99 Windstar VSS

I have a 99 Windstar that has had the "O/D lockout" indicator flashing on, with troubles shifting out of 1st gear. My local Autozone scanned it as
P0720. The local Ford dealer quoted me $300 labor & $60 part plus tax to replace the vehicle speed sensor (this in addition to $112 already charged for diagnostics).
The van is still sitting at the dealer's - I told them to hold off on doing any work, because this price seemed way too high to me. I'm not a skilled mechanic, but I have the shop manual, and unless I'm missing something, it doesn't look like this is a real involved job. The 95-98 Haynes manual said the crossover pipe has to be removed, but the specific 1999 Ford shop manual says nothing about having to drop any exhaust components. I talked to a local transmission shop and they said they thought the whole job would be around $225.
Is the dealer trying to hose me? What would be a reasonable charge to pay a mechanic to replace the VSS? Thanks for any advice you can give.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Tom Mc wrote:

code is P0500

speed sensor inputs a signal to the PCM, based on the speed of the output shaft of the transmission. The PCM compares this signal with the signal of the VSS or TCSS and determines correct tire size and axle gear ratio. Possible causes; OSS sensor circuit short to GND OSS sensor circuit short to PWR OSS sensor circuit open Damaged OSS sensor Damaged PCM Verify sensor signal output varies with vehicle speed. Output Shaft Speed (OSS) Sensor Removal
If equipped, turn the air suspension switch off. Disconnect the battery ground cable. Raise and support the vehicle. . Remove the heat shield. I can't post pictures but if you send me and email snipped-for-privacy@verizon.net I will Disconnect the output shaft speed (OSS) sensor connector.
Remove the OSS Sensor cover. Remove the connector. Remove the bolt. Remove the cover.
Remove the OSS sensor.
Installation
NOTE: When the battery (10655) is disconnected and reconnected, some abnormal drive symptoms may occur while the vehicle relearns its adaptive strategy.
Follow the removal procedure in reverse order
--
Message posted via CarKB.com
http://www.carkb.com/Uwe/Forums.aspx/ford/200607/1
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Motorsforum.com is a website by car enthusiasts for car enthusiasts. It is not affiliated with any of the car or spare part manufacturers or car dealers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.