12)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #194

Oct 292014

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 83,000 miles


Drove to pick up someone at the airport noticed that the car was shifting weird. After parking in the airport parking lot for about an hour wanting to leave tried to pull out of the parking spot in reverse I had no response in reverse. Called tow truck because I felt unsafe driving not knowing what else could be wrong. Next day had it towed to the dealer they called said need more time to find the issue. Dealer called the following Monday claiming 3/5/reverse are gone that I have an internal failure in my transmission $4500 repair. Since then I been trying to communicate with GMC customer service they pretty much told me the car is too old and over the warranty. But they considered helping at first since I didn't reach 100,000 miles yet but once they spoke to the district manager from my dealer her said no assistance. GMC has been knowing about the issue since they manufactured this car and has not done anything to stand behind their product. The parts on the inside of the transmission are breaking apart because of faulty material. Why is the customer held responsible for something the customer has no control over. If I do something illegal I get held responsible a manufacturer should too. Just because I was lucky enough to make to 83000 miles and over the 5 year warranty why should I endure the full cost of something that should have been fixed by the manufacturer. I hope more people file a complaint so action can be taken against GM.

- Virginia Beach, VA, USA

problem #193

Nov 112014

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 49,154 miles
We don't even have 50,000 miles on our Acadia and the transmission went out. The dealership is quoting us $4,200 to fix it. This is a well-known issue with Acadias yet GM has not placed a recall. This should not be happening on a vehicle with only 50,000! what a hardship:( we have done everything right with this vehicle since it was new, all regular maintenance and keeping up on the recalls.

- Bellevue, WA, USA

problem #192

Jun 152012

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 71,000 miles
Transmission failed. This is the first of two 2008 Acadias in which we had to rebuild the transmission as the wave plate broke. There needs to be a recall is this is a very common issue and happens around the 70K mile mark!

- Powell, OH, USA

problem #191

Nov 012014

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 71,000 miles


The transmission went out and needed to be rebuilt. $3300. This is the second transmission we have replaced - we did our other 2008 Acadia 2 years ago. This is a very well known issue and there needs to be a recall!!

- Powell, OH, USA

problem #190

Jul 302014

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 98,000 miles
I'm logging these issue as I have now come to realize that the issues we have had with our 2008 GMC Acadia are very widespread among owners. Very early on in the life of the vehicle approx Oct 2008 we began seeing small amounts of water inside the cabin. Water would drip along the windshield occasionally, no action was taken as it was not consistent or so we thought. On multiple occasions my wife would complain that the vehicle would "cutoff" or "die" generally at slow speed in areas such a parking lots when turning, however the dealer was unable to re-create the issue so no repairs were made. One day this summer (2014) my wife was unable to start the vehicle, it just would not crank. On taking it to the dealer the vehicle was diagnosed with a corroded battery cable that ran from the middle of the vehicle to the starter in the engine bay. Cost to repair $1,200. In approximately June 2014 the vehicle began experiencing a slight rollback when placed into drive. At first we didn't think it was an issue as it didn't get worse with time. However by October 2014 we got a check engine light, diagnosis transmission failure cost to repair $4,890 after a $200 discount.

- Miramar, FL, USA

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problem #189

Aug 252012

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 73,730 miles
I purchased my 2008 GMC Acadia on 9/22/11. The following summer on August 25, 2012 the transmission went out while on vacation. It was towed to a dealership where they told me the wave plate and snap ring were broken. They replaced the clutch housing, all pistons, all fibers, replaced side cover and pistons and seals and springs. They replaced control valve body spacer plate and tom solenoid gasket screen. The vehicle had 73,730 miles on it. Since then I have also replaced the headlights twice, the battery once. My dash lights only work when they want to and my windshield sprayer stopped working. To top it off my transmission went out again just the other day!!!! it's November 10th 2014 with 119,000 miles and I'm already needing to have another transmission!"!" this vehicle is junk, and I still owe a ton of money.....something needs to be done about this!

- Lansing , MI, USA

problem #188

Oct 152014

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 173,000 miles


I just purchased a 2008 GMC Acadia one month ago. We live in Washington state and it rains alot. The first couple days of driving the vehicle, we experienced water dripping all over our seats, floor, and in corners of windows when we drove it getting my 3 children and myself wet. I didn't think it was such a big deal at first since I figured it was a minor leak I could easily fix. Over the next 2 weeks, I noticed my front headlight would flicker on and off and sometimes not work at all. I also figured it was a typical vehicle issue. Up until a week ago I tried to start up the vehicle and it wouldn't start, I knew it was the battery. I took it to get checked only to discover the battery, which is located under the floor board on the passenger back side, was submerged with water. The battery was taken and checked out good out of the vehicle. I researched online that there plenty of others experiencing this same issue and there are no recalls in place now. What am I supposed to do? this is a definite safety issue as its affecting the electrical system. I have a 2 year old,4 year old, and a 5 year old. My 5 year old has health issues and my husband and I bought this vehicle in hopes to have a reliable and most importantly safe vehicle because he is in the U.S. navy and is away alot on deployments and underways. The rain draining inside also causes mold which is dangerous for my children. The dealership wants to charge us almost 1,000$ to repair this. They were unsure how to fix this permanently so they referred me to the body shop.

- Lake Stevens, WA, USA

problem #187

Oct 302014

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 75,200 miles
Transmission. Problem shifting...3rd gear. Vehicle would attempt to shift at 40mph but unable to do so. Engine would rev up then shift extremely hard with a loud clunking noise. Took vehicle to local dealership who informed me transmission would need to be replaced. More cost efficient to replace than to rebuild. No third gear. Transmission should not need replaced at 75,000 miles.

- Lebanon, MO, USA

problem #186

Sep 102014


  • 109,000 miles
Transmission went out (wave plate) which caused the engine to rev. Up. because of this I now have to have the engine rebuilt as well. I see that there are a lot of issues with the transmission from searching online. Why hasn't GM recalled this and made it right.

- New Carlisle, OH, USA

problem #185

Oct 202014

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 97,783 miles
2008 GMC Acadia. This year/model has had a lot of issues with the wave plate & transmission. The truck was brought in with 58K miles and had the transmission replaced in 2011. This past week, the transmission has started to malfunction again. Same symptoms from 2011 when the transmission needed to be replaced. The car delays as it goes in and out of gears. The car now has 98K miles and will need to have the 2nd transmission repaired (3rd transmission in car if you count the one it came with). The vehicle is less than 6 years old. Looking at repairs, the cost will be over $3500. Lots of owners are running into these issues with the 2007/2008 Acadia models. I don't understand how GM is not doing a recall on these vehicles to address the root issue.

- Charlotte, NC, USA

problem #184

Mar 012010

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 73,000 miles


Steering locks up. When you take off from a stop sign or traffic light and want to make a right or left turn the steering will lock up to a point where you can't turn. There had been several occasions that I was almost in an accident. Replaced rack and pinion 3 times and power steering. Water pumps are defective, replaced 2 before 100,000 miles transmission went out at 73,000 miles. Every issue that is stated above the dealer didn't want to replace under warranty, even after contacting GM. It took a lot of fighting with GM to replace the transmission when there was known problems with these transmissions being faulty.

- Kennewick, WA, USA

problem #183

Aug 292014

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 880,000 miles
Transmission went out car slowed to 10 mph.

- Wheaton, IL, USA

problem #182

Apr 112014

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 108,000 miles
Well a lot happened with this car. First the power steering pump went out. Then the lifters had to be replaced at 54000 miles. Then at 104000 miles the lifters are back making the same noise that it made the last time I took it to shop.the transmissions went out at 108000. Got it replace. But the heads are still rattling. Then there is the electric problem my windows want go up or down most of the time they said the motors or still good in them. They said that it need electric work that's why my gauges go crazy sometimes. Then there are the struts and shocks that went out at 60000 miles. Ever since I put my car in the shop at peilter Chevrolet in lufkin Texas I have had nothing but trouble. They fix a recall in the tire area on my car, and I think it wasn't done right. They didn't put my tire guards all the way back on its missing screws. They said that's the way it was I told them it wasn't hanging down when they got it. Then when the replace my heads and I picked up my car. The black guard pieces that goes under the hood had screw setting on it. The where not put back in it. Then there was a 2 bigger screw and the didn't know what they went to. I had more thing wrong when I got my car back from them then when I carried it to them. I researched GMC Acadia and I realized that a lot of people had the same thing like lifters replacement, transmission replacement at around 90000 miles to 110000 miles, problems with there struts and shocks. Power steering and much more. What I cant figure out is why hasn't there been recall on the transmission and heads or lifters, if everybody is having this much trouble out of these parts on the 2008 Acadia's. we all pay good money for these vehicle's and to have this much trouble out of them there not worth what we pay for them we are getting cheated out of our hard earned money. That's the way I feel about it.

- Pineland, TX, USA

problem #181

Sep 272014

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 55,000 miles
While driving the transmission did not engage into the next gear and the engine RPM's went very high for a short time and the transmission finally engaged the next gear very roughly. I immediately stopped an placed the vehicle in park. I then placed the vehicle in drive and began to accelerate when the vehicle missed the same gear again. I stopped the vehicle and placed I took the vehicle to a local mechanic who stated that the transmission would have to be rebuilt or replaced. He informed me that this is a major issue with this vehicle and that I should research it on the internet where you can find thousands of the same issue from owners of the same vehicle. The problem that GMC is aware of is a defective wave plate in the transmission that fails, causing the issue. This should be recognized as a defect and GMC should be held accountable.

- Islip, NY, USA

problem #180

Sep 292014


  • 129,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 GMC Acadia. While driving approximately 65 mph, the vehicle failed to respond when the brake pedal was depressed. The vehicle stalled and did not restart. The vehicle was towed to a dealer. The technician stated that the transmission needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the issue. The failure mileage was 129,000.

- Christiana , TN, USA

problem #179

Apr 152011


  • 28,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 GMC Acadia. The contact stated that while driving approximately 45 mph, the vehicle stalled without warning. The vehicle was towed to the dealer. The technician diagnosed that the water pump had failed. The vehicle was addition, the contact stated that the transmission failed and she was not able to exceeded more than 10 mph. The dealer repaired the fuel kit, housing, sensor and cover. However, the failure recurred. The manufacturer was aware of the issue. The approximate failure mileage was 28,000.

- Cathedral City, CA, USA

problem #178

Mar 152013

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 58,000 miles
I have had to replace a transmission on a car with just over 55000 miles. The windows leak when sitting outside in the rain. The power steering locks up when you drive thru a puddle. The braking system makes some god awful noise when going on or off a ramp. This was our very first brand new off the line car. Really wish we had waited until the bugs were worked out.

- Danville, IL, USA

problem #177

Sep 052014

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 71,174 miles
My wife was driving down the highway with our kids when the transmission suddenly slipped. The engine revved up and then dropped into the next gear. The next time she came to a stop the car wouldn't shift into third or fifth gear. It will not go into reverse either. There are no "service engine" lights on. The service garage said she was lucky it didn't happen in heavy traffic. This seems to be a very common problem with these GM vehicles. GM will do nothing because it's out of warranty. This is obviously a defect in manufacturing.

- Coleranie , MN, USA

problem #176

Aug 312014

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 67,500 miles
Driving my family to grandparents house for the weekend to visit.the trans started to rev between gears and then just forward or reverse just big bill to fix for an issue that GM knows they have.I'm not going to ramble on because a lot of people with same issue had spent a lot of time writing novels of what has happen to them.simply will be put this way.tranny stopped working, GM knows of issue and they should pay to fix.

- Mukwonago, WI, USA

problem #175

Jul 112013

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 46,782 miles
Complete transmission failure due to 3-5 wave plate failure. The consumer has an issue with the head restraints in the new Acadia's. he stated the eight passenger vehicle only offers four adult head restraints. Updated 06/03/15.

- Berkeley, CA, USA

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