2013+ Illuminated Shifter Assembly Retrofit into 2011-2012 S60's
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    1. #1
      Member p.rico's Avatar
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      I decided to go through the retrofit process to get rid of the ugly column and gate shift assembly found in all of the 2011-2012 S60's.

      I had perused a few threads here, specifically this one here for information on the assembly and some install guidance. https://forums.swedespeed.com/showthr...ifter-Retrofit

      However, I hadn't found much on the S60 specifically... so when I did mine this past week, I decided to catalog everything to post a write up on here for others to see the process.

      If anyone doesn't know what I'm referring to, I mean going from this:



      To this:



      For starters, you have to source the entire shifter assembly for this to work. Thankfully, there are plenty of them on eBay. Erie Vo-Vo, one of the major Volvo part resellers specifically, generally has several for purchase.

      Here's pictures comparing the assemblies, showing that they are virtually the same besides the top end shifter design. If you buy the assembly, all the of associated electronics are included.



      The assembly parts from Volvo are about $800 in change, but you can buy assemblies from anywhere between $100 (what I paid) to just under $200 for decent parts.

      Alright, on the install...
      Last edited by p.rico; 11-13-2017 at 08:58 PM.
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    3. #2
      Member p.rico's Avatar
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      To get to the assembly and the transmission tunnel floor, you'll need to take out the waterfall and center console. I found this video to be pretty helpful for this first set of parts.



      First thing to take out is the top waterfall vent. This is a difficult part. Not because of it's complexity, but because there are a ton of really stiff clips. To do this right and not mar anything, you'll need to get a set of plastic auto pry tools.



      I bought a good set on Amazon that have served me well. (https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1)

      You really need to work hard to get some of these clips disconnected, but once you get some of the corners up, you can easily then get your fingers in and pull. Hard.





      Once the vent is finally free, there is one green connector for the Hazards, disconnect.



      Now, you'll see a set of six Torx 25 screws. There are four on top and two on the sides.



      The four on top are pretty short, and the two on the sides are much longer.

      A tip: Every one of the Torx 25 screws removed from the console, minus the two longer ones, are all the same and interchangeable, so you don't need to separate them out.

      Next, there are two Torx 25 screws on the rear of waterfall. You can reach behind in the cubby area and feel them. They are a pain in the butt, but are easier to access from the passenger side (at least for me they were). I used a ratchet Torx bit to get at those.





      By now, all the screws holding the waterfall in place have been released.

      Pull the two side panels off from the driver and passenger side consoles to expose the console area underneath the waterfall.





      Now you're ready to pull off the waterfall. Start from the top and gradually pull it forward to disengage all the clips. At the bottom, you'll need to pull up and away from the console and floor.




      There is one green connector for the electronics on the center console. However, the harness is also held in place by two back plastic clips that are stubborn. You need to pull them off, but it might take you some work... just a forewarning.



      Once you got the connector and harness clips off, now you can pull the waterfall out completely. NOTE: When you're doing this, it will be easier for you to turn the car on, place the car in neutral, turn it off, and then pull the waterfall out. The car will beep at you incessantly, which is highly annoying when trying to maneuver the part out, but don't fret. Once you're done, you can put it back in park and the car will finally turn off.



      On to the next steps for the remaining console piece!
      Last edited by p.rico; 11-13-2017 at 09:01 PM.
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    4. #3
      Member p.rico's Avatar
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      Now that you have the waterfall off, you can work on getting the rest of the console out.

      You'll need to remove the four Torx 25 screws on the plastic at the four corners of the shifter assembly.



      Those are the only four screws holding the lower assembly in, but you'll need to make room to pull it out by moving the center console and armrest out of the way.

      Take off the lower center console panel on the driver's side.



      Take out these two Torx 25 screws.



      Go into the armrest cubby and remove the bottom rubber tray. Take these four Torx 25 screws out.



      Once those are loose, the console is free, but I found it easier to get more leverage for the removal of the console area around the shifter by taking out the cupholder and disconnecting the 12V lead for the power outlet. That way, you can hinge the center console harness away from the center area toward the rear seats.



      With the area clear of console bits, go ahead and put the car into Neutral again (it will make getting the trim out much easier) and work to disconnect the whole console trim. The top area will need to unclip from the rest of the dash. It might take a good bit of force.



      Once that is finished, you are now clear to take out the shifter assembly.

      Last edited by p.rico; 11-13-2017 at 09:06 PM.
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    6. #4
      Member p.rico's Avatar
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      For the shifter assembly removal:

      First, and I STRESS this part, do yourself a favor and mark with a permanent marker the outline of the assembly in its current position. This will save you massive headaches in the long run, because if you don't put it back correctly in place, you'll be misaligned with the waterfall, and it will not fit. Make sure to get all four corners.



      There are four 10 mm nuts holding the assembly in place.



      As you can see in this picture, the assembly has a large through hole and the pins are not centered, so you'd be in heading to frustration if you didn't mark the outline earlier.



      With the assembly unbolted, it's now time to get the shift cable out of the assembly. There are two areas that need to be addressed: The large grommet in front, which is easy, and the white circular clip holding the cable into the ball joint on the assembly. That white clip was initially daunting, but it was easy once I figured out what to do.



      First, pull the grommet out of the assembly with your hand.



      Now, for the white clip... you will need to pull it up to disengage it from the ball joint. What worked very well for me was a small flat head screwdriver. Insert the flat head into the clip edge and use the arched area of the plastic in the picture as a pry point. You should be finally able to pop it up. Once popped up, the cable slides right out.



      You can see the white clip still pulled up in this photo below. I kept the screwdriver in until the new assembly was in place and I was able to push the white clip back in to engage the ball joint.



      Success, the assembly is out.



      From this point on, all you need to do is everything again in reverse, pretty much to the letter.
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    7. #5
      Member p.rico's Avatar
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      Here are more photos of the final part installed.







      I hope this helps some of you that were unsure of the process and wanted to see it done. It took me about 2 1/2 hours in total, but a lot of that time was documenting with photos and figuring out some of the details, since I didn't have a good guide for the shifter cable removal and some of the underpinnings of the center console.

      If you have any questions, feel free to PM me.
      Last edited by p.rico; 11-13-2017 at 08:40 PM.
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    8. #6
      Member p.rico's Avatar
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      One thing to add of note. It is clear why Volvo went away from this shifter style after only one year. The cable that runs along the shifter from the knob to the assembly is extraordinarily frail and not up to the task of frequent abuse.

      This thread on here highlights the issue in detail: https://forums.swedespeed.com/showthr...ted-Gear-Shift

      Here is a video of my shifter. You can see the issues with non-functionality in Park, and the intermittent signal in Reverse (you can see it contacting and not when I touch the area underneath the knob in the leather boot. Once you go past those into Neutral and Drive modes, the cable is not pulled and those modes are unaffected.



      Just one thing to be concerned with this retrofit. The fix, of course is another knob, but at least you can get yourself one of these Polestar knobs then... (might be a future purchase of mine).

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    9. #7
      Global Moderator R-Pow3R3d's Avatar
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      To the sticky it goes! Thanks!
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    10. #8
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      Awesome write up! And I agree the stock shifter on 2011-12 models were not very exciting. This was one of the first things I changed and over the years have grown to really like it. I actually prefer having to push the shifter right to engage manual shifting (which I never do). I like resting my hand on the shifter when I drive and on cars where the shifter is pulled to the left to engage manual shifting I find myself constantly engaging manual shifting on turns when not intended. Never have that issue with this shifter. And this may sound strange but I really like the color of the orange indicators lol. Here's what I did back in 2012. It's from an S80.

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    11. #9
      Member msmith's Avatar
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      Awesome write up. I'm putting this on my list of things to do in the spring. It's getting too cold to be spending 2.5 hours outside now.
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    12. #10
      Junior Member moyni's Avatar
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      Is that connector issue resolved if you use a Polestar shifter? Also, followed, thanks for the great guide and write up!
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    13. #11
      Member p.rico's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by moyni View Post
      Is that connector issue resolved if you use a Polestar shifter? Also, followed, thanks for the great guide and write up!
      I think they're all eventually going to get pulled and crimped to death. There is evidence, based on the pictures in the thread posted above that the newer shifters seem to have that part of the cable (near the shifter) reinforced to help with the crimping problem. If I get a new shift knob, I would give the cable a bit more slack (not guiding it through the assembly fully, and also bond or epoxy the connecter near the shifter in the max position, so it doesn't pull on itself near the connector when going to its furthest extent (in Park).
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    14. #12
      Junior Member lawsonmf's Avatar
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      My 15 S60 RD Platinum doesn't have an illuminated shifter. Should it have one?

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    15. #13
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      Quote Originally Posted by lawsonmf View Post
      My 15 S60 RD Platinum doesn't have an illuminated shifter. Should it have one?

      Sent from my Galaxy S7 using Tapatalk
      Yours isn't even backlit?
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    16. #14
      Junior Member Major Error's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by p.rico View Post
      Yours isn't even backlit?
      Nope.

      In other news, this write-up is rather timely considering that the cupholder cover sent my parking hang-tag into the nether regions under the storage box...
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    17. #15
      Junior Member lawsonmf's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by p.rico View Post
      Yours isn't even backlit?
      No

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    18. #16
      Member p.rico's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by lawsonmf View Post
      Quote Originally Posted by p.rico View Post
      Yours isn't even backlit?
      No

      Sent from my Galaxy S7 using Tapatalk
      Man, that's pretty lame. I was about to get a 2014+ assembly because i had thougjt at least the letters were lit, but found this one instead. Good to know. I think that you guys probably wont be able to add a knob if you wanted to without the associated electronics.

      I pulled the cover off mine today to look at the cable. Oddly enough the cable at the shifter end is fine. Apparently the issue is lower in the knob under the boot, where I presume there is a pinch point that has marred the cable enough on the pins which control Park and Reverse.
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    19. #17
      Junior Member Major Error's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by p.rico View Post
      Man, that's pretty lame. I was about to get a 2014+ assembly because i had thougjt at least the letters were lit, but found this one instead. Good to know. I think that you guys probably wont be able to add a knob if you wanted to without the associated electronics.
      *shrug* Instead, we have the TFT display instead of dials on the dash...
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    20. #18
      Member p.rico's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by Major Error View Post
      *shrug* Instead, we have the TFT display instead of dials on the dash...
      Yep, and for me to retrofit that TFT, I'd have to buy a ~$500 OBD adapter to get it to read the gear and gas mileage...
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    21. #19
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      Did the same thing about 2 yrs ago. Looks 100% better.


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    22. #20
      Junior Member moyni's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by p.rico View Post
      Man, that's pretty lame. I was about to get a 2014+ assembly because i had thougjt at least the letters were lit, but found this one instead. Good to know. I think that you guys probably wont be able to add a knob if you wanted to without the associated electronics.

      I pulled the cover off mine today to look at the cable. Oddly enough the cable at the shifter end is fine. Apparently the issue is lower in the knob under the boot, where I presume there is a pinch point that has marred the cable enough on the pins which control Park and Reverse.
      Im about to start this process soon. However from what I have read it seems not be an issue with the cable but rather that cable being pinched? If so what was your fix to stop the crimping of the cable.
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    23. #21
      Junior Member m337jkb's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by p.rico View Post
      Man, that's pretty lame. I was about to get a 2014+ assembly because i had thougjt at least the letters were lit, but found this one instead. Good to know. I think that you guys probably wont be able to add a knob if you wanted to without the associated electronics.
      That's odd. I got mine from a MY16 and it is indeed lit up.
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    24. #22
      Member p.rico's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by moyni View Post
      Im about to start this process soon. However from what I have read it seems not be an issue with the cable but rather that cable being pinched? If so what was your fix to stop the crimping of the cable.
      I haven't fixed it yet. I'm still on the fence of pulling it out and putting a new Polestar knob on.
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    25. #23
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      Quote Originally Posted by m337jkb View Post
      That's odd. I got mine from a MY16 and it is indeed lit up.
      I was sure it did too, I just don't think people realize it and think it's just from the surrounding illumination.
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    26. #24
      I'm just about finished on my TFT DIM mod/upgrade, ordered the Vesper module, and I'm thinking about doing this shifter upgrade next... But after reading into it, it appears to be more trouble than it's worth. Anyone who's completed this mod having any regrets? Is it worth the hassle?

    27. #25
      Member p.rico's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by Jonmichael02302 View Post
      I'm just about finished on my TFT DIM mod/upgrade, ordered the Vesper module, and I'm thinking about doing this shifter upgrade next... But after reading into it, it appears to be more trouble than it's worth. Anyone who's completed this mod having any regrets? Is it worth the hassle?
      The question is what's the worth to you? Some people would see 1.5 hours of labor and decide it's not worth it. This is my hobby, so I see things differently.

      As for regrets, I don't see why there would be any. The modification doesn't change the functionality of anything, except that the shifter gate for the manual and sport modes now goes the proper direction, in my opinion. This is a purely stylistic choice, and you know you like it or don't before you go through with the swap.
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    28. #26
      Junior Member marvinmartian's Avatar
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      Once again, another great write-up from p.rico. Good job, man.

      I'm curious. This is primarily a cosmetic upgrade. But I wonder if it gets you the "sport mode" automatic disengage feature. IE., if you're in Sport mode and hold the shifter in this + position for 1 or 2 seconds it goes back to Drive mode. This doesn't happen on my car. I don't think it happens on MY12 or MY13 either. Not sure when they added it.

      I'm doubting this upgrade gets you that as it's most likely a software or tranny feature specific to later model years. But I've been super curious since the shifter swap upgrade thing started.
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    29. #27
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      Does anyone know if the Heico Aluminum shifter knob I have would fit on the 2013+ shifter assembly?

      It's not illuminated but I'm willing to forgo that to get the leather boot.
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    30. #28
      Member p.rico's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by marvinmartian View Post
      Once again, another great write-up from p.rico. Good job, man.

      I'm curious. This is primarily a cosmetic upgrade. But I wonder if it gets you the "sport mode" automatic disengage feature. IE., if you're in Sport mode and hold the shifter in this + position for 1 or 2 seconds it goes back to Drive mode. This doesn't happen on my car. I don't think it happens on MY12 or MY13 either. Not sure when they added it.

      I'm doubting this upgrade gets you that as it's most likely a software or tranny feature specific to later model years. But I've been super curious since the shifter swap upgrade thing started.
      No problem, aim to help and contribute.

      It doesn't work for the 2013 illuminated shifter assembly as that wasn't added until after. I assume the software for that resides in the GSM (gear shift module). Saying that, I believe then that if you have a 2014+ shifter assembly with that GSM, the sport deactivation should work...

      I know that pietila proved that you can add the paddle shifter steering wheel to a car with the 2014+ assembly for the same reason, because the GSM had the paddle software in place (all he had to do was connect the wires from the paddle part of the steering wheel harness to the GSM harness).
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    31. #29
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      Quote Originally Posted by Almaz View Post
      Does anyone know if the Heico Aluminum shifter knob I have would fit on the 2013+ shifter assembly?

      It's not illuminated but I'm willing to forgo that to get the leather boot.
      I would assume if the metal rod is still the same length, and actuates the shift lock the same way, then maybe? But not really sure...
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    32. #30
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      Quote Originally Posted by p.rico View Post
      I would assume if the metal rod is still the same length, and actuates the shift lock the same way, then maybe? But not really sure...
      I suppose I have to buy one and try it. Worst case scenario I'd have to sell it and take a little loss.
      I see a bunch on eBay but for some reason LKQOnline returns zero hits even though you can see them in pictures of cars they have. Any idea why?
      2012 S60 T5 Savile Gray/Beachwood

    33. #31
      Junior Member marvinmartian's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by p.rico View Post
      No problem, aim to help and contribute.

      It doesn't work for the 2013 illuminated shifter assembly as that wasn't added until after. I assume the software for that resides in the GSM (gear shift module). Saying that, I believe then that if you have a 2014+ shifter assembly with that GSM, the sport deactivation should work...

      I know that pietila proved that you can add the paddle shifter steering wheel to a car with the 2014+ assembly for the same reason, because the GSM had the paddle software in place (all he had to do was connect the wires from the paddle part of the steering wheel harness to the GSM harness).
      Where is the GSM? Is it possible to replace? Crucially, would it work in a MY11? I'm thinking not because I vaguely recall some kind of change in how the tranny gets controlled at some point.
      Caspian Blue Metallic 2011 S60 T6 AWD

    34. #32
      Member p.rico's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by Almaz View Post
      I suppose I have to buy one and try it. Worst case scenario I'd have to sell it and take a little loss.
      I see a bunch on eBay but for some reason LKQOnline returns zero hits even though you can see them in pictures of cars they have. Any idea why?
      No clue. The same reason I can't seem to find any steering wheels with (or without) paddles, even though I see all the pictures of them in the vehicles as well.
      2012 S60 T6 AWD - Vibrant Copper - Premium Package - Climate Package - Multimedia Package - BLIS - Polestar Optimization + Mods galore
      Running intro/install/DIY thread: https://forums.swedespeed.com/showthr...w-S60-T6-Owner!

    35. #33
      Member p.rico's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by marvinmartian View Post
      Where is the GSM? Is it possible to replace? Crucially, would it work in a MY11? I'm thinking not because I vaguely recall some kind of change in how the tranny gets controlled at some point.
      This is the unit, the part number is the same listed for a 2013 and 2014, but I'm not sure how that can be true.

      https://www.volvopartswebstore.com/p.../31437116.html

      Here is the 2013 illuminated knob below. The Polestar knob shares the same cable.

      https://i.ebayimg.com/images/g/zwwAA...ZS/s-l1600.jpg

      And here is the 2014+ knob.

      https://parts.volvocarsofnaples.com/...0954104538.png

      The cable ends are different, so the modules physically cannot be the same.
      2012 S60 T6 AWD - Vibrant Copper - Premium Package - Climate Package - Multimedia Package - BLIS - Polestar Optimization + Mods galore
      Running intro/install/DIY thread: https://forums.swedespeed.com/showthr...w-S60-T6-Owner!

    36. #34
      Junior Member marvinmartian's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by p.rico View Post
      This is the unit, the part number is the same listed for a 2013 and 2014, but I'm not sure how that can be true.

      https://www.volvopartswebstore.com/p.../31437116.html

      Here is the 2013 illuminated knob below. The Polestar knob shares the same cable.

      https://i.ebayimg.com/images/g/zwwAA...ZS/s-l1600.jpg

      And here is the 2014+ knob.

      https://parts.volvocarsofnaples.com/...0954104538.png

      The cable ends are different, so the modules physically cannot be the same.
      Right ok. I remember, you did a write up of putting the paddle shifters on your MY12, right? That's super sweet. By changing the steering wheel, GSM and shifter, it's possible to get it all working, right?

      More labor intensive than I have time for right now (baby on the way in a few weeks). Maybe later. :-(

      EDIT: my bad. The write-up was by Pietila. Here's the link: https://forums.swedespeed.com/showthr...=1#post6301073

      I can feel the obsessive neurons in my brain already firing about this. I want it badly.
      Last edited by marvinmartian; 03-07-2018 at 01:24 PM.
      Caspian Blue Metallic 2011 S60 T6 AWD

    37. #35
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      Mission accomplished. It looks good and works as expected.
      Didn't seem like I can put my Heico Aluminum shifter knob on it so if anyone wants it for their 2011/12 it's for sale.


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      2012 S60 T5 Savile Gray/Beachwood

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