I've been trying to remove the starter. Comments on PCA.ORG indicate the starter may be removed without lowering the motor. I've been under the car for about six hours trying to get a breaker bar in place to apply enough torque to remove the top side 10mm hex nut. Seems impossible. Without a service manual I don't know if there are special tools for this or not.
Has anyone actually done this without lowering the motor?
That top 10mm starter nut is basicly impossible to get to under the car. You might not like my solution, but I do not have mega hours or alot of patience for a nut I can`t see or feel! In my mind removing the engine is NOT an option. My solution made the job, and future replacements MUCH easier. Solution: Pull up the glued back seat and carpet over the starter, CUT AN ACCESS HOLE at least one inch/25mm INLINE with the 10mm nut. Make the hole about 25mm so you can see with a flash light while engaging the nut. BE CAREFUL not to damage the multi lines routed nearby under the car. Use the large near by seat belt bolt as a reference point! Eyeball the seat belt bolt and you will see that the 10mm nut is about 4 inches above and about 2 inches right when looking at it from INSIDE the car. Drill a small pilot hole through sheet metal in the approximate location in front of the nut. Insert a stiff wire straight in through the hole, then look under the car to see if your inline with nut,if not adjust as needed. I then drilled 4 holes in about a one inch square, then cut the rest of metal between holes with jig saw. Reaching the nut is now EASY. Study the situation closely under the car when you first start, your access hole will be about 8 inches twords the center of the car from that group of metal lines routed under the car. Glue a sheet metal patch over the opening you can pull off for future access.
Reglue carpet and seat. Apply undercoat to opening under car to prevent rust.
I also removed the allen bolts securing axle to trans. Carefully disconnect CV joint/axle and swing out of the way in direction of front of car. Wire up and support weight of axle. Letting axle hang loose cold damage metal cup on wheel end.
Option #2 Take the car to the dealer and prepare to emty your bank account.