VW Transmission Identificationby Rob Wagner
Volkswagen has used 10 different types of automatic and manual transmissions in its vehicles since the 1970s. The identification code is typically found on the bottom of the transmission.
Volkswagen equipped its cars with four and five-speed manuals until 1993. These were designed to fit more than two dozen different gasoline and diesel engines. "ACH" was stamped on "020" five-speed manuals in the 1985, 1.6-liter, diesel-powered VWs.
The six-speed manual was standard equipment on Beetles and Golfs beginning in 2002. An "02M" six-speed, for example, featured "FML" stamped on the transmission for 2002 to 2005 Beetles.
Model year 1985 to 1987 VWs were equipped with a 1.8-liter gasoline engine, and had "TJ" stamped on the "010" three-speed automatic case. Diesel-powered versions were stamped with a "TL."
Model year 1995 and later Golfs, Corrados, Beetles and Passats used "096" and "01M' stamps on four-speed automatics. Passats had an "APE" code. Golfs had a "CLB" code, depending on model year and engine size.
Rob Wagner is a journalist with over 35 years experience reporting and editing for newspapers and magazines. His experience ranges from legal affairs reporting to covering the Middle East. He served stints as a newspaper and magazine editor in Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. Wagner attended California State University, Los Angeles, and has a degree in journalism.