Major mechanical failure 1500 miles in. 2dr 3.6/auto JLR transmission area leaking tons of fluid

jessedacri

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Well - I don't know what to think at the moment, but my brand new 2019, 2 door 3.6 auto JLR suffered what appears to be a defect in the transmission/transfer case area. About 11pm tonight I was driving to a taco spot about 10 minutes from my house, I previously had been idling in my driveway listening to a music track a buddy and I are working on. About 7 minutes into the drive I do a hard pull on a back road from about 10mph to 40mph, winding first and second gear of the 8 speed auto out spiritedly. I immediately smell something sweet coming through the heat vents (heat was on, AC was engaged). I pull into my destination a minute or two later and as soon as I park there's a pretty heavy stream of something flowing out of the transmission/transfer case area and a strong sweet smell inside. I can't tell if it was coolant or maybe transmission fluid? It smelled sweet but didn't look blueish/purpleish like the coolant seems to in the reservoir. I tried to get under to see where it was coming from and it was tough to tell, but was definitely dripping down from the transmission and rock trac case area.


I called roadside and had the tow truck take it to the dealer where it now sits with the key in the drop box. I'll be over there the minute they open to talk to them.


It's been on a couple mild trails in my local LA area and our friend owns a place in Green Valley Lake in San Bernardino, so it's seen some dirt and 4L use over the one free weekend I've had since I got it back from out of state purchase in AZ. I've bonked a skid plate once or twice at low speed, but there's no signs of any damage under the Jeep that I can see and nothing I've done with the vehicle thus far has been overtly rough or challenging. I've had it only 14 days - it has 1580 miles on the odometer. One other weird random tidbit: while we were idling in the driveway (about 10 minutes) I noticed the car thought it was 99 degrees outside on the Uconnect display when it was definitely 11pm and below 70. Only until I started moving did it drop down to the proper ~65 degrees. Seems like it could just be heat soaked air around the sensor, but who knows?

Hoping for the best - I took it to Glendale Dodge Chrysler Jeep and have never dealt with them or any dealer in the area before. Anyone seen this before and/or have advice for this situation? Pretty concerning with a brand new vehicle and I'm worried for the surgery it will undergo right off the bat.

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Edit: After reading around a little could this be a bad heater core? Would the fluid drop down by the transmission area if that was the case?
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jdubya421

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your heater core is typically back near the fire wall so that your blower fan can blow through it. Idk where it is in these Jeeps, but the last time I replaced one it was behind the glove box.
 

blnewt

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The look on your face says it all, bummin for ya, good luck w/ the repair, hope it's quick and good as new!
 

Headbarcode

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Yeah, a sweet smell is antifreeze. The heater core has got to be somewhere under the cowl panel between the hood and windshield, and would typically either pool up on the passenger floor or wash over the tranny depending on what side of the fire wall they located it.

My fingers are crossed that they treat you right and get you back to munching miles and smiles asap.
 

Maverick909

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ouch. that is not good at all. hope the dealer gets you going asap. please keep us informed though! hopefully it was just a failed hose. they put these "quick disconnect) type fittings on the heater core these days and they're trash IMO. But every car maker that uses them. beautiful rubi though
 

four low

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I hope it's a "simple" fix, bad hose connector or maybe a rock flew up and dinged a coolant line.
Do the Rubicon Skid Plates offer enough coverage, or are aftermarket skids needed to prevent coolant line hits ? Assuming that's what it is..
 
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jessedacri

jessedacri

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I hope it's a "simple" fix, bad hose connector or maybe a rock flew up and dinged a coolant line.
Do the Rubicon Skid Plates offer enough coverage, or are aftermarket skids needed to prevent coolant line hits ? Assuming that's what it is..
I’m not sure - the fluid looked like it was coming from an unknown location above the skids and was leaking down and dripping off the factory transfercase skid - would I not be able to see a smashed or otherwise damaged coolant line by going under the vehicle?
 
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jessedacri

jessedacri

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Dealer can’t look at the car until next Tuesday or Wednesday - so now I’m going to be driving around in a base compact Enterprise car for who knows how long while I make payments on a $51,000 Jeep.

The dealer is a bit indifferent to the whole situation and said “they’ve got tons of brand new cars with major issues ahead of me and my car is not unique and anywhere you call in the county will likely be the same”, is that not concerning as hell for the state of a brand? Does anyone have a killer socal-ish area dealer rec?




This is my first American car and my first actual new car purchase for that matter and I’m not at all thrilled.
 

MORTON

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The dealer is a bit indifferent to the whole situation and said “they’ve got tons of brand new cars with major issues ahead of me and my car is not unique and anywhere you call in the county will likely be the same”
If only they would have told you that before you purchased it....

Super comforting..
 

JeepCares

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Hi @jessedacri,

We're terribly sorry to hear that this has happened! If you would like additional assistance while in service, please send our team a private message with your VIN.

Darlene
Jeep Social Care Specialist
 

flot

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First things first. There is a big difference between "my transmission exploded" and "my jeep is leaking coolant."

Engine coolant is a watery liquid. Other than the windshield washer fluid, it's the only watery liquid you've got. Most antifreeze also smells sweet - I don't honestly know that I've ever smelled the purple OAT coolant but I assume it is similar.

Every other fluid in the jeep is somewhere on the spectrum between gasoline and heavy grease.

So what was the liquid pouring out? From your description and photo, it sounds hard to imagine that it is anything other than coolant. While a coolant leak will definitely stop you from getting where you are going, and it sucks that it happened 2 weeks into your ownership - it is usually easy to diagnose and fix and you should be back on the road without much hassle.
 
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