Huge win for car owners! All TSBs to be made public. The Center for Auto Safety just made the NHTSA (US Government) make public the full text of all TSBs from now on. They are the same organization that has petitioned the NHTSA & filed lawsuits to protect car owners over exploding gas tanks & other major safety issues. Whenever you drive in your car, you are safer thanks in part to a lot of work over the years by this small but very effective consumer advocacy group.

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NHTSA — Power Train: Manual Transmission: Floor Shift Assembly Problems


hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
55,150 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

1998 Saturn SL transmission problems

transmission problem

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1998 Saturn SL Owner Comments

problem #4

Jan 232005

SL 6-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 55,600 miles


While parking my 1898 Saturn Sl in a hospital garage, the shift lever went limp without warning. There was no way to operate the transmission. When I removed the console, I discovered that the plastic bushing that connects the manual shift lever to the shift cable was missing. There was no longer any connection between the shift lever and the cable to the transmission. The entire shift cable assembly had to be replaced to fix the problem. Saturn told me that the bushing is made onto the cable rather than being available as a separate part. If this bushing had failed in a traffic situation it could have resulted in an accident. The bushing should be designed such that if it brakes; the shift lever will remain connected to the shift cable and just cause sloppy shifting thereby warning the driver that repair is required. I still have the old shift cable assembly.

- Meraux, LA, USA

problem #3

Apr 032004


  • 35,000 miles
While accelerating to 40 mph consumer shifted from second to third gear and floor shifter failed. Dealership was notified, but did not resolve the problem.

- Lady Lake, FL, USA

problem #2

Apr 022004

SL 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 130,000 miles
Shifter arm clutch linkage bushing broke while shifting gear.

- Palm Bay, FL, USA

problem #1

Feb 192004


  • Manual transmission
  • miles
Manual transmission linkage broke. The plastic that locks the ball of the linkage to the socket of the shifter cracked, and became seperated while in operation.

- College Station, TX, USA

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