Replacing X350 console/cup holder for cars with rear seat climate control option

Friends: I just finished replacing the console cover/cup holder on my ‘06 VDP. Easy. I ordered the part from this outfit It arrived in 6 days and was a perfect color match. My interior is billed as Mocha. The cover I ordered was described as champagne. What follows is a short tutorial on what I did, plus one tip to short circuit the process if your console spring still feels stiff enough. I can’t figure out how to incorporate pictures, so my description will have to suffice.

1: gently pry up the wood shift surround, starting at the front where there’s room at the ash tray to get your fingers under the surround.

2: There are 4 T-30 screws, two in front, and two in the rear under the removable air duct covered on either side of the transmission hump. Slide the front seats forward to gain access to the rear screws.

3: gently pry the rear climate control off and remove the electrical connectors. There is one black/red two-wire one coming off the AC temp display for which the connector is inside the console. Just trace it back.

4: lift console from the rear and pull back to extract at an angle. (Installation is the reverse.)

5: There are 5 T-20 screws inside the console holding the spring/hinge device, one of them at the back of the console in the center of the black metal bracket. Loosen the most forward screws first, followed by the two closest together, then the final one. Extract the old cover with its broken cup holder. You will have to pop free the plastic “storage” bin that sits atop the console.

6: Reverse this. You need to carefully angle the storage bin into position while keeping it roughly aligned with the new cover as the first two screws/guide pins need to line up with openings/receptacles on the underside of the storage bin cover. You can ease the process a little by installing the 5th screw, the singleton, loosely in the frame to try to hold the frame in place. Finish up by getting the two screws closest to each other seated, then hand tighten all five with the T-20 Torx bit.

7: reinstall the console, keeping seat belts out of the way by fastening them. Remember, have the front of the console lower than the rear. It helps to sit in front to guide the front guide pins into place, then lowering the rear of the console. A good shove from the back seat will get the console firmly into place. Reinstall electrics and pop the climate panel back into place. Be sure to get the Bluetooth cable reconnected. Best to route it down the left side of the console into the rear console area.

It took me about 2 hours to do this. The shortcut is: the underside of the old cover/cup holder and the new one have little black plugs you can pull out to reveal two T-10 screws at the back and 2 more toward the front. If you’re satisfied with the strength of your existing spring/hinge you should be able to unfasten the bottom cover, thus freeing the part of the hinge assembly that sits inside the cover, then reinstall the new cover/cup holder over that frame and refasten the plastic base with the screws. I was advised to go the full replacement routed, and did.