Did you check the fluid level?
You need to get under the car, and remove the FILL bolt, The fluid should be level with the hole opening.
Everything you mentioned seems to point to low fluid levels. Tranny fluid doesn't burn up, so if it's low, it is usually a leak. Hopefully it won't be a seal or gasket, maybe just a lose drain bolt.
Last edited by SD 328I; 05-10-2009 at 02:57 AM.