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NHTSA opens investigation into the 2011 Mustang’s transmission problems

By - August 7, 2011 – 12:17 pm21 Comments | 9,203 views

For the most part the 2011+ Mustang has been void of any major problems, but if anything has caused trouble it’s the transmission. The Chinese-built Getrag MT-82 6-speed has already been the subject of one TSB regarding cold shifting problems, but many owners have reported more serious issues including binding gears, difficulty engaging in shifts and excessive noise and vibration.

To the dismay of many owners Ford has remained silent regarding the transmission issues, but it appears that the issue hasn’t gone completely unnoticed. Today the NHTSA announced that it is opening an investigation into transmission problems, reporting that they had received 32 complaints from owners regarding a sudden inability to shift into gear. According to the Detroit News, “some reports said incidents occurred while merging into high speed traffic, while others said incidents occurred while turning left across oncoming traffic.” The government agency will be taking a closer look at approximately 26,000 Mustangs that could potentially have the problem.

After the announcement Ford did acknowledge that they are aware of the problem. “We will fully cooperate with the government as they review this matter,” commented a company spokesperson.

[Source: Detroit News]

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  • no name brand says:

    About freakin’ time they investigate. Hope something good comes out of it.

  • Faster than you says:

    Some of the lock out caused by drivers I proved this with guy 2011 V6 car. Grinds and blocks out gears to busy trying to man handle the shifts. I drive it trys to grind but no block out. Grinding from damage from him most of the poeple who are having problems came from front wheel drive cars. You can tell went they say my Honda LOL. Lock out coming hitting between gates. That guy wanted to drive my 2012 GT oh hell no so he can damage my car. Not saying some are having problems but have manufacture hasn’t

  • Jim says:

    My cousin works in the auto industry making foam products for many different manufacturers. He told me over memorial day weekend this year not to buy a new Mustang or F-150. I asked why and he said Ford asked them to add extra foam over the transmission tunnels to mask a noise in the transmission. I didnt think much at the time till I read this article today.

  • Joe says:

    Can someone translate what Faster than you said?

  • Brian says:

    Sadly Getrag has this bad reputation regardless of which manufacturer chose to use their transmissions. I remember having these problems with my 2002 Sunfire which used their F23 5-speed. The previous models using the Isuzu 5-speed were less prone to hard shifting and grinding issues.

  • Tom Rannin says:

    The transmission is buggy. I’ve been driving stick since I was 16 years old, and know how they are supposed to work. The Getrag doesn’t. I don’t really want to hear some wiseguy blaming the drivers. We got enough of that from Ford.

  • Rob wolf says:

    I am unfortunate enough to own a 2011 Mustang with a manual tranny. It has been in the shop for 28 days. I can’t believe they didn’t say anything about this being a huge problem! To anyone else who is embarking on this process:
    They tried to replace about a dozen major parts in the transmission, and when installed, it’s worse than when I drove it off the lot new.
    Don’t let them try this, it does NOT WORK!
    They say they will give me a new transmission, but it will be a%&$$@Chinese replacement!! maybe this one will last more than 5000 miles…

  • Skip Race says:

    Why would FORD use junk from China? Being from Detroit the last thing that they should was parts from over seas. When your at the top, why would you do that? I’ve worked at the Mahwah,New Jersey Plant and own a great many Fords. You are a total embaressment to all Ford drivers

  • flyfish says:

    This seems to be all manual trans but I have an ’11 with the auto and it bangs going into gear at a standstill and double bangs between 2nd and 3rd. Ford keeps telling us there is nothing wrong!! Neither my wife or I can stand to drive it and will probably end up taking the loss and trading it.

    Anyone looking into automatic trans problems??

  • ZDS says:

    I have a 2007 , and some people describe the noise as Gear roll, it happens most in nuetural with the clutch out,sounds like a bad bearing to me. If someone in china happen to use a sub-standard bearing ,gear, or assemled the trans wrong , hell no one can afford Quality Control ant more , In China huh, for Americans Huh! This has been a problem for a long time ………Ford Built a Great Mustang , but they will never admitt to a Design or Quality defect , the corporate mentality of ” how does this affect profits for the next 6 months”!!!!Its what has destroyed our country . We gave our manufacturing to othere countries , and for that they send us back garbage , for which we pay high prices with our low incomes….Welcone to the future of these once Great United States….

  • flyperry says:

    i have a 2010gt500 with the diablo motorsports trinity 93 oct tune it runs great when u get it in gear which is hard u have to shove it in 1st and speed shifting is dangerous 1-2 is tough and ive missed more then once it just wont go sometimes i have to force it in gear not just push but shove in 1st im affraid ofd the dealer i have not have much luck with them anyone else have this and did u take it in to fix it so far im living with it and not happy my 08 gt500 did the same tning and its not me i think i might be getting a ctsv

  • William Dover says:

    I have a 2011 gt with the mt82. My car has had the clutch bolt tsb done within a month of me purchasing the car, then a couple months later i took it back in because the clutch was back on the floor and they said it was normal. My car is now sitting because it has no second gear at all what so ever and the dealer will not fix it. They said they think i have been racing it so now i have a 7 month old car that im still paying on and can’t afford to fix their junk transmission so i can trade it in. It has 8989 miles on it.

  • David says:

    I am reading about all these problems, and am experiencing the same issues having 5300 miles on my 11 gt it feels like it binds going into first and second, the clutch pedal will stay on the floor starting at around 4500 rpm with their story about at or above redline being a load of bull. I love my car but I’m not driving 400+ hp to pull 5 second upshifts and miss gears. Nor am I going to pay for a smoked clutch when it will hold itself in going to give them the winter to have mine properly repaired…wish me luck.

  • john says:

    i have a 2012 gt and have all the shifting problems and more.

    whats just as disturbing as paying over 40,000 canadian for a car thats transmission is totally grenading with under 20,000 km on it is fords attitude and treatment of customers bringing in their cars now..

    people are having to really fight ford to honor the tranmission warranties on these cars. another thing ford is doing is looking for ways out and excuses not to have to fix these crappy scabby chinese M-82 tranmissions, they issued a memo that any modifications to the car at all voids the warranty. even just swapping your muffler to one thats a little raspier and boom – your eff’ed

    as far as im concerned if ford continues to take this stand against us, their customers, im going on a total war with them. to be honest i could afford to upgrade my entire transmission but then on the other hand i NEVER would of bought this car in the first place if i knew this m-82 GETRAG tranmission from CHINA is a total peece of ssssit.

  • tom mercer says:

    i have a 2011 v-6 mustang w/a six speed manual trans. When the car is cold it is dificult to shift into first gear. It is also difficult to shift from 1 to 2 most of the time(cold or not cold). There is minor grinding and noise between 1 and 2. the shift quality is very poor. !thought mabe the problem is me. However I have been driving manual trans. cars for over 45 years. my ford dealer has said that they are unaware of any problems. I knew I wasn’t the problem (especialy after stumbling on to your website. I am concerned that ford will not fix this problem!

  • Jason Wieber says:

    I have a 2011 Shelby GT500 paid $57,750 all said and done minutes after I got the car I couldn’t get it in 5th gear. Soon when the car was at 1700 miles my reverse went out, Ford then replaced 5th, reverse, forks and syncros now my Shelby is at 2700 miles and I still can’t get it in 5th gear just frickn B.S. if I paid 5grand for the car I wouldn’t car but with that price tag give me a break they better fix this problem

  • Julien R. says:

    I have a 2011 GT and so far so good. Then all of a sudden a couple days ago, I was flooring it through 4th and when I tried to put into 5th at 6900 rpm’s it would not go in. I then released my foot from the clutch with the car in neutral and quickly tried again, thin again. When I took my foot away from the clutch I noticed that it was a couple inches from the floor. My heart sank, trust me. I felt sick. I put my foot under the clutch pedal and lifted the think back up to it’s normal position and then pressed it back down and down shifted into 3rd. Nothing has happened since and nothin up until that point. The car has 26000 miles on it. I think I’m one of the lucky ones but I still have the tranny issue in the back of my mind and that alone sucks. I will say on a positive note that the car is a beast and I smile every time I drive.

  • sandman4X4 says:

    My new 2011 spd man shifts like butter, never hard, never grinds, never have any clutch prob. have ove 45K on it now, and have had not one prob. bought new and got $2,500 off and good trade value. I think faster is asking for another beer and shot, but he needs to clear off all the MT’s on the table 1st. I wouldn’t hesatate to buy another 2011 Camaro 6.0 lt 6spd stand. w/posi. best sport cp. I have ever owned.

  • dallaspower says:

    have a 2013 gt. i was told that there is a recall on the tranny because the sesnor may be bad and the tranny may not go in reverse or the taillights may not come on. i hope this is not a trend. i have never owed American before.

  • MustangsDaily says:

    dallaspower – you can read more info on that recall here:


    If your Mustang was affected you should be hearing from your dealer soon. It should be an easy fix.

  • ROLIN'NMY5.0 says:

    I’ve got a 2011 5.0 with 39000 miles. I have had no problems with my transmission. It shifts perfect and smooth every time. I think that maybe the early run cars had a few bad transmissions. My car was built in May of 2010. On the other hand it started ticking the other day like a car with a bad lifter. It is most likely a hydraulic lash adjuster gone bad.

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