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Thread: 2013 Abarth - Shifter cable bushing fails at transmission

  1. #11
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    To fix the shift cable bushing you will need to order a replacement shifter cable for $125. You will only need a portion of the shift cable so it may be possible to just fabricate the bushing but since it is a simple push on type with no retaining clip or pin the fitment will have to be exact!

    To repair, you will need to disconnect the battery, remove the battery, disconnect the ECU plugs, remove the battery box/ECU. This will allow access to the shift bushings.

    This is what the view and work area is like.

    This is the failed bushing. You can see how it came completely apart and fell of the transaxle shift lever.

    This is the replacement part that you will remove from the new shift cable assembly.


    Here is the new part after it has been attached.


    Here is the failed bushing. It looks pretty bad for a 2 year old car with ~30k miles. The housing is rusted and the rubber parts are degraded. Heat and exposure seems to be one factor here. The alignment of the bushing was off as well which will place additional strain on the rubber parts. I made sure the alignment was decent and installed the new bushing part with 9.5 turns.
    Tie Your shoes, Drive your car, Love your girl. -WP

    2013 Abarth
    1980 X1/9
    1977 124 Spider
    1974 124TC Wagon

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    DeSoulo (08-05-2015), emilio avila (06-02-2017), Fiat500USA (01-20-2016), gtntahg (08-06-2015), jayadam63 (03-02-2016), Klasse Act (01-18-2017), Loring (01-20-2016), RedAbarth (08-06-2015), rustbucket (08-06-2015), Scarecrow23 (08-06-2015), stubtail (01-13-2016)

  3. #12
    Senior Member gtntahg's Avatar
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    Great write-up and pictures! Thanks.
    2013 Abarth C - NeuF 28mm torsion bar, NeuF Lowering Springs, RRM Corsa Braces, NeuF Torque Insert, F/R adjustable Koni Yellows, DNA Front Camber Kit, Rear Camber Plates, 17" Yokohama S.Drive, MPX Ported Throttle Body, "Boost Leak-Fix," GFB+ Diverter Valve, HPSI Ram Air Hose, BMC Air Filter, High Flow After-Air Box Polished Intake Pipe, PTP "Lava" Turbo Blanket, Polished Turbo Bracket. Tri-Colore interior leather accessories by Black

  4. #13
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    Thanks. The fix has made shifting gears a lot better, I suspect the original bushing was going bad for a while before it completely failed.


    Quote Originally Posted by gtntahg View Post
    Great write-up and pictures! Thanks.
    Tie Your shoes, Drive your car, Love your girl. -WP

    2013 Abarth
    1980 X1/9
    1977 124 Spider
    1974 124TC Wagon

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    DVT (01-20-2016)

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    Great write up and job well done! The same bushing failed today on my 2013 abarth with 55K miles. An hour from home with only 2nd and 4th is no fun. I pressed back on and ziptied through the bushing and around the paddle for a temporary fix. No warranty for me unfortunately.

    I don't want to spend the $125 for a full cable when I only need the bushing. I found www.bushingfix.com and it appears they solve the problem for about $25 (currently on sale). Does anyone have experience with their products and have you used to fix the abarth shift linkage bushing failure?

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  8. #15
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    Hey everyone,

    I just wanted to clarify a few things and get some feedback from you guys.

    Firstly, thanks to Fiatanimal for bringing this to my attention.

    Second, the current bushing we make is for the auto trans, though there's clearly a need for the m/t version.

    That said, I'm thinking we can produce two versions of these bushings, the first being a comfortable but durable bushing made from a polyurethane blend that should last a really long time under normal driving conditions. The second being a solid bushing for more spirited driving that will allow for some heavier shifting and provide solid engagement feedback to the driver.

    Those are my initial thoughts, I'd appreciate any feedback you guys have.

    -Loring
    Ascension Engineering - Creators of BushingFix.com

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    bianco scorpion (04-27-2016), DVT (01-20-2016)

  10. #16
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    An aftermarket bushing would be great. I did just replace this part on my 2013 POP ($175 for the Fiat cable assembly w/ bushings), and the new bushing is a lot beefier and is surrounded in a coating (blue color). If I knew the specs on the original in-terms of thread type/size, and socket-ball size, I would have bought something from Grainger, but that would not have been tested for this application. This is a huge opportunity for both the Mini Cooper and 500 fix-it yourselfers'. Could a SS Heim Joint be modified to work for this application, or is this particular bushing style different than a Heim Joint?

    Quote Originally Posted by Loring View Post
    Hey everyone,

    I just wanted to clarify a few things and get some feedback from you guys.

    Firstly, thanks to Fiatanimal for bringing this to my attention.

    Second, the current bushing we make is for the auto trans, though there's clearly a need for the m/t version.

    That said, I'm thinking we can produce two versions of these bushings, the first being a comfortable but durable bushing made from a polyurethane blend that should last a really long time under normal driving conditions. The second being a solid bushing for more spirited driving that will allow for some heavier shifting and provide solid engagement feedback to the driver.

    Those are my initial thoughts, I'd appreciate any feedback you guys have.

    -Loring

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    Quote Originally Posted by Loring View Post
    Hey everyone,

    I just wanted to clarify a few things and get some feedback from you guys.

    Firstly, thanks to Fiatanimal for bringing this to my attention.

    Second, the current bushing we make is for the auto trans, though there's clearly a need for the m/t version.

    That said, I'm thinking we can produce two versions of these bushings, the first being a comfortable but durable bushing made from a polyurethane blend that should last a really long time under normal driving conditions. The second being a solid bushing for more spirited driving that will allow for some heavier shifting and provide solid engagement feedback to the driver.

    Those are my initial thoughts, I'd appreciate any feedback you guys have.

    -Loring
    I'd love this. I posted this in the "normal" 500 forum regarding this exact thing. Mine broke the 3rd day I owned it when on a canyon road at 1AM with some friends. I don't botch shifts really, but I think the person who owned mine before me (I bought a 3 yr-old one with 26K miles) learned manual on it because after I got mine fixed under warrantee, the shifting really improved. I have been slightly paranoid about it failing again (though if it lasted them 26K miles, I figure it should last me at least that long) and would love a part that's stronger than the OEM one.

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  13. #18
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    Cheking and eventually lubrificating bushes in a car during service is part of required scheduled maintenance of every car. The problem is if the dealers do all inspections.

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  15. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Birdseyeview View Post
    Could a SS Heim Joint be modified to work for this application, or is this particular bushing style different than a Heim Joint?
    It's similar but different. This joint needs to be removable several times without failing in order to R+I the transmission. Heim joints would be great, but would be less servicable and require the modification and/or removal of the selector shafts, which on this transmission are partially internal. It would require a teardown, and I think we can accomplish the same thing while being less... invasive.


    Quote Originally Posted by MJAB View Post
    Cheking and eventually lubrificating bushes in a car during service is part of required scheduled maintenance of every car. The problem is if the dealers do all inspections.
    Hi MJAB. Unfortunately, these bushings don't have grease fittings, and aren't designed to be lubricated. They're not like suspension and chassis bushings in that manner. This is an actual part failure due to a material that doesn't handle the heat and mechanical stress under normal use. Even if they were to be lubricated, we'd still be experiencing these failures.
    Ascension Engineering - Creators of BushingFix.com

  16. #20
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    Correction to my original post,...I only had 3rd and 4th gears after I lost my bushing.

    Zip ties are holding tight after 1000 miles. I'll wait for bushing fix to come through with a real solution and carry a few spare zip ties with me in the meantime.

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