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cud be many things with an old trans-ther very complex--but 1st make sure fluid is full-testit while runnin-shud be red and not gritty feelin--changeit with new filter if not--tv or throttle valve may need ajustin too--some units have sensors and ther own computer--bring it to a reputable mech if no relief--caution-alot of trans guys are liars
In most cases it will be torque converter shudder. The trans fluid is not lubricating properly and causes a less then optimum performance and the lock-up mechanism fails to shift fully. This causes the lock-up to shudder or modulate and gives symptoms of a unbalance wheel at 40-50 mph. Change the fluid and filter and your problems will go away. The fluid should be changed every 30,000 miles...most people don't ever change the fluid and wonder why their trans needs a $3000 fix. Hope it works for you...it did for me.
Trans axle and transmission are the same in a front wheel drive car. After 25 oil changes, the trans fluid probably should be replaced anyway, if never done yet. Pontiac/Toyota do recommend synthetic trans fluid, which is quite pricey per quart from the dealer. If you did drain the trans fluid, and didn't replace it, chances are you wouldn't be driving right now. I do wonder how oil change #26 went wrong? Not criticizing, just wondering. Hope this helps.