Report: Shifter Lever Bushings May Break Causing Loose Feel/Noise
Mercedes-Benz 500SL Problem
The bushings for the shifter lever wear out to the point where they break and fall out. This causes excessive movement (loose feel) in the shifter lever and a clanging-type noise when changing gears.
Visitor, 1991 Mercedes-Benz 500SL, 166,000 mi
Had same problem. changed bushing, all is fine.