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Discussion Starter #1
I have tried searching for this issue but could not find anything here.

My car recently has started to produce a grinding sound when shifting into reverse. Over the past week or so, it started only when cold, but now it's doing mid day 70 degrees F.

I've searched other forums and youtube and this is a real issue. In some cases the transmission has been replaced to solve the problem, so there is documentation that MB is fully aware and actively engaged with providing solutions.

My car will go to the dealer tomorrow and I will produce video of this artifact in case they come back with the "we can't reproduce the noise" reply.

I'm curious if anyone here has had the same experience.
 

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Discussion Starter #2
As a followup, my dealer/service is pulling the transmission for evaluation. I showed them my video and they agreed that there is a problem. They may try to fix it or replace the transmission, as others have had done. I tried to post my video here, but it won't work. My video reveals the identical sounds of other videos on forums, groups and youtube. I am so lucky as my warranty will run out mid May. I am trying to find out if MB has solved this issue or are they just replacing with the same earlier parts.
 

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ricke, what year, miles? Have you had the tranny fluid and rear diff fluid changed?
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
27k miles, 2016. I have all fluids changed at half the mileage MB requires. For example, oil at around 4k+ miles instead of 10k. I don't track this car, in fact I pretty much baby it, but I do let it breath every now and then. My car has had the transmission rebuilt with the latest revision parts in question, and will be ready to pick up tomorrow.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Transmission has been rebuilt. All shifting is super smooth, and almost silent.

I do have a question for the group though. After a transmission rebuild, wouldn't it make sense to change the oil after a short interval, to flush things out? Maybe after 1000 or so miles?
 

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If the rebuild was a new synchro and seals them there's not much metal to metal contact to wear and create grit. Even then it's become a bit unusual to worry about early oil changes even when all parts are new.

But yeah, I'm a proponent of changing early. But ...

The problem as I understand it is that the DCT oil fill is a dealer service requiring the MB service computer to turn pumps on and off as certain oil temperatures are reached. I've read that unless you get a senior mechanic this process can get screwed up so there is a risk.

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Discussion Starter #9
Interesting! I have to say, I had no problem until after my recent 30k service, which included transmission oil change. I have been wondering if the problem started because of some kind of error with this oil change. It even crossed my mind that they could have drained the oil and forgot to fill it! Car worked perfectly going in. Transmission problems started almost immediately after I got it back. At least it is running very nicely now.

I'm glad you posted your response Wayne, thanks! I was just going to let my independent shop do the fluids.
 

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It's interesting to know the history just before the failure.

I've been warned by members on the AMG Private Lounge (a Forum for AMG owners only) to be very careful about who does the transmission oil change. I intend to query the dealer's service team before deciding.

I found this to be very true on my 997.2 PDK (Porsche"s name for the DCT). I interviewed multiple dealers and found too many who didn't know how to do the work. Finally I chose a dealer a distance away only to find they were a bit baffled as well. For the last service (120K miles) I coached a good Indie (who had the special Porsche PIWIS computer) through the process. That worked out well.

I believe some on this Forum have DIYed the transmission oil change. I'd love to hear details from them with step by step instructions since Pam and I are coming up on 30K miles.
 

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@ricke , wow, glad they fixed the transmission under warranty. Mine also had transmission issues "grinding into gear, car can not move forward or reverse", experienced by the original owner at 2.5k miles and MB put a whole new transmission in it. I've had zero issues with it.

@Wayne , holy crap, that transmission service sure seems involved, and prone to errors. Thanks for posting that.

Geesh... didn't realize our powertrain warranty was running out on our 2016's right now! Ouch. MB 4yr/50k miles powertrain is the worst in the industry, although about a third of makers have this lousy warranty. For reference, Hyundai, Mitsubishi, Kia, and Tesla all offer at least double the term MB does. I guess I need to find a good independent shop and am probably done taking our '16 GLA45 to the dealer.

@Shadofax , any reason you are still using the dealer for your '15 for oil changes?

Does anyone know of a MB web site where I can plug in my VIN# to get warranty status? I'm really curious to know when mine is up, or maybe it has already happened.
 

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Cheers, first post! My name is Coleman and I'm an avid car nut, I live about an hour north of Boston-

We have a 16' A45 and I have the same issue with grinding in reverse. From reading all I could about this, there's not much information, but it does seem to be a common problem.

(I'm coming over from Rennlist, and I guess I've been spoiled where the smallest detail is discussed ad_nausea multiple times over the years. Porsche guys can get a little obsessive but the great thing is that there is a wealth of online information.. AMG owners tend not to be "Armchair mechanics".. So not being able to find much information has been a bit of a bummer.. I also think that since this is a relatively new engine, the M133, information hasn't really built up yet..)

We really noticed it during the winters when the car was cold. It doesn't seem to happen when the tranny is warm.. The car has 75K Miles and it's out of warranty which is sort of a bummer.. I was thinking that maybe it needed a different viscosity in the transmission oil for the colder climates, so finding that same information above about the difficulty of doing the tranny change yourself, I decided to bring it in to my dealer- they couldn't replicate the sound and they had it for a few days though I did give them a recording of the sound.. They changed out the fluid and we still have the problem..
Sometimes we were able to not have it happen when the car was put in Drive first and then in reverse, but sometimes this also did not work.. My theory is that with cold oil, there's a lot more friction and it's causing the gear stack to rotate a bit because of the friction. When the rotating stack comes in to mesh with reverse, one of them grinds because of the rotation, almost like a synchro isn't doing its job.. I don't really know, but considering that the solution is a fully rebuilt tranny, until we get more information on exactly what the issue is, I don't think I'm paying for a new transmission... Also, to park it where it doesn't need to be reversed when it's cold will reduce the occurrence of the problem significantly.. Not the best solution, but it's still better than a 10K transmission..​
When Ricke had it rebuilt, did the MB techs tell you what the problem was?​
Coleman.​
 

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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
I'm really glad people are looking at this thread, as it is very important to know the history of this transmission and its issues.

While I just got in under the wire with regards to my warranty, which is up today, May 10th, I was told that there is no warranty offered for my transmission rebuild. This information has left me pretty stunned, as it takes MB off the hook, should the repair have been performed sub par. After a fair amount of shaming from my part, my service guy has said they would warranty this repair for a year, but this is not official. I have heard others were given a 2 year warranty for the same repair, and that is what I will be adamantly pursuing in the next few days.

It has always been a battle when dealing with my local MB service, and in a way I am glad my connection with them is coming to an end, as I will be dealing with independents now, except for certain technical services. I will be seeking official MB service from another place, even if I have to travel to get to them. Thanks to Wayne, I now can ask intelligent questions and hope I get honest answers from potential service people.

As for minimizing transmission use, I too have thought about parking in a way to all but eliminate using reverse, especially during the winter/cold days. Given that my car is running extremely well after the transmission rebuild I think it could last for quite some time. Keep up on the service/oil changes and things should work out. I'm also going to monitor warmup temps more closely.

Oh, before I forget, I have asked about this repair and if the new parts will solve the syncro issue. I was told the syncro and output shaft assembly now have different part numbers, opposed to what they were some time ago. The mechanic said he had heard the synro was made out of different material, perhaps harder. I was also told to call a 1-800 number (I forgot) to get the definitive answer if this will be considered a solution to this problem. I will ask for the phone number again in writing and pass it along.

My car just turned 28k miles. It should not be having this problem. I have a Ford Expedition with way way over 200k and runs like a charm. One moderate repair of a new intake manifold (plastic). My GLA45 can be considered a weekend driver, for the most part, and I have always driven very very easily. I do on occasion let it breath though, but zero track time. I do not like the way MB have treated people, including me.
 

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I'll add my experience with the transmission in the GLA 45.

First, so this doesn't get buried all the way at the bottom incase you don't read all the way through... the GLA's have two different transmission codes (15 vs 16). Wondering what code the people who've had issues have.

Ricke, I think having the dealer screwing up your transmission to the point of it having issues shouldn't be ruled out or overlooked, especially if it was running strong before the service. The 45's aren't that old, and about a year ago three local dealers to me (within 2-3 hours of each other) had only done 2 or 3 C/GLA 45 transmission services altogether, and one hadn't even done one yet. My story below...

First car was a '15 and bought it with about 26k miles as a CPO. Being new to Mercedes and AMG, I took the car to the dealer for its first service to me. Left with a quote of around $700 I think for A service + trans, but then got blindsided at pickup. They told me they had trouble getting the TCU hooked back up, and had to drop the transmission pan again and pretty much do the whole job twice in order to get everything in order. They were saying it went up to a $1500 bill and didn't call me for any authorization, plus wouldn't release the car til the bill was paid in full. The kicker, I said to the SA "I feel like you're trying to screw me here" and she quickly was able to cut the transmission charge in half.. just confirmation she was indeed trying to screw me and charge me for her tech's mess up. I can probably dig up the service report and post it if anyone is interested.

I now use an independent that I trust leaps and bounds more than the dealer. The only reason I'll take my car to a dealer would be a warranty issue, or searching and combing through to find one reputable enough to do the transmission service. I once had a guy at the service bay tell a tech to grab my car and pull it in, and he looks confused and says out loud "I don't even know what (model) that is." Yeah, that felt great. PSA: DO NOT LET YOUR DEALER TELL YOU, "OH YOU HAVE AN AMG, YEAH WE WORK ON THOSE ALL DAY, DON'T WORRY ABOUT A THING" Ha, that means worry more.

Anyway, beforehand when I called they said they only have done one or two 45 transmission services before that, and then had to keep the car overnight because they didn't even have enough trans fluid on hand to do the job. Two big red flags I shouldn't have overlooked, but I was still new and this was my first service with the car. Ended up calling corporate and pretty sure whoever looked into my situation saw I was a new owner and didn't want the sour taste in my mouth, so corporate picked up the extra bs charges and put me back to my original amount. When I got the car, didn't have any issues before I sold it at about 46k miles and always thought the trans was strong.

Recently got into a '17 in a similar way as the first. Lease buy out CPO, this time with 20k miles on clock. The really nice thing about this one, it had the transmission service done right before it was returned at 20k miles, 10k before it's called for (customer requested). The sales girl actually handed me a pre purchase inspection sheet with $3k worth of work on it (brakes + rotors all around, alignment, 2 new wheels) so all that plus transmission done was a huge bonus. I plan to do transmission every 20k miles for this one (20k, 40k, 60k, etc.). Before this thread I always thought of the trans as one of the stronger parts of the car, especially having personal experience with both codes.. the new one being noticeably better.

As for my driving, I almost always drive with the AMG screen on showing temps and don't usually drive aggressively til its warmed up. No one's perfect though and every once in a while it'll get a little pre mature leg stretch when running late for work or something, but never have just got in the cold car and put it in Sport+ or RACE and started hammering it. The 'worst' I've done is a Sport+ pull on a cold winter night just a couple minutes after restarting the car after it had been on a couple hour drive and sitting for like a half hour. Even still, the car was pretty warm yet and I got the car with 20k miles so have no idea how it was driven before.. can't stress too much, especially having CPO warranty an extra year plus the option to extend even 2 more years after that. I love the pops and bangs from the performance exhaust, so I often downshift with the paddles to get max noise. Can't imagine having to think about parking my AMG where I had to minimize my reversing, I'd sell it at that point.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I'll add my experience with the transmission in the GLA 45.

First, so this doesn't get buried all the way at the bottom incase you don't read all the way through... the GLA's have two different transmission codes (15 vs 16). Wondering what code the people who've had issues have.

Ricke, I think having the dealer screwing up your transmission to the point of it having issues shouldn't be ruled out or overlooked, especially if it was running strong before the service. The 45's aren't that old, and about a year ago three local dealers to me (within 2-3 hours of each other) had only done 2 or 3 C/GLA 45 transmission services altogether, and one hadn't even done one yet. My story below...

First car was a '15 and bought it with about 26k miles as a CPO. Being new to Mercedes and AMG, I took the car to the dealer for its first service to me. Left with a quote of around $700 I think for A service + trans, but then got blindsided at pickup. They told me they had trouble getting the TCU hooked back up, and had to drop the transmission pan again and pretty much do the whole job twice in order to get everything in order. They were saying it went up to a $1500 bill and didn't call me for any authorization, plus wouldn't release the car til the bill was paid in full. The kicker, I said to the SA "I feel like you're trying to screw me here" and she quickly was able to cut the transmission charge in half.. just confirmation she was indeed trying to screw me and charge me for her tech's mess up. I can probably dig up the service report and post it if anyone is interested.

I now use an independent that I trust leaps and bounds more than the dealer. The only reason I'll take my car to a dealer would be a warranty issue, or searching and combing through to find one reputable enough to do the transmission service. I once had a guy at the service bay tell a tech to grab my car and pull it in, and he looks confused and says out loud "I don't even know what (model) that is." Yeah, that felt great. PSA: DO NOT LET YOUR DEALER TELL YOU, "OH YOU HAVE AN AMG, YEAH WE WORK ON THOSE ALL DAY, DON'T WORRY ABOUT A THING" Ha, that means worry more.

Anyway, beforehand when I called they said they only have done one or two 45 transmission services before that, and then had to keep the car overnight because they didn't even have enough trans fluid on hand to do the job. Two big red flags I shouldn't have overlooked, but I was still new and this was my first service with the car. Ended up calling corporate and pretty sure whoever looked into my situation saw I was a new owner and didn't want the sour taste in my mouth, so corporate picked up the extra bs charges and put me back to my original amount. When I got the car, didn't have any issues before I sold it at about 46k miles and always thought the trans was strong.

Recently got into a '17 in a similar way as the first. Lease buy out CPO, this time with 20k miles on clock. The really nice thing about this one, it had the transmission service done right before it was returned at 20k miles, 10k before it's called for (customer requested). The sales girl actually handed me a pre purchase inspection sheet with $3k worth of work on it (brakes + rotors all around, alignment, 2 new wheels) so all that plus transmission done was a huge bonus. I plan to do transmission every 20k miles for this one (20k, 40k, 60k, etc.). Before this thread I always thought of the trans as one of the stronger parts of the car, especially having personal experience with both codes.. the new one being noticeably better.

As for my driving, I almost always drive with the AMG screen on showing temps and don't usually drive aggressively til its warmed up. No one's perfect though and every once in a while it'll get a little pre mature leg stretch when running late for work or something, but never have just got in the cold car and put it in Sport+ or RACE and started hammering it. The 'worst' I've done is a Sport+ pull on a cold winter night just a couple minutes after restarting the car after it had been on a couple hour drive and sitting for like a half hour. Even still, the car was pretty warm yet and I got the car with 20k miles so have no idea how it was driven before.. can't stress too much, especially having CPO warranty an extra year plus the option to extend even 2 more years after that. I love the pops and bangs from the performance exhaust, so I often downshift with the paddles to get max noise. Can't imagine having to think about parking my AMG where I had to minimize my reversing, I'd sell it at that point.
Thanks for posting your experiences! So much to consider, and where to begin;

I've been calling around and talking with various Independents and, thanks to Wayne, asking questions on the 45 transmission service procedures and repairs. Turns out, very few have had many 45's in their shops. I did locate a transmission specialist that most of these local shops send their transmission work to when it is extensive. When the topic got to why I was asking I told them about my transmission repair. Again, I was told that repairs from the dealers should be at least 2 years, and like me, were puzzled why my MB dealer has been reluctant. I was told to call MB Headquarters, which I will.

From all my research, I think I've got a better sense now on how to keep my car maintained and in the best possible shape. I'll post my findings with MB HQ's and also with the local transmission specialist.
 

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are you also in the bay area like wayne? if so, any tips on which dealer i should avoid? i prepaid for up to 40k and was going to continue go to the dealer until my 100k extended warranty is over but now i'm having second thoughts... also appreciate if you have any recommendation on independent shops. thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
I am also in the bay area. I am reluctant to mention which dealer until I have exhausted all possibilities with them for a full solution and warranty to this problem. They sure are not making it easy though, but this has been the case with many others who are facing the same issue. Right now I am talking with others on a GLA45 group on FB with the same problem and there are a flood of people telling their experiences with this very issue. I think it deserves to be issued a recall and Mercedes needs to step up!
 

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understandable. please keep us posted and i'll continue to provide feedback as well. i'll look for the fb group as well.
 

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Thanks @ricke , I never knew there was a FB group... just requested to join it now.
 
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