Short Shifter Testimonials
Just wanted to drop you a quick note as to how happy I am with your product. Last week I purchased the full Rogue Octane SSK (with WSR)
from Daniel of Beastpower and installed it Saturday. Brought a lot of
smiles to my face, I can't believe I waited this long for such a needed,
and relatively economical mod, what was I thinking! While I was at it,
I replaced the tranny mounts (with yours of course), and put in the Royal Purple Syncromax Manual Gear Oil. Sent a few pics from the
install to Daniel who will update his site for even better product promotion. All I know is that I am very happy with your product and will be joyously
BMW E39 M5
At full acceleration I have missed shifts into third and fifth gear before. After almost 80,000 miles, my stock shifter was very sloppy.
I just installed an Octane Short Shifter Kit in my 98 BMW M3 Sedan along with Rogue's transmission
mounts and your recommended selector rod gear joint replacement (BMW parts). Shifting is now a dream come true. Short throws and extremely precise gear selection make my car an absolute JOY to drive. I'd like you to pass along a very hardy and sincere thank you to everyone who made the Octane SSK
possible. They did their job very well and obviously enjoy driving as much as I do.
1998 BMW E36 M3
Mt. Vernon, IN
|Thank you Ben,
This is what a short shifter was SUPPOSED to feel like. Just got it installed today and the difference is amazing.
The two big things I notice is that getting into first after a stop light is now much easier and more like I remember the stock shifter feeling. The other thing is the second to third shift. I never missed one with the stock shifter but had to really think about it using the other brand. With yours, it is a no brainer again. Just go for third and its there.
Cannot thank you enough. The tranny mounts are in and cannot really say I notice them but they were an easy install. Can't wait for the last item, if these other two items are indicative of the overall quality of your items, they will be awesome.
1996 BMW E36 328i
Grover Beach, CA
Just a quick note to thank you for
supplying shifters for our cars this year. They felt good on
the cars in the shop but we just got through with our first race
week of the year and I got to put them through their paces on the
track. Amazing - seriously.
We have gotten free shifters from
several different companies in the past and they have always come
back off and replaced with the stock parts after testing them out.
I feel that in general, short shifters have a cool feel, but that is
not really good or a benefit - just different. In fact, due to
the plastic pivot point, the stock shifter has a smoother feel and
the longer throw gives better and more accurate gear selection -
both advantages on the track in a pressure situation where shifting
needs to be automatic and flawless. Additionally, I installed
a huge shift knob on one customer's car at his request and as I
feared, the added mass disguised the gates and made shifting and
extremely clumsy (they sent the engine back for a rebuild after one
weekend due to a mis-shift).
At about turn 5 on the first lap in
my new E46 car, I hit a quick shift and remembered thinking "Wow,
that was solid". Not a bad accomplishment for a single
part to make an impression on a completely new car with well over
100 completely custom fabricated parts! The shifting was
smooth and unlike heavier shift knobs, the Weighted Selector Rod
allowed proper gear selection while still adding mass to make
movement rock solid. This is by far the best shifter I have
ever used and I am very happy with them. I have attached one
of the few pictures I have gathered from this past week. I
will send more from the weekend later and more from the podium
position from next race now that we have our engine management
issues straightened out. Thanks again!
E46 Bimmerworld World Challenge Racecars
|I just wanted to drop you a note to thank you and praise your engineering efforts in regards to the Rogue Engineering OCTANE SSK for the E46 6SPD. I am just blown away by this shifter! I have a friend who has the 5SPD version on his '01 330i and I always loved driving it. The 6SPD kit is even better, in my opinion! It has just the same shift effort WITHOUT a weighted selector rod (included in the 5SPD kit). The Self Adjusting Pivot Point is the icing on the cake, though. The gear selection feel is just so nice and crisp with hardly any excess play and no binding whatsoever...and that's after the kit has just been installed! The car is just a whole new toy now. I'm in the process of putting together a bit of a sleeper with my '04 330i and Rogue's products are exactly what I'm looking for. As far as the
OCTANE SSK, I like the short throw, I like the build quality, I like the innovative approach, I like being able to use the stock shift knob without any shift feel problems. Ben, you and Rogue Engineering nailed it. Thank you and keep up the good work! I look forward to future developments from the folks at Rogue.
2004 BMW 330 6-spd
As an owner of a
2003 330i with the Performance Package, I was excited about the
prospect of an OEM short shifter along with the other goodies the
package included. Coming from a Steptronic transmission, any 6
speed was great but the shorty knob and “reduce” throw was very
appealing. After 6 months of regular driving, I began to sense
a level of vagueness that was not what I had expected in a short
shift kit. In reading posts about short shift kits on
Bimmerfest.com, I became intrigued with trying out a aftermarket
short shift kit to improve the overall shifting characteristics.
I wanted to be sure that I was not stuck with something that was not
to my liking so I inquired with Ben from Rogue about the OCTANE SSK.
First I want to thank Ben for his timely response to all of my
inquiries and that he stated clearly that if I were not please with
his product I could return it with no questions being asked.
I can not attest
to the install ease or difficulty since I had a friend put it in for
me. Being winter in PA, I was not about to tackle this project
at home. He has his own shop and was quick to offer his
assistance. His only comment was that he had a bit of a
challenge aligning the new carrier arm.
impression of the OCTANE short shift kit was “WOW” this thing is
tight. There was no vagueness in the pattern. The slight
offset to the right was easily noticed and lines up with the nature
placement coming from the transmission. The throw reduction
was not dramatic but just enough to make it an improvement from the
OEM version. Shifting did require a bit more effort,
especially at slower speeds, with an OEM shift knob. The
counter weight of a slightly heavier knob took care of this
characteristic, in fact, I would highly suggest that you package in
a new shift knob should you purchase an OCTANE short shift kit.
Caution though on using a knob that is too heavy, I had a loaner
from a friend that smoothed out the shifting but the top heavy
nature made it quite easy to get ahead of yourself in shifting and
it basically just felt too darn heavy.
After using the
OCTANE short shift kit for a bit over a month and around 2,000
miles, I can say I am very pleased with the product. The
adapting to the reduce throw, balanced feel and lack of vagueness
was an easy transition…one which I would suggest that anyone go
for whether you have a standard shift package or the “short
lever” OEM version. The set up of the Rogue product gives
you the benefit of a SSK without going to far in the direction of a
too short and laborious shift. Throw in the professional
treatment and prompt ordering/shipment process and you have a win
win proposition on your hands.
“Dr. Phil” on Bimmerfest.com
2003 330i ZHP
Mount Joy, PA
|I just took my first drive with the
OCTANE SSK installed in my 540. Your product really lives up to the claims made by your customers and exceeds the
expectations you describe in your literature. I think I am going to really
enjoy this modification to my car.
BMW E39 540
|Thank you and Rogue Engineering again for such a well engineered
[OCTANE] shift kit. I was previously using the shifter lever
from a 1995 BMW E36 M3, I thought that felt good, but your kit is light years ahead
in feel and throw civility.
1988 BMW E30 M3
|I just wanted to
write and comment on your new OCTANE SSK. I received
the unit a few days ago and was able to put it in prior to a Drivers
Ed event (thanks for getting it out to me in time). I would
like to say that the feel and precision of shifts are terrific!
Shifts take the same effort as a stock set-up requires. The
shift "gates" are much more well defined now. I
especially like the 3-4 shift under power, it feels much more direct
and connected. There is a solid feel of engagement when you
hit 4th gear. There is also no slop in the shift lever any
more. I used to be able to wiggle the shifter from side to
side when it was in gear, no more. I am sure that is due in
part to the new carrier bushings.
The shorter throw is nice as well, shorter than stock but enough
travel so you know you're shifting. It's funny the short throw
is not on the top of the list of things I like about the OCTANE
SSK. I am really mostly impressed with the new feel the
shifter has over stock. Finally, there is no additional noise
or vibration in the cabin. I was afraid a SSK might transmit
gear noise, but I have not heard anything that is different then
stock. Great job. I am very happy with the product.
1995 BMW E36 M3
been two weeks now since I've had my Rogue Engineering short shifter
kit and weighted selector rod (WSR) installed. Thought I'd give as
complete a review as possible.
Usual Disclaimer: I'm a product whore. No affiliation with RE. I
call it the way I see it.
Short Review: If you don’t already have a SS, buy this combo now.
If you already have a SS, buy the WSR. Both pieces are that good.
Background: My last car was a Honda S2000. This car, the Miata, and
perhaps the Type R, have the best shifters on the planet IMHO. Snick
snick quick. Short, almost too short of a throw with very positive
engagement. When I got my M3, I was disappointed with the shifting.
. . Long throws and sort of rubbery. Felt like a truck in comparison
to my S2000. If you haven't driven an S2000, do so and you'll know
what I mean.+
Kit evaluation: First, I brought the kit to the shop that I use, a
shop full of BMW hard core racer types that are active in the BMW
CCA. They've done a ton of SS installs, including Stygar and [another company]
kits. If you are in Austin, this is Terry Sayther's shop. The funny
thing is, the tech I talked with is a tinkerer: he had his personal
car on a lift and had disassembled his shifter linkage, and was in
the process of modifying his current SS kit. While I did not fully
understand what he was doing (something about pivot relocation I
think), he was proud of his ingenuity. I then stated that I have
RE's kit and he wanted to check it out. He said that RE had already
done to their kit what he was trying to do! Then, he said that Rogue
went beyond what was necessary in terms of component quality,
completeness, and aesthetics (after all, one cannot see these parts
after installation). He was thoroughly impressed (his words, not
WSR evaluation: I have a first production run unit. Well built,
solid. Very heavy, as this is the whole point of the WSR. The same
tech that looked over the SS Kit said that in the VW world, most SS
kits come with a counterbalance to attenuate notchiness. E36 kits do
not b/c of the packaging concerns, just too tight down there. He
thought the WSR was a great idea. When you compare the WSR to the OE
selector rod, it's clear that the WSR is of superior quality, which
is typically not the norm in the aftermarket.
Install: I did not do this myself, after climbing under the car and
looking everything over. I was charged one hour ($72). The tech that
did the work said that the install went w/o drama.
First Drive: Holy shit, my car felt like my Honda. No kidding.
Slightly longer throws, but less notchiness than the S2000. I
couldn't have been happier. Engagement is more precise. Resistance
to engagement is only slightly higher than stock, thanks to the WSR
On the track: I got the car to the track the weekend after the
install. No drama, just precise shifting all weekend long.
Today: Still happy with the SS and WSR. But now, I'm so used to it,
I need to change something else. Argghh.
Other comparisons: The only other car I've driven with a SS kit is a
friends with the Stygar parts. The RE kit is quite a bit smoother
and more stock-like in the required effort to engage gears. More
'snick snick' if you will. Note, however, that this is not a totally
telling comparison since each kit was on different cars.
1997 E36 M3 Sedan
|Well, I have had
the RE SSK in my car for about two weeks now. During that time, I have
been able to scrutinize my shifter and observe many differences of the
First, lets start with the install. The shifter was personally
installed by the Ben Liaw himself, and it took him a mere 15 minutes
to do so. Thanks again Ben.
When I first put the car in reverse, I could have sworn I was in 1st
gear. That long throw from neutral center over all the way then up to
R was gone. :eek: Then, I drove back to RogueFest and decided to have
some fun with shifting. My first impression was a bit of a shock as
shifting had become so much shorter. It almost felt wrong, as if I was
not fully engaged in the gear.
Normally when I shifted with the stock shifter, the throws were just
that: a shift employed the services of almost every muscle on the
right side of my body. A very tedious task to say the least. But I was
a bit disappointed
when after the kit was put in, I still was moving my whole arm to shift.
Why that was, I will say later.
So, after Rogue Fest,
I had a nice 6 hour drive back to Pittsburgh, where I had plenty of time
to test those 3rd 4th and 5th gear shifts. You manual people know how
cumbersome that shift to 5th gear is. It is as if you are lunging to the
glove compartment to get into gear. The throw from 3rd to 4th is a easy
shift, but quite long. But with the SSK in and working, the throws
became far more enjoyable.
I have been talking about upshifting, but what about downshifting? Well,
downshifting happens a lot quicker as well. Before I said that the new
throws were not wrist flicks, and this is the reason why. I had become
so accustomed to shifting with so much effort that I never tried to
simply flick my wrist to shift. It was out of habit that I was still
using my body to shift even with the kit in. I then experimented tried
just flicking my wrist to shift, and what do you know, it worked ;).
If you are one of those people that slam the clutch pedal all the way
down when you shift, be ready to have to wait for the RPMs to fall to
catch up with your shift. A clutch stop would compliment the SSK
So back in Pittsburgh, I drive in the city and around town, shifting
often. The short throw becomes something you get used to, and almost now
a short throw. That's a good thing. So I almost forgot that I had a SSK
kit in until I drove my friend's E46 with stock setup. Boy what a
Something else. At first, it almost felt like I needed just a tiny bit
more effort to get the shifter into gear, but if you are shifting with
just a flick of your wrist, the shift is easy and quite smooth. It is
not as smooth as stock, but pretty close, and a lot smoother than
another kit that I had driven with.
Overall, I am extremely happy with the RE kit, it's well worth it.
This being the first product that I have put on from RE, and having
spoken to Mark and Ben personally regarding their products, I can say
this. Often times, we strive to get certain mods for our car that are a
bit too extreme for our daily driving habits. Huge 15 inch brakes and
race shifters are a bit excessive for our cars, no matter how hard it is
for us to admit it. The kit is definitely civil enough to drive everyday
but a significant improvement over stock.
So, I am happy. And I totally encourage anyone who is interested in
getting a SSK to drop Ben Liaw an email firstname.lastname@example.org
and inquire about a kit.
is a brief summary before the full write-up (which will be posted on
tUNINGwERKS). First, I'll comment on the install, then I'll comment on
the shift shorter itself. Install was performed on a '00 323ci. Info
on the SS from Rogue Engineering can be found here.
Install time according to RE: 30-90 minutes
Actual install time: 3 hours
Although the procedure is very straight-forward, I felt that RE could
have provided better instructions with the unit. Not a big deal -
easily remedied. I had a question about the install and e-mailed
Rogue. Someone got back to me within a day (on Sunday, to boot!).
There are two sticky areas that I ran into, and I assume others will
as well. First, while under the car, removing the nylon pivot is
difficult because the drive shaft is in the way. Spent a good hour
here trying to get it off. Second, removing the rod-bushing clip that
keeps the shift carrier in place, was very difficult. There's not a
lot of room to work with so it was hard to get enough leverage on
anything in order to pry up the clip. All of this will become clear
once I get photos up. E46fanatics has a nice write-up
on an Auto Solutions install, which was helpful.
Aside from those two issues, everything else was a snap. Gotta love
the feeling after a self-install.
I love this mod and I wish I would have done it sooner. Before I did
the upgrade, I thought all I would get is a reduced throw, but
instead, it's a different driving experience altogether. Shifts are
short and crisp. And although shifting is slightly notchier, I don't
mind it in the least. I just spent 20 minutes driving the car and had
the same 'just-got-my-car-SAG' on my face the whole time. There should
be an option for this at the dealer.
Ben: thanks again. Although it's too early to make a definitive
conclusion, I believe you have a fine product on your hands. I look
forward to doing business with you again. I feel comfortable sending
friends your way.
I'd be happy to answer any questions.... but after I go out for
2000 E46 323Ci