Installing a TRD QuickShifter
|Approximate Time:||1 Hour|
|Required Tools:||Philips head screwdriver
Installation of TRD's QuickShifter can be fairly complicated, but is well worth it due to the much shorter throws provided by this modification. I would estimate that the throw is reduced by 40-50% with the installation of this part. Before you do anything, be absolutely sure that you have the four metal spacers that should've come with your QuickShifter. These are necessary pieces that will go under the QuickShifter assembly to raise it up higher. Without these spacers installed, your car will not shift at all.
First, you need to disconnect your battery's negative terminal under your hood. This is required because you'll be disconnecting the airbag system plug from the airbag computer. Next, you'll need to remove a couple interior pieces. The shift knob will need to be removed, so simply twist this knob counter-clockwise and it will come loose, and then it simply spins for a while and will eventually come off. Next, remove the trim piece which contains the shift boot. To do this, simply pull up on the back of it and then on the front of it, and it should pop out of the clips. You'll also need to remove your center console. To do this, first remove the two screws near the front of the console(Circled in first photo), and then remove the two 12mm bolts that are inside the compartment in the console(Also circled in first photo), underneath the carpet sort of thing. There is a wiring harness that connects to the light for the change holder that will need to be disconnected once you pull the console up a little bit, and then the whole center console comes out of the car. Once the center console is out, you'll have some access to the original shifter mechanism.
To give yourself the room needed to get the original shifter out and the QuickShifter in, you'll need to remove the two screws that are on the sides of the black panels that are next to the shifter(knee panels). These screws are kind of tough to get to because they're so close to the seats, but if you try at it you'll be able to get a screwdriver in there to take those screws out. Also, I found that it was much, much easier to take the original shifter out after I cut the little plastic piece that connects the two knee panels with some strong wire cutters(Marked in second photo). That piece doesn't provide any support for the knee panels anyways, because once the center console is back in, it is screwed to each knee panel, giving them all the support they need. If you don't want to cut this, you will need to remove the knee panel, which involves removing the heat and air controls. You should see a yellow wire loom that connects to an air bag control unit. You'll need to disconnect the wire loom harness(Marked in the second photo) from the silver air bag control unit, and then undo the clips that hold this yellow wire in, so that you can move it out of the way for when you're removing the stock shifter assembly later. You can remove the black clips by sticking a flat head screwdriver in there and kind of manuvering it around until you're able to pull the clip apart. For all the clips that are connected to the original shifter assembly, you'll need to simply pull hard on these until they pop out.
Prior to doing this next step, I'd advise putting your car into neutral(Make sure your car is off, since your air bag sensor is disconnected and you don't want your air bags to deploy). This makes it easier to access the shifter clips and makes it easier to get the shifter out of the car. Once you've got room to work on your shifter, you need to remove the four 12mm bolts that hold the short shifter into the chassis of the car. A socket extension was very helpful for this step. After removal of the four bolts, there are two metal pieces that slide into place to hold the shift linkage cables in place(Marked in third photo) that need to be removed. To remove these, I took some pliers and gripped these parts with them, and then I pulled up as I pulled side to side to get the metal pieces out of there. This step requires some force, and you may not believe that those pieces come out, but they do come out if you use enough force.
After removing the two metal pieces that hold the shift linkage cables in place, I proceeded to remove the clips that hold the shifter assembly to the shift linkage cables. One of these clips is to the left side of the shifter arm, and it simply pops off, and then the shift linkage cable will slide off. The other clip is harder to pop off, and it sits at the end of the shifter lever, in the middle of the shifter assembly. To remove this clip, you need to move both sides of it until you're able to pull the shifter ball at the end of the lever out of the cup that holds it in on the shift linkage cable. This is probably the hardest part of the whole project, and it takes some work, but it can indeed be done. Once both clips are removed, you should be able to work the original shifter assembly out of your car. This step will be much easier if you cut the plastic that holds the knee panels together earlier.
Once you've got the original shifter assembly out of the car, you're ready to install the TRD QuickShifter. First, work the QuickShifter into place. Once it's in place and the shift linkage cables are close to where they need to be, you'll need to reconnect the clips to attach the shift linkage cables to the shifter assembly. Again, the clip on the right is going to be the tougher one to install. You'll need to put the shifter ball at the end of the lever into the little cup on the shift linkage cable, and then you'll need to work the clip onto there until it snaps into place and secures the ball into the cup on the shift linkage cable. For the clip on the left, you'll need to simply put the shift linkage cable on the bar that it goes on, and then snap the clip back into place. Once those clips are in place, you can put the two metal pieces that hold the shift linkage cables back in place. These pieces are much easier to put in than they were to take out. Just pound them in with your socket wrench or something like that once they're back in place.
Once the metal pieces are back in place, you're ready to bolt the QuickShifter to your car. For each bolt, you need to slide a spacer(The ones that came with the QuickShifter) in between the car's chassis and the shifter assembly before inserting the bolt. It is absolutely critical that you install these spacers, because your car will not shift into gear if you don't. Make sure that when you screw in these bolts, you get them very tight, because a lot of force is put on the shifter assembly every time you shift. After the shifter is secured to the chassis of the car, make sure you can shift into all of the gears.
If you can shift with no problems, simply reconnect the air bag wiring harness and put all of the panels back on, and then put your shift knob on. Then go for a drive, and enjoy the short shifts provided by the TRD QuickShifter.