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Doug, ASE Certified Technician
Category: Mitsubishi
Satisfied Customers: 8594
Experience:  Mitsubishi employed and Factory trained ASE certified technician
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Mitsubishi Eclipse GT: I have a 2006 eclipse GT coupe. Yesterday

Customer Question

I have a 2006 eclipse GT coupe. Yesterday when shifting from neutral to drive the car went into failsafe mode. Car goes into drive, park and reverse. Trans is in 3rd gear and auto shift will not work. Read codes and it is a P1751 code for A/T control relay. Can I fix the car and get it out of fail safe mode or do I take it to the dealership?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Mitsubishi
Expert:  Doug replied 2 years ago.
HiThe P1751 is not likely indicative of what is going on unfortunately as this code will set regularly when you hit fail safe.The way fail safe works is the computer kills power to ALL electronics on the transmission, preventing them from interfering with operation entirely. The transmission then relies on manual direction of hydraulic pressure via the manual valve (directly connected to the shift cable).The way that computer accomplished killing power to the entire transmission electronics is by disabling the AT relay of course... and depending on what fault is set in the transmission itself (not the OBD faults), the transmission can go into fail safe faster than the engine controller can identify it and it will set the P1751 in the OBD side.Sort of a chicken or the egg situation.What you need to do first is get it either to a dealership or a independent shop with a full function scan tool that has transmission specific access for this model. Then they can see what fault(s) set in the transmission side controller to put it into fail safe.If the fault is not a hard fault (not a constantly occurring problem), you can try unhooking the negative battery cable for a few seconds to reset the system. If the fault that occurred was momentary, this will restore transmission operation... however it will also erase any trace of what happened, making diagnosis for the shop impossible until the problem returns. If the system does not reset even temporarily after unhooking the negative cable, then it is a hard fault (constantly occurring), and will have to be diagnosed/repaired before operation is restored. It will not affect the ability of the shop to diagnose it either if it is a hard fault, since the problem will be constantly present.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Does this mean my transmission is damaged? I am afraid to take it to the dealership because of all the horror stories I hear.
Expert:  Doug replied 2 years ago.
The vast majority of the time, no it does not indicate damage.If you went into fail safe and did not have a forward or reverse gear (or both), then that would definitely indicate an internal issue, however with it just switching to fail safe the majority of the time it will be related to a sensor failure or at worst a solenoid etc.While it can escalate beyond that, it is generally pretty rare... these are pretty reliable transmissions internally.If you have a questionable dealership, then I would suggest getting it to an independent to have the transmission codes read first... you may still end up at the dealership depending on what is found (for example the sensors you can not use aftermarket on these cars.... also there are software updates for certain problems that only a dealer can install), but at least you will know ahead of time what is going on or at least have a good idea.