On my way to work, my 2003 Ford Taurus decided it wasn't going to actually move anymore.
It has been having some transmission trouble for a while now, jerking when I first accelerate (but not between 1st and 2nd gear, which is a common problem with the VSS on these cars). I was just beginning to accelerate out of a stop sign when there was a quiet clunk and there was no more power. Luckily I had gained enough speed to safely clear the intersection, but the car has not been able to move under its own power since.
What I do know
- The car has the 3.0L DOHC engine (with the AX4N transmission), and is sitting at around 130k miles.
- The transmission fluid is probably OK. It has been changed a little more frequently than recommended.
- The transmission pump is OK. I've tested the pressure in the transmission and it is within spec (albeit barely) for the vehicle. I think this rules out the very common problem (for this transmission) of the pump shaft splines getting worn out.
- The shift linkage is OK. When shifting between gears, the transmission pressure changes accordingly, and we can see stuff moving with the shift selector.
- None of the drivey gears work. That includes reverse, drive, overdrive, and first.
- Neutral and park do work. I can easily push it in neutral, and definitely cannot in park.
- It's not worth the cost of a transmission rebuild. It has loads of rust, the tires and rims are worn out, it has some cosmetic damage, and I suspect other parts of the vehicle will be failing soon. If repairs come out to more than $700 or so, I will be in the market for a new car.
- The check engine light is not on when the vehicle is running. There are no codes readable by my OBD-II reader.
What I Don't Know
- What is wrong with my car?
- Failing a definitive cause, are there any more diagnostics I can do personally to narrow it down?