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I have always liked the look of open gate shifters. Lots of concepts have them but they never end up on production cars. Do manufacturers just not want to spend the money on the chunk of metal there or what?
 

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Slipstream said:
I have always liked the look of open gate shifters. Lots of concepts have them but they never end up on production cars. Do manufacturers just not want to spend the money on the chunk of metal there or what?
It's a cost thing. Using a boot makes it easy to seal the cabin off from the outside world, speeds assembly time and gives greater flexability for other transmissions, namely automatics. An "open gate" shifter is purely cosmetic and most people either don't like it or don't have an opinion on it, so they opt to skip it. If you really want one it would be easy to fabricate a gate, but the hard part to engineer would be keeping the noise/smell/cold air of the underside of your car out.
 

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Actually one of the aftermarket guys looked into making one for the S2000 but they found that it couldn't be done.
 

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They do look good, but manufacturing cost and complexity are probably the prohibiting factors. As Aerodave mentioned, keeping the elements out of the car is a factor. I would imagine some sort of boot or insulation could be created to fit under the metal gate to keep the inside secure from the elements, but it could get costly to manufacture with different materials being created and assembled, not to mention the cost of the metal plate. It would also have to be made as to not impede shifter operation or cause it to be more difficult to use. Don't the Ferrari shifter require more precise movement to get it into the right gate?
 

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Fformula88 said:
. Don't the Ferrari shifter require more precise movement to get it into the right gate?
Stole the thoughts from my head. I've read (wish I could tell ya from experience) that shifting Ferraris, Lamborghinis, and other exotics with open-gated shifters is more demanding for this reason. I'll stick with a Z-gate-type shifter where I can easily shift from 2-3 and 4-5 without slowing down to think "up-right-up".

Have to admit, though, there's something pretty sexy about a polished naked shifter gate.
 

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Don't forget that the transmission has to be allowed to move if there are soft mounts, which is the usual case. Most rear wheel drive cars, when you rev the engine, you can see the gear shift moves sideways.
 

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DreamerDave said:
Don't forget that the transmission has to be allowed to move if there are soft mounts, which is the usual case. Most rear wheel drive cars, when you rev the engine, you can see the gear shift moves sideways.
That's only the case with a top loader or when the shifter is mounted directly to the transmission case. A shifter can be mounted remotely with cables (crappy) or linkage rods (better), and more often than not they are these days. I don't know much about the Aisin, or how Pontiac is planning to place the shifter, but I hope they mount it directly to the transmission. This is best for precise, accurate and smooth shifting. However this does complicate things for anyone who wants to make an "Open Gate" shifter for the reasons DreamerDave points out.
 
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