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angusdawg1 03-20-2007 12:39 AM

2001 Kia Optima (Automatic) Transmission Problem...Ideas?
I purchased a preowned 2001 Kia Optima last week. Of course, the next day, the (automatic) transmission starts acting up. Has anyone else had this problem or have any idea what's going on? I'd appreciate any help/suggestions!

Here's what its doing:
Everything seems fine the first 10-15 minutes of driving. Then, there's a slight jerk, it pops out of 4th gear and into 3rd. If switched over to the manual shifter at this time, it will go into 2nd, but not back to 4th or even down to 1st. It stays this way until I stop the car and restart it. Then the same thing happens again.
I should also mention that there are times that this doesn't happen. I drive along like nothing's wrong. It's kinda hit and miss.

Is this a sensor issue? Or something bigger? Again, any ideas will be appreciated!

Lisa M.

NYRANG 04-01-2007 03:17 PM

it is a sensor issue... I had the same problem with my 2001 SONATA. The trans was acting up so i got rid of it. listen to me... IT WILL ONLY GET WORSE.

ekubec 04-17-2007 11:31 PM

transmission problems
Have the fluid professionally changed. And make sure you use synthetic tranny fluid or the KIA OEM fluid.

A shop can actually suck out all the fluid that remains in the torque converter.

Just pulling the drain plug will only cause some of the fluid to drain.

This will cost you about $135

baller06 04-19-2007 04:29 PM

there is no check engine light cause i know optimas are known for input/output sensor going bad

sawzall 04-25-2007 12:59 PM

Yep, my input sensor went first at about 61K miles, then the output went less than a year later. Both replaced and both fixed the same exact symptoms. Do it yourself, these sensors are right on top and easy to replace, don't pay the 2.5 hours the mech will charge when its a 15 minute job. I paid about $120 for each sensor from a KIA dealer.

jalexa12 05-11-2007 01:55 PM

Having the same problem and planning to have the tranny fluid flushed and the sensors replaced.

Do I replace both the input and output sensors? (as i've seen posted in outher threads)

If so, where are they located for an 01 Optima? I have someone that can do it, but needs to know where they are.

Also, I went to and noticed that they have "Vehicle Speed Sensors, automatic trans" for $60.15. Is this the part i'm looking for?

baller06 05-15-2007 04:50 PM

You need input and output speed sensor or sometimes called pulse generators not vehicle speed sensor that is for your spedo. they are located on top of the tranny good luck

ahfrederick 05-15-2007 08:26 PM

Don't dish out any more money that you have already. Take the car back to where you bought it and tell THEM to deal with it. OR BUY IT BACK! ;)

jalexa12 05-16-2007 02:52 PM

Baller06 - where do i get the parts from?

ahfrederick - My vehicle is an 01. It's a little to late for that.

atomicwaist 05-18-2007 02:13 AM

I am also having a similar problem. Does anyone know where I can find a diagram to replace the sensors and where I can purchase the sensors, preferably NOT from Kia directly. Thanks in advance for the help! :D

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