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Paul ASKED THE GUIDE

Ford Ranger 2019: The gearbox is not engaging

I have a 2019 Ford Ranger. I’m wondering if anyone else has had a problem with their 2019 bi-turbo gearbox not engaging. I was on the highway last night and, out of nowhere, lost all drive from the gearbox. The brakes and steering still worked, the dashboard alarm light with the shifter on it illuminated and I got a message to `notify dealer immediately’. The engine and all electric functions on the car still worked and it was like it was stuck in neutral. Roadside assist checked the computer and it has come up with no fault. The car has now been towed to the dealership.

I’ve heard of a couple problems with the ten-speed automatic in these Rangers; problems that could produce the problems you’ve noted.

From what I can gather through the trade, there has been a dealer bulletin regarding failures of and problems with the transmission’s torque converter. Without a functioning torque converter, it’s entirely possible that you could have experienced exactly the symptoms you’ve mentioned. The fact that the computer hasn’t logged a relevant code is a bit of a puzzle, but stranger things have happened. Apparently, there was a manufacturing problem with a batch of transmissions (some of which were sold in Australia) and that problem caused torque-converter failure.

The other problem my insiders have identified involves the front oil pump for the transmission. Again, without this functioning, the transmission lacks the oil pressure it needs to engage and provide drive. Like the torque converters, it seems there was a bad batch of oil pumps made with too much hardening applied to the teeth, which made them brittle and prone to breaking.

I’m tipping the dealership will have a pretty good idea of what’s going on and that it will involve either the oil pump or the torque converter. At least your vehicle is still under factory warranty.

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