Technical Grande Punto hard to get into 1st and 2nd Gear

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Technical Grande Punto hard to get into 1st and 2nd Gear

Apr 16, 2002
United Kingdom.
For last few years I've had increasing difficulty engaging 1st and 2nd gear + it could grind a bit getting into reverse. Clutch biting point is right on the floor so it seems that the clutch isn't fully disengaging. All gear changes are perfect with engine off. Only done 60K miles and zero clutch slip at all, so clutch seems OK other than the very low biting point.

I tried bleeding the system then replacing the brake/clutch fluid but it didn't help. Then tried replacing the clutch slave cylinder and again it didn't make any difference.

So I came up with this idea, as it seemed that the clutch just needed a little more travel to raise the biting point and it would then be OK. The clutch slave piston has a ball shape on the end that fits into a concave part on the back of the little plastic part at the tip, which then fits a hollow (concave) part on the gearbox release arm. So still having the old clutch slave I thought I'd try extending the clutch travel by around 10-12mm by stacking the plastic parts together (1 from new slave + the one from the old slave), and amazingly they fit together perfectly and quite securely.

And with that mod to give a little more clutch travel it now changes gear 100% perfectly, as good as it ever did. I added a cable tie around the 2 plastic parts but TBH it's not even needed as they fit together so well you'd think it was intended.

Have been running it like that for a few weeks now with no problem and it still changes gear absolutely perfectly. Of course something must be worn, bent or out of alignment or something for this to be necessary but for now it's working fine so just thought I'd share this in case it can help anyone else. :) A few pics below showing the mod.