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Psyclogic

My Lupo 3l nighmare

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Hey fellas,
I'm new in this forum, just found this great forum about Lupo 3l so thought you might give give me some help.

I'm big fun of Lupo 3l so few weeks ago bought one from swiss but it turned out to be my nighmare car. From day one i had problems with gearbox, while driving sometimes the car didn't want to shift gear and it stands in iddle. What i did was switched off and than reconnected the battery and than the car was fine for few km before it got even worst...
Few days a go i changes the gearbox oil in my lupo and the accumulator pressure but the mechanic had no idea about Lupo 3l and touched the clutch cable with pliers.
After that i took the car for a test drive and got stuck after 200-300m. I heard strange noise in the gearbox, it was shaking like crazy and it didn't want to shift gears.
After that 2-3 other mechanics checked the car but they can't figure out whats wrong, this is just second lupo 3l in my city.
Btw we did basic settings today with vag com and no error codes shown. They say gearbox is not broken so what else might be?

Clutch cable is working very strange and the hydraulic pump is active all time, it activates every few minutes...

Thanks in advance for the help guys!

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Excuse my ignorance, just done some research

Appears it's a 1.2 TDi. Why wasn't this sold in England from new? What are the diffefenxe between the 1.2TDi and 1.4TDI/ 1.7SDI, obviously apart from engine size ?

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If I had a 3l with gearbox problems (you're not going to fix/find another) I'd fit a manual box and then I would never have issues ever again.

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Have you opened the pressure valve on the accumulator?

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Excuse my ignorance, just done some research

Appears it's a 1.2 TDi. Why wasn't this sold in England from new? What are the diffefenxe between the 1.2TDi and 1.4TDI/ 1.7SDI, obviously apart from engine size ?

If you google it, you'll find out it was a special little car, with loads of factory mod's to get the famous 100km to 3litres of diesel.

And yes, a great shame it wasn't sold UK side.

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They are special cars but most importantly the gearboxes are prone to non catastrophic failures. The most obvious one is air in the accumulator or a failed part.

Quick way of checking the health of the hydraulics. Switch on the ignition (but do not start) with your foot on the brake. Wait for the hydraulic pump to stop and put the lever in tiptronic mode. See how many gear changes you can make before the pump restarts.

2 is poor, 4 is moderate and 6 is excellent.

If your fluid level is OK and 6 is not achieved, consider changing the accumulator unless you have obvious leaks.

Edited by Skezza

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Have you opened the pressure valve on the accumulator?

Skezza i think no, I'm not even sure where is that valve exactly located!!

What i maybe did wrong was not removing the hydraulic unit while replacing the accumulator pressure... do you think it has accumuted air in accumulator?

Btw with the new accumulator I can shift 6 times in tiptronic mode before the pump is activated.

I'll try to record a video of my Lupo noise and how the gearbox is "grinding", when i put it in D the car runs like little turtle and starts to make that strange noise.

If I had a 3l with gearbox problems (you're not going to fix/find another) I'd fit a manual box and then I would never have issues ever again.

I'm thinking of that option mate...

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I don't know much about the auto manual tranny, but from reading about the operation intro for mechanics, it basically works like a manual with piston controlled shifting. Someone posted that gearbox link (no pun intended!) a couple of weeks ago in another thread- basically describing exactly how the thing works. It may help you find the problem.... Anyone got that link?

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Have you opened the pressure valve on the accumulator?

There's no pressure valve on the accumulator!

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They are special cars but most importantly the gearboxes are prone to non catastrophic failures. The most obvious one is air in the accumulator or a failed part.

Air in the accumulator is not an issue. The system is self-bleeding. The gearboxes are no more prone to failure than a normal manual gearbox.

RAB

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If I had a 3l with gearbox problems (you're not going to fix/find another) I'd fit a manual box and then I would never have issues ever again.

No need to change the box as it is a (lightened) manual gearbox. The shifting mechanism is different though!

RAB

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Skezza i think no, I'm not even sure where is that valve exactly located!!

What i maybe did wrong was not removing the hydraulic unit while replacing the accumulator pressure... do you think it has accumuted air in accumulator?

Btw with the new accumulator I can shift 6 times in tiptronic mode before the pump is activated.

I'll try to record a video of my Lupo noise and how the gearbox is "grinding", when i put it in D the car runs like little turtle and starts to make that strange noise.

I'm thinking of that option mate...

Have you checked the rod with the two ball joints on either end on the gear actuator? They might be worn which might give problems changing gear. Why are your mechanics so confident that you don't have a gearbox problem?

RAB

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Air in the accumulator is not an issue. The system is self-bleeding. The gearboxes are no more prone to failure than a normal manual gearbox.

RAB

I'm sure I read somewhere that air can get in the system? And there's a valve you have to open?

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Did you get this fixed in the end? we're all curious to know what the cause was....

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Hi, I have also just bought a Lupo 3L from Germany, I am just waiting for the registration document to come through and carrying out the minor work needed to get it fully serviced / through an MOT.

Watch this video of how to test the accumulator, try it, and let me know what happens! I did mine this morning, it manages 3-4 shifts, so I'll be changing the accumulator

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That's a very very good video.

Also, that is what I meant about releasing the pressure...

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That's a very very good video.

Also, that is what I meant about releasing the pressure...

So how many shifts did you get?

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So how many shifts did you get?

I'm not the OP. He hasn't been back on since. My point was that by undoing that nut on the accumulator, which releases the pressure and redo it, the system will bleed. I know for a fact in Germany, a lot of issues were caused by this issue alone and that while the correct solution is still to probably get a new accumulator and find the leak, this was one way.

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Releasing the pressure means releasing the hydraulic oil pressure, nothing to do with bleeding air. Under normal operation any air will be absorbed as fine bubbles in the oil, which will be released when the unpressurised oil returns to the reservoir. Any air escapes through the green cap, which you will find has a small hole which also allows air to enter and escape as the reservoir level goes up and down.

RAB

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Releasing the pressure means releasing the hydraulic oil pressure, nothing to do with bleeding air. Under normal operation any air will be absorbed as fine bubbles in the oil, which will be released when the unpressurised oil returns to the reservoir. Any air escapes through the green cap, which you will find has a small hole which also allows air to enter and escape as the reservoir level goes up and down.

RAB

OK, so from a technical perspective, why does releasing that cap seem to fix some gearbox failures? I definitely know this is a common thing in Germany, afterwards replacing the accumulator is the next move.

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Releasing what cap? That on the reservoir? That won't do anything. With the hydraulics electrical connector removed, you unscrew the accumulator to relieve the hydraulic pressure, unscrew it fully and replace it.

RAB

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Releasing what cap? That on the reservoir? That won't do anything. With the hydraulics electrical connector removed, you unscrew the accumulator to relieve the hydraulic pressure, unscrew it fully and replace it.

RAB

You're being a bit literal here. What I was told was by unscrewing the accumulator and relieving the hydraulic pressure, many gearboxes have started working again. Replace the accumulator soon after, etc.

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It will only make a difference if the accumulator is changed. Accummulators contain nitrogen; with time this leaks away through a diaphragm and eventually the accumulator cannot store enough oil at high pressure for the system to function.

RAB

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