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Thread: 2003 XC70 needing new transmission, compatible with other years?

  1. #1
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    Default 2003 XC70 needing new transmission, compatible with other years?

    2003 with 181k miles. Trans won't engage in any gear. Shop says I need a new trans, cost for rebuild = 2800 + 1500 labor (includes rear main seal). Dealer wants $5300. I'm leaning towards a low mileage used.

    What I like to know is if other year AW55-50 will work as a direct bolt-on for my 2003. I found one with 22k miles from a 2006 XC70, and couple others from 2007, but the shop says they don't think it'll work (obviously they don't normally deal with used parts, so whatever it says in their computer that's all they know.)

  2. #2
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    #1. Rebuilding a XC70 tranny doesn't work. Run, don't walk away from these hacks. We've never seen a rebuild here that lasted longer than 6 months. And if they seriously think they can rebuild this Japanese transmission, I question their sanity.
    #2. Used is fine as long as it's the exact same part number. I do know that an 03-04 transmission will work. But 05-07 there was another update but it's the same engine. Not sure if Volvo updated the transmission electronics. JRL? Art?
    #3 Dealership is probably going to swap in a used - $5300 is not unreasonable depending on the mileage.

    Mady - did you figure out why did your 03 transmission fail? Were you flushing it every 50k miles? Was it shifting hard when you purchased it? Are you the original owner?
    Last edited by Forkster; 01-22-2016 at 02:57 PM.


  3. #3
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    2003 and 2004 ONLY

    As for rebuilding, depends on who is doing it ... but at your miles your tranny case may be a bit warped.
    Better off to find a lower mileage one and then rebuild it or buy a new (rebuilt) from Volvo.
    All emails please use: jrl1194 (at) aol.com

    2007 V70 2.5T White/Oak, 112K miles. My daily driver and GORGEOUS
    2000 V70R wife's. Won't sell, now at 148K miles !! and still (almost) perfect.
    2000 S70 GLT SE with 29,000 miles!!! A time capsule, V70R front bumper, Volans, etc. SOLD!!! (I Will regret selling this!)

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Forkster View Post
    #1. Rebuilding a XC70 tranny doesn't work. Run, don't walk away from these hacks. We've never seen a rebuild here that lasted longer than 6 months. And if they seriously think they can rebuild this Japanese transmission, I question their sanity.
    #2. Used is fine as long as it's the exact same part number. I do know that an 03-04 transmission will work. But 05-07 there was another update but it's the same engine. Not sure if Volvo updated the transmission electronics. JRL? Art?
    #3 Dealership is probably going to swap in a used - $5300 is not unreasonable depending on the mileage.

    Mady - did you figure out why did your 03 transmission fail? Were you flushing it every 50k miles? Was it shifting hard when you purchased it? Are you the original owner?
    I do not know why it failed, just told that it's an internal failure. Someone has suggested it might be the pump, which makes sense since it was a cold day and wasn't getting engagement in any gear position. Not confirmed. Wife is main driver, she said nothing unusual prior to failure, just lost power on the freeway then no go after she stopped on the shoulder. Car was towed to the local Swedish car shop, they were able to drive it for a couple minutes before no engagement again.

    I am not the original owner. I bought it almost 4 years ago at 125k. Immediately drain/filled with 3309 fluid 4 times over a couple days, then every otheroil change did drain/fill one time. Haven't done it in last 2 years, but kept an eye on fluid condition.

    So looks like 03-04 transmission only, which is a major bummer because the low mileage units I've found are 06 and 07. Can I use transmission from a V70 (2.4L FWD)?

    Has anybody ever looked on automotix.net for used transmission? The way they split the fitment has Station Wagon, AWD, with and without XC. Is it even possible to buy in 03? I thought all AWD were XC unless it's a V70, in which case you can't get AWD.
    Last edited by madymo3d; 01-22-2016 at 09:45 PM.

  5. #5
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    when you say 'towed', you mean on a flat bed right?

    i just paid $3000USD for my whole car, are you better off just buying another one, cause that trans rebuild cost is big $$$
    2008 XC70 Premium - Electric Silver/black interior

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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aussie70 View Post
    when you say 'towed', you mean on a flat bed right?

    i just paid $3000USD for my whole car, are you better off just buying another one, cause that trans rebuild cost is big $$$
    Yes, flat bed. No doubt the rebuild will cost close to buying another car, but any car in the $3-5k range would be hit or miss anyway. At least I have some history with this car. It only had 1 previous owner who gave me all his maintenance records and was serviced at the same shop I had the car towed. But yes, that's a dilemma with any used 10+ year 100k+ miles car.

  8. #8
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    Default does it have to be from another XC?

    Quote Originally Posted by JRL View Post
    2003 and 2004 ONLY

    As for rebuilding, depends on who is doing it ... but at your miles your tranny case may be a bit warped.
    Better off to find a lower mileage one and then rebuild it or buy a new (rebuilt) from Volvo.
    JRL, does the 2003 and 2004 trans have to be from another XC or can it be from S60 FWD, for example? When I look up sites, after selecting 2003 XC70, it stlil shows bunch of options like convertible/stationwagon, FWD/AWD, XC and no XC, turbo/non-turbo, etc. Clearly an XC is only AWD turbo, so do the options there just indicate what they came out of, but all will fit the XC70?

  9. #9
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    Of course it does if you want to keep your AWD
    All emails please use: jrl1194 (at) aol.com

    2007 V70 2.5T White/Oak, 112K miles. My daily driver and GORGEOUS
    2000 V70R wife's. Won't sell, now at 148K miles !! and still (almost) perfect.
    2000 S70 GLT SE with 29,000 miles!!! A time capsule, V70R front bumper, Volans, etc. SOLD!!! (I Will regret selling this!)

  10. #10
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    Yeah, pretty much needs to be a XC transmission though I think a 2.5T AWD from an 03/04 would fit as well.

    I'm with you better you know than the one you don't know.


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