Wow, 3 posts in one day, i'm on a roll!
Just thought I'd post this up here and maybe help out other people who think they are having tranny trouble. I'm driving my second Duratec Sable (both have been 01's) and have noticed some similiarities i think are common for this transmission. Let me clarify that my current rig has 28k miles on it, my last one I drove from 36k-48k before selling it for something different. Here are my oberservations from both vehicles:
1. When placing the car in reverse, there is a bang rather than a soft clunk found in other vehicles I've driven. I've found myself shifting into reverse, waiting a half second and then releasing the parking break so the two sounds coincide.
2. the upshift from 1st to 2nd involves a slight pause between gears, slightly more pronounced after a long stint on the highway or under hard acceleration. I was told once its due to the lack of synchronizers in the transmissions greates larger shift gates between gears
3. when slowing down you can often times feel the car downshift from 2nd to 1st right before stopping.
4. The transmission overall feels sloppy when shifting through the gears, especially the 1-2 and the converter lockup in top gear (again probably due to lack of synchronizers).
I've driven several vulcans with the AX4S and not noticed any of these issues. Even when they have 100k+ miles on their original transmissions. Am I correct in assuming the issues i've noticed above are par for the course with a duratec engine/tranny combo? Before anyone suggests regular maintenance I replaced fluid and filter on both vehicles just after purchase (at 23k on my current one and at 36 on my other one) and I ran the MerconV as specified from Ford. Temperature gauge never fluctuates even on the hottest of days (i know its only engine temp but just wanted to be clear there are no heat related issues with the cooling system). No leaks or funny sounds from under the hood, fluid smells good (well it smells terrible but you know what I mean, not burnt or oddly colored). Gears never slip when engaged, engine pulls strong and I get great MPG (average 24 or 25 in mixed driving with AC
I'd be interested to know your thoughts and or experiences.