Question about 1999 Saturn SL

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1999 Saturn sl with shifting problems first gear and reverse

I have a 1999 Saturn sl with a manual five speed transmission. At times i can't shift into first from neutral or after comming out of reverse,and at times it wont come out of reverse unless i shut it down and restart. sometimes it wont let me shift into third gear .What causes this problem?
Priscilla B. Derry NH

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Jeff Barton

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Ms Derry ,I would check the pair of shift cables and shifter itself before suspecting internal transmission problems.The cables attach to the shifter then runs to the linkage on the transmission.One cable is responsible for side to side movement as the other is for moving front to back(like 1st to second) Center console removal is fairly simple which requires mounting screw(4) removal on the front sides and in the rear cup holder.This gives you an opportunity to view the shifter and cable operation from above while this movement should also be appreciated at the transmission linkage meaning someone shifts the vehicle as another inspects proper movement at the transmission.If all this is actuating properly,you may need to tear down and inspect transmission but hopefully it can be rectified with external repairs mentioned...good luck

Posted on Aug 26, 2009

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