definitely annoying
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
29,900 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.

2003 Volvo S60 transmission problems

transmission problem

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2003 Volvo S60 Owner Comments

problem #5

Dec 102008


  • 94,000 miles


On 12 Dec, 2008, my 2003 Volvo S60 stalled with no warning while traveling on a busy highway at 60 mph. I pulled to safety (vehicle was in "limp home" mode) and had the vehicle towed to the dealership (park place Volvo). Since the vehicle started right back up and presented no codes, I was told there was nothing wrong and given a bill for $418 (for tow and diagnostic check). Approx. 1 month later, vehicle presented same problem; it stalled, without warning, while driving... creating a great safety risk for the second time. I had vehicle towed again to same dealership, and since vehicle started right back up with no codes, I was told there was nothing wrong. Dealership could not get vehicle to duplicate problem on either occasion. However, to appease me, dealership did replace accelerator pedal...vehicle still presents same stalling issue, and intermittently goes into "limp home" mode for no apparent reason. This will undoubtedly cause a serious accident, as it is obvious, from the numerous complaints on this issue, that this is a mass defect.

- Grapevine, TX, USA

problem #4

Dec 012004

S60 5-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 40,000 miles
The transmission of my S60 inadvertently mis-shifts at a variety of speeds. The problem happens at low speeds when backing off between gears and feels like it up shifts at an inappropriate time and speeds up. Other times the transmission will mis-shift upon acceleration causing high revs, with no power. Talked with Volvo several times and first service visit paid $100 for a software upgrade that did nothing. Next time to service they checked the servos and stated they were ok. Last trip to service addressed issue w/ service rep and requested to have it documented. Service rep stated car had a 100K guarantee dismissed request. Car has 80K on it and problem seems to be increasing. Afraid it is a safety issue due to lack of control.

- San Diego, CA, USA

problem #3

Jul 082005

S60 5-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 6,000 miles
2003 Volvo S60. Vehicle stalled at least 6 or 7 times at various speeds. Transmission was replaced due to stalling.

- Alpharetta, GA, USA

problem #2

Aug 012003

S60 5-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 500 miles
Vehicle continued to row when consumer removed foot from the accelerator pedal when driving up an incline. Dealer was notified, and they informed the consumer that was the normal characteristic of that vehicle.

- Brighton, MA, USA

problem #1

Aug 012003

S60 5-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 9,000 miles
For both our 2001 Volvo S60 2.4T and our 2003 Volvo XC90 2.5T AWD there have been unsuccessful attempts to repair a transmission defect (essentially same transmission in both vehicles per Volvo tech support). Between 2nd and 3rd there is. Intermittent/unpredictable failure to engage 3rd in timely fashion with resultant loss of acceleration as vehicle is functionally in neutral with engine racing for 0.5 to 2.5 seconds. This is extremely dangerous especially when pulling on to a highway. We have experienced 2 near collisions (almost being struck from behind). Volvo tech support acknowledges a flaw in design causing servo fluid air lock in the 2001. A new transmission is scheduled to be replaced for our S60, but if the problem is still occuring in our 2003, will this correct the problem? the 2003 XC90 they say can be repaired with "upgraded software" (which is scheduled for that vehicle) but this remedy failed when performed on our 2001 S60. We have let the dealer know we feel both vehicles are unsafe with this problem and we are now stuck with them trying to remedy both glaring safety defects. We are not aware of a federally mandated recall to repair this acknowledged (safety) defect.

- Ft. Washington, PA, USA

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