NHTSA — Power Train: Automatic Transmission Problems

CarComplaints.com Notes: The Pontiac Vibe is the mechanical twin of the Toyota Matrix.

Both models were a joint GM-Toyota venture, manufactured together at a NUMMI production facility in Fremont, CA. Only the heating & A/C systems are different.


hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
68,612 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.

2005 Pontiac Vibe transmission problems

transmission problem

Find something helpful? Spread the word.
Get notified about new defects, investigations, recalls & lawsuits for the 2005 Pontiac Vibe:

Unsubscribe any time. We don't sell/share your email.

2005 Pontiac Vibe Owner Comments

problem #13

Nov 012008

Vibe 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 75,000 miles


In November 2008 my Pontiac Vibe (automatic transmission) started to shift harshly (literally slamming into gear), the check engine light came on and my mechanic pulled the code P2716 indicating a solenoid/transmission problem. The car was off warranty, but before I had any work done I called both the local Pontiac dealer and GM (11/4/2008-documented). Each said the same thing. There was no known problem and no recall. So I took the car to a transmission specialist and paid over $3200 for a new transmission. The car still shifted harshly and the transmission specialist did some research and found a Toyota tech bulletin from 2006 that described the exact problem in the Toyota matrix (sister car to the Vibe-nummi plant). I asked Pontiac about this and they still denied that there was a problem. This was also the time of the economic collapse and GM looked like it would go extinct. Now, in Sept. 2010, I get the recall notice admitting to the exact problem that Toyota described in 2006. I was told to wait for the second letter before going to the dealer to check it out. The second letter came in Feb 2011 advising me to go to the Pontiac dealer to get the PCM checked. I did that but I already had the correct PCM from the initial failure in 2008. The failure of the now recalled PCM caused extremely harsh shifting which caused transmission damage (metal filings etc. In the transmission-documented) which led to a complete transmission repair job costing me $3275.45 as well as the replacement of the PCM. My transmission was ruined because of a known faulty part (PCM) that is just now under recall. The right thing for Pontiac/GM to do is pay for my transmission repair caused by their faulty part.

- Altamont, NY, USA

problem #12

Aug 012010


  • 102,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Pontiac Vibe. The contact stated that the vehicle would exhibit an abnormal noise when driving at any speed. The vehicle was taken to the dealer who stated that because the power control module was improperly installed, the engine and transmission had become defective and was causing the abnormal noise. The manufacturer was contacted but offered no assistance. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure and current mileage was 102,000.

- Matteson , IL, USA

problem #11

Aug 212010


  • 123,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Pontiac Vibe. The contact was driving on the interstate and the vehicle started making a grinding noise. The contact tried to drive onto the emergency lane but the vehicle stopped moving. A passerby pushed the vehicle to the side of the road. The vehicle was towed to a GM dealer who inspected the vehicle and stated that the transmission could not be repaired. The dealer did not inspect the transmission; the diagnosis came from how the transmission sounded. The manufacturer stated that the transmission was not under warranty and that transmission for that vehicle was no longer being made. The contact was able to find a used transmission to replace the failed one. The failure mileage was 123,000 and the current mileage was 130,000.

- Beaver, PA, USA

problem #10

Dec 102010

Vibe 4-cyl

  • 97,000 miles


2005 Pontiac Vibe PCM failure. Engine light came on, and the transmission began shifting very hard. Engine code P2716. I have read numerous reports where people are told by dealerships to replace the transmission, and after doing so the symptoms still occur. After finally replacing the PCM, the issues were resolved. That means $4000 in wasted repairs. I have contacted GM with case 71-902887626. The car only shifts poorly when the engine light is on, so it seems logical that the issue is electrically related. (PCM) so far GM has denied that the PCM in this car is affected by the "current" recall. A monkey can put two and two together in this situation. I writing this for other Vibe owners who get the run around with GM and their dealership.

- Beatrice, NE, USA

problem #9

Jul 102010


  • 66,719 miles
Check engine light on. Hard shifting. Gas mileage reduced epc solenoid burned up and was replaced, still had engine light on. Had computer flashed still on. Had valve body replaced cause of bad plunger in solenoid valve body fell apart when removed ( bad clips) and then needed PCM replaced. Is it possible the PCM caused the solenoids to fail and burn up along with the PCM going bad?

- Ambridge, PA, USA

problem #8

Aug 102010


  • 56,955 miles
2005 Pontiac Vibe- PCM unit goes bad, leading to auto transmission error code P2716, first replaced battery then alternator with delco/GMC part now electrical system errors and trans problems due to faulty PCM - solenoid D failure.

- Elmhurst, IL, USA

problem #7

Jul 192010

Vibe 4-cyl

  • 80,500 miles


My 2005 Pontiac Vibe stalled as I was driving on a residential street. I had to have the emission control module replaced and had to pay $571.71 for the repairs. The consumer stated the check engine light illuminated prior to the engine stalling. Several components were replaced, but the engine light would come back on. The consumer received a recall notice regarding a with the PCM. However, the part was not available. Updated 01/28/11

- Columbus, OH, USA

problem #6

Feb 142010


  • 101,800 miles
Driving 2005 Pontiac Vibe and in afternoon of 2/14/2010 shifting became hard. Took to be diagnosed and code that came up is P2716; pressure control solenoid; electrical fault. Took to have diagnosed at several locations, and same code arises. Found out will have to replace computer on a 5 yr old vehicle. Was told by my mechanic that this was an issue that GMC tried to cover up, but knowing that my car has a Toyota engine, he contacted Toyota and found they had the same issue for their matrix & corolla for that same year. Toyota corrected the issue, yet GMC denied there was one present.(tsb TC014-06). At the time of the incident, I had roughly 101,800 miles on vehicle. Per Pontiac--they are requesting me to pay to have another diagnostic test done at a GMC dealer to verify the codes are correct before they would "consider" offering, if anything, any type of resolution. I requested to have the part @ no cost and I would pay for the labor. They are refusing to acknowledge there is an issue that was not caused by me and unless I pay to have another diagnostic test done, they will not offer any re-imbursement or parts at no cost. I now am stuck with not being able to renew my plates B/C @ the emission station failed my vehicle. All because of the computer needing to be replaced. I do not want to pay for another diagnostic test when 4 separate mechanics have tested my vehicle--including a government run Agency--and all came up with the same code and part that needs replacing. I requested to have the part specifically sent at no cost to me from Pontiac and I would pay for the labor, but again, Pontiac is refusing that option until I have it diagnosed at an actual GMC dealership, which is going to cost me another $75, on top of any repair/replacement costs. I also have no guarantee from Pontiac that they will provide any re-imbursement/parts at little to no cost to me, so I feel that I am wasting more money for a faulty computer GMC refuses to acknowledge has a problem.

- Waukesha, WI, USA

problem #5

May 172010


  • 81,000 miles
The check engine light came on. I was making a left turn at a traffic light and the car stalled in the middle of the intersection. I put the car in park and restarted it. Shortly thereafter the car stalled again while I was driving but I was able to make a turn into a parking lot. Also, the transmission will slip out of gear while driving the failure occurs randomly while driving. Was diagnosed as computer performance problem with PO607 engine code.

- Charlotte, NC, USA

problem #4

Mar 302009

Vibe 4-cyl

  • 33,096 miles
2005 Pontiac Vibe automatic transmission 4-cyl 1.8L at 33K miles, had intermittent check engine light + tough shifting for 1 week, took to 2 repair shops and told it needs a new transmission + torque cylinder. Specifically, the code was "pressure control solenoid" and the transmission fluid was black. Car has been well-cared for, mostly city driving, no mountains or cold winters (but located in houston with heat + humidity). There should be no reason for a car this new with this low mileage to have a serious transmission defect. Engine + transmission are Toyota made in the us. Internet searches reveal this may be a known defect of the Toyota matrix and Pontiac Vibe, yet no recalls or service calls have been issued by GM.

- Pearland, TX, USA

problem #3

Jul 252005


  • 1,000 miles


While driving at any speed a cycling vibration can be felt in the steering wheel. It feels like somethi;ng is momentarily binding and slowing the car minutely, as if a shaft were too tight or out of round. Seems to be coming from the transmission or drive shafts. This was noticed shortly after purchasing the vehicle new. The GM dealer in fredericton N.B (O'leary's), was not able to determine the cause but admitted it was present. There is approximately 70,000 kilometers on the vehicles at this time.

- Fredericton, 00, USA

problem #2

Oct 272007


  • 27,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Pontiac Vibe. While driving at any speed, the steering wheel would vibrate and the front end would make a rumbling sound. The contact did not notice any differences in the vehicle prior to the failures. The vehicle is currently being diagnosed by the dealer. The VIN was unknown. The current mileage was 32,000 and failure mileage was 27,000.

- Madison, WI, USA

problem #1

Jan 142007

Vibe 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 46,884 miles
-the contact owns a 2005 Pontiac Vibe. While driving there was hesitation and force when changing gears and accelerating. A yellow warning light illuminated. The failure mileage was 46,884. This failure occurred intermittently. The dealer stated that the pressure solenoid has been diagnosed as faulty. The consumer stated the vehicle jerks into gear first through fifth. Updated 03/19/07.

- Oak Park, IL, USA

Not what you are looking for?