pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
25,000 miles
Total Complaints:
21 complaints

Most common solutions:

  1. not sure (19 reports)
  2. replace transmission (1 reports)
  3. replace valve body (1 reports)
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This problem may be covered under warranty. Ask your Chrysler dealer.

problem #21

Jan 192018

Pacifica ES V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 26,867 miles

I am having the same issue I see on all of the Pacifica transmission forums. I bought the used van with 15k miles on it. Within a few months the hard shifting started. I feel as if someone has rear-ended me. My kids and any guests in the car are frightened when it happens. Sometimes in traffic I am worried the person behind me will indeed rear-end me because my car is pausing and sitting for a moment and will not move forward. It typically happens from 1 - 2 gear. It will happen when it's cold, hot, whatever... it is intermittent.

The first time my complaint was documented (although I believe I complained before hand) was January 2018, I just brought it in for the 4th time January 2019. The first time they did a software update but it did not fix it. The service advisor tried to explain it is because there are sometimes 2 drivers and we "drive differently." Which sounds completely bogus. It happens to both my husband and myself - intermittently. My last visit to the dealer, Jan 2019 they stated as they have the last 3 times - we could not duplicate the issue and offer zero solutions... when I pulled out of their parking lot - it did it again! I have an appointment next week and advised them to keep the van until they can "duplicate the issue."

Today I called Chrysler to lodge a formal compliant directly. I am now at 50,000 miles and very concerned this is not getting fixed before my power train warranty is up at 60k.

- Jessie C., Jacksonville, US

problem #20

Dec 042018

Pacifica Limited 3.6L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 23,501 miles

Like others, my Pacifica shifted so hard I thought I got hit. Took to dealer last Saturday, they did an update. But today after stopping for a stop sign, I went to take off and trans slipped then caught. Got home, my driveway has a little incline. Van moving, took foot of gas, then on again trans slipped. Now in reverse. Only 6 months left on lease.

- Jeffrey Q., davenport, US

problem #19

Jan 092017

Pacifica Touringxl V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 1,005 miles

I have asked the dealership to fix the problem but they haven't. They are very poor at fixing problems. The problem is chronic and occurs at low speed under 20 mph.

- Susan C., TEMECULA, US

problem #18

Feb 012018

Pacifica V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 10,000 miles

I have been having hard shifting issues intermittently. This happens when shifting from 1st or 2nd gear to a higher gear. It literally can cause personal health issues over time because it feels as if someone has rear ended my vehicle.

I have filed a complaint with FCA and under the Lemon Law as I made three attempts to have the transmission malfunction repaired. Software updates were done on the first attempt per the recall, which I was told should resolve the issue. However, issue occurred a few days later.

I took the vehicle back within about two weeks, and was told some type of transmission update was done because a stall in the shifting was noticed. I was told they weren't able to duplicate the hard shifting issue. The same day I got the vehicle back the hard shifting occurred again, but not as bad. I drove it out of town a few days later, and the very hard shifting occurred again several times.

I made a third appointment to take the vehicle back, and during the time my vehicle was kept to be driven, the hard shifting was duplicated. I was told the valve body was the issue. I was contacted to be told the part was on back order to be available a month later. My vehicle was already at the dealer 2 to 3 weeks by this time. When I opted not take the unrepaired vehicle back into my possession until the parts was received, they were magically able to get the part within one week's time. Maybe it was a used part to avoid any ongoing rental vehicle expense that FCA was responsible to pay.

I drove the vehicle a few days, and there was the hard shifting again, and the issue is worsening. I am highly concerned for my family and I safety and well-being as this is one of our everyday transportation source and traveling source for our family of 6. The FCA claim was filed after the second repair attempt, and Lemon Law complaint was filed after no resolution following the third repair attempt.

My Lemon Law claim was denied indicating I didn't make three repair attempts. Well, it was discovered that per lack of documentation on the dealer's behalf my hard shift concern that I made very clear on the first repair attempt was not noted. They only documented the vehicle was brought in for the software update recall. From the outcome of my ongoing issue of no one wanting to take responsibility for this issue and with it clearly being a known issue amongst other consumers with this very same make/model vehicle, I feel this safety concern deserves a class action lawsuit.

- Latoya W., Jacksonville, US

problem #17

Sep 092018

Pacifica Limited 3.2L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 23,741 miles

I am really disappointed in this 2017 Chrysler Pacifica Ltd. I should've bought another Honda Odyssey which was excellent mechanically because it never once failed in 10 years. We wanted to try the new Pacifica since it was raved about in all the automobile media as something fresh and great. We bought it in November 2016 and experienced the first transmission problem in June 2018 at about 20,000 miles. We drive in city traffic and started noticing a jolting clunk when the transmission changed gears when decelerating at around 15-20 mph. It did not happen every time the transmission shifted gears but a few times per week.

Now in October 2018 with 25,000 miles it happens several times a day when driving in stop and go traffic. It is really embarrassing that such a nice and luxurious type of Minivan has a CLUNKING Transmission. I don't brag about my Pacifica anymore. Now I regret even buying it at all. A vehicle of this caliber should have the smoothest most reliable transmission of any of them.

The 2017 Chrysler Pacifica Transmission is Junk because of this clunky hard shifting problem. I'm certain it will fail completely upon expiration of warranty. I would not recommend the 2017 Chrysler Pacifica or any other model with the same transmission. The transmission is defective and unsafe in our opinion.

- Jeff J., Louisville, KY, US

problem #16

Sep 082018

Pacifica LPlus 3.6L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 16,000 miles

My van has shifted so bad that I thought I got rear ended 3 times now. It is an intermittent problem, so I don’t know how to proceed until it gets worse.

- Tina D., Grand Rapids, MI, US

problem #15

Jun 072018

Pacifica LX 3.2L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 30,000 miles

I have a 2017 Chrysler Pacifica that I bought new. About 3 months or so after I bought this van, I was taking off from a street light and when the transmission shifted it sounded like the whole rear end had fallen out and it made a noise like a "Bang". Didn't think too much of it at the time just made a mental note of it. Now it has happened several other times since that initial first time. I called the dealer and made an appointment to have it looked at. they called me and told me my car was ready, I went to pick it up, and I asked what did they find wrong. Well guess what I was told. There's nothing wrong with the transmission, that being the type transmission it was that (it)was just shifting between gears. And there is nothing that be done with it! I guess every time I drive it and it sounds like rear end just fell out of it that's normal! I say BS, why would anyone build a car that operates that way!

- Dan H., Coshocton, US

problem #14

Aug 232018

Pacifica LX Zf 9spd Auto

  • Automatic transmission
  • 190,000 miles

I have a 2017 Pacifica LX that I purchased new in January 2017 to use as a contractor courier delivery driver delivering (of all things) transmission parts. At 100k miles (about ten months from purchase), I inquired about getting the trans fluid changed and was told by Chrysler that it was 'lifetime fluid.' After a few months, around 135k I noticed a whirring sound right before up shifting. The engine would rev to about 3k at around 45-50mph then whine just before and during the shift.

I got the trans fluid replaced at 140k by sucking it out the fill hole inside the drivers wheel well. DIYers, there is a $25 dip stick you can get. got 3.5 quarts out. Put new fluid in at $40 a quart!! Problem solved, no whining... for 20-25k miles at least. Got another fluid change at 170 and again the problem went away.

By 180k I started having extremely hard shifts only when accelerating slowly from a stop or very low speed. Shifting hard from 2nd to third at 5-10mph feeling, as others have described, like you got a 5mph bump to your rump from another vehicle. Reading the valve body solution from a previous comment, that sounds great if you're under warranty. I asked my shop to find one and the reported that they're about $350 but that Chrysler won't allow the sale of them to independent shops. Labor is five hours at $100 an hour plus about $240 in fluid plus tax will bring you to about $1200.

And that won't solve the whirring/whining issue which, my mechanic said, is likely something coming apart like the clutch. So they found a trans from a wrecked 2019 Pacifica with only 3k miles on it for $2100. With fluid, install and tax I'm out $3343. Might as well!

Okay, this is going to make some of you angry who have had this problem with a tenth the mileage but I know other courier route drivers who have made it much further. A co-driver with a 2012 Escape made it to 460k miles! I guess the trade off is saving $1300 per 100k miles in fuel with the 9spds over the old 6spds but spending $900 more per 100k in replacement costs (figuring $3400 every 190k instead of every 360k). So all told, I guess it's worth it. Hopefully my 2019 will have a couple glitches worked out and make 200k!


- David R., Pittsburgh, PA, US

problem #13

Jun 152018

Pacifica Touring L Plus 3.2L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 20,000 miles

Same problem as many others, low speed hard shifting probably from first to second. Only notice when coasting and then barely adding accelerator pressure. Have not been able to reproduce when accelerating under load. Usually happens when coasting around and coming out of a corner, or in parking lots. Have not yet approached the dealer but interested in anyone who has used a "co-pilot" device as mentioned in one post. Look forward to getting more alerts if anyone has success. Dealer is Reed Jeep/Chrysler in Overland Park, KS (not dissing, they have been good to work with...so far). If anyone has any follow ups about replacing the transmission valve body, let us know.

- Richard C., Overland Park, US

problem #12

Oct 022017

Pacifica 3.2L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 15,000 miles

The problems started at about 15,000 and were hard shifts that occurred intermittently. Would take care in and nothing. No codes; no lights, could not find problems. Took care in probably 10-15 times for months. Finally got some help and had a CO PILOT installed on my car which tracked the transmission, gas pedal, etc. from the dealership. I would push a button to record 1 minute prior and 1 minute after when the hard shift would occur.

Took it back to the dealership and they were able to find out what was going on. They even drove it and FINALLY felt it. I know have 30,000 miles it took forever to get some help. They are telling me it is a bad Transmission Valve Body. So they are going to replace and see what happens. FINGERS CROSSED!

Update from Jul 23, 2018: HI everyone - for those of you who have asked if the replacement of the Transmission Valve Body has fixed the problem I am happy to say at least as of now yes! I have had NO ISSUES since I got my car back and the car drives great!

I had my Pacifica serviced at Suburban Chrysler Jeep Dodge Ram in Troy Michigan and the Service Manager there was great to work with

- Kristen S., Clinton Township, MI, US

problem #11

May 302018

Pacifica Touring L V6

  • CVT transmission
  • 16,000 miles


- infinitycars, Franklin, US

problem #10

May 302017

Pacifica Touring L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 15,000 miles

Like everyone else, when you are going slow,or even just coasting, between 10mph to 20 or 30 mph, the transmission will SLAM/CLUNK/KICK. Really hard. You can be slowly accelerating, just coasting, or not even have your foot on the gas pedal, it just happens. So, today, it happened and did it 3 times in fast succession, and then would not shift into third gear. I drove it (slowly) to the Chrysler dealer. They are checking the transmission fluid!! This has been going on for MONTHS...I have called the dealer and customer service with complaints. NO SATISFACTION. When is Chrysler going to do a recall???

- Donald S., Cocoa, US

problem #9

Apr 022018


  • Automatic transmission
  • 31,000 miles

Had a 2014 Caravan with same issue. Multiple times reported to the dealer, they said no codes and can’t find any problem. They finally said their is no fix for the hard shifting, so I traded it in for the 2017 Pacifica with the new 9 speed trans. Around 10000 miles 2nd oil change started to have hard, rough shifting. I have complained every oil change since every 5000 miles and get same answer no codes can’t find anything wrong.

Well around June 1st it will be due for 35000 mile oil change and it better get fixed or they are keeping it I’ve had it. There is nothing wrong with this van except trans. problem, gas mileage is outstanding ride and comfortable and great looks. This is my fourth Chrysler van I have owned a 06, 2010,2014 and now 2017. 06 had a new trans. at 60000, 2010 front brakes every 3000 miles, 2014 transmission problems now 2017 transmission problems. Each van has had problems but only ones I listed for them.

- Donald R., Hudson, US

problem #8

May 022018

Pacifica Limited 3.6L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 16,200 miles

My wife alerted me to this hard shifting issue recently. On 5-2-18 while riding with my wife, the van hard shifted twice in a row within seconds of each other. We were leaving a school function and while slowly accelerating maybe between 7 and 12 mph, the problem reared itself. The hard shift (which is what I assume it is) is so hard that I looked behind us to see if anyone had bumped our rear end. I asked my wife how long the van had been doing this and she said since February and has occurred more that a dozen times. My wife indicated it usually happens at the lower speed.

After reading the other post here on CarComplaints, this issue is not a lone issue. I will be taking our van into the dealership for the recent recall and will be asking them to look into this issue. I have also looked into the Pacifica forum and people are reporting the same problem there. I will be filing my complaint there also.

- Trace D., Scottsburg, IN, US

problem #7

Mar 312018

Pacifica Touring L Plus 3.6L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 18,000 miles

2017 Chrysler Pacifica has been experiencing hard shifting issues which began in December of 2017. Problem occurs periodically when doing a slow speed upshift most likely from first to second gear after the vehicle had been slowing down in traffic. Unable to reproduce the problem at will. I experienced the problem myself on 3/31/2018 and thought I had been rear ended on the turnpike since I received a real jolt when accelerating.

Took the car into the dealer on 4/4/2018 with 18k miles on the odometer and they updated the TCM (transmission control module) software under TSB 21-027-17. They also ran a scan and there were no fault codes. I picked up the car and experienced another failure, so obviously there is currently no known fix for this issue. If anyone knows of a fix for this situation, please post so others can read. Thanks.

- mcdermgd, Lawrenceville, US

problem #6

Nov 022017

Pacifica LX 3.6L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 10,000 miles

around 10000 miles our 2017 pacifica started to shift really hard especially when letting off on the gas pedal. The problem is hard to accurately reproduce. We have taken the vehicle in for the same problem 3 times and are deciding to try the lemon law. We also had an issue where the vehicle would not shift into park and then died in gear in our driveway. dealer had car towed and we were told it was a dead battery. We have had 3 reflashes done to the vehicle due to this problem. We drove a loaner town and country and were amazed at how smooth the shifts were??

- btupper, Oxford, US

problem #5

Jul 062017


  • Manual transmission
  • 19,941 miles

Don't get me wrong, I like my Pacifica. The first time it happened it felt like some body rear ended me. Every time I take the van for service I let them know about the shifting. Because it doesn't show a code and they can't duplicate the problem. I never know when it's going to happen. The hard shifting has happened when I'm driving in my neighborhood or on the highway. There are times the van feels like it doesn't want to go in gear or it's trying to stall. My last service they did a software update which was suppose to fixed the problem, not. Within that week the hard shifting started again. I'm just waiting for the transmission to die. My next service is due and of course I will continue to complain.

- Cora R., Triangle, VA, US

problem #4

Oct 052016

Pacifica Limited 3.6L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 4,000 miles

Transmission has very jerky operation on the 1-2 or 2-3 shift if you are accelerating and have to let off on the accelerator, you get a lurching motion like you have been rear ended(neck snapping). This has happened numerous times and dealer states they don't get any failure codes so nothing is wrong. I now have 29000 miles on the vehicle. It has happened over 50 times during this time frame. Dealer will not do anything about it because of no failure codes. This is a very common problem with Dodge, Chrysler, and Jeep vehicles with new 9 speed transmission. Some folks have gone to arbitration with no good results. Others have used lemon law to some getting relief, others no help. Chrysler doesn't recognize the lurching as a problem. I have never had this kind of problem with any other vehicles I have owned.

The problem is not repeatable, I can't make it happen any time I want to so this is a real problem. It just happens when the circumstances are right. I haven't figured out how to make it happen so I could show it to the dealer technician, I and my wife just know it happens way too often for a new vehicle.

It is an unsafe feeling when it happens.

- William L B., Acworth, US

problem #3

Dec 252017

Pacifica LX 3.2L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 15,000 miles

I've noticed it mentioned here, so, it's worth repeating. From 1st to 2nd gear (presumably) between 14 and 18 MPH. The transmission seems to glide out of first, and then slam hard into second.

This has been on going for a few months, but, like someone else had mentioned, it never seems to happen at one particular time or another. Never when the tech needs to look at it.

I'll likely be posting again, on this subject.

- Shawn K., Elma, US

problem #2

Sep 142017

Pacifica Limited 3.2L Vg

  • Automatic transmission
  • 23,000 miles

The transmission sometimes slams when it shifts between 1st and 2nd gears around 19 miles per hour. It occasionally happens so the dealership said they cannot get it to duplicate it so they cannot fix it. It feels like it has been rear ended when it slams.

- chris_mckinnon2002, Laurel, US

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