Holden Cruze Engine Problems

Why is my 2013 Holden Cruze revving and losing power?

Answered by CarsGuide 25 Jul 2022

If the engine is revving but the car is not moving, you probably have a transmission or gearbox fault. If the problem was a broken driveshaft or CV joint, the car would just roll to a stop and not move again. But since it gradually lost drive before finally refusing to move, it’s more likely to be the gearbox that is the cause of this.

Sometimes, this sort of problem can be as simple as a leak from the transmission which has led to a low fluid level. And since it’s the fluid in an automatic transmission that actually provides the drive (by transferring the torque) this can bring on the symptoms you’re seeing.

At the other end of the catastrophe scale, you could be looking at a gearbox that has failed internally and comprehensively. And I’m afraid to say that this model Cruze did have a reputation for just that occurring. Sometimes the problem could be traced back to a torque-converter, valve body or sensor error, but other times complete transmission failure was the diagnosis.

Holden actually acknowledged this problem by extending the transmission warranty to 150,000km or five years after the date the car first went into service. Unfortunately, that ended in 2018 for your car. It would still be worth contacting Holden’s customer service department, however, but don’t be surprised if financial help is not forthcoming.

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My 2004 Holden Cruze manual is getting oil in the number two spark plug tube. Where could it be coming from?

Answered by CarsGuide 23 Nov 2021

Like a lot of relatively modern engine designs, the Cruze uses a spark plug centrally located in the cylinder head. That means that it’s between the two camshafts in the Holden’s case, and that means the spark plug lead needs to effectively pass through the rocker cover to attach to the spark plug. In turn, that means that the spark plug sits at the bottom of a tube that forms an oil-tight chamber between the inside of the tube (where the plug lives) and the inside of the rocker cover (which has oil flinging around inside of it when the engine is running).

The problems start when the seal at the bottom of that tube fails and allows oil to seep into the tube from the rocker cover. That’s when you’ll see the oil you described. The fix is to remove the rocker cover and replace either the whole gasket, or the O-ring seal (depending on the design). If it’s the latter, don’t just replace the one that’s leaking now, replace all of them as the rest won’t be far behind the one that’s already leaking. O-rings and gasket start to become hard and brittle as they age, and that’s when leaks will occur. This is not a huge job to fix, but left unchecked, it can allow the engine to begin to misfire.

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Why did I loose acceleration in my 2012 Holden Cruze even though I still had revs?

Answered by CarsGuide 9 Oct 2020

If the engine is still revving up but the car isn’t moving, logic says you have a transmission (gearbox) problem. Transmission problems are very well known in the Holden Cruze, and must surely be classified as an inherent fault. Fundamentally, the automatic transmission in your car was a dud from day one, and Holden even announced an extended warranty for it as part of a special service program to replace consumer confidence in the unit. It didn’t work.

Many Cruzes exhibited the precise behaviour you experienced, and the loss of all drive as well as the check-engine light illuminating are classic indicators of a transmission that either needs new components such as sensors, a valve body or torque converter, or is totally done and needs to be completely replaced. An inspection will be able to determine this. Error code P0776 is what I’m tipping the car will offer up when it’s electronically scanned (which should be your next step).

Once Holden had fixed these transmissions, it was extending the warranty to five years from when the car first entered service or 150,000km, whichever came first. Obviously, your car is older than that, but it has covered low kilometres and since you’ve had it from new and can verify its service history with a Holden dealer, I reckon it would be worth your while to contact Holden’s customer service division and state your case. Let’s face it, less than 120,000km on a modern car before the transmission blows up is not really good enough, is it?

You may not get anywhere, but even if you can convince Holden to help with the cost of parts (labour would be nice, too) the financial picture changes dramatically. Without a bit of help from Holden, it may just be that the cost of repairs will be higher than the actual value of the car itself.

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Holden Cruze 2011: Leaking water pump

Answered by CarsGuide 21 Jun 2019

Leaking water pumps are not unknown; most are changed every time the timing belt is changed because they’re leaking.

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Holden Cruze 2010: Engine stopping and shutting down

Answered by CarsGuide 19 Apr 2019

It’s an annoyance rather than a safety issue per se, one that’s related to the car’s computer system. By stopping and restating you are rebooting the computer, same as your computer when it shuts down for some unknown reason. The difficulty for those trying to find the problem is that it happens sporadically, and not necessarily when they are working on the car.

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Holden Cruze 2011: Shutting down

Answered by CarsGuide 1 Mar 2019

It’s probably an issue with the computer, but it could a wiring issue, a sensor problem. Have a mechanic check it.

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I missed my car's service

Answered by CarsGuide 7 Dec 2018

If you missed the recommended service interval by 15,000 km – that’s like missing a whole service – then I don’t think you have any grounds on which to make a claim. The only thing you can do is to repair the engine.

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Holden Cruze 2010: Injector failure

Answered by CarsGuide 12 Oct 2018

I would question the dealer’s competence and seek a second opinion from another mechanic. I suspect they misdiagnosed the problem in the first instance, and think that perhaps it wasn’t a faulty injector. If you go ahead and give them the approval to pull the engine apart you will be liable for the costs, and you will be liable for any costs for repairs that come out of that.


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Holden Cruze 2014: Engine misfiring

Answered by CarsGuide 16 Mar 2018

I’d say you have a turbo problem. Get it to a dealer and have it checked out. Wit the problem you describe you should be able to clearly show the dealer what you are concerned about.

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Holden Cruze 2010: Oil leak

Answered by CarsGuide 15 Dec 2017

The problem could well be a radiator problem, one not related to the incident with the kangaroo. It’s not uncommon for the transmission oil cooler in the radiator to fail. To try and determine the cause have the appraised by an independent assessor.

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