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Transmission Swap (going from 4spd auto to 5spd manual)in my í90 Chrysler LeBaron 3.0L V6)

I had to purchase the following:

Junk yard:~$400


Fly Wheel(if youíre lucky you can get the clutch assembly, for a core return, from the yard)

Shifter & Cables(assembly make sure you get the bushings and retainer clips for the shifter cables)

Brake/Clutch pedal with clutch cable(assembly make sure to get clutch cable retainer)


Fly Wheel Bolts(8)

Pressure Plate Bolts(6)

Transmission Mounts(2)

Auto Zone(or preferred auto shop):~$150

Clutch Kit(clutch, pressure plate, bearing, alignment tool)

Brake cleaner(to clean pressure plate and fly wheel contact surfaces)

Thread Lock(Make sure them fly wheel bolts donít come loose)

It took me 4 days @ 8hrs/day to complete the project.

Trans out

Open hood.Take a big breath and dive in.Remove Battery, battery tray, cruise control, air intake box & hoses.Once again take a big breath and make sure you want to do this swap.†† Empty the radiator and remove the hose that runs next to the battery.

Lift front of car and support with jack stands(the higher you have it the easier it is to get at the trans.Also the higher it is the higher you will have to lift the trans.)Remove Front wheels.Remove Axle Nuts(my car required an impact wrench and a 32mm Deep well socket).Separate brake, hub assembly from ball joint(Take out retainer bolt and use a pry bar to push the lower control arm down off the assembly).Put a catch pail under the tranny where the axle enters it(trans oil is nasty to clean up).†† Gently pull axle out.Now do the other axle.

Support engine/tranny with a jack and remove the transmission mount(you have to pull a plug out of the drivers side wheel well to hit the bolt that goes through the mount).††† Once this is loose remove the starter and the front mount(you might have to lower the motor/tranny a bit so you can get it free).

Take free all the sensors and the gear selector(double check to make sure you got them all off).

With the engine and tranny supported take off the torque converter/fly wheel cover and remove the bolts that hold the converter to the flywheel(Take out one bolt and turn the motor till you can get the next).†† Make sure you get all the converter bolts out!.Now take out the rest of the bell housing bolts.There are two bolts on the upper bell housing that hold the coolant pipe onto the motor.Just pull that loose once you get the bolts out.††† Be careful the auto tranny weighs a TON! It might be a good idea to have someone help you steady it while you take the bolts out.If you have a transmission jack(a floor jack with a ~1ft sq. plate on it) it will be a bit easier.Just allow the jack to support the tranny.Once all the tranny bell housing bolts are out the trans pretty much falls out(mine did, thud dooohhhh:-).†† Now push/drag/pull the trans out of the way(might need a friend for this too, Iím a pretty big guy and could barely lift it a couple inches of the ground).

Put the new shifter in and bolt it down.You will have to drill a new hole in the fire wall for the extra shifter cable that will pass through it.I put mine about an inch up and toward the drivers side from the existing shifter cable hole.Start with a small hole then grab the biggest drill bit you can get your hands on to open it up. Slip both the cables through the holes and then crawl under the dash and feed them through to the shifter.They have different connectors on the shifter side so figuring out which goes where is pretty self-explanatory.††

Now if you have a í90 or newer Lebaron or Daytona cut a hole in the center console for the shifter (see pic) and install it the way it came out(I just left the extra light for the gear selector window floating under the console, just push it out of the way so it doesnít get crushed).


This is the real fun part.Remove the center console. This required taking out screws that hold the little elbow rest box cover on, the screws in that box, the screws that hold the ash tray down, the screws that hold the carpeting up against the console and two screws that are under that carpeting.To get the ash tray out you have to pull it up a little and remove the cigar lighter wires.Also if your car is a Vert stick as many fingers as you can in the coin holder/top switch and tug it up, and unconnect the wiring.To get the shifter knob off I had to use a very small allen wrench to remove the screw that is in the front and pull the knob straight up.†† Where the shifter goes through the console there will be a little piece of dental floss looking wire, just snip it.There is also a light that goes under the gear selected window, it just pulls out.The center console should be free now just pull it straight up till it clears the shift lever and then remove it from the car.

Now to remove the shifter cable from the shifter and pull it out from under the car.Now take off the 4bolts that hold the shifter down and lift it out of the car.

To put the 5spd shifter in just bolt it down and feed the shifter cables thought the firewall to the shifter and connect them. You will either have to cut your center console or get one from a 5spd car. I cut mine.
Comparison of the auto and manual gear selectors.

The Pedals

Dash comes all apart for this little operation.†† If you have the Lebaron or the Daytona there is a cowl that is over the instrument cluster.There are three screws(I think) on the bottom of each side of the Cowl.This frees the underside of the cowl which will come out with a little shimmy and shake(if you have tilt steering wheel, putting the wheel at itís lowest position will help).†† Now remove the screws that hold in the instrument cluster and remove that.You can now get at the screws that hold the upper casing of the cowl to the dash.Remove and set aside.Crawl under the dash and remove all the nuts/bolts that hold the pedal in, also take the break booster cable off of the pedal.It wonít come totally loose till later.Now that you have all the bolts/nuts out, go get a flash light and double check.There are several bolts.There are also 2 nuts and 2 bolts that you have to get at from the top.Now, from underneath the dash remove the nuts that hold the steering column up and lower it and gently pull it towards the seat. Your pedal should be loose by now. (See Pic). †† Check to make sure the break light switch is disconnected and lift/shake/shimmy/etc to get the pedal out.I found it best to turn the steering wheel to the left and take the pedals out to the left(it took me and a buddy, he was shaking the wheel and pedal from above while I was shaking the pedal from below).†† Once they are out congratulate yourself(this part took me a full day).††

Before you put in your new pedals check to make sure that your clutch pedal has a stop on it so it wont go up to the dash(Justin has also informed me that some brake pedals will need a stop, Mine came with both stops in place). Now put the new pedals in the same way the old one came out.It is a little tricky because you have another pedal but it is not real hard.†† Now put all the bolts back in and then put the dash back together.Then put the steering column back up.Check your break lamp switch by plugging it in and having someone behind you watch for the lights to go on when you hit the breaks.If they stay on push the switch further in towards the little piece of metal that hangs off the break pedal.If it wont go in enough you have to remove that little piece of metal and bend it some(8mm open-ended wrench).††

5spd Install

First remove the flex plate(hand full of bolts that go into the crank shaft.Now hold up the fly wheel and turn it until all the bolt holes line up(this scared me at first, the fly wheel only goes on one way If they donít line up keep on turning until they do:-).Use a torque wrench(~70ft/lbs) and some lock tight.

Now a somewhat difficult part. Put the release bearing onto the tranny shaft and then test fit the clutch.Put the clutch and pressure plate onto the flywheel( one two ). Hand tighten the bolts only.Do not use an extension with a socket on it.Have a buddy line up the clutch while you hold it stable.Once it looks centered tighten the pressure plate bolts(recommended way is to get them all hand tight then go around the pressure plate and give each bolt a turn until they are all totally tightened.Then grab a torque wrench and put them all at the recommended tightness.

Remove the hydraulic tranny mount(if equipped). Tranny jack is pretty worthless for this part unless you have no other way to lift it.Me and a buddy were able to crawl under the car and lift it into place.A little shimmy and shake was required to get it into place.Once you think you have it centered have another guy gently push it toward the engine(another way is to hold it up there then have someone turn the crank).If it wont go on and youíre sure itís where itís supposed to be have someone turn the crank, then try to push again.One of these times it will go on.From above put in the upper tranny bell house bolts then lift the tranny up so the tranny mount engages the other portion of the mount.Slip that bolt in and tighten it down(you may have to shake the engine/tranny around to get it in there).

Now bolt on the back of the flywheel cover and attach the front engine/tranny mount to the front of the car.Now swing the motor/tranny forward and put in the mount bolts.Attach all the bolts and tighten them down.Now replace the starter and reattach the wires.From above put a ring of RTV or preferred high temp rubber gasket in a bottle to the engine side of the coolant tube that runs into the engine.Check all the tranny/engine bolts.

A drawing I had stashed away
mount001.jpg Blury
mount002.jpg Blury
mount003.jpg Blury
Little different way to make the Trans Mount(Good pic)

The 2nd transmission mount, that looks like a shock, will have to have a bracket welded on to the cross member. I put the mount on then put the brackets on and clamped them down. Then mark and remove the shock and welded the brackets on(be sure to disconnect the battery if not already done, unless you want to fry your electrical system). After the welding is complete reattach the mount.

You will need the speed sensor from the automatic tranny so your speedo isn't off. Just unbolt it from the auto and put it on the manual. This is the sensor that is on the differential(Above where the pass side axle comes out of the tranny)[note from Nick The speed sensor is only on the differential housing on the earlier model 4-speeds. The later ones don't have it back there, and it's a little more involved. Just thought you might like to make some mention of it].
There is a three(3) wire connector with purple, blue and brown/yellow wires. The brown/yellow wire is for the starter relay and needs to be grounded so you can start the car. The blue and purple need to go on either side of the reverse light switch on the 5spd(the two(2) prong connection on the top of the tranny).
Pull all the other wires and connectors back and twisty tie them out of the way so they don't accidently get crushed, cut, or ground.

Patch it all back together
Attach cables(the shifter cable with the bigger eye goes on the linkage that is closest to the fire wall and the one with the smaller eye goes on the top of the transmission. Clutch cable is a bit tricky. I first put the cable on the pedal then pulled the throwout arm off the transmission and attached the cable and retainer. I then strong armed the arm back onto the spline(don't forget to replace the e-clip that holds the arm on). cheeter way Put a bottle jack under the TO arm and jack it up until the presure is relieved fromt the cable. Then get in the car and put that end of the cable on the pedal assembly. //cheeter way Put the axles into the tranny and through the hubs. Put on axle nut, spring, cover, and cotter pin. Fill transmission and check for leaks(you can purchase a special tool for this, it is a cap that screws onto your bottle of oil and has a long flexible tube coming out the top of it, or you can do it like Justin and take a funnel with a long tip and melt it some with a lighter to get the shape needed). Put the wheels on and lower the car. Replace the battery, air filter box, and radiator hoses. Fill the ratiator.

check and recheck everything for tightness and leaks. If you think you have it all then give it a crank(don't forget to clutch it:-).

Clutch Break-in
Proper break-in of the clutch varies from person to person. I did several weeks of city driving before I tried to really hammer on it. I'd say just do ~200-400miles of 'gentle' driving(i.e. no peel outs:-).


If you have further quetions or comments you may e-mail me at
or these people who have completed the swap:
Nick Boers1987(I think) Lebaron Coupe with a 1992 3.0L V6
Justin Cronk 1990 Lebaron Vert
Dave RobinsonNot sure what you drive Dave. If you see this drop me a mail
Paul Berkebile1990 Dodge Daytona
Matt Cairney1993 LeBaron conv't
Robert E. Carter, III(IE crazy guy with minivan '88 Dodge Grand Caravan SE
Josh Bourgeois92 Dodge Daytona ES
Drew Jones5sp 3.0 Ply Duster

You wana be added to the list shoot me an email with the info @
Wink had a few things to add:

1. Tranny
2. Shifter with cables (Make sure that the bushings are on the cables. If not, CNNP makes a derlin set for our application.)
3. Clutch/brake pedal assembly
4. Clutch cable, retainer, and bracket (The bracket attaches to the drivers strut mount tower.)
5. New clutch, pressure plate and throwout bearing
6. Sensor plugs for reverse switch and vehicle speed sensor (VSS) if the auto does not have them.
7. About 25 feet of 18 gauge wire and an assortment of connectors and splices
8. Bracket for rear transmission bobble strut mount (and mount if not attached to transmission)
9. Driver side tranny mount. (If your mount hasn't been changed due to a TSB change)
10. "O" ring seal or black rubber RTV sealant for coolant tube that enters the engine through the tranny at the top.
11. New passenger side drive axle (Only if your current one doesn't have the splines for the VSS)
12. Wire ties to secure wires and old tranny wire harness
13. Center consol for a 5 speed (or cut your old consol)
14. Flywheel with bolts. (the auto's flexplate bolts are too short).
15. WIRING DIAGRAMS for the splicing of new sensors and Park/neutral wires
16. About 4 quarts of 5W-30 motor oil for tranny lubrication.
17. Coolant (and not a bad time to change the thermostat since the coolant has been drained for the swap).

Things to note during swap.

1. Your car may have a key lockout feature for the ignition switch. Just bend over the cable that attaches to the auto's shifter and zip tie so that it doesn't retract.
2. The donor car's pedal assembly didn't bolt up properly. I had to swap the pedals to my original bracket. I also had to cut the welds for the clutch stop bracket and bolt it onto the original as well.
3. If your car has cruise control, the park/neutral wire will have to be wired into the clutch pedal switch. The park/neutral wire must be grounded to start the engine, but must be open for operation of cruise control.
Other than that the procedure is rather straight forward. Just use Harv's site and a manual to guide you along the way. The process took me just under 4 days. Good luck and e-mail me for any questions, if needed. Also ask the group if I don't get back with you within a day or two. I have to leave for the next two months and won't be able to access my email account. Let me know how it comes out and enjoy the new found fun of the 5 speed.

93 Lebaron Conv.
Project "Headless Horseman"