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Q: Traction warning on, unexpected deceleration

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My car has an automatic transmission. It has gone around 117,000 miles. The following problems I've been having with the car occur intermittently. On one occasion while I was driving, the instrument panel in my car started showing the traction warning on. Then, there were some clicking sounds and the car decelerated by itself. When the traction control is on, the car would begin to stall. Also, while I was applying the gas pedal to prevent the car from staling out, the car would suddenly surge. What could be causing these issues?

It definitely sounds like there is an issue either with the engine management or traction control system. Fault codes need to be read out to see if there are any underlying issues causing these malfunctions. One common input to both systems is the MAF sensor.

There is a TSB that discusses contamination of the MAF can affect not only the engine management system but also have adverse effects on both the traction control and transmission control systems. So the first place to start is to have the fault codes read out. You may want to enlist the help of a mechanic, such as one from YourMechanic, who will have the tools and expertise to interrogate these systems, diagnose the issue, and repair the system to prevent these malfunction from occurring in the future.

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