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The strangest thing just happened to me to night when I went to start up my Passat. I live in Pennsylvania where we received a fair amount of snow and ice a few days ago and the temperatures have been a high in the teens.

I started my car, cleared the snow and ice off and it probably idled for almost 5 minutes before I got into drive. After removing the parking break, it was exceedingly hard to move the gear selector from park. I literally felt like it was going to break off in my hand before I got it into reverse. Eventually I was able to, and then into drive but on the dash it would not show that drive was selected, only park, reverse and neutral and I could not bring the selector beyond drive.

When I attempted to drive, it would not shift out of first gear at all, either automatically or when set to manual. After popping the hood and looking with a flashlight there was a chunk of ice the size of a grapefruit around what looked like 2 or 3 tubes that were located where the transmission should be.

I did a few searches and haven't found any information on it, but it seems troubling. Has this happened to anyone else before?
 

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Sounds like the shift cable is frozen in ice. Forcing it into gear may have screwed up the muti-function switch.
 

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The strangest thing just happened to me to night when I went to start up my Passat. I live in Pennsylvania where we received a fair amount of snow and ice a few days ago and the temperatures have been a high in the teens.

I started my car, cleared the snow and ice off and it probably idled for almost 5 minutes before I got into drive. After removing the parking break, it was exceedingly hard to move the gear selector from park. I literally felt like it was going to break off in my hand before I got it into reverse. Eventually I was able to, and then into drive but on the dash it would not show that drive was selected, only park, reverse and neutral and I could not bring the selector beyond drive.

When I attempted to drive, it would not shift out of first gear at all, either automatically or when set to manual. After popping the hood and looking with a flashlight there was a chunk of ice the size of a grapefruit around what looked like 2 or 3 tubes that were located where the transmission should be.

I did a few searches and haven't found any information on it, but it seems troubling. Has this happened to anyone else before?
Could you pls give more explanation on your needs? It is better for the answer.
 

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Shifter Stuck

I agree by forcing it you might have damaged the shift indicator or multi-function switch...The other issue are your passenger side carpets damp to the touch ? If so you might have gotten the Passat Curse of water into the TCM which is under passenger side carpet and you can read the links on here as many of us have gone thru this syndrome including the class action law suit that VW lost due to this design defect...
 

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murdered out Jetta, er, B5 Passat
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This same thing happened to me a while ago. :( Mine only could go into park, neutral, and reverse too. I had to really pull back on the shifter to break the cable/box assembly to release the shifter more to be able to finally put it into drive. The only problem with that was that the ignition key didn't come out of the ignition because it didn't recognize that the car was in park anymore.

The fix now is that your gonna need to install a whole new shifter box assembly. It's not a small job and quite costly. The whole exhaust is gonna need to be lowered down off the car a little bit to install it.



 

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Well how did this turn out? I have a cable that is acting up and if I had a diagram of how the shifter works and hooks into the cable, I would repair it but I do not have one!
 
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