Pontiac Bonneville Transmission Problems & Cost | 4T65E / 4T65E-HD

The Pontiac Bonneville was equipped with the 4T65E transmission in most models, the 4T65E-HD in Supercharged models, and the 4T80E in 4.6L V8 models. But they aren’t without their problems though, so let’s look at some of the most common Pontiac Bonneville transmission problems, look at cost estimates and figure out what you can do about them.

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?

Pontiac Bonneville Transmission Models

Pontiac Bonneville: 4T65E Transmission
Pontiac Bonneville: 4T65E-HD Transmission (Supercharged)
Pontiac Bonneville: 4T80E Transmission (4.6L V8)

Pontiac Bonneville Transmission Replacement Cost Estimate

Pricing varies by model. To be 100% sure on pricing, have your VIN# handy and use our Get An Estimate feature to look up your transmission by VIN#.

Replacement Pontiac Bonneville Transmission Prices:

TransmissionStreet Smart TransmissionAutozoneAdvance Auto PartsDealer Retail

What are the DTC codes related to Pontiac Bonneville transmission problems?

Trouble CodeDescription
P0717Input/Turbine Speed Sensor Circuit No Signal
P0730Incorrect Gear Ratio
P0753Shift Solenoid 'A' Electrical
P0758Shift Solenoid 'B' Electrical
P1860TCC PWM Solenoid Circuit Electrical

Pontiac Bonneville Transmission Recalls

None Found

Pontiac Bonneville Technical Service Bulletins (TSB)

TSB 04-07-30-028 – Transmission fluid leak from reverse servo cover – 4T65E Transmission
Problem – Transmission fluid leaks may be observed under the vehicle, which may be caused by a 4T65E reverse servo seal that can actually shrink in the cold weather below 20°F/-6.7°C
Solution – Replace reverse servo cover seal

TSB 02-07-30-022B – Usually harsh shifts, along with multiple transmission diagnostic trouble codes – 4T40E Transmission | 4T45E Transmission | 4T65E Transmission
2000 – 2004 Buick Century – 2000 – 2004 Buick LeSabre – 2000 – 2004 Buick Park Avenue – 2000 – 2004 Buick Regal – 2003 – 2004 Buick Rendezvous – 2000 – 2001 Chevrolet Lumina – 2000 – 2004 Chevrolet Cavalier – 2000 – 2004 Chevrolet Impala – 2000 – 2004 Chevrolet Malibu – 2000 – 2004 Chevrolet Monte Carlo – 2000 – 2004 Chevrolet Venture – 2000 – 2002 Oldsmobile Intrigue – 2000 – 2003 Oldsmobile Aurora – 2000 – 2004 Oldsmobile Alero – 2000 – 2004 Oldsmobile Silhouette – 2000 – 2004 Pontiac Bonneville – 2000 – 2004 Pontiac Grand Am – 2000 – 2004 Pontiac Grand Prix – 2000 – 2004 Pontiac Montana – 2000 – 2004 Pontiac Sunfire – 2001 – 2004 Pontiac Aztec
Problem – Drivers can experience unusually harsh shifts, along with the following DTC’s: P0716, P0717, P0730, P0753, P0758, P1860, P1887
Solution – Inspect, repair and/or replace the transaxle 20-way connector to the transmission wiring harness

TSB 00-06-04-037A – Harsh shifting with DTC’s P0716 and/or P0717 – 4T40E Transmission | 4T45E Transmission | 4T65E Transmission
2000 – 2002 Buick Century – 2000 – 2002 Buick LeSabre – 2000 – 2002 Buick Park Avenue – 2000 – 2002 Buick Regal – 2002 Buick Rendezvous – 2000 – 2001 Chevrolet Lumina – 2000 – 2002 Chevrolet Cavalier – 2000 – 2002 Chevrolet Impala – 2000 – 2002 Chevrolet Malibu – 2000 – 2002 Chevrolet Monte Carlo – 2000 – 2002 Chevrolet Venture – 2000 – 2002 Oldsmobile Intrigue – 2000 – 2002 Oldsmobile Aurora – 2000 – 2002 Oldsmobile Alero – 2000 – 2002 Oldsmobile Silhouette – 2000 – 2002 Pontiac Bonneville – 2000 – 2002 Pontiac Grand Am – 2000 – 2002 Pontiac Grand Prix – 2000 – 2002 Pontiac Montana – 2000 – 2002 Pontiac Sunfire – 2001 – 2002 Pontiac Aztec
Problem – Some drivers may experience unusually harsh gear changes, accompanied by a P0716 and/or P0717 DTC
Solution – This problem can be caused by an intermittent connection of the input speed sensor circuit at the transaxle 20-way connector

Common Pontiac Bonneville Transmission Problems

Lack of Response
Leaking Fluid
Low Fluid
Burning Smell
Grinding or Shaking
Whining, Clunking or Humming
Refuses to Go Into Gear
Torque Converter Issues
Valve Body Issues
Transmission Noisy in Neutral
Gears Slipping
No 3rd or 4th Gear
No 1st or 2nd Gear
No Reverse
Dragging Clutch
Trouble Codes / Check Engine Light

Can I drive with a transmission problem?

If your Pontiac Bonneville can still make it up and down the road, you might say “It’s fine, I’ll just drive it until I can get it fixed”. But that is not always a good idea, depending on the symptoms. You see, there are a lot of (very expensive) moving parts inside of a transmission, and if something isn’t right, continuing to drive with a transmission problem could damage something else.

How often does a Pontiac Bonneville transmission need to be replaced?

The overall lifespan of a Pontiac Bonneville transmission largely depends on how well it was maintained. Factory design flaws also factor into this equation, along with how/how hard you drive. But on average, we’ve seen the Pontiac Bonneville transmission last for between 130,000-180,000 miles. A high quality replacement transmission however, can last considerably longer if all of the factory design flaws have been addressed and the vehicle has been maintained.

How are Pontiac Bonneville transmission issues diagnosed?

It is fairly easy to guesstimate what the root cause of your Pontiac Bonneville transmission problems might be, but you won’t truly know unless you have the right tools and experience. A good mechanic or transmission repair center will be able to connect your truck to a computer and find out which diagnostic trouble codes (DTC’s) have been stored. Once they know what to look for, they can perform a visual inspection to verify the problem.

How is a Pontiac Bonneville transmission replaced?

In order to replace your Pontiac Bonneville transmission, the truck has to be lifted from the ground in order to gain access to all of the parts that will need to be unbolted. Then the transmission can be lowered to the ground (typically with a transmission jack), so the new transmission can be installed. Once it is in place, for the 6L80, the vehicle PCM will have to be reprogrammed / reflashed to accept the new transmission using the latest GM subscription.

Recommendations for Pontiac Bonneville transmission issues?

To save time and get back on the road faster, have your 17-digit truck VIN# handy and you can get an online quote for a reman Pontiac Bonneville transmission here, then find a local shop using our Find a Shop guide to install it for you.

How to Solve Pontiac Bonneville Transmission Problems

Solution A: Buy a Used Pontiac Bonneville Transmission

The quickest way to fix your transmission problems is to simply buy a used transmission or used transmission. These can be found at most junk yards, and they often come with a 30-90 day warranty. However, there’s no way to determine the actual condition of the internal components, so you could be spending a bunch of money to have the exact same problems. Plus, that warranty only covers the transmission if it’s defective, not the labor costs that you’ll have to pay.

Solution B: Buy a Rebuilt Pontiac Bonneville Transmission

Another option would be a rebuilt transmission or rebuilt transmission. A local repair shop will remove your transmission, then install a bunch of new parts during the rebuild. The problem here is, the skills and experience of each transmission rebuilder will vary widely from shop to shop, so you could have problems from something that wasn’t adjusted properly. And the 1-2 year warranty might only cover you at certain transmission repair shops, in a specific geographical area.

Solution C: Buy a Remanufactured Pontiac Bonneville Transmission

Many owners depend on their vehicle to commute and get things done. Their gasoline engines are designed to go 100’s of thousands of miles, so it makes sense to invest in a remanufactured transmission.

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?

What Problem Does Your Pontiac Bonneville 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!

Your Name
Email Not Required
22 Tell us about your transmission problems
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
1 month ago

My 1999 bonneville was rough shifting (it would bump when shifting gears) for years, then the other day was cruising about 35 mph and it lost power. Coasted to side of road and tried to put in drive again and it crawled forward but very slow and seemed like it was shaky or grinding. Let sit for a week and put it in drive and it’s shifting smooth now, but starts vibrating around 3rd gear. My question is will it need a complete overhaul or could this be something simple like a solenoid?

4 months ago

stalling while driving

7 months ago

Don’t shift good sometimes sluggish shifting

Chris Todd
7 months ago

Car feels as if there is a vibration coming from driveshaft and when you hit rough areas in highway car shimmers real bad

7 months ago

Hard shift

8 months ago

Trany throwing code 741, trany has 101,000 miles

8 months ago

Code 741 trany has 101,000 miles

Reuben Anderson
9 months ago

Severe vibration from transmission with fluid leakage from the driver s cv seal

10 months ago

wont shift from 1st to 2nd gear

10 months ago

wont shift from 1st to 2nd gear

Patricia Price
10 months ago

Car won’t go in reverse or forward

1 year ago

Worked in forward gears by putting in low the shift up the gears. Then stopped forward gears altogether. But reverse works

1 year ago

My gearhead homies and I are baffled by my 03 Bonneville. The tranny takes a few miles to “warm up”. Once you’re cruising, everything is fine. Stop, turn it off, restart and drive again, still smooth shifting. Let it sit for a couple hrs, or (here’s the odd part) park and restart from certain locations and it’s gotta warm up again. Any ideas are welcome.

lobner transmissons
1 year ago
Reply to  Nicky

probably has worn lip seals in the tranny. they get hard and don’t seal against the inside of the drum so fluid goes past it. after warm up, seals get more pliable and work ok till they cool off again. only permanent fix is overhaul. you might be able to find some additive to work but eventually you will be pulling it.

King Puff
1 year ago

2000 3.8L Pontiac Bonneville, it’s at 170,000 miles Original Everything expect fixing parts including bad ball joints, wheel bearing, tyrods, alinement, electrical sucks bc windows don’t work & Sunroof won’t open just noisy. The car (I call my baby Bonny), my Uncle did a little more than usual of burning rubber Not even on command (badass car) he tried a burn out, than later on be revved it alot. Later last night 12am it stopped in mid traffic and wouldn’t MOVE at all in Drive. Eventually got to move it struggling using Manuel mehtod since automatic is dead. It’s still kicking like a race horse. Used it for less than a evening and it stopped in mid traffic again but stopped in 1 and 2 completely!! Pushing the car down streets n streets now trying to get it picked up brought home so we can go to the Junkyard and find this possibly nice transmission we found for a either very similar class or same car but might been a Buick, so we can pay $100-150 to get the tranny from the junkyard and my Uncle is the best tool head mechanic off the books EVER amazing and family’s mechanic in Buffalo, NY. The car still pushing, maybe sensor problems but we gonna have to replace it, luckly he’ll do it and make it work. He did simaliar on his Ford Focus and it worked so he learned alot of tricks n tips of replacing a transmission with another used transmission. I know Bonny not dead yet we going to do the best to get it home than go from there love this car it’s a eye grabber loud a badass with balls , A FOUR DOOR MUSCLE CAR😤💯 just wish we knew if it was a lil sensor or something instead of doing the tranny thing. It’s $1500 to buy one in shop or AutoZone but $3000 to rebuild not even to mention labor fees but luckly family mechanic has that issue covered. If your reading this hope you got some good reliable info. Bonneville such a underrated BEAST!

2 years ago

2002 Bonneville 3.8 Vin ‘K’. Same here @Barbe. Acting up, shifts hard at 4K; won’t hit 4th till about the same RPM and 70 MPH…Behaving, shifts smooth w/values not too far out of normal; idle hovers around 700 RPM at a Stop. Ramping up to misbehave, shift is slightly higher than normal; ~1500 RPM out of 1st and into 3-4 between 2-2500K RPM w/normal speeds.

A lot of these symptoms are similar to the effects of phasing in/out of ‘Limp Mode’, but only periodically. An independent Electrical Systems Master Mechanic diagnosed a bad ECU saying that “it was unable to process signal from the TPS. This much I knew from a $12 volt meter…Key ON/Engine OFF back-probed to an OEM Replacement TPS read ~2V or about 40% open throttle; reference signal is 0.4V or about 8% open throttle.

Odd things about it are the above has happened with and without the TPS connected…it makes perfect sense that without TPS signal, the Transmission cannot shift properly, but make no sense that it would occasionally act perfectly normal also while disconnected. In addition, there were never any Transmission DTCs stored ever.

I’ve systematically vested significant funds into this and have dealt with it for some time now – I had alternate transportation, but that’s no longer an option – and given I can get a remanned and programmed ECM for around $250 it seems to make the most sense to replace it.

I’m not a Full-time mechanic, but I know plenty of them and paid labor rates north of $100/hr for advice. I don’t pretend to know everything about cars, but I think my logic is sound. Any advice or criticisms are thanked for in advance…every failure is an opportunity to learn; where the only failure is to have learned nothing from them.


Jay Baldwin Jr
9 months ago
Reply to  -Anon

Solution – Inspect, repair and/or replace the transaxle 20-way connector to the transmission wiring harness

2 years ago

lost 4th gear 1998 bonneville ssei

2 years ago

End broke input shyon 4 t 65 hf in 2000 md bonniville 3.8 turbo chrged engine???

2 years ago

Input shaft broke off in the torque converter side 2000 model Bonneville 3.8 turbo charged engine will not pull

2 years ago

Won’t shift until about 45miles

2 years ago
Reply to  Barbe

Will not pull at all

Would love your thoughts, please comment.x