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Answered 2007-01-23 01:09:48

If a 96 Mercury Tracer Trio 1.9 is the same as a 1996 Mercury Tracer, the information is found on page 1-22 of the Haynes Repair Manual "Ford Escort and Mercury Tracer 1991 through 2000" To summarize, there is a connector on the manual transaxle that provides a mechanical sensor linkage to the speedometer and an electrical connector with two conductors. The connector is found at the back of the transaxle, accessible from the top. The connector must be removed in order to check the fluid level. I had to build a very long extension (about 21 inches) to use a 10 mm socket to loosen the small bolt. Once the bolt is removed, a clip can be slid off. Please note the orientation of the clip, perhaps by marking the top side with the notation "top." Then, the electrical connector has to be released. On my vehicle, the plastic retaining clips broke off when I attempted to release them. The electrical connector then lifts straight up. A wire clip holds the speedometer cable in the connector. I had to pry it out and then almost straighten the wire to reinsert it later. Make sure the area around the opening is clean of any dirt that could fall into the transaxle. Lift the connector straight up. I dried the plastic gear with a clean paper towel to check the fluid level. It should be even with the top of the plastic speedometer gear. According to the Lincoln-Mercury service person that I called today, the fluid should be replaced with MERCON-5. The 2006 Ford Service Bulletin did not explain why this should be done. (The drain plug is at the bottom of the differential.) Put it all back together. There is a cable that connects to the secondary oxygen sensor in the exhaust line. It should be secured to the plastic clip included with the connector to keep it from hitting the rotating driveshaft. Dr. Gene Nelson

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