Picture of VW Beetle Golf Jetta Automatic to 5 Speed Swap
So... why do you want to swap?
1) the 01m automatic transmission is junk... and at $4500 used, it's expensive junk
2) the 02j 5 speed is not junk, and at $600-$1000 used, you can save a lot of money converting.
3) The automatic TDI only gets about 35 MPG real world, where the manual is capable of delivering a prius challenging 50 MPG.
4) It's the "green" thing to do...
5) Your automatic transmission just died... and you want to save some money, and get better economy to boot.

This is my first instructable, Thanks to everyone who voted for me in the Epilog Challenge! I don't think I'm going to win, but hey it's not a bad try!

Who is this for?
This instructable is for owners of any Mk4 VW Golf/Jetta/Beetle... a.k.a. 1998-2006 beetle, 1999.5-2005 jetta, and 1999.5-2005 Golf. This one is specifically from a 2001 Beetle TDI ith occasional shots from a 2003 Jetta TDI. It's for the budget conscious, or for the green, or for those who want a little more power.

Notable DIfferences
The automatic has a different:
Coolant pipe
Power steering line
Injection Pump
Transmission Computer (the manual doesn't have any wires, other than the speed sensor and the reverse switch)
Transmission (Duh!)
Shift Linkage (Duh!)
Clutch Pedal... not there (Duh!)
Wiring Harness (Duh!)
Park Neutral Relay

Since there are all of these differences, we're not going to use the transmission, transmission computer, axles, Starter, chunks of the wiring harness, park neutral relay, and probably a bunch of other stuff that was left out just because we're a bit lazy, or didn't take that photo... We're going to adapt the existing harness for clutch cancel, cruise, and reverse switch later on... we're also going to adapt one of the brackets from the automatic wiring harness to support the power steering line.

What we need
"53" relay (horn relay)
Red 3M crimp butt connectors
Reverse switch (should come with the transmission)
Clutch Switches (there are two on the clutch pedal, make sure you get the two brackets)
Shift Linkage, complete with shift boot and shift knob, there are two boot types, so it might take two tries before you've got it right
Clutch Pedal
Transmission from a TDI (if yours is a 2.0 or 1.8T, try to get one from a TDI, it's got better gear ratios)
Manual Transmission Starter (the automatic one won't work)
Manual Transmission Axles
Dust Tins from the Engine (it's between the transmission and engine, and comes with two pieces)
All of the nuts and bolts that were removed from the junkyard
New Stuff Needed:
1x New Clutch (might as well throw in a G60/VR6 from www.dieselgeek.com or www.boraparts.com )
1x Dieselgeek.com sigma5 short shifter (the OEM shifter won't clear the power steering line).
2x Nuts for the wheel end of the Axles, these are one time use only!
12x Bolts for the manual transmission end of the axles, these are also one time use only
1x bottle of blue threadlocker
2x Vertical bolts for the transmission mount (again, stretch bolts!)
2L VW Gear Lube for the 02j transmission
Yes, you will need a LOT of tools for this job
Special Tools:
VAG-COM from www.ross-tech.com
M8, M10, M12 Triple Square bits
Clutch Alignment Tool (might come in the clutch kit)
Transmission Jack (will make it MUCH easier than bench pressing the puppy in and out!)
Continuity meter (normal VOM will work)
30mm 12 point socket

Good Luck, and try to keep up!
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rwarrick23 days ago

Any chance you'll do one of these on a Mk VI?

alphaseinor (author)  rwarrick23 days ago

I've done a few on the Mk5, just haven't had anyone ask about the Mk6 yet. I don't see many differences between the mk5 and mk6

chevyguy29 days ago

Great write up.starting this project with my son on a 01 gti.I have an 01 jetta 1.8t 5speed donor car to pick from

haven't seen anyone else with this problem:

I have swapped (full proper swap) a 24v vr6 engine from a 2003 auto onto a 5 speed (o2j) transmission 2001 glx. replaced flywheel, clutch, throw out bearing, and pressure plate. I bought a brand new starter as i knew the old one was on its way out the door and it makes an awful grinding noise and if it even tries to crank the engine over ( half the time it wont engage properly) it doesn't seem to fire. engine ran/ started before i pulled it and clutch/ tranny worked as well. kept the 24v harness and such.

alphaseinor (author)  vr6teenandprego1 year ago
Make sure the starter is not for a six speed.
its proper for the 0j2, but it is the new version without the aligning spindle on the end, it sounds like it engages at first then pushes itself out of the flywheel. all bolts are toqued down properly and it aligns with the teeth when i install it.
alphaseinor (author)  vr6teenandprego1 year ago

There is something wrong with the starter you installed, It really sounds like it's a six speed starter, go to the auto parts store and carefully check the differences between the manual 5 speed and manual 6 speed

its the proper 5 speed starter. it is however the newer version without the locating post on it. but the old starter i took off didnt have the post either.
TobyTonyTon2 years ago
PLEASE PLEASE SOMEONE HELP!!!!!!!!!!! Ok here's the story. I own an 05 1.9TDI (BEW) Jetta that had the 5 speed Triptronic shift before the swap. I followed every instruction from alphaseinor to a T, except for reprogramming the ecm or hooking up the VSS. The car started and ran like a champ except for my Mass Air Flow Sensor keeps cutting out, "Not sure if it's because of the swap or not." Anyways I wanted my speedometer and cruise, so I followed KnowledgeMotorsports and the Bentley wire diagram to a T just for the vss, and as soon as I hooked up the vss the immo light came on and couldn't start the car. well before I took the car to VW to get the keys done I replaced the cluster and ecm from two different cars. Towed my car up to VW. $400 and 4 days later VW said it couldn't be done and they put the origanal ECM and Cluster back in and now I'm back at Square one, driving it with no speedometer. They said the computer is reading 3 different Vin numbers my car, the cluster and the ecm, and they can't get all 3 to communicate together. PLEASE SOMEONE HELP, I really want this to work.
pkoupelka2 years ago
Hi, I did the swap on my 2001 vw jetta vr6. all is working fine but only one thing seems to be weird. when I shiffting, pressing the clutch pedal down the RPMs raises up. it looks like that I don't know how to shift gears. :-) rpms go up on every shifting gear.
I never hook up the cruise control and clutch cancel switch. It could be this problem?
Thanks for any help.
wcraft2 years ago
What did you do with the extra wiring from the automatic? Remove it or tuck it away somewhere?
MK4 GTI2 years ago
hay whats up my man i followed all of ur steps of converting my 2002 vw gti to a 5 speed that i got from 2003 vw jetta 1.8T same engine code. everything went ok and the car starts and drive but i still have to do the reverse light and the cruise control which im not worry about. my biggest problem that ive might missed is that my abs light is and the also the traction control too i have a code in the ecm for a abs vehicle speed sensor which i replaced already and didnt fix it. also using the vac in the abs control module there is a code for abs not communicating. sorry if u mentioned it and i missed it any idea what should i do next please help
akwdiesel2 years ago
My speedometer is not working now either, it was working even after I did the swap and I am not sure what happened. What are the possibilities?
akwdiesel2 years ago
My automatic went out in my 2002 VW Jetta tdi sedan last sunday, and before I ordered a $1800 automatic I found this page and end up buying a wrecked 1999.5 VW jetta mk4 sedan 2.0 5 speed to start the swap. So far I have gotten both transmissions out of both cars. I was able to pull the 5 speed out of the 99 jetta with a 2.0 without having to remove the half shafts/cv axles, in case anyone wanted to know that. I am using the stock flywheel off of the 99 for my 2002, and bought a new clutch disc, pressure plate and throwout bearing which I bought for a 99 mk4 2.0 5 speed oem replacement (hoping it will last at least 150k miles on my tdi).
alphaseinor (author)  akwdiesel2 years ago
the only problemyou will have is the gear ratios on the 2.0 are much shorter than on a tdi. you might be able to put in a taller 5th gear from boraparts.com a .622 will drop it to about where you would have been with a tdi transmission due to the final drive ratios.
Update! I bought a o2j out of a 01 vw beetle tdi today for $600, and right this minute I have taken out the 99.5 jetta 2.0 o2j that i had put in my 02 jetta tdi the other day, but my problem is the shift linkage on the 01 beetle o2j does not even closely match the shift linkage in my car which I pulled from a 99.5 jetta! Please help! can I just swap the top parts on top on the o2j's, because it seems extremely tight and does not want to come off.
I put the 01 beetle tdi 5 speed in my 02 jetta tdi, it does not work, there is no reverse, and 5th gear is 1st gear! It is all jacked up and I am tired and pissed right now!
alphaseinor (author)  akwdiesel2 years ago
You need to adjust the shift linkage assuming you are running the correct shifter for the 2001 beetle. The 1999.5 version cannot be modified to use correct shift cable ends.

1999.5 and earlier use an old shifter style.
2000-2001(ish) use a ball style connection to the transmission
2001-2005(ish) use a clip style connection to the transmission

any linkage newer than the 1999.5 can be adapted to the ball or clip style by ordering the correct version of the cable end from VW (or aftermarket where available).

while technically, yes it can work by changing the top part, I haven't had much luck, it's much easier to swap the shifter box and cables.

I end up being able to weld and fabricate a bracket to make the 99.5 jetta shifter box and cables to work on the 01 beetle 5 speed in my 02 jetta that is now converted to 5 speed from manual, but I would not recommend it to anyone! lol, it sucked! Plus the passenger side cv axle ball bearings fell out when I was trying to put it in, so I put in a new bearing from the one in the junkyard because I could not get the stupid thing back together.
Thank you, I will go to the junkyard and get a shifter box and cables out of a 00-01 vw beetle/golf/jetta because this transmission has the ball style connection, I was still trying to use the old style shift box and cables from the 99.5 Jetta still.
Update! I am finished with the swap and driving my car, it does run 3k rpm at 60 mph, so I am either going to track down a tdi 5 speed tranny under $600 or order the .622 gear from germany for $475
I found several tdi 5 speeds at junk yards for under $600 so I think I am going to get one of those and swap transmissions again instead of just getting a 5th gear for this one.
A .658 gear for $349 is the tallest gear I could find. If you know where I could get a .622, please let me know.
ghosty7682 years ago
hi.,after doing all of this.,did you manage to start the car.,as i dont see anibody saying anythin about it.,and thats the problem i am facing today. pliz help... the starter does not even click.,but i have disconected the TCM/TCU...
alphaseinor (author)  ghosty7682 years ago
You need to re wire a few things, not just disconnect the TCU, check the other steps for the wiring instructions.

You will also need a 53 relay in place of the 175 relay
i managed to change da fuses and the car started without a problem..thanks for that..now i do not have a reverse light..thats the only thing left now..
ok.,i wil try that out.,cause i was able to locate the reverse wires on the harness in hood.,was only left with the starting problem. will keep you posted if i encounter ani problms.
ghosty7682 years ago
hi.,i have followed you instructions.,but i am having a problem with starting the car now. i have cleared all the fault codes from the TCM, then disconnected it. when i put the key, everything goes on, but the starter does not click or anything.. what do i have to do to get it to start with the key instead of starting it manualy.
alphaseinor (author)  ghosty7682 years ago
you still need to rewire
I was hoping for a little more clarity. For example, "Cut the Green/Black wire from the backside of the 175 socket (should be pin 5, or the one directly in the middle of the socket) and connect it to the blue or black clutch pedal switch (the bottom one)". It does not specify if the wire is being connected from the harness side or the relay side. Does anyone know and could they clarify the other connections as well? Thanks so much.
alphaseinor (author)  dmcdougall iii3 years ago
The green and black wire is cut out of the connector side, this is only used for power on the cruise switch on the clutch pedal.

The blue with black wire needs to be cut with a little length at the connector side for the starter cancel switch on the clutch pedal.

Hello alphasenior, I have done a swap from auto to manual transmission on my Jetta 1.8T 2003, I have done all the wiring jo, removed TCU, installed starter cancel switch (the white switch from clutch pedal to relay 53), connected rear lights, speed sensor, etc but I want to have wired up the cruise control to make it functional, at this time blue switch from clutch is not wired up. I have used the existing auto ECU and car run fine at this moment, my doubt is if I can make functional the cruise control with the automatic ECU or if I really need to change to standard ECU to get cruise control feature. According my wiing diagram (from mitchell on demand software) one wire from blue switch need 12V (ignition signal) and the other one need to be landed on terminal 39 of ECM, could you help me to complete this last task please.
alphaseinor (author)  dmcdougall iii3 years ago
Please reference your Bentley manual for actual pin-outs, and wire colors as these vary by year/model, also make sure to check for continuity on all items.

Connect Reverse lights
Cut the transmission range connector off of the wiring harness this is the connector on the back of the transmission near the ABS pump.
Use the Black/Green wire to one side of the reverse switch
Continuity check the Yellow/Blue or Grey/Red wire from the 175 relay socket to the matching color on the Transmission range switch wiring.
Cut this wire at the 175 socket
Cut the Black/Blue wire with enough wire to spare a butt connection later for the clutch cancel switch and connect side that leads into the harness to the yellow/blue or the grey/red wire in the previous steps. This is a standard butt connection that connects the reverse switch to the reverse lights. Heat shrink this connection
Connect the transmission range side of the Yellow/Blue or Grey/Red to the other side of the reverse switch. Heat shrink these connections

Connect Clutch Cancel Switch
Cut the brown wire at the 175 relay and connect it to the Grey or White clutch pedal switch (on the top bracket)
Connect the other wire from the switch to the Black/Blue wire you cut for the reverse lights in the above underlined and bold step.

Connect Cruise
Cut the Green/Black wire from the backside of the 175 socket (should be pin 5, or the one directly in the middle of the socket) and connect it to the blue or black clutch pedal switch (the bottom one)
Cut the Grey/Red (yellow/green on 2000+ vehicles, should be Pin 9)
Check for continuity on the Grey/Red or Yellow/Green wires in the TCU connector to the grey/red or yellow/green on the 175 socket
Connect the Grey/Red or Yellow/Green wire on the 175 socket to the other side of the blue or black clutch pedal switch
Remove the TCU from the car
Pull apart the TCU connector
Disconnect the ECU harness and pull apart the large connector
There will be a yellow/red wire that has continuity with pin 19 in the ECU large connector. Cut this wire at the TCU
Connect the Yellow/Red wire in the TCU to the Grey/Red or Yellow/Green wire in the TCU.
Move the wire from ECU pin 19 to pin 66 (98 and 99 beetles are pin 44 so verify the connector pin in your bentley before doing this).
Heat shrink the Butt connectors.
Wrap the unused connectors in Gaffers tape or other harness tape. (You may also cut the unused harness out of the loom).
Reassemble the relay panel
Place a 53 relay into the modified socket.
You really should list what each pin is for on these relays, switches and connectors. For those that don't have the same year model cars it would be easier for us to look at our corresponding diagrams and fine the pin related to the specific wire.
You are misreading, because there is only one side to the green black wire after you cut it and it is the harness side.
if i cut the wire, there would be two wires, one that leads to the relay socket, and one that leads back to the harness. that was my confusion. once i got into the wiring, it was not difficult and these instructions were very helpful. i just wanted to fully understand what i was doing before ever looking under the dash and i was confused. it seems the best approach is to just start doing it and to double check that everything is correct before connecting the battery and starting the car. Also, when connecting the cruise wires at the tcu, be very careful as there are two yellow/red wires. i followed these instructions almost to the letter (starter interlock override) and have a working car with working cruise. i hope i did not confuse anyone and cleared up a couple of things i was confused on. thank you for all the help, this writeup made the job so much easier and i knew what i was getting into. i will be sure to browse the tdiclub forums and other writeups and share as much knowledge about this swap or other related projects as i can. the more everyone talks, the more everyone knows.
alphaseinor (author)  dmcdougall iii3 years ago
updated the wiring description to clarify any ambiguities...
lsf6273 years ago
I have been looking over the article, and have not found anything about the wiring for the speedometer. Do you have any information of where to hook that up in the car. THanks.
alphaseinor (author)  lsf6273 years ago
The VSS on the 01m connects to the same place as the 02j (and 02m 6 speed).

If you have a 5 speed manual, then you'll have to wire it up to the Instrument cluster, and sometimes a few other places.
OK, no one has ever responded to this question on any forum that I have looked in. I finally got the speedo working on my conversion.

1.)For the 04 and up models you MUST obtain a manual transmission ECM and Cluster ( I was able to utilize the original automatic cluster though) and then have them coded and to recognize each other. If you don't obtain the manual ECM you will have a code for no communication with TCM. Same goes for the cluster. The dealer is the only group that can obtain a secret key code from Germany which allows the modules to be recoded and immo to be set.

2.)Next you must have the immobilizer in the cluster programmed to recognize your old key (04 up only; immo3). 04 and down you should be able to just put the key in the ignition, turn the ignition switch to on, keep the drivers door open and wait for ~ 10-20 minutes. The cluster will recognize the key at this point and recode itself.

a.) Finally, last but not least the speedo issue. On your manual transmission ECM find pin 28 on the green connector on the back of the instrument cluster (This applies to 04+ cars check the wiring diagram for your specific vehicle to find the pin for speed signal input). Strip enough wire to be able to solder in the signal wire that will be run from the manual transmission speed sensor.

b.) The speed sensor, located on the back of the transmission, is a three pin type. The old harness from your donor vehicle should consist of three wires; Black (12v switched/supply), Blue/White (raw speed signal, run this wire to pin 28 on the green cluster harness) and Brown (ground_ I grounded this wire to the cylinder head)

c.)For the black wire find a wire on the AT harness that has 12 volts when the key is switched on, hardwire these two together.

d.)Find yourself about 3 feet of wire to hardwire/solder to run from the blue/white wire and feed it through the firewall grommet of your choice and connect this wire to pin 28 on the cluster (green connector_ should be a solid orange wire_ count up from pin 17 which should be on the far right of the connector).

e.)As for the brown wire find a suitable ground free of corrosion an make your ground connection here ( I grounded mine to the cylinder head valve cover stud on the rear of the head). Make sure its a good ground!

f.) Viola, you should have a working speedo at this point! This worked for me on an 04 Beetle convertible.
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