How To Remove A Transmission Shifter Cable Ford Escort

Learning how to remove a transmission shifter cable from a Ford Escort is sometimes necessary. Although Ford Escorts come with a hydraulically operated gear shift, there is a transmission shifter cable which can be removed if the action becomes loose or tight, the transmission cable could have snapped or rusted inside the cable sleeve. This is when you need to remove the whole cable and replace it.


  • Socket set and wrench
  • Flexy knuckle socket
  • Penetrating fluid
  • New gear cable
  1. As with any mechanical procedure, it is safest to apply the handbrake and remove the negative battery lead, but in this case the battery gets in the way so remove the whole unit out of the engine bay. 
  2. The transmission shifter cable is located under the floor console in your Ford Escort. First, you have to remove the center console unit. There are 8 Phillips screws to remove.
  3. With the floor console removed, you will be able to see the cable which runs below the ECU which is underneath the radio aperture. Remove the plastic ducting for the heater assembly up until the firewall.
  4. There is a rubber button which stops moisture from coming in to the cabin. There is another Phillips screw which holds this rubber button in place, remove it and spray some penetrating fluid on it, which will loosen it and you will be able to pull it out.
  5. The cable is bolted at the floor console unit and the gearbox end. You can simply undo these bolts and remove the washers too.
  6. With a new transmission cable, refit it, starting at the gearbox end. Tighten up the bolt fully. Make sure the cable does not get kicked or run near the hot exhaust. Feed the cable through the hole in the firewall and replace the rubber button. It should slide in easily with penetrating fluid on it. Don't tighten up the fixing screw yet.
  7. Feed the cable into the shifter mechanism and tighten up the bolt. Double check there are no kinks in the cable and fit the retaining screw on the rubber button.
  8. Before replacing the floor console, check the transmission shift action. If it is tight, loosen the pinch bolts on either end of the cable an 1/8th of a turn until it feels right.
  9. Refit the console and the battery, securing the bolts properly to complete the job.
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