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Q: Sloppy manual shifter on a '97 BMW 325i

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I have a '97 BMW 325I and my manual shifter is sloppy in and out of gear. What is it and how hard is it to fix?

The first thing I’d tell you to do is take it apart. A lot of time it is as simple as a problem with the plastic bushing at the bottom of the shifter. When the bushing wears out, you just buy a new one and put it in and the way you go. If it’s not the bushing, it’s generally the whole shifting assembly breaking down. And with those BMWs, they are expensive and it’s so hard to find parts for them. As long as it goes in gears, I’d live with it. But if really starts to become a big problem, have your shifting issue inspected by a certified mechanic, such as one from YourMechanic, to have it repaired appropriately.

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