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Thor Chateau Citation, Four Winds Siesta

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Old 01-31-2018, 05:45 PM   #1
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Default Transmission issues????

Sorry for being long winded on this one!!

At about 25K miles on our 2014 THOR 24SA, we had just stopped at a stop sign, turned right up a slight incline. Just as the transmission was about to shift out of 2nd gear, we heard a very loud “BANG” as if a sledge hammer had hit the transmission.

The engine started racing – as I was still trying to accelerate. The RV began to slow down as if the transmission was in neutral. I checked the gear shifter – figured I must have bumped it into neutral. Nope, still in “D”. Coasted to the side of the road. Engine still running, no warning lights on the display, gear shifter in “D”, I could race the engine but RV would not move. (Almost as if the drive shaft had fallen off.)

I killed the engine. Darn!!!!!! What to do? What to do? Looked under the RV. Everything looked good.

Started the engine, put ‘er in drive and away we went. Everything working ok. No lights. Babied the RV for the next few 1000 of miles. No problem.

Next oil change at Mercedes of Chandler, I asked them to check the transmission. All diags showed everything to be ok. No issues.

At about 37K+ miles, we were heading out on a two-month long trip. Driving from Phoenix to Flagstaff up I17 to 7000+ feet elevation, no problems.

Pulled into Flagstaff, stopped at a stop light, turned right up a slight incline. As the RV was about to shift out of second gear, another “BANG”.

The RV started coasting – while I was trying to pump the accelerator to see if anything would happen. Nope! RV just coasted to the side of the road. Everything looked good. Changed shifter to Park, back to Drive. RV would not move. Darn!!!

Killed the engine. Scratched my head!!! Started the engine, shifted in to Drive and away we go. Everything worked fine.

Slowly drove the RV to the Flagstaff Mercedes dealership and asked them to check the transmission. They could find nothing wrong.

I called my ACE Service guy in Chandler and discussed the issue. He suggested continuing on with our trip.

At about 42K miles in the mountains near Chattanooga, I pulled over at a beautiful lookout. Killed the engine. Everything was going great.

Pulled back out on to the road, heading up a slight incline and just as the RV was shifting out of 2nd gear, another “BANG”. Same thing. About to lose my temper now!! : (

Killed the engine, started it back up, and away we went.

At about 44K+ miles, driving through Amarillo, all traffic was moved off of I40 to a single lane of traffic on the access road. Driving at about 5 miles per hour for about a half hour, finally were about to pull back onto I40.

UP a slight incline with the RV about to shift out of 2nd gear, another “BANG”. Coasted to a stop in the middle of the one lane road – with about 5 miles of cars lined up behind me.

Killed the engine. Started it back up and finished the trip.

Mercedes of Chandler had the RV for over a week trying to determine the issue. They called Mercedes in Germany to see if they knew what to check. All diags checked out. Darn!!

After much discussion, the decision was made to change out the Transmission Control module. Transmission oil looked great. Filter had no metal particles. Control module replaced.

Of course, Mercedes would not warrant the module replacement because nothing showed up on the diags. That SUCKS. (I would figure the control module was part of the drive train. RV sure would not work without it.)

So, $1500 later, with the new transmission module, we have now driven the RV about 2000 miles and have had no more issues.

Transmission does seem to shift a bit better than before the module was changed out.

Keeping our fingers crossed.
A product of Western Oklahoma, a great place to be from!!
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Old 01-31-2018, 06:26 PM   #2
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Default Re: Transmission issues????

If the vehicle was still under warranty you should not be responsible for the repair charge. It is MB's responsibility to rectify the problem and if the dealer can't figure it out and has to throw a part at it as an educated guess it's MB's problem, not yours.
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Old 02-06-2018, 06:04 PM   #3
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Default Re: Transmission issues????

Ours did this just before the 3 stooges showed on the dash, (Wheel Rotation, ABS, Skid) from false readings from one of the wheel rotation sensors. We have had 6 new sensors installed under warranty. The lights are on now and from reading in other forums it is just iron powder from the brake pads building up on the sensors. I'm going to pull the rear wheels off and clean off the sensors. I suspect these sensors also provide information for the transmission.
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Old 02-06-2018, 06:57 PM   #4
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Default Re: Transmission issues????

Thanks WizBandit

Nothing showed up on the dash displays. Nothing showed up when Mercedes check the history report. : (

I have not had any issues with the wheel sensors. The only time the ABS/SKID light came on was when the brake pedal switch malfunctioned. Switch replaced - no more issues.
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Old 02-07-2018, 07:31 PM   #5
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Default Re: Transmission issues????

Might see more responce on NCV3 Forum
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Old 04-15-2018, 01:59 AM   #6
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Default Re: Transmission issues????

Along same line as Wizbandit-- Twice I have have the 3 idiots light up. ABS ASR ESP - 1st was Right rear wheel sensor, 2nd (7 months later) was the left rear. The first time I was able to continue trip of 5-600 miles with the lights on and no cruise or often they reset after a restart and everything worked.
The recent failure was totally different. Idiot lights on a highway speed, lost cruise control. Refueled, and on restart no idiot lights- as I pulled into traffic, it did not want to shift, went to 2500+ rpm in 1st, shifted hard to 2nd, back to first. and bang into 2nd. Shutdown in parking lot. Restart with lights on, all normal w/o cruise, drove 200 miles home without shutting down. (did not want lights to clear)-- The wheel sensors apparently tell the tranny when to shift. Dealer diagnostic states "left wheel sensor signal intermittently goes away."

2016 Siesta Sprinter 24ST

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Last edited by Hooligan2; 04-15-2018 at 02:04 AM.
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Old 04-15-2018, 08:56 PM   #7
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Default Re: Transmission issues????

Any body have a slite vibration on down hill with cruse on??

The motor home is a 2016 pleasure-way XLMB. 2015 sprinter..

Take cruse off it stops.
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Old 07-10-2018, 12:24 AM   #8
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Default Re: Transmission issues????

I wanted to document a similar situation.

Pulling out of my driveway with a 2018 Thor Chateau 24FS (with a 2016 Sprinter 3500 diesel chassis) with less than 9K miles, I had a "bang" from the transmission. One bang only. In hindsight, this was just after a right turn. About 300 miles later after a stop light and right turn, the Transmission started trying to shift back and forth between 2 and and 3 (or maybe 1st and 2nd) in somewhat violent rapid alternation. I stopped and restarted the RV. Ran fine. About 75 miles later after a right turn, same thing. Stopped and restarted.

ODBii (ScanGauge) gave me a C0037 "left rear wheel sensor" code and the dash lights showed: Check Engine, ABS, Tire Rotation and Traction lights...and they wouldn't go off after restarting engine.

I'll skip the sad parts, but finally got it to an MB dealer and they simply pulled the code and replaced the left rear wheel speed sensor. Have only put 10 miles on it since than w/o problems. I hope the problem is now fixed.

Also, as hindsight, when this starts to happen, perhaps putting the transmission into manual shift mode might help. Stop/Start/Put in drive then left tapping the shift knob will shift down to 3, then 2nd then first. Right tap to shift up. Manually forcing the transmission from 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th as you accelerate might work around the transmission having fits if you can stop and then downshift to first gear before a right-turn...might be a short-term workaround to all the banging. I've not tried this (and hope I don't).
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Last edited by tma1; 07-10-2018 at 12:40 AM.
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Old 07-10-2018, 12:42 AM   #9
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Default Re: Transmission issues????

A few weeks ago, my 2010 2500, from stop turning left onto a very steep uphill paved street my transmission seemed to miss catching 2nd gear, did some really strange noises. Let off on accelerator, it “caught” a gear and climbed the hill as expected. Been fone in a few hundred miles since..
A few months ago my Chev minivan syarted shifting really hatd, immediately after attaching my Ultagauge. After several hard slam / bang shifts I got to a private trans shop. Said hard slam wouldnt hurt anything for a few hundred miles. Something about a hydraulic valve closing making the disconcerting sound.
Disconnected the Ultragauge, cleared codes and van shifts good thousands of miles later. Haven’t re-connected the Ultragauge to verify it was the cause.
Maybe like a flyswatter hitting the wall ? Big noise, no harm to wall or swatter. Hopt theres no flies in my transmission ?
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Old 09-03-2018, 07:33 PM   #10
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Default Re: Transmission issues????

Same Problem I described on 7-9-2018...except left turns.

9/2/2018: Well, on a return from a trip to FL, I did a left turn and started having the same problem. Same dash lights came on as above. This time the ODBII Code was C003A. I found that this translated to “right rear wheel sensor”. I was able to nurse the unit home, but it did have the same problem after left turns a couple of times. I failed to remember my hint above about manually controlling the gears, so I don’t again know if that would be a workaround.
The big issue here is that there is a safety issue: If you make a 90 degree left or right turn (depending on which sensor went out), the Sprinter starts shifting between gears rapidly and with great noise. You have no choice but to manually put the Transmission into Neutral. At that point, until you stop the vehicle and turn off/on the engine, the transmission will not go into gear an you are basically stuck costing to a stop. If you pulled out onto a busy intersection and had this problem, you would stop traffic and may get rear-ended. This is not acceptable. The Sprinter’s computer obviously doesn’t take into consideration that changing gears multiple times per second is not good and thus the speed sensor must be bad. There should be a threshold limit that if exceeded, the computer would ignore the sensor….go ahead and turn on the dash lights, but don’t try to destroy the transmission….and don’t leave the poor drive a “sitting duck”.

I've submitted a problem case with the NHTSA If you have a Sprinter 3500 experiencing the same thing, submit an NHTSA.gov "Report a Problem" report also!!

Last edited by tma1; 09-03-2018 at 09:14 PM.
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