16. Console

The T5 shifter is positioned further forward than the automatic shifter. To obtain a better relationship between the shifter and the console, the console must be moved slightly forward. The mounting holes at the rear of the console are slotted but allow the console to move forward less than 1 inch. If you want to move the console even further forward, I recommend fabricating an offset bracket to mount the console rather than further elongating the holes in the console.

16.1. Chevrolet

The T5 shifter will protrude through the Chevrolet console trim plate, but the hole in the console trim plate for the automatic shifter must be enlarged. I enlarged the hole in the console trim plate in my 1986 Monte Carlo SS to 2¾ ´ 6 inches. 
Figure 16-1
shows how I modified my console trim plate to accommodate the T5 shifter. The hole that I made looks large, but as shown in Figure 16-2, the hole is really about as small as it can be.

Jim Brady installed a T5 in his 1987 Monte Carlo SS using a 1984-1992 F body bellhousing. Figure 16-3 shows how Jim modified his console trim plate (note the hole is offset due to the canted mounting face on the F body bellhousing). Later Jim installed an aftermarket Borg-Warner T56 and TPI 383 in his Monte Carlo using the same console trim plate he modified for the T5. Jim’s installed console trim plate can be seen in Figure 16-4.

Rob Luke installed a Tremec TKO into his 1987 Monte Carlo SS using a Lakewood Industries 15020 bellhousing. Rob fabricated a metal frame to retain an upper shifter boot from a 1988 Acura. After cutting a hole in the console trim plate, using the inside of the fabricated frame as a template, Rob mounted the frame to the underside of the console trim plate. Rob's installed console trim plate can be seen in Figure 16-5.

Bob Morris installed an aftermarket Borg-Warner T56 into his 1986 Monte Carlo SS using a 1978-1981 A body bellhousing. Bob cut a 4- × 6-inch oval hole in his console trim plate to accommodate a C5 Corvette leather upper shifter boot. The boot simply snaps into the oval hole. Bob's installed console trim plate can be seen in Figure 16-6.

Figure 16-1: Modified Console Trim Plate in My 1986 Monte Carlo SS

Enlarge in a new window

Figure 16-2: Modified Console Trim Plate in My 1986 Monte Carlo SS (installed)

Enlarge in a new window

Figure 16-3: Console Trim Plate Modified by Jim Brady

Photograph courtesy of Jim Brady

Figure 16-4: Console Trim Plate Modified by Jim Brady (installed)

Enlarge in a new window

Photograph courtesy of Jim Brady

Figure 16-5: Console Trim Plate Modified by Rob Luke with 1998 Acura Shifter Boot

Photograph courtesy of Rob Luke

Figure 16-6: Console Trim Plate Modified by Bob Morris with C5 Corvette Upper Shifter Boot

Enlarge in a new window

Photograph courtesy of Bob Morris

16.2. Oldsmobile

Bob Keeling installed a T5 in his 1979 Malibu using a 1983 F body bellhousing. The console Bob is using is from a 1979 Cutlass. In place of the automatic transmission console trim plate, Bob inserted a modified manual transmission console trim plate from a 1983-1989 F body (the boot is part of the plate assembly). Bob rotated the F body console trim plate 180 degrees, placing the shift pattern insert ahead of the shifter, and then cut down the trim plate to fit the Oldsmobile console. Bob's installed console trim plate can be seen in Figure 16-7.

Figure 16-7: 1979 Cutlass Console with Modified 1983-1989 F Body Manual Transmission Console Trim Plate and Upper Shifter Boot

Enlarge in a new windowEnlarge in a new window

Photographs courtesy of Bob Keeling

16.2. Pontiac

Henry Helfman installed a GM Borg-Warner T56 in his 1984 Monte Carlo SS. The console Henry is using is from a 1978-1987 Grand Prix. To install this console, Henry removed all of the mechanical parts from the stock Grand Prix automatic shifter leaving just a bracket to mount the center of the console to the floor. Some additional trimming of the bracket was required to fit around the T56 shifter. Henry modified the automatic transmission console trim plate by cutting away the center until all that was left was the wood grain perimeter. Henry used a 1993-2002 F body lower shifter boot on the floor and a 1993-2002 F body upper shifter boot sandwiched between the console and the console trim plate. Henry's installed console trim plate can be seen in Figure 16-8.

Figure 16-8: 1978-1987 Grand Prix Console with Modified Automatic Transmission Console Trim Plate and Fourth Generation F Body Upper/Lower Shifter Boots

Enlarge in a new window

Photograph courtesy of J. Matthew Daugherty

 


Originally Released 11 February 2002

updated 27 August 2007