Update: Today after driving around for 30 minutes and shifting through the gears (I'll get to that) I checked my ATF and it is a red color with no burning smell to it. Now, the way I got my car to shift at/over 40 MPH was to put it in NEUTRAL. Yes, you read that correctly. It seems my shifter and my transmission aren't on the same page. I still have a neutral gear if I need to by doing some careful movement, but for now by placing the car in drive, then pushing up the shifter to neutral (without pressing in the button on the shifter, as it goes with no little/no resistance) I am able to shift past 40 mph, Now I'm not sure if that means where the transmission connects is misaligned, damaged, or whatever the case, or if the problem could be resolved with some adjustment to the shifter and its underlying parts. I don't know this system too well, I am used to generally "exposed" repairs such as brakes, gas line, oil system.
Not sure what this means or where to begin checking so again any advice would be appreciated. Thanks!
Thursday, June 20th, 2013 AT 6:08 AM