Nissan March/Micra Stuck Shift Lock Repair

The shift lock is the mechanism that keeps the gear shift stuck in PARK unless the ignition is on and the foot brake is depressed.  There is also a manual override button, I guess intended for allowing the shift to neutral for towing etc even when the car is switched off.

For some time now, we’ve been resorting to the manual release button because the automatic mechanism doesn’t work.  (2003 Nissan March)

The mechanism is pretty simple.  Circuit diagram here: Micra K12 manual page 3912 on .  There is a solenoid (black/white wires) in series with the brake switch, and a  microswitch (blue/white wire) that is closed when the shifter is in Park.


Getting access to the mechanism is a matter of removing two screws either side of the centre cover at the rear (push seats forward to access). Lifting the cover from the back will pop out the two clips at the front.

Using a continuity tester I found the microswitch wasn’t closing when the shifter was in park. However, pressing it more firmly caused it to close.  Probably the plastic cam that presses the switch has finally worn too much.

I fixed this by moving the shift out of Park, and carefully bending the microswitch lever up towards the cam.  The above photo shows it closed now.


4 thoughts on “Nissan March/Micra Stuck Shift Lock Repair”

  1. Hi, thanks for this as its been very handy. My brother’s 2004 K12 Micra has just started having this issue and he didn’t even know about the shift release button. One thing not conveyed in your write up is how small all of this is and buried under the gear shifter. I’ve got the centre console out but wasn’t able to get my probes onto the microswitch terminals to determine whether it was the same issue. I could hear a click from the microswitch though when moving it from park so it might not be. I’d also assume this microswitch isn’t the same one that forces you to be in park before the key is released?

  2. Back again and found this tricky as I don’t have access to all my tools. However I found that I could free up the wiring on the connector by unhooking it from the various tangs it was under. I then managed to prove that by bridging this the solenoid operated fine with the ignition on and pressing the brake pedal. So I then removed the switch to test it which wasn’t very difficult just a couple of tangs that hold it on and poles that make sure its positioned ok (putting it back was fairly easy as well). Initial continuity testing proved it was always open circuit but I can’t be sure my probes were making good contact. Anyway it then seemed to function ok although I still bent the lever up a bit to make sure.
    At this point I’m suspecting a dodgy switch and fearing it looks non-standard. However I was wrong and its an off the shelf Omron d3m-01k3-3 which can be purchased from most electronics suppliers for a couple of quid. So put it all back together including the centre console and can hear the microswtich click as I did before and annoyingly it wasn’t working. Removed the centre console again and didn’t really do anything and put it back and suddenly it was working.
    So my plan is now to replace the switch as its quite cheap to see if that fixes it and use the shift release button in the meantime. It could be a dodgy connection elsewhere but I guess I’ll see after fitting the switch. Having looked at a used gear shifter on ebay then its a self contained module with just a cable/lever connecting it to the gearbox. Frustratingly it looks as although the bolts securing it are from the cabin it actually comes out under the car which I think is a pain. .
    Anyway some photos ->

  3. Hi there. I’m so glad I’ve found this article. My 2015 nissan march’s gear has recently started acting up. It gets stuck in park almost all the time and I have to press the shift lock every time, never mind that the shift lock is so hard to access. Anyway, my question is, how else can you fix this problem without a microswitch? I don’t have one currently. Is there a way to repair the shift lock without it?

    1. The microswitch is part of the gear shift assembly. See the photos, including Rob’s photos linked above.

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