Q: Fiero GT VERY difficult to move shifter from any position. 1986 Pontiac Fiero

asked by on March 18, 2017

My car's shifter is insanely difficult to move.

When I try to move the shifter when my car is off, it is sloppy, however when I am driving, it becomes near impossible after about 5 minutes.

For reference, I have a 5 speed tranny with 1st gear being left-top, fifth being right-top and reverse being right-down.

There are two feelings I feel when shifting:

Vertical shifts - 1st-2nd, 3rd-4th:

These are difficult and feel like there is 'blocking' happening. 1-2nd gear feels very sludgy and takes a decent amount of force to overcome the resistance but 3-4 feels a bit smoother.

Horizontal shifts - 2nd-3rd, 4th-5th:

When moving my shifter sideways to shift from 2-3rd & 4-5th it is EXTREMELY difficult, it takes all my body power and takes about 4 seconds to get it over and up into third. The resistance is coming from the sideways motion rather than upwards motion.

Getting into 5th is not possible when driving and reverse requires every aingle ounce of power and pushing off the wheel...

My car has 140000 miles.
My car has a manual transmission.

Hello - your Fiero uses rather long cables for the shifter linkage, and several pivot mechanisms that are potentially very stiff if they have not been cleaned and lubed in recent history. Cold weather also makes cable action stiff initially, even if in tip top shape. For assistance, I recommend a shifter cable replacement performed by a mobile, professional mechanic, such as one from YourMechanic, who will come to your location, diagnose this problem, and give you an accurate assessment of damage and cost estimate for repairs.

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