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Have a fully loaded 2016 MDX. Worked fine for a few weeks, and now the transmission is a problem. This is the new 9 speed transmission.

Here is what happens:

Accelerate from a stop or slow speed- delays 1-2 second (pushing gas pedal, nothing happens) until it kicks into gear and lurches.

Accelerate into traffic (like merging onto the highway) and the car pauses, then awkwardly downshifts- not smooth at all.

Come to a stop, put it in reverse, and it can take 3-5 seconds for reverse to kick in (if at all). You'll find yourself rolling downhill until reverse starts.

Anybody else having these problems???

We took it to the dealer 3 times. No error messages so "no problem". However, tonight we got a "transmission problem" error when experimenting with the drive to reverse problem described above.

This is presumably caused by the transmission slipping, or simply not knowing what gear to kick into.

This is unique to this transmission, and is in no way consistent with what a $60K car should drive like. Tag onto this post and describe your own problems.
 

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The ZF 9 speed has dog clutches, which aren't technically supposed to "slip" ever (if you do, you've lost all the teeth, which is unlikely). The dog clutches do give you the "hunting" feeling though, since the teeth have to synchronize before setting, which is that lagging feeling.

Is it a good execution of dog clutches in a transmission? Not really, but it is not slipping either.

If you got a "TRANSMISSION PROBLEM" message, then have the dealer diagnose it at that point. After all, you now have error messages, so there is a problem after all (just take a pic or video and show it to the dealer in case the message disappears).

Here's a write-up about our ZF 9 speed: ZF's 9-Speed 9HP Transmission Puts Dog Clutches On The Leash - The Truth About Cars

Many of us are in agreement that the 6 speed should have stayed in the MDX, but I think we're past the point of no return now, so we just need to keep complaining until they deal with it. They claim it's all software issues, which is not unbelievable since the TCU is technically controlling the shift points and if we are starting to see wrong gear engagement issues, I think we have some gear position sensor issues too.
 

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We also have the 2016 MDX and have all the same issues. Was told by the service person at dealership that we have to get used to it (not that they see any issue). I've tried to adapt by being very light on the gas when I accelerate but there is still a very noticeable hesitation/lag. It always seems like car is revving up whenever I accelerate even the smallest amount - rpms go up to 3 or more each time. Also, was going downhill, so took my foot off the gas and the car accelerated...like it kicked in too late or something. That was pretty disturbing but it did only happen one time.
We've had the car for 2mos now and nothing has really changed except for how I try to drive. It's a real irritation as I drive mostly local roads w/lots of stop lights and stop signs so there's plenty of opportunity to feel this happening.
 

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You have heavy/lead foot.

Due to EPA's fuel economy mandates, car manufacturers tune the transmission to drive on higher gear to increase fuel economy. If you abruptly step on the gas pedal, the transmission needs to downshift to get the required torque to move the vehicle quickly. When this occurs, you will feel the car hesitation. Normal behavior, not transmission slip. If you don't want this annoyance, use SPORT (S) mode plus pedal shifter.

If you still prefer automatic driving, you will need to get used to it. By that, I don't mean you stuck with that annoyance. Learn how to step on the gas pedal gradually...watch the engine RPM rises...then step on it -- fast but gradual. Your car will be smooth. Learn your car, not car learning you.
 

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Keep in mind S mode is not really SPORT but SEQUENTIAL and for most drivers, SEQUENTIAL will not alleviate these problems, only exacerbate them (especially when downshifting). I have found the shifting to be smooth, but yes, it takes some time to engage because of how dog clutches work. Usually an acceleration when you take your foot off means you lifted very quickly right where the TCU is deciding between the previous gear and the current gear you're in. It's definitely something to get used to if you tend to drive with heavier engagement.

The OP ended up having an actual transmission issue (as you can tell by her TRANSMISSION PROBLEM error message) with failed clutches.
 

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Have a fully loaded 2016 MDX. Worked fine for a few weeks, and now the transmission is a problem. This is the new 9 speed transmission.

Here is what happens:

Accelerate from a stop or slow speed- delays 1-2 second (pushing gas pedal, nothing happens) until it kicks into gear and lurches.

Accelerate into traffic (like merging onto the highway) and the car pauses, then awkwardly downshifts- not smooth at all.

Come to a stop, put it in reverse, and it can take 3-5 seconds for reverse to kick in (if at all). You'll find yourself rolling downhill until reverse starts.

Anybody else having these problems???

We took it to the dealer 3 times. No error messages so "no problem". However, tonight we got a "transmission problem" error when experimenting with the drive to reverse problem described above.

This is presumably caused by the transmission slipping, or simply not knowing what gear to kick into.

This is unique to this transmission, and is in no way consistent with what a $60K car should drive like. Tag onto this post and describe your own problems.
Hi,

I was following up to see if you are still experiencing issues with the transmission. I'm in the market for an MDX, but I may wait.
 

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MDX - Slow off Stop Line and 'Kicks' at 30-35 mph

I have a very similar issue. I go to a 'Stop' sign, fully stop, and then press on the gas (not too heavy) and wait for the car to move and always see the RPMs going up to 3 when it finally feels like it is moving. Then when I am moving I feel the car 'kick' at 30-35 mph. At green lights, other cars are always getting off the line a lot faster than I am. On the highways, the car is great except for the initial merge. On local roads, I experience the aforementioned problems whether in Sport, Comfort, or Normal mode. I am bringing it to the dealer next week.
 

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I'm currently experiencing this same issue on my brand new 2016 MDX. All was smooth for about the first week then one day one of the gears started skipping... I have the car now in the shop but not very hopeful they will fix it. Has anyone come up with a solution? Thanks!
 

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Bad hesitation -- 2016 Acura MDX -- Saftey concern

Same thing with my New 2016 MDX -- the scary thing is it really hesitates after I brake hard to make left turn and then cross oncoming traffic. Its driving me nuts and I find my self being a little scared in certain situations. First gear is way too low and the computer is way too slow......it really needs a reset and/or a download to fix the programming.

Acura! Get on a fix for this! We shouldn't have problems like this with a new car and it sounds like it is a widespread defect that has safety concerns. I called the dealership and they told me I wasn't driving the MDX right!! I've been driving for 30 years and I know when something is not responding correctly. Fix this now before there is a recall and our trade in value drops like a rock.
 

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Sluggish in first gear problem solved for us

I wanted to share our experience with our 2016 MDX.

We purchased our 2016 MDX in April 2015 for my wife. It was one of the early 2016 models.

From the start, it was really sluggish in first gear when starting from a full stop. It would start going, then rev up quickly and take time to shift into second gear. We lived with it for a long time, even though it drove my wife crazy and I thought it was a safety hazard. She previously had a 2008 MDX which was very responsive and drove great.

Well we finally got fed up and after searching online I found that there was possibly a software upgrade for the car which would solve this problem. We took the car to the dealership yesterday and they were able to upgrade the software in a couple hours and now the car drives great. I can't believe we waited this long to get it looked at.

We have not noticed any slipping but since this sluggishness was mentioned in the thread I wanted to pass it along. I have only driven the car once since the new software was loaded but it feels like the car is shifting differently (and better) through all of the gears.

I have a 2016 RDX and I much prefer the 6 speed transmission to the 9 speed in the MDX, we will see how things go in the future with Acura transmissions.
 
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