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


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
6 / 2
Injuries / Deaths:
3 / 0
Average Mileage:
62,729 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 steering problems

steering problem

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2008 GMC Acadia Owner Comments (Page 2 of 6)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #85

Sep 272014


  • 131,000 miles


We were out in South Dakota 200 miles from home. We were driving the Acadia and the transmission began to slip. We didn't think anything of it at first. We drove the Acadia home and scheduled to have the car looked at. On the Monday after we got home, I was driving my kids to school when suddenly the car went completely out of gear and the check engine light came on. I tried putting it into park and then back into gear and had no luck in getting it to go into gear. I shut the engine off and started it again and it did go into gear. I dropped my kids off at school and when in park it went out of gear again. I shut the engine off and on again and got it to go into gear. Drove it directly to the auto shop. They ran the codes. They said it was a 3/5 wave plate issue. Had to have the transmission rebuilt. 2200 for the rebuild. Reading online that this seems to be a common issue with vehicles. Talked to the transmission shop and they said they were rebuilding 8 of these a week from the Saturn, Buick, Chevy and Acadias with the 6 speed transmission. They said the wave plate wasn't heat treated at the factory or something like that. It gets heated and deteriorates. GM would do nothing to help. Hopefully, you guys can.

- Darwin, MN, USA

problem #84

Oct 212014

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 48,365 miles
While attempting to turn into a parking spot at a shopping center, I lost power steering completely. I was able to man handle the vehicle into a parking area that was sparsely occupied and did not hit anything. If I had been in a different area of the parking lot, there were a lot of pedestrians, pushing strollers and most had children with them. I could have hit several of them and had no control over the vehicle. I took it to the mechanic and he said that the rack and pinion needed replacing. I have now received a bulletin from GMC advising that if I have had a problem with steering, I should take it to my closest dealer for them to run a diagnostic. However, if the diagnostic didn't show specifically that the problem was the power steering pump, then I would be responsible for the cost of the diagnostic plus any repairs needed. My mechanic has advised me that the pump is fine, but the rack and pinion needs replacing since the seals or cylinders have been leaking. I had to add power steering fluid at about 23K miles, but the dealer stated it was probably just not filled up when it was off the factory line. So, I have to leave the vehicle at the mechanic until I can afford to have it repaired since I don't want to drive it. I could have killed someone due to this power steering failure. My research show that this problem is common for the 2008 Acadia and I feel GM should stand up and do the right thing for those of us who bought this vehicle.

- Jackson, TN, USA

problem #83

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 #82

Jan 162013


  • 85,000 miles


The contact owns a 2008 GMC Acadia. The contact stated while driving approximately 5 mph attempting to make a turn, an abnormal noise emitted from the steering wheel. The failure recurred multiple times. The vehicle has not been repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 85,000.

- Shannon, MS, USA

problem #81

Nov 042013

Acadia 6-cyl

  • miles
Since the day I purchased my 2008 GMC Acadia I have been having trouble with the power steering. When I start to turn the vehicle the power steering goes completely out. It continues to get worse daily. The first time I took it to GM they told me that it just needed power steering fluid. So they filled it up. This did nothing to correct the problem. I took it back for a second time, and GM said that they could find nothing wrong with the power steering. The power steering stops working and when making a turn it is almost impossible to make the turn. Next, I took my Acadia to a independent repair shop. They told me that the steering rack, or as GM calls it, the rack and pinion was cracked and needed to be replaced. I then spent around $800 to have the steering rack replaced. I began driving it hoping this would solve the problem but it did not fix the steering problem. I took the Acadia back to GM, and they looked at it again. They told me the rack and pinion, or the steering rack was faulty. I told them about replacing it 3 months ago, and they told me that unless I had replaced both the steering rack and the pump at the same time then the part that was not replaced would cause the other part to fail. Next, I took it back to the local repair shop and told them what GM had said. They looked at the steering rack that they had replaced and told me that there was absolutely nothing wrong with the new part they had replaced. They looked into the manuals and internet replacement guides for GM parts and could find nothing saying you had to replace both parts or the one that was not replaced would fail. The power steering continues to fail. It should be recalled.GM will do nothing unless I replace both parts. I guess I will have to wait until someone dies to get GM to take care of the problem and hold their company responsible for the faulty parts on the 2008 GMC Acadia.

- Opelika, AL, USA

problem #80

Oct 032014


  • 110,000 miles
At low speeds, the power steering seems to shut off. It then randomly turns back on. This is extremely dangerous because when turning the wheel hard to make up for the lack of power steering, it sometimes kicks back on which makes the vehicle veer. Another example of a dangerous GMC issue that they refuse to address until multiple people die in mvas.

- Overland Park, KS, USA

problem #79

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 #78

Sep 282014


  • 125,000 miles
When turning into a parking spot or driveway, slow speeds, steering loses power. Has done this as long as I have owned it and keeps getting worse. It also has a popping noise when turning. What im reading is there are alot of complaints of this matter.

- Saucier, MS, USA

problem #77

Jul 262014

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 75,000 miles
Power steering went out while driving. Unable to turn wheel.

- Lexington, KY, USA

problem #76

Jul 042014


  • 72,000 miles
The contact owns a 2008 GMC Acadia. The contact stated that while driving 15 mph, the power steering failed without warning. The vehicle was taken to the dealer where the technician diagnosed that the steering rack and pump needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure. The failure and current mileage was 72,000.

- Stampford, CT, USA

problem #75

May 152014

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 74,000 miles


Power steering stops working intermittently, making car very difficult to control and maneuver.

- Flemington, NJ, USA

problem #74

Dec 302008


  • 10,000 miles
In light of the all the safety recalls by GM for ignition switch failures, I believe that my wife's crash in our 2008 GMC Acadia was the direct cause of the ignition switch failing. Driving North bound on AZ route 89 in the area of prescott, AZ called the granite dells, the car proceeded straight where the road turns slightly to the right. The cat proceeded into and partially up a granite stone out cropping on the opposite side of the road. The car then went air borne landing up side down on its roof in the middle of route 89. I believe that this accident happened due to ignition switch failure which in turn shut off the engine, power steering, and the entire air bag system which in this accident fail to deploy. My wife was air lifted to northern Arizona medical center in flagstaff, AZ for sever head injure from which she has recovered. It is my belief that the ignition failures that have shown up on other GM cars is also a problem for the 2008 GMC Acadia and possibly other like models of GM vehicles. In my opinion it has to be ignition switch failure that shut down the engine, power steering and air bag system causing this accident.

- Chino Valley, AZ, USA

problem #73

Nov 122013

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 77,219 miles
So the window switches don"T work, when I'm trying to open the window it will open but then it won't close back, the steering wheel makes squeaking noises and most important the most costly thing to repair was the transmission. We purchased the car used with 53,000 miles on and after driving another 20,000 miles the transmission broke I had to pay out of my packet about 4,000 dollars for the repair I have two small children and when it comes for safety im not sure if we should keep the vehicle. When I'm reading all those recall issues I'm getting worried about my kids safety.

- Burbank, IL, USA

problem #72

Jul 302013

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 69,000 miles
We bought our 2008 GMC Acadia in January 2008. The battery died in July 2008 while vacationing in Canada leaving us stranded. After it went dead several more times the dealership replaced it. The air conditioning went out several times in 2010 and we had to pay to have the ac recharged twice since. In July 2013 we had to have the transmission replaced when it stopped shifting into gear. Our warranty had expired in January of that year. The dealership did get GM to pay half but it still cost us almost $2,000. Now it is at the dealership again and we have to replace the entire steering column as it lost power steering at low speeds. We are having it repaired at an estimate of nearly $1,800 more. This vehicle cost about $36,000 in 2008. Since then we have paid thousands of dollars just to keep it on the road and safe. This is a lemon and I would like to see a recall for both the transmission and loss of steering at low speeds. I see that both of these are common problems with this vehicle. I would like to be reimbursed for our expenses.

- Swartz Creek, MI, USA

problem #71

May 142014


  • 95,000 miles
I had been hearing a clunking sound while turning the wheel at lower speeds lately, but on the way to my mother in laws house, with our one year old son in the car, the power steering felt like it went out. We took it to the dealership hoping it was an inexpensive fix, but were not so lucky. This repair will set us back about $1,500! ridiculous! I looked online and was shocked to see so many issues with the steering of this vehicle. I truly love the look and ride of my Acadia, but safety always comes first when it involves my family.

- Norfolk, VA, USA

problem #70

May 062014

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 86,236 miles
Power steering failure again! 4/30/2010 at 23624, then 10/31/2013 at 80110, now only driven approx. 6,000 more miles and power steering is failing again May 2014. 10/31/2013 master cylinder also had to be replaced. I absolutely loved my Acadia for the first 50,000 miles, but ever since I started having transmission issues, this vehicle has turned to a money pit. I will never buy a general motor family vehicle again. Very disappointed with the short life of this american made vehicle.

- Livermore, CA, USA

problem #69

Mar 032014


  • 54,000 miles
Car loses power steering intermittently at low speeds, such as in parking lots. The issue only last a few seconds, then returns to normal.

- Leawood, KS, USA

problem #68

Jan 072014

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 96,000 miles
This is the 5th or 6th time that my steering has locked up while driving. I love my Acadia, but it seems as if its falling apart. I'm scared to drive it because of the awful noise my steering is making. Its hard to turn and at moments it just locks up why driving. I'm afraid of hurting my children, myself, or even worse others!!! this problem needs to be fixed. Due to the numerous others that are experiencing the same problems, this is defiantly a manufacture default.

- Sweetwater, TX, USA

problem #67

Apr 072014

Acadia 6-cyl

  • 70,775 miles
There is an intermittent loss of power steering causing complete loss of control of the vehicle. This is a common recurring problem on the GMC Acadia class SUVS. This has now happened at least three times while my wife was driving the car, all fortunately while she was driving a low speeds and able to stop before running off the road. The power steering seems to "come back" without reason as well. My dealer is telling me that I need to replace both the power steering pump and steering rack due to internal leaks caused by seal failures. This sounds like a manufacturing defect due to either design of the seals or incompatible steering fluid being installed at the factory that adversely affects the seals. Here is a link to a consumer forum about the Acadia - just put "power steering" in the search field and host of repeated problems will come up.

- Carmel, IN, USA

problem #66

Apr 082014


  • 90,300 miles
My power steering is making a noise and at low speeds it is very hard to turn, seems like it has reverted back to manual steering. I am anxious that it may stop working as I am driving. Taking it in for diagnosis on 04/10/14. I saw a recall on power steering issues with some makes with GM. This seems like the same problem.

- Eaton Rapids, MI, USA

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