Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: Car starts & drives well, but quits after one mile

asked by on

My car starts fine and drives well, however it has a dangerous issue with shutting down after going only a short distance. It will rarely go over one mile before the engine completely shuts down, along with the electrical system. I had an experienced mechanic to check out the problem and he could not find a solution. I am considering whether or not it is a fuel problem, an electrical issue, or if it is electronic. I have decided not to drive this car until I solve what is causing this dangerous problem. What can you determine that is the cause of my car’s engine-quitting problem?

Hello there, thank you for asking about your 1987 Oldsmobile Toronado. There was actually a recall on your vehicle for stalling; it’s number 87T816E. Stalling was such a severe issue with this vehicle that GM decides to extend the warranty on all stalling related repairs to 100,000 miles. Oddly enough, they don’t say what the root cause of the stalling might be. I guess there were just too many potential causes to consider. The first thing that comes to mind is the crankshaft position sensor. The powertrain control module (PCM) relies on the crank sensor signal for ignition timing and fuel control. If the crank sensor goes off line, the engine will stall. Of course, there are many other potential causes for your problem. The vehicle will need to be inspected firsthand. My advice is to get a second opinion from a professional, such as one from YourMechanic, who can inspect why your car dies after a mile and replace the crankshaft position sensor if necessary.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1000 mechanics are ready to answer your question.
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Ask a Mechanic
(100% Free)

Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.

Ask A Mechanic
Over 10,000 questions answered!

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: Dies randomly and now wont start

Hi there. What your vehicle needs is a gnome. Gnomes fix what gremlins screw-up. First off, the electrical draw should be isolated. Disconnecting the negative battery terminal and putting a test light inline between the negative terminal and negative...

Q: Dashboard lights flash and then go out

Hello there, thank you for asking about your 1987 Oldsmobile Toronado. This is something that would require first hand inspection for complete diagnosis. However, there is a technical service bulletin (TSB) that may pertain to your issue. The TSB is...

Q: Got 40 lbs fuel pressure got spark no injector e

If you have spark and fuel pressure but no injector pulse, it is most likely the crank sensor, the crank sensor connector or another wiring problem in the crank sensor circuit. The best method to check the crank sensor is...

Related articles

How Do Power Car Windows Increase Passenger Safety?
Power windows are responsible for approximately 2,000 emergency room visits every year. When a power window closes, it exerts enough force to bruise or break bones, crush fingers, or restrict an airway. Though...
What are the Car Pool Rules in Hawaii?
Hawaii is widely regarded as a land of vacation and relaxation, and as such, its scenic roads and routes are far better known than the state’s freeways. But, as with all...
How Much Does a Mechanic Make in Vermont?
Automotive technician jobs in Vermont have an average mechanic salary of $37k, with some mechanics earning a salary of $53k.