Q: Car turns on, able to shift but wont move

asked by on August 19, 2016

My GMC Envoy has been working fine and I drove it earlier today to run some errands and parked it at home. 4hrs later my wife gets in to use it, starts it up fine, tries to go in reverse and the car doesn't move. The engine revs up but wont move forward or reverse. One thing I did notice is that when I shifted the gear its was a lot smoother when transitioning from Park to the other shifts than any other time. On the dashboard the vehicle still says Park when I shift the gears and also when I shift it isn't allowing me to push my vehicle, its almost as if it is stuck in park even after shifting. Trans Oil is good.

My car has 153000 miles.
My car has a manual transmission.

Great description. It sounds like you have a problem with the shifter cable. The cable either broke, or the end of it popped off. The cable runs from the shifter to a linkage arm on the transmission. The ends of the cable are plastic, and snap on to a steel ball. Wear on the plastic, or rust on the ball and it can come off.

The transmission range sensor is on the transmission. The fact the the indicator says "P" and you cannot roll the car supports this theory. I would have this repaired on the spot, or have the vehicle towed to get it repaired. A knowledgeable mechanic may be able to manually put the car in drive with you sitting in it, but do this as a last resort. You would not be able to put it back in park or reverse when needed, or restart the engine if it were shut off. The tow truck driver will need to manually take it out of park too if you decide to go that route. Alternatively, a certified technician from YourMechanic can come to your car’s location to inspect the shifting issue and assist with resolving the problem.

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