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Product Reviews

B&M Edge short shifter

The B&M Edge short shifter is designed to shorten shift throws by lengthening the distance from the pivot ball to the bottom end of the shifter, while slightly shortening the distance from the pivot ball to the top of the shifter. The design is also supposedly weighted for optimum performance. The shifter itself has an attractive (and presumably durable) chrome-like finish, is made from CNC machined steel, and comes with replacement o-ring bushings for the bottom pivot.

Pic: B&M Edge

Installation of the shifter is fairly straightforward, and involves putting the vehicle up on jackstands (the more room the better, so a lift would be even more effective), removing the shift knob, unhooking the middle section of the exhaust, unbolting three 12mm bolts, and lifting the shifter and change extension assembly out. The stock shifter is then removed from the change extension by removing two 10mm bolts. The Edge shifter is a perfect fit, and includes grease for re-lubrication. Re-install everything, and that is about it. Installation time was 1 hour at a very relaxed pace. This install could easily be done in 20 minutes or less.

Performance wise, the shift throws are shortened by a measured 2 from stock. The difference from stock is night and day: a quick but firm flick of the wrist is all that is needed to execute a shift. The most noticeable advantage can be found in the second to third gear shift, which is always the most difficult in the heat of battle.

The Edge shifter is a little shorter from the pivot ball to the top of the shifter, so the shift knob sits a little lower. This, combined with the longer pivot to bottom distance, results in a little more effort needed to put the stick in each gear. Also, the stock shifter has a slight bend in it towards the rear, so the B&M shifter, which is perfectly straight, sits a little further from the driver. B&M claims the straight shaft allows for the best leverage, but a slight bend would probably be appreciated. As it stands, the shifter positioning is fine, it just could be a little better for taller or short-armed drivers. (Note: With B&Ms own Shift Stabilizer kit with eccentric front bushing, the shifter can be adjusted closer to the driver if so desired.)

Overall, the B&M shifter is a wise choice for the performance minded driver, especially one who enjoys racing the 1320 or making it first to the next stoplight. Instructions, fit and finish are impeccable with this unit, the only drawback being the poor quality stickers that come in the kit (at least you get two).

I installed the B&M Edge into my '99 SiR with no problems. The stock shifter on the SiR is actually quite an improvement over the '94 Si stock shifter, but the B&M still provided even better shifting. Fit in the '99 is perfect, with no contact with the stock exhaust and heatshields.

Update: 03/03/17
The shifter started getting really stiff moving front to back in the past week or so. I attributed this to high pressure water spray from the do-it-yourself car wash I frequent during the winter months getting in around the lower pivot and freezing in the cold weather. But then it got worse, even when the weather warmed up. Then I surmized that the high pressure spray might have gotten past the seals in the shifter linkage and washed the grease out of the lower pivot when I sprayed the underside with a particularly strong pressure washer (some of the bays' pressure washers are stronger than others).

Today after work I jacked the car up and dropped the shift linkage. Lo and behold the lower pivot of the shifter was seized with rust. I disassembled, cleaned, and rebuilt the shifter with a heathy dose of grease, and it is now moving smoother than it ever has.

A note to those living in wet and/or cold climates: drop your aftermarket shifters and grease them up every year or two and you will notice a world of difference in how smooth the shifter works.

Update: 05/04/05
This winter has been particularly brutal, with lots of snow and lots of salt. As a result, the bottom pivot point of this shifter has seized solid, to the point that I was not able to pound the stock pivot bushing out like I did last year and the year before. So instead I purchased a new Skunk2 shifter and shift knob from Kensai Racing. The Skunk2 Shifter uses cartridge bearings, aluminum spacers and a new bottom pivot bolt with nylock nut, instead of re-using the stock pivot bushing and bolt. Reviews soon...

B&M Website