1. Lock the transmission into its "home" position. Right now, your black L-shaped locking lever is in the ”rest position” and should point to the left, just like in the picture. In the engine bay, make sure that the transmission is in neutral (in neutral the bronze front/back shift bracket is free to move up and down). With your right thumb, push down on the crescent-shaped part of the bronze lever approximately 1/3 of an inch and then with your forefinger turn the small black L-shaped locking lever on the transmission's shift tower clockwise while pushing it in. The tip of this black locking lever will end up pointing straight up when the shift mechanism is successfully placed in the locked or “home” position. You will also not be able to move the bronze front/back lever up and down if the transmission is locked into the “home” position.
2. Expose the shift linkage inside the car. On New Beetle, grab the rectangular "ring" at the base perimeter of the shift boot and pull it upward. It will unsnap from the center console. Then lift the rubber sound deadening boot from the shifter aperture.
3. Lock the mechanism inside the car into its “Home” position. Do this by inserting the expensive and rare special tool we supplied with the kit into the hole at the lower left of the shift lever and push it through and into the corresponding hole in the shifter base until it bottoms out. This will give the appearance that the shifter is in second gear which is exactly correct. Also, the shift lever inside the car WILL NOT MOVE if you have successfully put the nail through both holes. If you don’t have the nail tool we provide with our kits, the special tool was made from a 4 inch long, 20d Bright Common nail with a 5 mm or .195” shank diameter and a 30 degree bend 2.5" from the tip of the nail to clear the shift knob.
4. Once you have locked the transmission into its “Home” position (Step 1) and also installed the adjustment nail through both holes inside the car (Step 3), Where you clamp the cable has everything to do with the proper adjustment of the shifter. Unlike the front to back cable end, SOME THREADS WILL BE SHOWING on the side to side cable end! If you are confident that you followed all of the steps before this one then you can finish the adjustment procedure by simply twisting the aluminum cable end to make it perpendicular to its mounting pin on the black bracket (its top slot will face straight up).
5. Unlock the transmission from its “Home” position. While pushing down slightly on the bronze front/back bracket, pull the transmission’s L-shaped locking pin to the left and rotate it counter-clockwise until it comes back out to its “rest position” stop. It will move toward the right side (engine side) of the car by approximately ½ inch. (You are not removing the pin completely.) It is very important that you pull this pin back to the normal “rest position” since your shifter will not work with the pin pushed into the transmission’s “home” position! Furthermore, you will permanently damage the pin if you forcefully try to shift the mechanism with the pin pushed in! Please don’t forget to release the pin after adjustment. The mechanism will still function if you damage the plastic pin. The part number for the locking pin is 02J 301 358C and is available at your dealer for about $5.00. It is a pain to install, however.
6. Unlock the mechanism inside the car from its “Home” position. Go back inside the car and remove completely the special bent nail tool from the shifter mechanism. Save the adjustment nail with your stock shifter parts.
7. Check the shifter action by cycling through the gears. Make sure that first and second gear engage smoothly without too much effort. Also, make sure that reverse gear is easy to engage. (Make note that the shifter will always work its best with the engine running and the clutch pushed in.)
8. If all is smooth, reinstall the shift boot onto the shift boot frame ring inside the car. The New Beetle’s shift boot just pushes straight down into the aperture.
9. Reinstall the air box. Reattach the flexible duct to the mass airflow sensor with the screw clamp (1.8T) or spring-type hose clamp (all other engines). Plug the electrical connector for the mass airflow sensor back in until it clicks. Reattach the engine side vacuum line for the air box (TDI) or reinstall the flexible air injection feed hose for all other engines. A positive air hose connection results in a little “click”.