MR02EV has been a registered road going vehicle for 3 years and covered about 12,000 kilometers in that time, mostly through commuting to work and running around town. It’s a fun car to drive. But right from day one the gearbox has been plagued with problems, excessive noise and excessive backlash, which has just gotten worse over time.
Luckily I found some very talented people within AEVA Sydney who were willing to help. So in December 2015 I decided it was time to tackle the problem and refurbish the gearbox. The aims being:
Backlash has always been a problem, which I guessed was due to something broken in the gearbox, or slack in the coupling to the motor. By opening the gearbox we could investigate.
The funky part of plan was to change the shift pattern to “straight shift” between 2nd and 3rd gear instead of the normal “dog-leg”. Not a simple task given the design and construction of the average 5 speed manual gearbox, however, we manage to do it and I will describe the process in a future post.
But prior to that.
Removing the gearbox from an MR2 is easy, especially when there is no messy engine involved, so dropping the gearbox and electric motor out of the car took about an hour. Once on the garage floor we were able to look closely at the gearbox and the first thing we noticed … no transmission fluid.
Thought I had checked the fluid level when building the car … but was obviously wrong ... so I have driven 12,000 kilometers with no lubrication, the gearbox is stuffed and I need a replacement!
1989 Toyota MR2 gearboxes (designated C57) are a little hard to find, but Corolla gearboxes from the same era (the C52) are internally identical, relatively easy to fine and cheap. The only difference is the selector leaver is on the opposite side of the case. Instead on being on the right hand side it is on the left hand side.
My thinking at the time was … I’m sure it will be fine and we will figure it out … well more on that soon.
I have a Degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Technology Sydney and am employed in Broadcast Television Industry. My hobby is the (continuing) modification of MR02EV. I am also the National Treasurer of the Australian Electric Vehicle Association.