CVT failure - Fiberglass RV


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Old 07-24-2017, 07:14 AM   #1
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Name: John Michael
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CVT failure

Several posts over the years have claimed CVT'S (Continuous variable transmissions) are prone to failure when towing. I know nothing about the durability of CVT's. Does anyone have direct experience with such failures? Did your problems result from towing or just high mileage wear and tear? I have towed tens of thousands of miles with CVT's with no problems. Maybe I was just lucky. Still I am concerned.

Thanks, john

BTW. I have towed my 13' Scamp w/brakes over 20,000 miles with my current 2015 Outback. 55,000 total on the Outback to date. I did change the tranny oil at half the recommended interval. So far it works great.
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Old 07-24-2017, 07:47 AM   #2
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From recent posts on this site, I'd say the jury is still out on the CVT.

At 50K+ mile and 11K or so towing, my experiment continues. A recent lab test of my trans fluid and fresh Subaru fluid showed no significant deterioration.

Please everyone, for the benefit of those who might find the information useful, please provide the make model and year of the TV, along with the mileage, along with the trailer towed, and hopefully the loaded weight. Recent discussions feature posts equivalent to, "I had a car. I towed a trailer. it failed."(or 'I never had a problem.') Let others benefit from out experience. Within reason, the more detail the better.

Please excuse the rant.
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Old 07-24-2017, 08:09 AM   #3
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CVT failure

The most interesting "experiment," if you want to call it that, is the current Nissan Pathfinder. It has a maximum tow rating of 6000 pounds, top of its class, coupled with a CVT transmission. I am watching to see how that works out.
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Old 07-24-2017, 08:32 AM   #4
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I remember hearing that the cvt trans in the Ford Freestyle was problematic, but when I asked a few owners they said it's been very dependable. Go figure
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Old 07-24-2017, 08:44 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jon in AZ View Post
The most interesting "experiment," if you want to call it that, is the current Nissan Pathfinder. It has a maximum tow rating of 6000 pounds, top of its class, coupled with a CVT transmission. I am watching to see how that works out.
There is an interesting detail in the Nissan CVT story. Some of the early Nissan CVTs had issues, to which Nissan's solution was to add a transmission fluid 'warmer', which seems counterintuitive, given the normal concern with transmission coolers. I believe Nissan first used the CVT on the '03 Murano.
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Old 07-24-2017, 08:50 AM   #6
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My daughters have had CVT transmission failures in their Nissan and Kia vehicles. Both tow small pop up tent trailers .
Both were told that their CVT transmission failures were due to towing.
The Kia transmission failed at a little over 60,000 miles and at a little over 100,000 miles it is starting to fail again.
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Old 07-24-2017, 09:32 AM   #7
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Hi John,
We towed our EggCamper about 10,000 miles with our 2014 Subaru Outback with no problems. It towed very nicely. I had the dealer check the CVT at around 35k miles and they did a sort of "stress test" on it which showed perfectly normal conditions. Still, knowing that we were very close to the recommended Outback towing limits on weight and tongue weight, we have since mostly opted to tow using our 2006 Tundra.
I've not heard of an Outback CVT failing, but, as Clif noted on another thread, and both of us have, within the last 2 weeks, received the letter from Subaru extending the CVT warranty to 100k miles/10years for 2010 and up models.
Mark
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Old 07-24-2017, 09:40 AM   #8
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It could be more who is making the transmission than the fact that it's a CVT. Or just that the technology is still going through growing pains. Some companies just do a better job than others.

It will be really interesting to see how these CVTs do in the longer term.
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