Gear Selector Broken, Wont Start on 1999 Pontiac Sunfire

My 1999 Pontiac Sunfire GT 2.4L Automatic Will Not Start. The gear selector moves freely without depressing the brake, but the indicator shows only reverse and no mater what, the reverse lights stay on. You can push the car easily no matter what selection you have on the gear selector, but again, its reading as a perminant false reverse. The key is stuck in the ignition as well. It ran just fine earlier that day, but when i came back to my parked car, nothing worked. It seems the only thing working is the electricity/radio. What could be the cause of this problem? How can I fix it? And, of course, how much is this going to cost me?

by in Orlando, FL on July 08, 2010
1 answer 3 comments
ANSWER by on July 08, 2010
It sounds like the shifter is broken or the shift cable has become disconnected in your 1999 Pontiac Sunfire. The most likely fault would be a problem with the shift cable. The shift mechanism should be properly diagnosed before a proper estimate for repairs can be given
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COMMENT by on October 01, 2010
Hey, just a thought. I worked on one on my car lot yesterday, that was doing the same thing. Key was stuck, shifter was moving, but mine would start. I finally found that on the button you depress to change the gears, there is a piece of cushioning rubber that had become misshapen and was not allowing the button to return to a locking position. I removed the rubber piece and all is well. Simple fix that I found, only after I removed the ignition key cylinder, the shifter cable, and lubed all the parts around the cable. May not be your problem, but....only takes a minute to look.
COMMENT by on October 08, 2010
Well, I took it to the shop, and the shift cable was broken. After buying the part online myself and having the shop install it, my cost was still below $200.00. Thank you for the advice. -NVetterick
COMMENT by on December 30, 2010
Where, online, did you get your shift cable from? I have an automatic 1999 2.4L Cavalier Z24, and I've only been able to find shift cables for manual trans. The shop that currently has my car is not able to locate this part either. Since our cars are twins, I need the same part you found.