Join Date: May 2012
Location: Glendale, AZ
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Scary Near Miss: Has anyone else experienced this?
The wife and I took the 2010 SRT8 for a nice cruise around northern Arizona today. For a period of time we were on a curvy stretch of 2-lane road with varying degrees of graded inclines and declines. We were cruising between 40-65 mph using auto-stick to prevent excessive heating of the brakes as the car in front of us (looked like about an 08 Impala) was standing on the brakes constantly.
When the curves stopped, the car in front of us was having trouble keeping up with the 65 mph speed limit. There was a clear opportunity for an easy pass to the left (passing allowed) so I accelerated and realized the transmission did not kick down. I still had the shifter in auto-stick in 5th gear which did not allow the automatic kick down. I had already bypassed the Impala, but only slightly and did not want to cut it off. At this point I see a pair of motorcycles coming at me about a mile away.
Instead of just downshifting the auto-stick to 4th and easily pulling further ahead and moving safely over to the right, for some reason I decided to select neutral then back to drive to turn off the auto-stick feature. However, when I did this since I saw the oncoming traffic approaching, I must have panicked somewhat and kept my foot in the gas when I hit neutral. What occurred immediately after this was downright scary:
I put the shifter in drive which should have given me immediate response (looking back it should have been like a rolling neutral drop), but that's not what happened. What did happen is I lost control of my transmission, it went into some sort of electronic "safe mode".
For all practical purposes I was freewheeling, coasting towards oncoming traffic at 72 mph with a car about 10 feet to the right rear of my right 1/4 panel. I tried shifting between neutral and drive again, tried auto-stick, nothing. NOTHING!
By now I have drifted in front of the Impala, whose driver must think I'm insane. The engine was running, no warning messages, engine temp fine, I could rev the engine and watch tach jump but had no transmission response. Gear indicator clearly showed "D". I drifted onto the shoulder and stopped safely. My wife is shocked, thinking I blew the tranny using the auto-stick.
I placed it in park, shut the engine, restarted the engine, placed the shifter in drive and took off. EVERYTHING IS NORMAL again. Obviously the transmission (maybe actually the PCM or TCM) must have gone into some sort of "reduced power" or "safe mode" to protect the engine when I left the gas in it when I put the shifter in neutral. WOW this was kind of unexpected and scary, especially when the engine was revved in the neutral shift for only a split second.
Has anyone else ever experienced anything similar to this?!?
Last edited by damule56; 09-30-2014 at 11:15 PM.