2001 L300 V6 won't shift out of park. Brake lights work. ????
If your car cannot shift out of park, have some one monitor the brake lights for you, or if you are alone, put something on the pedal and walk around back.
1) If the brake lights are NOT on when the pedal is depressed, the sensor/switch which turns them on, and also opens the shift interlock, is not functioning because a) it is broken, b) it is dirty or c) it has become disconnected.
2) If this is your problem, get your head under the dash (move the seat back and sit in it like Neil Armstrong, bring a flashlight). There are three plastic push pins holding the bottom of the dash in, remove them and place in a safe container. Remove the lower dash cover, also remove the plastic hose for the heating A/C... it comes right off, no problem.
3) Look at the pedal, there are two switches. The one closest to the door is the offender. Sometimes wiggling it will cause it to operate, but without replacing it, you will not have brake lights... so don't do this just to get on the road, you may get rear ended. Twist the switch and pull it out. Now it will be easier to mess with. When the car is running with the e-brake on and the car in park, when the switch is operated, you can hear the clicking of the interlock. But if it's not happy, it will get hot, so don't mess with it too much.
4) Get a new switch, and install it. If you are stuck at home with no car and are technically minded and the brave type, you can take this switch apart and repair it for short term use, or just blast the heck out of it with some lithium grease. Try just the grease first because the switch is evil to take apart and repair... I DO NOT recommend trying to fix the switch. I did, but you might not be able to and will now have a car which cannot move out of park until you get a new switch and you will curse my name every minute you spend wallking to the dealership.
5) The brave person has ignored my warning and now has no idea what they have in front of them... so here goes.
*The switch consists of a top and a bottom, two springs, three contacts, a square-ish sliding part and the plunger.
*CAREFULLY pull the square slider off the plunger, yes, it ratchets, so don't break it.
*Pull the contacts out of the bottom. The Contact which sits on the plunger, actually goes underneath them, so when you put this all back together, put in the big spring first, the small contact, and then the two big contacts.
*Now, carefully slide the square-ish slider into the assembly so that it goes into the middle contact, these parts only goe in one way, so experiment with it, one is easy, the other isn't, just pay attention.
*Put the top part of the switch back on, yes, the plunger is still on the counter. This is easier this way.
*When it is all back together, push the plunger in a LITTLE BIT.
*Plug it back in to the wire assembly BEFORE installing it to make sure that it works.
6) Now, with the brake pedal in the resting position (as in, not pushed to the floor) push the switch into place, you will hear it ratchet as the plunger goes in. Check to see if when you press the pedal you get lights. Adjust the plunger so that you do.
7) Drive to the dealer BEFORE you put the dash back together, buy new switch, replace it, drive home, drink beer, put dash back together.
Taken from another site. Greg.
on Jan 18, 2015