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sprinkles08, ASE Certified Technician
Category: Car
Satisfied Customers: 21425
Experience:  ASE Master and Advanced level certified. Factory trained with 15 years dealership experience
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Buick Park Avenue Ultra: I have aXXXXXUltra (

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I have aXXXXXUltra ( Supercharged). The car starts and runs fine, the problem is that when I shift into reverse gear only the car dies out immediately. I can go past reverse into any other gear and it runs fine. I can drive it and it will not shut off. I checked for codes and there are none stored or pending.

Hello and welcome to JustAnswer!


When this happens does it feel like the engine is being drug down, like if you left a manual trans in gear, held the brake and let out on the clutch? If that's what it feels like then your torque converter clutch is most likely turning on when you put it in gear. In the front of the converter there is a disc clutch that turns on at certain times to give a mechanical lock between the engine and trans to lower engine RPM's. Usually this doesn't just happen in reverse but it's possible.


If it doesn't feel like it's being drug down then I would either try to have a look at some data or set up a spark tester on it as it dies. If it dies abruptly then you are losing spark, if it hesitates and runs out of power that's a sign you are losing fuel. It's possible that the powertrain shift that happens when you put it in reverse is causing a wire to rub through to ground or is causing an intermittent open circuit and this is taking down spark, fuel or both.

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

It only does it in reverse, I can pass reverse into drive and drive it all day long at any speed so it does not sound like a clutch problem.

If you don't feel the engine is dragging down and dying then it may be losing spark, fuel or injector pulse. You're going to need to at least watch spark as it dies, monitoring data on as can tool is most likely going to be necessary to diagnose it.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Why would it not lose fuel or spark in other gears?

Because powertrain movement in one direction may be causing a wire to rub or open up. When you put it in reverse the powertrain torques the opposite direction as a forward gear.
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