Ford Fiesta Transmission problems & Overview

In the mid-70’s, the Ford Fiesta was designed to offer people a practical transportation solution, for very little money. Americans didn’t much care for subcompact cars at the time, so the little Ford went away after the 1980 model year. It remained a strong seller in international markets, but the Fiesta wouldn’t return to North America until 2011 (the car you’re thinking of was called the Ford Festiva).

Need a replacement transmission? Get an estimate for replacement transmissions and local installation. Look up your transmission model by vehicle make and model.

What Transmission Do I Have?

When the 6th generation Fiesta finally debuted in early 2009, it brought a whole new standard of quality and equipment to the subcompact segment. Buyers could now get high-end features like voice-activated infotainment, and leather upholstery. A six-speed PowerShift dual-clutch transmission was also available, making the Fiesta the first affordable subcompact to combine the quick-shifting capabilities of a manual transmission, with the excellent fuel economy of an automatic.

Does something seem wrong with your Fiesta? Let’s look at some of the most common Ford Fiesta transmission problems, and see what you can do to get your car back on the road.

Ford Fiesta Recalls

No transmission-related recalls

Ford Fiesta Technical Service Bulletins (TSB)

2011-2014Fiesta – TSB 15-0090-15-0043 / 10058318

Problem:

According to Ford, certain 2011-2014 Fiesta’s that are equipped with the Ford DPS6 automatic transmission, may experience excessive transmission clutch shudder during light acceleration, and/or fluid leaks from the clutch housing. This is due to fluid contamination of the clutch, caused by failed input shaft seals.

Solution:

Depending on the severity of the damage, the clutch may be able to be cleaned, and both input shaft seals replaced. However, the clutch itself may need to be replaced as well.

2011-2015 Fiesta – TSB 44852 / 10057815

Problem:

If the above repair to fix clutch contamination isn’t done correctly, the new input shaft seals could swell and rupture, causing the same problem to occur again.

Solution:

When cleaning the bell housing and clutch assembly, allow ample time for the parts to dry before installing the new input shaft seals. Otherwise, the cleaning solvent can cause the new seals to swell and rupture.

2014 Fiesta – TSB 14-0063-14-0135 / 10056929

Problem:

Certain examples of the 2014 Ford Fiesta that are equipped with the 1.6L Ti-VCT engine, may display an MIL warning lamp, and store one or more of the following diagnostic trouble codes: P2610, P286F, or P06B8.

Solution:

The Powertrain Control Module (PCM) and Transmission Control Module (TCM) will need to be updated with the latest transmission control software, using IDS release 89.02 or higher.

Need a replacement transmission? Get an estimate for replacement transmissions and local installation. Look up your transmission model by vehicle make and model.

What Transmission Do I Have?

How to Diagnose & Fix

  1. Check the OBD Codes
  2. Check the fluid level
  3. Test transmission pressure
  4. Drop the transmission pan
  5. Repair, replace or rebuild

What to Read Next

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What Problem Does Your Fiesta Have?

Let us know the year, mileage and problem you’re having as well as any trouble (OBD) codes you’ve found. If you’ve been given a quote or paid for a repair, we’d like to hear about that too!

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Carl
26 days ago

Roaring noise. Stops when you put in Neutral

Brittany Dillon
5 months ago

2014 ford festia every now and then it wont go into revers and it said transsmisson hot I love my car but im still paying for it and im scared its going to break down

Anonymous
6 months ago

I have a 2011 Ford Fiesta. If I’m at a stop sign or stop light and go to take off it shakes and shutters and I can hear an electrical sound. It’s very noticable and really embarrassing. It does this every single day. My engine light will come on every now and then, and it goes back off. No codes are being thrown. Sometimes I’ll go to take off and it won’t even move. Then finally it’s like it finds the gear and takes off and shutters and shakes. This is by far the worst car I’ve ever owned. I’ve had 2 recalls on it. One my doors stopped latching, and my driver side door popped open on me on the highway. I never received a letter in the mail over that. They told me that while I went up there for that reason. I had to literally hold it closed until I could make it somewhere with bungee cords just to keep my door(s) closed. Then I received another recall for an upgrade on my transmission, it doesn’t even act like they did anything to it. I’m so over this car, I’ve spent thousands of dollars and I still continue to have to get something fixed on it. Never buying Ford again.

Anonymous
6 months ago

I have a 2011 Ford Fiesta. If I’m at a stop sign or stop light and go to take off it shakes and shutters and I can hear an electrical sound. It’s very noticable and really embarrassing. It does this every single day. My engine light will come on every now and then, and it goes back off. No codes are being thrown. Sometimes I’ll go to take off and it won’t even move. Then finally it’s like it finds the gear and takes off and shutters and shakes. This is by far the worst car I’ve ever owned. I’ve had 2 recalls on it. One my doors stopped latching, and my driver side door popped open on me on the highway. I never received a letter in the mail over that. They told me that while I went up there for that reason. I had to literally hold it closed until I could make it somewhere with bungee cords just to keep my door(s) closed. Then I received another recall for an upgrade on my transmission, it doesn’t even act like they did anything to it. I’m so over this car, I’ve spent thousands of dollars and I still continue to have to get something fixed on it. Never buying Ford again.

Kimi
7 months ago

Loss or reverse and shudder early in acceleration

Gary Matlock
9 months ago

Makes a noise-like gears turning-when u turn key on-no reverse but has gotward

Gary Matlock
9 months ago

Turn key on trans.makes a noise before it cranks&then no reverse but u have forward-replaced neutral safety switch-same problem

Delma Love
1 year ago

I have a 2012 Ford Fiesta SEL and it has been giving me issues especially the transmission problems. At times it jerks when trying to speed up. Shaking. It has been doing this since I bought it. But Everytime I take it to the dealership. They say it doesn’t have a recall on it.

Judi
1 year ago

I have 2012 Fiesta hatchback. Manual transmission. I have under 60,000 miles. First transmission replaced at 50,000 miles. Advised current transmissions needs to be replaced after 9,000 miles. It makes high pitched whine; hard to get in reverse and comes out of 5th gear. Is there defect in these manuals like the automatic I keep reading about?

Colin Maskell
1 year ago

My 2012 ford fiesta drops out of reverse after a very short time

Patrick Joseph Neary
1 year ago

So far, my new 2019, Ford Fiesta se, automatic, has been ok! It’s averaging 36.7 mpg.

Marsha
1 year ago

2014 fiesta hatchback. Engine shudder

Ap
1 year ago

2011 fiesta 1.6 automatic. Trans making crunchy noises while turning. Thought it was tire rub but no such luck. Drivers side tire when jacked up makes the noise when rotated

Aaron ray
1 year ago

My 2014 fiesta has an issue when I push in the clutch and let off the break it wants to take off without letting out the clutch

Jane L.
1 year ago
Reply to  Aaron ray

Yes, exact same issue just started with my 2014 Fiesta, manual transmisson. I had to kill the engine to keep it from continuing to reverse out into a street. A d sometimes now will not go into first gear after stopped in neutral.

Michelle
1 year ago

I have a 2013 ford fiesta and the transmission light came on and the wrench light ! It says on my dash, Transmission malfunction, service now ! What is going on ?

Tiffany
1 year ago
Reply to  Michelle

Same here. Over heated transmission? Car doesn’t back up. Working on this right now. What happened to yours? How many miles did yours have?

Joe
1 year ago
Reply to  Tiffany

I have a 2014 fiesta. Battery (4yrs old) began causing lots of relay chatter, various warning messages, wrench on and off twice in a matter of minutes, check engine stayed on for 3 days, now off. I’ve been having to charge my battery(short periods) because it’s old and I’m broke because it gets to about 10 volts and won’t crank. (About a month of this) if I drive say 25-30 miles it will crank even if it sat at work all day(or home) I minimize all electrical usuage, ie daytime lights, dome lights, etc. remember, lots of relay chatter ok. Yesterday, 1-18-20, I heard what sounded like gear mesh/crunch for just a few seconds and found no visible damage under car. That was ten miles into trip. 20 miles left then 30 miles home and one more 30 to work the next day. Park on an incline (slight) 7 hours later, car rolled out but had zero transmission! D,r, standard! Nothing! Took the only relay under hood that exactly matched r3 or transmission module I think, it was cooling fan relay. Put fan relay in trans module place and car was drivable again. Drove 30 miles, without cooling fan relay(not recommended) with heater on and thank God a cool night and made it home. I have my last clutch or whatever repair ford will do for free in the morning. That’s what happened to me today! P.s. God is good!

Tiffany - This is my update.
1 year ago
Reply to  Tiffany

Hey sorry for the late update. Overheated transmission for me turned into a broken clutch in my automatic transmission. Over a thousand dollars later…. car is working good as new.

Ford had a part warrantee for the transmission’s computer as the part was faulty, but the warrantee is for a certain amount of miles. In the end it was a broken clutch for my car and not the computer. Good luck to everyone out there.

Luis
1 year ago
Reply to  Tiffany

Same with me I have a 2012 and it does not want to back up. Have you fixed yet?what was the problem?

Robin
1 year ago
Reply to  Michelle

What was it mine just started today

Travis S
1 year ago
Reply to  Michelle

Did your battery die? If so…. you have a recalled tcm ford will pay to put another 1 in but if the extended warranty isn’t up…. I own a 2014 ford fiesta and it did the same thing cause my battery died my car would only go up to 4 gears and acted like it was in sport mode but was clearly messed up. It would randomly go into neutral when downshift…. I think you have 1 of 600000 recalled cars…. mine was. Hope this helps.

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