My 2001 VW Eurovan (T4) has automatic transmission and about 160k miles on the clock.
When I use the transmission selector to move from N to D or from N to R, there is a noticeable delay until I feel the selected gear has actually engaged. The delay is probably fairly small - less than a second, but it is more apparent than in other automatics that I have driven.
As a habit, I tend to wait carefully until I actually feel the engagement before I touch the gas pedal; If I don't wait, the engagement happens with a jolt - I don't know for sure if this is bad, but my engineering instincts tell me these kinds of jolts are not going to do any good.
A year ago I took the van to a transmission shop. They did a fluid and filter replacement. After that things felt a good deal better, but still not as good as a new car.
Do I need to worry about these symptoms?
Is this a sign of impending transmission failure?
If so, is there anything I can do to keep it healthy?
The transmission shop recommended yearly fluid and filter changes.