How to Fix a Pontiac Grand Am Shift Cable

by William Boyce

The Pontiac Grand Am has shift cables in both the five-speed manual and automatic trans-axle models. The shift cable links the gear shift lever inside the passenger compartment with the trans-axle, allowing the driver to change gears. Shift cables on high-mileage Grand Ams eventually become worn, frayed or corroded and require replacement.


Unscrew and remove the shift control knob. Remove all of the screws with a screwdriver and unfasten the clips holding the console in place. Remove the console.

Pull off the shift boot from around the base of the shift lever. On automatic trans-axles, make sure you have first disconnected the battery and disabled the anti-theft device on the stereo.

Pry off the shift cables from the base of the shift lever with a small screwdriver. On automatic trans-axles, use a screwdriver to disengage the locking bracket at the base of the shift lever and a pair of pliers to squeeze the sides of the bracket together to unlock it.

Disconnect the shift cables from the trans-axle with the pliers to remove the lock clip.

Pry the grommets loose from the cables with the small flat head screwdriver then pull the cables through from the passenger compartment.


Thread the cables through from the passenger compartment side to the trans-axle. Push the grommets back into place and attach the cables to the trans-axle.

Attach the cables to the base of the shift lever.

Install the shift boot on the shift lever. Replace the shift console and tighten its fastening screws. Thread the shift control knob onto the shift lever.

Reconnect the negative battery cable and enable the stereo anti-theft device if you have an automatic trans-axle.

Items you will need


About the Author

William Boyce started writing professionally in 2009. His work has appeared on and his own blog. Boyce was a registered professional forester in central British Columbia for 24 years. He has a Bachelor of Science in forestry from the University of British Columbia.

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