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lexpert
lexpert, Lexus Master tech
Category: Lexus
Satisfied Customers: 9974
Experience:  Master Certified with lexus, 8 years experience with Lexus
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My 02 Lexus ES300 automatic transmission will not shift into

Customer Question

My 02 Lexus ES300 automatic transmission will not shift into 5th (OD). The gear selector is in Drive...but the gear selector indicator on the dash reads "4th". The care is definitely in 4th, not 5th, based on RPM (2900 at 60, 3300 at 75) and MPG (18 not 22). The engine temperature is fine - normal. I ran the codes and came up with NO CODES.
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Lexus
Expert:  Greg replied 6 years ago.
Hi Steve do you have the system as well, if so will it go into 5th.


regards Greg
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
I'm not sure I understand your question...do I have what system?
Expert:  Greg replied 6 years ago.
Can you switch over from automatic to manual shift ,
some ES 300 came with this option,

Regards Greg
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
No, that is not an option on my car.
Expert:  Greg replied 6 years ago.
Ok.

Lets start with the most common cause for your model

Coolant temp sensor not reading correctly reading colder than is ,
or the thermostat has been removed and not replaced with a new one
or the thermostat is stuck open If the transmission system does nor read the correct temp it will not change into O/D

Regards Greg
Customer: replied 6 years ago.

The temperature guage reads in the normal range during operation, and reaches normal range quickly. When I say normal, the needle is 1/2-way on the guage. I don't recall the specific temp, but can easily check it. Of course, this all assumes the guage is correct.

 

Expert:  Greg replied 6 years ago.
Need to check with diagnostic tool to see true reading .

Let me know .
Regards Greg
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
ok, I will head to Auto Zone and run the diagnostic again. I ran it twice Friday and it came back "no codes" both times, but I will run it again.
Expert:  Greg replied 6 years ago.
Hi

This will not at times trip a code, if it does its more likely a P0128

get him to go into live data and check the coolant temp sensor.

Depending on which tool he is using and he goes Lexus ES300 ask him to run it though generic system / also known as Global test .

Regards Greg
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
ok...that makes sense - will do
Expert:  lexpert replied 6 years ago.

I need to step in and clarify a few things here and also provide you with a better answer to your issue on this car.


First NONE of the ES' have a triptronic or manual shift option.


The issue you have here is actually going to most likely be inside the actual shifter. There is a little plastic white "fork" inside the shifter that rides the shaft of the shifter and this "fork" gets toggles back and forth when you shift the transmission between position "4" and "D", I have repalced probably about 100 of these shifter assemblies because what happens is the fork either breaks off or gets jammed so the sensor on that fork constantly tells the ECM that you are in gear position "4".


If replacing the assembly is not a cost you want to take on then you can have your mechanic push the fork base over to the right in the "d" position to regain Drive gear.


-Pete

lexpert, Lexus Master tech
Category: Lexus
Satisfied Customers: 9974
Experience: Master Certified with lexus, 8 years experience with Lexus
lexpert and 3 other Lexus Specialists are ready to help you
Expert:  Greg replied 6 years ago.
Hi Steve .

A fellow expert has come up with a more reasonable answer to you question ,

With you not having the check engine light on ,like a code P0128 then i think Peter
is most probably on the right track.

So i'm going to opt out and let Peter take care of you

Kind regards Greg
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Ok, thank you both. The codes came back negative again, but now my TRAC OFF and VSC lights are now permanently on. I'll get my mechanic to try the shifter fork thing first.