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View Full Version : Bad manual trans bearings from the factory!!



cinquecintoadesso
10-14-2016, 11:24 AM
First, let me introduce myself, from the spring of 1968 to the fall of 1969 I . was stationed in Vicenza, about thirty miles from Venice Italy, I enjoy all things Italian and have owned many 124 Spyders and Coupes along with a Lancia Zagato Spyder and 1965 Pininfarina 1600S Spyder with the OSCA engine. To say I enjoy Fiats and Italy is an understatement, while stationed in Vicenza, I worked on cars owned by officers to pay for my weekends in Venice and Florence. In October of 1973 I gained employment as a Fiat mechanic at Ewing Buick till Fiat departed the USA in 1981 but hoped they would return. I started a European auto repair shop in 1981 till I retired from auto work in 2008. I have added this to show I am thoroughly acquainted with cars and their problems.

When Fiat returned I was glad to see them here but with only one model meant a Very limited market. When the 500L was introduced I bought one of the first 2014 500L Easies with the six speed manual transmissions( I don't care for automatics ). The car was everything I hoped it would be but it had a strange "groan" in reverse backing up an incline. I talked to the dealer about it but they claimed they could not reproduce the noise. I had no other problems with the car, got 38 to 41 MPG on the road and 33 to 36 in town with freeway mileage. This year I noticed that in second gear acceleration the engine seamed to hunt for the throttle position but not the other gears so I took the car to Dallas Fiat to see if the computer needed to be remapped or updated. Their main technician was at school but the computer was updated (flashed) and I went my way with the engine running smoother. Two weeks later the "hunting" returned so I returned to Dallas Fiat as their main Tech was now there. He went on a test drive and heard the "groan" and he decided I needed a transmission, In sort order I found myself in a two door 500.

My problem with the "groan" ended with more than a month in the loaner and a new transmission, flywheel and clutch disc replacement. After two weeks and less than 700 miles I started hearing a differential bearing noise. I have the habit of putting the transmission in neutral at stops to reduce throughout bearing problems and noticed gear clatter was present, so much for a "new" transmission, gear clatter comes from high mileage transmissions or improperly set bearing preload and the "groan" returned also, back to Fiat Dallas I go. 21 days and 759 miles later I'm told not to worry there is no problem. The next day I had to make a round trip to Austin and by the time I was back the transmission was roaring!

Another Loaner, this time a 2015 500L Trekking with the "Twin flywheel Automatic" and other than the reduction of MPG I liked the smooth shifting.

Again the car was in the shop for more than four months and told my car was ready with another "new" transmission.

As I drove from the dealer the differential bearing noise was as loud as when I brought it in, if not louder but I had to have the car for the next week so I kept going and called to bring it back the following week. By that time the "groan" was back and the gear clatter in neutral is getting louder. Fiat Dallas has been very nice and friendly, I have no beef with them as dealerships do not rebuild transmissions anymore I'm told so whoever is doing the transmission work needs to go back to school.

Now for the clincher, after taking the service manager for a test drive he agreed the third transmission had bad bearings (bad bearings from the factory??)and that it will be very hard to get a forth transmission, my question is, why was the first transmission with no bearing noise and a "groan" that fiat says is a "clutch" problem replaced?? Does Fiat not send out "tech updates" anymore?? The main tech was backed up with transmission jobs so limped around Dallas for about a month before leaving the car again. Another 500L Trekking loaner for me and this time to have them rebuild the transmission or replacement whichever came first. This went on for over four months.

As of October 30th Fiat of Dallas is GONE and I have a car with a transmission that may just lock up on me. I don't dare to drive out of town and will now have to go to Ft. Worth or Mckinney for service. I'm not a happy camper, this was SO unnecessary and disappointing. I so HATE Japanese cars, but at least they are reliable and the manufacturers stand behind their cars. I found comments on this blog about arbitration being a dead end so my lawyer will get to earn his pay.

FiatCares
10-14-2016, 12:03 PM
First, let me introduce myself, from the spring of 1968 to the fall of 1969 I . was stationed in Vicenza, about thirty miles from Venice Italy, I enjoy all things Italian and have owned many 124 Spyders and Coupes along with a Lancia Zagato Spyder and 1965 Pininfarina 1600S Spyder with the OSCA engine. To say I enjoy Fiats and Italy is an understatement, while stationed in Vicenza, I worked on cars owned by officers to pay for my weekends in Venice and Florence. In October of 1973 I gained employment as a Fiat mechanic at Ewing Buick till Fiat departed the USA in 1981 but hoped they would return. I started a European auto repair shop in 1981 till I retired from auto work in 2008. I have added this to show I am thoroughly acquainted with cars and their problems.

When Fiat returned I was glad to see them here but with only one model meant a Very limited market. When the 500L was introduced I bought one of the first 2014 500L Easies with the six speed manual transmissions( I don't care for automatics ). The car was everything I hoped it would be but it had a strange "groan" in reverse backing up an incline. I talked to the dealer about it but they claimed they could not reproduce the noise. I had no other problems with the car, got 38 to 41 MPG on the road and 33 to 36 in town with freeway mileage. This year I noticed that in second gear acceleration the engine seamed to hunt for the throttle position but not the other gears so I took the car to Dallas Fiat to see if the computer needed to be remapped or updated. Their main technician was at school but the computer was updated (flashed) and I went my way with the engine running smoother. Two weeks later the "hunting" returned so I returned to Dallas Fiat as their main Tech was now there. He went on a test drive and heard the "groan" and he decided I needed a transmission, In sort order I found myself in a two door 500.

My problem with the "groan" ended with more than a month in the loaner and a new transmission, flywheel and clutch disc replacement. After two weeks and less than 700 miles I started hearing a differential bearing noise. I have the habit of putting the transmission in neutral at stops to reduce throughout bearing problems and noticed gear clatter was present, so much for a "new" transmission, gear clatter comes from high mileage transmissions or improperly set bearing preload and the "groan" returned also, back to Fiat Dallas I go. 21 days and 759 miles later I'm told not to worry there is no problem. The next day I had to make a round trip to Austin and by the time I was back the transmission was roaring!

Another Loaner, this time a 2015 500L Trekking with the "Twin flywheel Automatic" and other than the reduction of MPG I liked the smooth shifting.

Again the car was in the shop for more than four months and told my car was ready with another "new" transmission.

As I drove from the dealer the differential bearing noise was as loud as when I brought it in, if not louder but I had to have the car for the next week so I kept going and called to bring it back the following week. By that time the "groan" was back and the gear clatter in neutral is getting louder. Fiat Dallas has been very nice and friendly, I have no beef with them as dealerships do not rebuild transmissions anymore I'm told so whoever is doing the transmission work needs to go back to school.

Now for the clincher, after taking the service manager for a test drive he agreed the third transmission had bad bearings (bad bearings from the factory??)and that it will be very hard to get a forth transmission, my question is, why was the first transmission with no bearing noise and a "groan" that fiat says is a "clutch" problem replaced?? Does Fiat not send out "tech updates" anymore?? The main tech was backed up with transmission jobs so limped around Dallas for about a month before leaving the car again. Another 500L Trekking loaner for me and this time to have them rebuild the transmission or replacement whichever came first. This went on for over four months.

As of October 30th Fiat of Dallas is GONE and I have a car with a transmission that may just lock up on me. I don't dare to drive out of town and will now have to go to Ft. Worth or Mckinney for service. I'm not a happy camper, this was SO unnecessary and disappointing. I so HATE Japanese cars, but at least they are reliable and the manufacturers stand behind their cars. I found comments on this blog about arbitration being a dead end so my lawyer will get to earn his pay.

Hi cinquecintoadesso,

I’m sorry to hear about these ongoing issues with your vehicle. Are you currently experiencing concerns with your latest transmission? Please let me know and I’d be happy to look this further for you.

Andrea
Fiat Social Care Specialist

cinquecintoadesso
10-15-2016, 12:40 AM
First, Andrea (also my daughters name xyxwave)the last paragraph two paragraphs summarizes my problem. I came in with NO problems with the transmission and "three" transmissions later I still have LOUD bearing noise above 5 MPH. The service manager, Joe Cruse, at Dallas Fiat had the sales manager talk to me about buying the Trekking I was driving but the deal he offered did NOT set with me. I bought the Manual transmission Easy so I didn't have to put up with the problems I thought would happen with the "clutch automatics" as I stated in the second paragraph and I was right about the " automatic trans" problems and was blind sided my problems (HOW DO YOU MESS UP A MANUAL TRANSMISSION??)
Thank you for your time Andrea and the reason for a double post is I'm new to this forum and didn't see my first post. I do hope we can resolve the bad bearings problem soon as the car is now a drive way queen ( meaning it's not going any where :confusion:)

cinquecintoadesso

FiatCares
10-17-2016, 10:38 AM
First, Andrea (also my daughters name xyxwave)the last paragraph two paragraphs summarizes my problem. I came in with NO problems with the transmission and "three" transmissions later I still have LOUD bearing noise above 5 MPH. The service manager, Joe Cruse, at Dallas Fiat had the sales manager talk to me about buying the Trekking I was driving but the deal he offered did NOT set with me. I bought the Manual transmission Easy so I didn't have to put up with the problems I thought would happen with the "clutch automatics" as I stated in the second paragraph and I was right about the " automatic trans" problems and was blind sided my problems (HOW DO YOU MESS UP A MANUAL TRANSMISSION??)
Thank you for your time Andrea and the reason for a double post is I'm new to this forum and didn't see my first post. I do hope we can resolve the bad bearings problem soon as the car is now a drive way queen ( meaning it's not going any where :confusion:)

cinquecintoadesso

Hi cinquecintoadesso,

Sorry to hear about your experience! Can you PM our page with your VIN and contact information? I would like to look into this further for you.

Andrea
Fiat Social Care Specialist

super15066
01-23-2017, 02:24 PM
I just got a 500L Lounge 6 spd manual about 2 weeks ago 2014... after reading this article im really concerned D: My car does a groaning noise as well when in reverse on an incline. Did not really think much of it. Im not experiencing the same issues as above with clattering and so forth but I seriously hope this wont be affecting the car

Joe's 500L
01-24-2017, 01:42 AM
Welcome to the Forum! I hope Andrea (Fiatcares) was able to resolve your transmission issues.

I have the duel dry clutch.....and it wines a bit going backwards (uphill slightly) coming out of my garage....and I have heard the same, mild wine sound on the stick 500L and 500's, for that matter......my son works for a studio here, locally...so I have driven many Fiats, on test drive. I think, it is safe to say, they all wine a bit.....I think, it's the nature of the vehicle and transmission itself. Like you, I was worried about the car being DCT....but, mine had, had all the updates performed....then, low and behold there was a new update for tuning the shifting, (update was issued 8/16 i believe it was). I got that update done...and now it's perfect....drives wonderfully!

Let us know, of your results....would be interesting to know.

Good luck!