Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: While highway driving, car stopped accelerating & became inoperative

asked by on

I was driving on the interstate and all the sudden my car stopped accelerating. It became totally inoperative. I got to the shoulder of the road and had to call for a tow truck. While I was waiting for him to arrive, I noticed that there was a smell like something was burning, coming from the car. I'm not sure from where on the car though. The messages on my car’s display were “inoperative” and “see operator’s manual.” Before I allow the service department to work on my car, can you give me your assessment of what the problem is and how to fix it?

A: This message indicates there is a problem i...

This message indicates there is a problem in the anti-lock braking and/or electronic stability program system. If the problem is severe enough, the vehicle will go into limp mode, as you experienced. The root cause could be anything from a failed wheel speed sensor to a faulty control module. The first step in diagnosing this problem is to retrieve the diagnostic trouble codes which are stored inside the module. These codes serve as a starting point for any further diagnostics. I suggest you get a trained professional to diagnose any trouble codes and repair your vehicle. The team at YourMechanic is an excellent option because we make house calls and can save you a tow bill.

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

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Save up to 30%

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: P0301

Diagnostic Trouble Code P0301 means that Cylinder No. 1 is misfiring but the causes of that can be very varied. The fuel injector could simply be dead or there is little cylinder compression due to a burned valve or leaky...

Q: No acceleration or RPM increase while pressing gas pedal

It sounds like you may have an issue with your throttle position sensor. This sensor sends a reference voltage to your power-train control module, which uses that to determine ignition timing and fuel trims. If the power-train control module is...

Q: Trouble starting car when cold

The starting issues scream timing. The typical causes that set these codes are the cam and crank position sensors. The only option you have not tried to my knowledge is the camshaft position sensor. I would start there. With all...

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...
P0052 OBD-II Trouble Code: HO2S Heater Control Circuit High (Bank 2 Sensor 1)
P0052 code definition HO2S Heater Control Circuit High (Bank 2 Sensor 1) What the P0052 code means This code is seen when the Engine Control Module (ECM) tries to control the...
P2103 OBD-II Trouble Code: Throttle Actuator Control Motor Circuit High
P2103 means there is a fault with the throttle actuator control motor circuit, likely due to a defective electrical component or part.