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1999 Tiptronic will not shift out of Park

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My tiptronic Boxster (1999) will not shift out of Park into Drive or Reverse.

I know about the safety feature (you must depress the brake pedal), but it only releases after about two minutes of pumping the brakes and pushing down on the shifter button.

I think I can faintly hear a click each time I depress the brake pedal, but I am not sure.

This has nothing to do with the car being on an incline (it isn't due to binding). I use the parking/emergency brake and it has being happening in my flat garage and on flat parking lots.

I searched this forum and found several postings on the same problem (Shift Knob Won't Release 99 Boxster Tiptronic; Gear Shift Sticks in Park; 2001 Tip Boxster Won't Shift Out of Park; Can't Shift The Tiptronic Shifter When in Park). Unfortunately none of the postings provides a solution.

I figure there is a solenoid that must be faulty.

I am looking for help before I have to go to a dealer.



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I will check the brake lights.

I've discovered a work around:

I push down on the gear shift as I turn on the key in the ignition. As the car starts the gear shift is released and I can move it out of Park into Drive or Reverse.

Oh by the way, is the brake light switch under the dash above the brake pedal? I guess it is time to take out the Bentley manual again.



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  • 2 weeks later...


I checked the brake lights.

The brake lights do not work unless the ignition is On. If the key is in the ignition and in the On position, the brake lights work. Is this unique to Porsche automobiles?

I am about to purchase a brake switch from Pelican Parts ($22.00 for OEM part or $11.00 for an AfterMarket part). Accessing the brake light switch seems to be a bear. Wish me luck.

Once I replace the switch, we will see if it solves the problem of not being able to shift out of Park into Drive or Reverse.



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  • 1 month later...


I purchased the $10.75 part instead of the $22.75 OEM part.

I had no problem fitting the new brake switch, but it made the brake lights stay on indefinitely. The $10.75 part was just a wee bit longer than the original OEM part.

I put the old switch back in and the brake lights are working.

I just ordered the $22.75 OEM part (996-613-113-02-M100).

More to follow.


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  • 5 months later...

I too have a 1999 Tiptronic and the same thing started happening a few days ago. I thought it might be weather related - the arctic vortex - but it didn't make sense. I play around with it for a couple of minutes and then it releases. Same symptoms as were described.

What I am curious about is the workaround mentioned. Is your foot on the brake while you are pressing on the knob and starting the car at the same time?

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