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I'm a bit confused, i have owned two XM's one early 8v petrol and my present petrol turbo, both have Auto gearbox. Presently I'm looking to change my car for a deisel variant as my wife has just changed her deisel Xantia for a smashing v6 Xantia, to cut our overal fuel bill down I'm going for a deisel.
i would like to buy one with a auto box but I have heard reports that the deisel auto combo is not a very good idea as the auto box is prone to failure. Now I have not heard this mentioned with a petrol auto combo, I thought it was the same box used in all and if any engine was going to break the gearbox I would have thought it to be the V6. Can any one explain why the deisel auto combo is a problem whilst the petrol auto is not; or is it that nobody has reported problems with the petrol auto combo.

Rolande Howey
Hi Rolande,

Your post was looking a bit lonely there. We don't want to give the impression we don't care.
I have two manual boxes myself so I don't have any experience of the auto box. I would have to agree with you. Most of the time when you hear auto box horror stories they are combined with diesels and not petrols. All other things being equal the diesel engine produces much more torque than the petrol. It may have something to do with that. However, I've seen very few reports coming to the conclusion of what the failure mode was. There must be a particular part of the auto box which goes before all the others.

Anyone here drive autoboxes? Have you had any trouble with them. ( I know a few people here that wouldn't touch an auto box with a bargepole, myself included).



I had an auto box on the last XM loved it, I would buy another.
I think part of the problem with diesels and auto boxes is that the car is used more of a work horse with its high towing capability, I know I can expect a few heated reply's for saying that but its what I think. I also believe that the XM should have only had the auto box

Hi Rolande

I agree with Noz that the higher torque from a diesel engine may shorten the life of an auto box. The reason for this is that virtually the same auto box was used on all the XM's with just the gear ratios changed to match the particular engine. With manual boxes there was a stronger version for the 2.5TD and V6. I think the XM auto box was a little dated when Citroen selected it as it has been replaced in the very late V6's.

I think that the reason XM autos are considered a problem is simply that if the auto box gives problems then there is no cheap or do it your self fix. Playing inside an auto box is outside the capabilities of virtually all of us. Even good secondhand boxes are expensive to fit and the condition is still a risk. Just rember we are reaching the time when most XM's are a gamble not just autos. A 2.5 with a duff clutch or mangled engine from a broken belt is just as much a write off with todays values.

I was going to say that like Noz I was manual cars only then I remembered that my first XM was a 2.0 auto SEI. S.W.M.B.O. saw it on the sales lot and I was an auto driver whether I liked it or not. Since then I found 2.5 TD's which only come as manuals and I decided they were the best XM for me. Then I bought a high miles (160k) V6 auto exclusive to scrap and put the interior in one of the 2.5's. Driving this V6 auto home saved it as I found driving it just as enjoyable as the 2.5TD. The box has given no problems in the last year and is now at 171k though I have just put this car on SORN as a newer, lower mileage V6 auto exc turned up last month.



Inefficiency, the potential to write the car off at a stroke and plain I just don't like the way they drive. But I live in the country, now if I lived in London......

Hi All

V6 autos suffer too!!!! Too much power for the ole box!

I've had two now. First started to slip in top. Current needs a replacement as it snatches into 4th badly.

I'd heard about the auto-adaptive giving up at completely random mileages but my Citroen specialist friend is convinced its been down to a lack of gearbox oil changes.

I'm assuming that abuse will limit their mileage but what consitutes as abuse?

I generally let the box kick down smoothly by not keeping my foot nailed on the loud pedal at the point it kicks down. If you keep your foot buried it thumps down pretty aggresively and goes for it.

A chap i know has a 1997 Xantia V6 with auto-adaptive and 180k on the clock. Its just had its 3rd box and its been pretty well serviced too. He does give it some though.

If i had to have an auto XM i'd be going for a 2.0 petrol or CT Turbo as the boxes seem to last indefinately just like they did in a well looked after BX. My BX GTi auto has done nearly 120k now and is still going strong which reminds me i must change the oil wink.gif
Thanks all for your reply's,
It seems the week-end is busy time for the Forum. I think that I agree with Ian as to the two model's that don't have problems are the 2ltr petrol and 2ltr with turbo. I have had both and used to annaully travel Europe with a heavy caravan on the back into Austria and Switzerland. I would be towing for long periods I 3rd gear. It may have help that the garage that I use always changes the gearbox oil on my car each year as part of the service, he is a ex dealership mechanic in the days of Xantia and XM's so he probably knows the short comimgs of this box.
The reason I was asking this question is that my wife recntly swopped her turbo diesel Xantia for a lovely low millage v6 Xantia ( great car to drive), and now our over all fuel bill is getting a bit high, so I'm looking to change my petrol car that does 430miles on a tank for a diesel version and get the 700-900 miles per tank that I have read about on the forum. The problem is that I love useing a auto; and with lock up on both 3rd and 4th gear the are not th un-economical unit that they once were; and until I joined the forum and I was happy looking for a low miilage turbo diesel auto. But now I'm looking along the lines of a 2.5 manual. My car has just passed its MOT and with new spheres on it last year I shall take my time before swopping it. the problem is that a lot of the dealers are charging a fortune for a low milage car, and it might be cheaper to keep mine.
Thank you all again. Its a grat forum, I learned more in the last couple of month about the XM than I have since my firstt purchase in 1993.

The problem with an automatic diesel is that its partly self defeating as the improvement in mpg you get is partly negated by the auto box. I can exceed 50 mpg quite easily in my 2.1 td estate, not towing and driving fairly sedately, but towing with an auto will result in quite a lot of the benifit being dissipated in heat by the torque converter in 3rd gear. You will still of course get some benifit and if you are prepared to take a chance there are far more 2.1 diesel autos for sale than manuals, have a look on ebay. But if you can get a good 2.5 that will probably suit you better.

Thanks Peter,
Having test driven a 2.1 auto my next move will be to test out a 2.5td manual. My turbo petrol auto is running well and as it has a good working air-con which is a bonus this time of year;I shall take my time looking. I bought my last two XM's on price and what was available; but this time with the knowledge I have collected from the forum I shall be selective; as i like to keep a car a long time as it normally takes a year or so to clear the niggly problems on the car when buying 2nd hand.

Hi Rolande,

There's an interesting R reg (98) 2.5 VSX manual estate with aircon and only 87,500 miles on eBay just now (4646864897). It appears to have been well maintained and has some niggles to sort out - but as the basis for a long term car it looks promising if the mileage is genuine.

Thanks Mackey1,
But I would prefer a hatch but the milage sounds good, if it was a bit closer I would take a look. I'm keeping a daily look at both e-bay and Auto exchange.

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